I still remember the uniformed chant and our little legs flogging our buttocks as we ran after your iron horse “Mersediz” you called it. It was a very funny name for a beast of burden but I watched your lips expand every time you said it. I remember hearing stories about how you conquered America and made white men your houseboy but on that day when you arrived the village, I believed it more than I believed in our gods. You spoke in the language of the white man, you wore clothes like them and ate their meals. Your fingers no longer burnt from the heat of eba, you conquered that with your metal stick just as you conquered the white man. Your shoes shone like coal and you smelt like fresh mangoes. You were the man the entire village wanted to be except Oguechi who strongly believes that the Americans brainwashed you and you are a mere puppet on their string. But then again what are the words of a drunk ogogoro seller to an enchantment of an entire village.
I was utterly stunned by your eloquence and poise, especially when you had a cigarette burning at the edge of your mouth, a newspaper in hand and a steaming cup of tea in the other. Unlike other times when you returned with candies and clothes this time you returned with Sarah. An American teacher who also smelt like mangoes.
“She will educate you all and save this village from illiteracy” you announced as we circled your Mersediz.
Kweku you had us charmed; you coated shit with gold and told us it was worth fortunes. There isn’t a day that goes bye that I don’t think of you. You were only a black man by your skin but your heart was as callous as the White Man. You promised to save our village and free us from illiteracy but you sold your own people for black boots and iron horses. Sarah was no savior but an instrument of deception. Secretly, slowly and steadily you carried my brothers away to be slaves for your own kind. Kweku! You deceptive wannabe, Oguechi was always right about you. I should have spotted this from your wide smiles and twisted tales but I was only a boy of ten heavily infatuated with your morning tea and white socks. I hope that one day you find your way back so that you will be killed like that Jesus you talk about!