“BANKE!!!!! BANKE!!!!! BANKE!!!”……..
The voice of mama Banke echoed in the small match-box looking apartment, shared in segments of 5-10 (likely to a dorm setting) and popularly referred to as “face me I face you”, located in the dense areas of Oshodi Lagos…
A squint and fragile voice replied.
“I am coming ma”
By this time, mama Banke is now impatient and standing legs at ease, one hand on her waist and the other rhythmically tapping her gown, as she awaits her daughter, who has no idea what could warrant such addressing.
“Yes ma”, Banke answers (now in the same room with her ‘vibrating’ mother)
A loud noise is heard as Banke’s mother’s palm lands on the right side of Banke’s cheek, sending her flat to the ground.
“Banke!!! Banke!!! How many times did I call you? You this silly child”
No response is heard, only faint subs as Banke now cries on the floor, while holding the ‘abused’ cheek with her hand.
“Banke!!! Se ko gbo mi se??!! Didn’t you hear me?? Abi are you now deaf young Lady???” Banke’s mum asks sarcastically, without a pitch dropping indicating her anger subsiding. (Now, Banke’s mum was the typical Lagosian; enlightened, well spoken but loved her Yoruba and every now and then, would infuse it to magnify her point).
“How many times did I call you??”
“Twice mummy, two times ma” Banke answers with a trembling and almost confused voice.
“This child! This child! What have I ever done to you to deserve this ehn??” She asks rhetorically.
“Look around you; are you encouraged??? What exactly are you seeing that excites you??? Oh! Is it the fact that you can still attend school?? Is that what has given you the audacity to go get yourself pregnant??”
At this point, Banke’s heartbeat stops! She froze.
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