LOUD WHISPERS: We Are Still Here


                  (In commemoration of International Women’s Day, March 8th)

 

Please don’t look for us, we are not lost

We have not been stolen away

We are still here

Even when they came for so many of us

And shoved us into the deep belly of the devil

There are still enough of us left

We are still here

Now they have come for more

From Chibok to Dapchi

Our mothers and fathers wail and gnash their teeth

Hoping, praying, fasting, beseeching for our return

We are still here

We are here in the eyes of the little girl

whose innocence was bloodied by the hands of her favourite uncle

We are here in the pain of the once vibrant Jenny

who has become a shadow of herself because some boys wanted to ‘teach her a lesson’

We exist in the fear of the widow who has been left with four mouths to feed

with no money, a temporary roof and vultures circling her home

We can be found in the sheer agony of poor Simon

Clinging to his wife Stella as she dies trying to bring their child into the world

Simon has no wife or child to comfort him

One day every year, we are remembered

There are a lot of speeches, rallies and marches

We sing, dance and clap

And our big men and women come out to tell us a lot of nice things

Then we all go away till the next year comes

We are still here

Waiting for the day when the pain will stop

When we will not have to see the desperate hunger in the eyes of our children

We never want to see the day when the thought will cross our minds

to sell one to feed five

Or the day when we will finally have to trade with the only thing we have

so that our children can go to school

We die a thousand deaths

As we see our children, men and women tied down like goats for sale in foreign lands

We are waiting for the time when we will have enough value to be considered as human beings

As people who do not get stolen away from their homes or schools

Or bartered, battered and disposed of

Cars, bicycles, phones or chickens, goats and cows get stolen

We are no different from all these things

The next time you hear we have been stolen away

remember the real reason

There are those who think we do not matter

we will always be lesser beings in their eyes

They don’t care, don’t give a damn and know they will get away with it

So, they steal us away

Not just from Chibok and Dapchi, but from so many other places

Yet no matter how many of us they take away

We are still here

In the bodies, minds and spirits

of all the millions who come together one day every year

Those who remain present but are actually absent

Those who are not missing but are well and truly lost

We will always be here

We will no longer be silent while they steal us away night and day

We will no longer speak in whispers

We know there are enough of us to make a difference

With solidarity, perseverance, courage and determination

We will make sure that everyone knows

We are still here.

 

 

Bisi Adeleye-Fayemi is a Gender Specialist, Social Entrepreneur and Writer. She is the Founder of Abovewhispers.com, an online community for women. She can be reached at BAF@abovewhispers.com

 

 

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13 Responses to LOUD WHISPERS: We Are Still Here

  1. omilola Adeleke. March 5, 2018 at 11:53 am

    Women are the strongest creatures in the universe. Our strength, our courage and hope is beyond a rock

    Reply
  2. Femi Diipo March 6, 2018 at 6:55 am

    And we are here with you, our mothers, wife and sisters. We will never leave you alone. You deserve more than just a day to he celebrated, hence, we’ll celebrate you all our life

    Reply
  3. Dom Dom March 6, 2018 at 6:59 am

    Wonderful thoughts. The impact and relevance of women in out society can never be over emphasized. We celebrate you all and we will never give up till all men know and realize how valuable you are and none will ever abuse or take you for granted ever again. We celebrate you still and always here with you

    Reply
  4. DSEED March 6, 2018 at 4:56 pm

    Happy Women Day. We celebrate ourselves. The point is that we wouldn’t stop whispering aloud until we see the changes we desired for. Here we are with you ma.

    Reply
  5. Victor Udoh March 7, 2018 at 4:17 am

    We are here with all our women, standing in the gap to fight for what is rightfully theirs. We will keep this fight up till the day of glory. Indeed, women are wonderful beings from God.

    Reply
  6. Bisi Alawode March 7, 2018 at 4:19 am

    And this brought tears to my eyes. I hope we find solace, victory someday. I hope this struggle we go through will soon be over. God bless all the women activists, God bless you Erelu.

    Reply
  7. Chioma George March 7, 2018 at 4:24 am

    We should all stand and speak up. This is a collective responsibility. Our women are important, our girls are crucial. Molestations, rape, humiliation shouldn’t be the story of any woman anymore. This is wakeup call for everyone right here, let’s share this even as we celebrate women. Thanks for this heart steering write-up ma.

    Reply
  8. Aderanti Esther March 7, 2018 at 4:29 am

    May we find an end to this struggle. When I heard about the Dapchi Girls, I went broken and cried. We haven’t sorted out Chibok girls and now we have this? I don’t know if we have a lot to celebrate or much of lots of work and awakening to do.

    Reply
  9. veronica Imaseun March 7, 2018 at 4:30 am

    Those who are not missing but are well and truly lost, that line made me cry. We are still here in this struggle, in this fight, in this brick of broken edges. May we find peace.

    Reply
  10. Victoria E March 7, 2018 at 4:35 am

    The question is, how did we get here? When did we become this minute to be tossed and trampled on? When did we become so inconsequential to be fought for? The time is now for women to stand together, you don’t have to be in the social justice space to do this. Every woman should stand up and cry out!

    Reply
  11. Eric Onuoha March 7, 2018 at 9:29 am

    What an amazing speech. I salute all the women in the world. Please continue to be here because our society need you. Happy Women’s day

    Reply
  12. Eric Onuoha March 7, 2018 at 9:32 am

    What an amazing speech. I salute all the women in the world. Please continue to be here because our society need you. May justice be served on all the evil perpetrators. Happy Women’s day

    Reply
  13. Olakunle Olajide March 7, 2018 at 10:58 am

    This is so emotional. This poem jusr reinstated in my heart that women are stronger than what any man could imagine.
    From Chibok to Dapchi, this country is in a state of mess. The country can’t even raise the flag half mast for these young ladies. I wonder what would happen if our leaders’ children were kidnapped.
    In all of this “Women are still here” and we are here with you.

    Reply

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