A Letter to Sanity By James Ogunjimi
It is with a heavy heart that I write to you today. Ever since you left, things have not been the same. Old and reasonable men have been acting like children and throwing daily tantrums. Otherwise wise men have thrown wisdom to the wind while they march unabashedly on the path of ignorance.
Sanity, how could you do this to us? How could you leave us hanging in the wind and take off? How could you perform surgery on great thinkers and replace their brains with a large mound of fufu and noodles? What is our crime that you should take the greatest of our fighters and transform them to zombies?
Sanity, they say no nation can survive without you breathing powerfully into the lives of their youths. But sanity, you looked at our youths and rather than breathe fire, courage and wisdom into them; you sneezed cowardice and complacency into them. Little wonder, they belch contentedly where they should be Oliver Twists and are satisfied with their ‘e go better’ and ‘gbogbo e si ma make sense’ ideology.
Sanity, what will it take to bring you back? If sacrifices are required, we would give up a thousand cows and harvest basketfulls of palm kernels. We would climb the tallest trees and bring to you the freshest of palm wine. We would look around at those who have been playing ludo with our lives since 1960 and donate them to you to do with them as you please.
Sanity, no nation should live a single day without you. But we have, and the whole world can see. We reek of everything the world detests, and still grapple with things other nations left behind aeons ago. The world spends less on entertainment now; they just ask their people to look at us; our lives and actions are entertainment enough; we have become laughing stocks.
Sanity, if a thousand chains are holding you, may Sango’s thunder break them and may the fire from his nostrils melt them off. If a thousand armies try to stop you, may Ogun have a field day against them and bathe jubilantly with their blood. If a thousand marabouts gather and make incantations to stop you, may Orunmila silence them and bring you home to us.
Sanity, we have lived too long without your direction and influence. We have lived too long without your light; groping, frustrated, in the darkness of this world. We have lived too long without the feel of your strong arms; rising and falling, in the muddy paths of this world.
Come, sanity, come to us quickly. Do not let us live one more day without you by our side. Come, do not let us take another breath without you breathing courage and wisdom into us. Come, sanity, we have endured too long the pain of your absence. Come, sanity, we eagerly await your return.