The Goats Have Left The Barnyard, By Presley Akhigbe
The activities of goats in a barnyard flowing with milk and honey. No, sorry, filled with lots of milk and yams. Yams? Oh yes, yams…
The he-goat had been indifferent to other goats that were having a field day disrupting the structures of the barn where they were occupying. These goats in their usual characteristics had demonstrated that they were animals, so they could not possibly change their ways. A leopard cannot change its spots, so they say- but these were not leopards, they were mere goats, they chewed and chewed everything in their barn. Even drinking and swallowing the milk flowing in the barn. They eat and drink until most of them start to suffer from constipation and mouth diarrhea from overfeeding.
Once when I was in the Polytechnic in 1998 (Osun State Poly Iree precisely), a student who was organizing his credentials at the corridor of his apartment had to quickly go inside his room to get something. Before he returned back to continue arranging his documents, a goat had started chewing his SSCE WAEC statement of result. The student was so shocked and filled with rage at the goat and contemplated killing the goat. But that would not bring back his credential. Reporting the goat to the owner too would not solve the problem. Well, in the midst of all the brouhaha, someone brought hot water and poured on the goat as punishment for eating the result. Soon we were told that the goats around the area were unusual and they eat paper, money, clothing, bags and all food stock kept negligently. It was a sour experience but the question that some wise people asked then was, why did you allow goats into your house? They will eat your yams or even results.
Back to our tale.
Having constructed a barn yard, it was only right that strong characters were kept in the yard so that all the varieties of yams are not eaten and the milk, squandered. Somehow, due to negligence and backdoor entry tricks, the goats found themselves occupying the barn. Ill prepared and clueless. These goats went ahead to eat every yam in the yard and like the goats in my polytechnic, which they were, they pounced on products like paper, clothes and other resources in the settlement. Then the he-goat, who was supposed to monitor others, exhibited greatness in emptiness of ideas, blaming other goats for eating yams. Of course it wasn’t the yam eating alone that was the problem, these goats turn blind eyes when wolves were killing and eating all their babies. They slept while the entire yard was experiencing failure. When they were not sleeping, they were either feasting on yams or just hopping aimlessly in the yard as if they were having a party or perhaps they were having a party over the attacks of wolves on their kinds. Goats. “Sighs”
“Mess the Barn”. Could that be the noise that goats make? As if feasting on the barn yams and being indifferent to wolves was not bad enough, the goats destroyed every part of the settlement. They desecrate its foundations like spoilt animals which they were; they even drank milk which served the entire settlement. Terrible animals. Where they never groomed? Stories emanate that the he-goat came from the Animal farm but even till now there are no records in George Owell s Animal farm of a he-goat.
What is more? While the he-goat was supervising yam eating with his goat friends, the she-goat, pigs and rabid dogs were busy disturbing with obnoxious noise, irritating the lives out of other settlers. Hmmm. How on earth did the settlers allow all these to happen in the first place? Very unfortunate.
But like a Cinderella story, it ended well. Having left the goats to mess up the barn for five days, some say six days. The number of days matters not as lots of mess had been done already. The barn owners’ chased all the goats with broom- not with hot water like was done in my polytechnic. They chased the goats far away to riverine area and in place brought a lion in the barn. A lion loved, feared and respected. One that carries himself like a king. He has all the attributes to maintain order in the settlement.
There was great jubilation that the goats have left. No more goats eating yams and even drinking milk belonging to all. The lion is here. Welcome to the lion King.