Requiem for the Disarmed Forces

I have always admired soldiers
Just like I have always ignored Valentine’s Day
But on the day, I make a statement.

Not because my silence isn’t sweetin me
Not because I am obligated to speak.

I have always admired soldiers,
as their sacrifices vary
from patriotism to sheer employment
from investment to raw adventure

I don’t just remember soldiers on a remembrance day,
especially because I am Igbo
a tribe that has forgiven genocide and discrimination.
I don’t just remember soldiers on a remembrance day,
especially because I am Nigerian
a country that has forgiven military dictatorships and coups.

I don’t just remember soldiers on a remembrance day,
especially because my friend Eric is a soldier,
a man that shares history, hopes and happiness with me.

I remember soldiers,
the fallen and the standing,
especially because guard-room is real,
and no reward is enough for the soldier;
Except for Freedom and the heat of battle.

From God is true freedom…
but when it comes to battle,
Arise, Oh compatriots…

The Niel
©2020

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