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Kofi

Kofi

There is a lone figure seated on a long stretch of a log just by the river, my son, Kofi.
His body doesn't only cast shadows in the silvery lines of the moon, he is also a shadow of his former self.
Stripped away is his toothy grin and boyish looks.
Washed away is his look of innocence
Snatched from his very own hands is his life, even before he got around to live it.
“A man dosent cry”
“A man dosent show any form of emotion”
“A man never talks about his problems”
These are the words Kofi seems to be muttering under his breath as I approached him.

What have they done to my son?

Kofi Osei Amaniapong
A son named after his own father
The midwife who delivered him said he came out with a smile on his face, before letting out a lusty cry.
He was a happy boy
He took pleasure in the simplest of things.
Then walked in life dressed in the form of tradition and custom.
They took my son away from me and in return gave me a walking parody of assumed responsibilities.

What have they done to my son?


“Kofi”? I muttered,
Afraid to tap him out of his reverie lest I startle him.
He kept on muttering his repeated mantra.
My heart sunk with each word mentioned
I looked into his eyes and there it was
The beginnings of wariness,
Frustrations and unshed tears.

What have they done to my son?

Eyes are the windows to the soul they say, but with each word being repeated Kofi’s window seemed to be closing with resolution and finally resignation..
Promises that was made by his forefathers before him.
Resolutions that was repeated year in and year out.
Responsibilities pushed around and around
Now,
Kofi.
They told him he had to be a man.

What have they done to my son?

I tapped him, gently.
Kofi blinked his tears away,
Straightened his spine
Pasted a smile on his face
“No Kofi you don’t have to be a man with me”
I should have said that
But I couldn’t
Kofi

What have they done to you?

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