The Return of the Coward

Teshie is a coastal town in the Ledzokuku-Krowor Municipal district, a district in the Greater Accra Region of south eastern Ghana. It is the ninth most populous settlement in Ghana, in terms of population, with a population of 171,875 people. It is also believed that Teshie turned 300 years in 2011. The town is rich in diversity as a result of the country’s current democracy and development program. Every August the town celebrates the Homowo festival.

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Woke up hopeful for a perfect day
Permitting into through my windows the morning sun’s ray.
Taking a deep breath I stretch myself.
Smoke from outside interrupts my breathing.
Ok this is Teshie. We smoke fish every morning.
Trying to think about my day.
Thinking interrupted by shouts of anger.
Nothing serious I must warn.
A typical day in Teshie involves shouting.
And sometimes fighting too.

For a very strange reason I decide to follow this morning’s riot.
Rather Unusual of me
And I’m so angered, angered by a coward.
A coward who denied a pregnancy 24 years ago.
Left a 17year girl to find her feet alone
Amidst the shame and struggle
The hunger and poverty that prevailed.
A coward who was not bold enough to claim ownership of the proceeds from the very land he ploughed.
The dog with its tail between the thighs, he runs away.
Coward!

24 years later he is back.
To apologize and take back the baby,
No rejected son, a full grown man.
Because rumors say ‘his son’ is now wealthy
Rumors had it right because ‘his son’ really is.
This shameless coward has returned, hiding for 24 years.
Now the storm is over,
He is back to face the calm.
With bottles of schnapps and a ram.
With a noble delegation of cowards.
To perform Kusum.
For what? And for who?
I say send them back!

17 years old Atswεε dropped out of school.
Joined the fish mongers association of Teshie.
Tirelessly saw her son through primary education.
Sold shoes and bags alongside smoked fish to see him through secondary education.
Took loans from banks to put him in tertiary.
Sold fish to pay the loans.
Sold her jewelry and cloths to make her son comfortable through tertiary.
Now her son, an engineer, a young achiever, her only crown is making her proud.
Cleaning her tears and paying off the years of hardship.
Bringing her all the pleasures she denied herself.
Crowning her with pride and smiles.
Once upon a time, society’s laughing stock is now the envy of many.

Don’t get calm yet.
Because the coward is back
To claim the seed he swore by the heavens he did not sow.
Such nonsense!
May the gods strike him!
What has tradition got to say?
The old woman has to answer that.

But Atswεε has been her own man for 24years.
She needs no man.
This boy needs no father now.
They are okay and content.
But this coward of a man,
I leave him for God
I’m taking this fight personal.
Don’t get me wrong.
It’s my boyfriend we are talking about.
#Teshie.

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26 thoughts on “The Return of the Coward”

  1. “A coward who was not bold enough to claim ownership of the proceeds from the very land he ploughed.”

    That line summarized everything. Sometimes we forget these stories still exist and well done for putting it together in ink.

    As always, keep up the amazing work.

    Cheers

  2. He is really a coward
    I also love de way de gal never gave up or to think of aborting this should also sever as a lesson to those who abort their pregnancy without thinking of wat de child might become in future and u the author as well u did write something interesting and full on lessons.

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