LOUD WHISPERS: This Sacred Land

(For Odia Ofeimun)

Last week, a friend of mine dug up an old poem I wrote a few years ago and circulated it on Whatsapp Platforms. According to him, the poem is very relevant to what is happening in the country today and Ekiti in particular. I wrote the poem in 2010 for the 60th birthday of  my big brother, friend and mentor of many years, Odia Ofeimun. The poem can be found in my collection of essays, ‘Speaking for Myself: Perspectives on Political, Social and Feminist Activism in Africa’, Amandla Inc, 2013. I admit that sharing this also helps my body and mind recalibrate as I try to get back to ‘normal’!

This land is ours
with all its glory, beauty, danger and chaos
This land is ours
and we cling to it
Even as we see the blood on the lips of the vultures who prod and peck at our throats, so they can suck even more blood
This land is ours
and we dance on it, to rhythms old and new,
with graceful limbs linked across generations
all bound together with the promise of tomorrow and the hope of redemption
This land is ours
and we reclaim what is ours with our voices
with our blood and with our souls
This land is ours
And the air we breathe on it is too sacred for those without souls to inhale
This land is ours
 And it shall be free.

©  Bisi Adeleye-Fayemi April 2010

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: This Sacred Land

  1. Olakunle Olajide July 26, 2018 at 9:50 pm

    Yes oooo..The land has been reclaimed, time to make things better.

  2. Florence Jimoh July 27, 2018 at 7:04 am

    Sincerely, this is what we need right now. We need to remind ourselves that this land is ours We need to let those unscrupulous politicians understand that this Land is our land and not their father’s property. We have to work together to make Nigeria great again.

  3. Lauretta Idemudia July 27, 2018 at 7:08 am

    The air we breathe is too sacred for those without souls to inhale it, this line is the most powerful to me. Unfortunately, they are inhaling it, they are the ones destroying the good of our land. They are the ones killing us as a people and we have decided to watch and enjoy the game. We even laugh at their show of shame. As Nigerians, we have to stand together to send these people away. 2019 is here, we must stand and fight

  4. Victor Udoh July 27, 2018 at 8:03 am

    May God heal this Land.

  5. Chioma George July 27, 2018 at 8:14 am

    This is the best theme for such a time as this. A time when some people feel they own the country. A time when some people have decided to make the nation their stage play.

  6. Laura Dameson July 27, 2018 at 6:23 pm

    If we will come together and fight for this land, we will win the battle. If we will allow unity, we will make the land flourish because this land is becoming tiring by the day.

  7. Femi Diipo July 27, 2018 at 7:31 pm

    Yes the land is truly ours and there’s no running away from that fact. And indeed it shall be free indeed.

  8. Dom Dom July 27, 2018 at 7:33 pm

    What a poem! Short but deep. I’ve always had this thought, and an incredible faith that things shall get better in this country before I die. Now I feel so inspired

  9. Olushola Aderanti July 30, 2018 at 3:25 am

    Our God will visit this land and make it pure once again. I just hope we as citizens are ready for this cleansing.

  10. Olaniyi Desmond July 30, 2018 at 3:27 am

    If only we would stand together and fight for the soul of Nigeria. We are far gone. The whole of Africa is waiting for us, we don’t even recognise this land anymore. I just pray that we will be fine as a country.

  11. Victoria E July 30, 2018 at 3:28 am

    It is hard to call oneself a Nigerian nowadays but with poems like this, we see the dire need to wake up and fight for this country.

  12. Eric Onuoha July 30, 2018 at 1:40 pm

    Truly the land is ours. No matter the unpleasant things that have happened,it shall be healed and redeemed

  13. DSEED July 30, 2018 at 1:52 pm

    It can’t be denied the land belong to us. Most of the time we feel so handicap to make changes on the land. May the lord heal our land and we shall never be desolate.


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