The emblems of change

NigeriaFlagPicture1The neighbourhood rang with a noiseless eerie echo; a deep throbbing silence haunting the shadows and the stars, a provocative mutedness intruding upon that big blanket of darkness with numbing portents.

There was a certain awfulness everywhere. There was that resounding uniform stillness; there was that drab vacant hugeness, the sad hollow ring of inanimate emptiness, the gripping, voided vocality, the loose, pervading cheerlessness hovering everywhere across the muted earth. Nothing stirred. Nothing moved. An enveloping stillness ruled everywhere.

The darkness is unceasing, implacable, thoroughly insistent in its mournful largeness. Nothing is roused in this neighbourhood of woe. None is intimated in a living force. The silence is as grim and haunting as the condemned wilderness of the dead.

There is no barking of the stray dogs. There is no bleating of the wandering goats. Even the chirping insects in their provocative lunacy have become hoarse, drained of life and energy, stripped of their droning habitual tempest.

The silence is unforgiven. The carapace of darkness challenges the observer with perplexing incomprehension, haunting the spirit and the soul, plumbing the utmost reaches of the human recesses, prompting one to wonder whether this neighbourhood, this part of the world has suddenly yielded into a sombrous vacuum, swallowed by some impenetrable grief that stole its joy.

Everywhere doors are shuttered firm, gates bolted in frightening unperceived locks.
Behind these new chains, behind this iron-wrought imprisonment, unseen faces huddle in solitary, silent curses and violent execrations against the muddled arbiters of the moment.

In biting fury and storm, in withering contempt and savage discord, they mope and rail in mystifying helplessness, wrestling with the howling miseries inflicted by a benighted power.

In the wastes and the sufferings of that neighbourhood, in the grim surfaces of the harsh darkness of that deserted perch of a troubled nation where hunger and deprivations lurk at every door, where a docile, defeated throng wander in frozen isolation, there you behold a searing national allegory of chaotic imbalance in the steering of the ship of state. There you behold the savaging indications of a failed indifferent power, stripped of any coherent organic mission, voided of any structural enlightenment, callous in its stoic centrality, vainly resolved on vengeance and primitive crudity.

The dislocations are everywhere in intrusive annoyances. From the tragic rumble and chaos of the endless, eternal stretches and the forlorn search for the elusive fuel to the infinite wait of exhausted commuters stranded on lonely roads, smitten and harried by a blighting sun – to the extorting markets and the famished homes – from the unemployment rows to the shattered, defeated lives in alienated hovels far beneath a thousand bridges, there their CHANGE looms and persists in suffocating triumph, negating endurance and hard work, nullifying patriotic purity.

Now, here we are in one giant muddle of lingering and seemingly interminable confrontations. Here there is a frozen will and logic at the highest totem of power. Here there is that stark, degrading inability to withdraw from the failed agenda, to reorganise and rectify the bankrupt primitive visions.

The Caudillo and his sophomoric team blissfully drift and waddle in the same thwarted pursuit, chained to the same abysmal spot, disturbingly inelegant in their crude and perverse attempt to transfer all affronting ills to the fallen man of yesterday.

They accept no responsibilities. They take no blame. They acknowledge no failings.
They dither and circle in deranged excuses, assuming faultless distancing. But no one is fooled. Their fraudulent largeness is now an open book. Even their most adroit liar has lost his equivocating swiftness. He is now hoarse, drowned in the pool of his own fraud.

This chain must be broken lest the people break. This horrible fixity of assuming no blame, of lolling in escapist wonderland why squalor and want assail every home must yield to rational articulations before the consuming tempest and the storm.

Even now the omens are abroad, fast and swift. The dark portents hover beyond the shadows and the blighting sun. Alas, the furies are lurking everywhere in concealed ponderings.

And yet they perceive no tumult. And yet they discern no corrective indications. They shuffle and muddle in incoherent distant majesty, vain in their ignorance, annoying in their deepening incompetence.

And as for the people and their wracking torment, something has to give!

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