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Wannan Shi ne Nijeriya

by stevebayor


Born out of the machinations of strangers

Forged for their selfish benefits,

A cluster of many personalities -

She’s been through it all,

The good, the bad and the inhumanely ugly

Yet she has stood strong,

Bounded by such unprecedented spirit of unity

Her existence has been threatened,

Over and over again.

She has been bled and drained of water and blood,

It seems like she hangs on a thread,

And she still stands.

I hear her agony and pain

It’s all over the news,

Her suffering is visible to the blind

And audible to the deaf…

Slavery and servitude, Wars and poverty,

Negligence and deceit, corruption and violence -

She’s seen it all

She cries for help every day!

How did I get here? Who will save me now?

When will the pain end? Does it ever stop?

For how long can I survive?

How much time do I have left,

Before life is snuffed out of me,

And everything in me.


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66 Reviews


Points: 925
Reviews: 66

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Thu Jul 19, 2018 9:57 am
Traves wrote a review...



This seems like a patriot's lament at the state of his/her mother nation, and as a resident of an ex-British colony myself, I can relate to this poem.

The review-

1. This is unmetered poetry with no fixed rhyming scheme and that's completely fine. I think it allows the reader to focus more on the substance of the words rather than the rhyme. The tone is more of sadness, and less anger or call to action. Some patriotic poetry can make one pumped up, but this will make the reader thoughtful and pensive.

2. I like the beginning —
"Born out of the machinations of strangers

Forged for their selfish benefits,

A cluster of many personalities -"

^ this is enough to let the reader know that your nation has suffered gravely at the hand of imperialists, who carved up an entity of diverse elements arbitrarily. This is the perfect amount of information imo since you don't want to talk about the colonizers, rather the state of the nation itself.

3. I like the juxtaposition of hardships and the " Yet we live " vibe

"She’s been through it all,

The good, the bad and the inhumanely ugly

Yet she has stood strong,

Bounded by such unprecedented spirit of unity

Her existence has been threatened,

Over and over again.

She has been bled and drained of water and blood,

It seems like she hangs on a thread,

And she still stands."

3. The punctuation is the important part in the ending, as Radrook has already specified. Another alternative to double inverted commas for when the nation's personality speaks, is to use italics.

4. My only advice would be to try to use the freedom of poetic license, and cut some of the fluff words , to make lengths of nearby sentences more or less similar.For example -

a. "It seems like she hangs on a thread,

And she still stands."

can become

"she hangs on a thread,

And she still stands."

b. "I hear her agony and pain

It’s all over the news,

Her suffering is visible to the blind

And audible to the deaf…"

can become

"I hear her agony and pain

It's all over the news,

visible to the blind

And audible to the deaf…"

c. Some similar words or phrases could be replaced or cut like

i. "Slavery and servitude, Wars and poverty,

Negligence and deceit, corruption and violence -"

can become

"Slavery and strife, Wars and poverty,

Negligence and deceit, corruption and violence -"

or

"Slavery , wars and poverty,

Negligence, corruption and violence -"

ii. "How did I get here? Who will save me now?

When will the pain end? Does it ever stop?

For how long can I survive?"

can become

"How did I get here?

Who will save me now?

When will the pain end?

For how long can I survive?"

5. These are small suggestions mostly, and the poem still gives the subdued yet saddening and pensive vibe, if that was what you were aiming for. If you wanted to make it more dramatic or visceral, you could use slightly more gory imagery.
This was a good one!

That's all from my side and keep writing!




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841 Reviews


Points: 664
Reviews: 841

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Wed Jul 04, 2018 9:16 am
Radrook wrote a review...



Radrook here a once again to offer some suggestions.
Apologies if i offend. It isn’t my intention.
Please feel full free to cast aside all things you deem not helpful.
But if you do be sure its true by being extra careful.

That having been said:

Thanks for sharing this poem about how the speaker feels concerning the history of Nigeria. I like the use of personification. Also the emotions of empathy and admiration that the writer feels are clearly expressed. So if that was the poem's goes then it did a good job.

Suggestions

I personally would have enjoyed reading it more with regular punctuation, so my advice is based on that. When each line starts with a capital, I pause because I am not sure whether I am starting a new sentence or continuing the one above.

Sometimes I have to stop and start over because I make the mistake of continuing after a slight pause when I was suppose to come to a full stop. This is made more serious if we use commas instead of periods because commas are telling me to pause and not stop.

If I pause and then I find that I needed to stop, then I will have misread it and the reading experience can become choppy via a distracting stop-and-start sequence. So in my opinion, fixing this would be an improvement. Below are some punctuation and other suggestions that I feel will improve readability.


Born out of the machinations of strangers[,]

[f]orged for their selfish benefits,

[a] cluster of many personalities -

[s]he’s been through it all,

[t]he good, the bad[,] and the inhumanely ugly[.]

-

Yet she has stood strong,

[b]ounded by such unprecedented spirit of unity[.]

Her existence has been threatened,

[o]ver and over again.

She has been bled and drained of water and blood[.]

It seems like she hangs on a thread,

[a]nd she still stands.

-

I hear her agony and pain[!]

It’s all over the news[.]

Her suffering is visible to the blind

[a]nd audible to the deaf…

Slavery and servitude, [w]ars and poverty,

[n]egligence and deceit, corruption and violence -

She’s seen it all[.]

-

She cries for help every day!

“How did I get here? Who will save me now?

When will the pain end?

Does it ever stop?

For how long can I survive?

How much time do I have left

[b]efore life is snuffed out of me,

[a]nd everything in me.”


For how long can I survive?

How much time do I have left,

Before life is snuffed out of me,

And everything in me[?]"
---------------------------------

She’s seen it all[.]
---





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