My Little Naija Street

My Little Naija Street

Another day, another time

Another glaring news headline

Another busy Naija street

That tells its story bit by bit

Each passing face a different tale

Measured out on a different scale:


The strange, ignorant passer-by

That amuses my idle eye,

The old sentry doing his beat

Smoking stubs in the noonday heat,


Jobless graduates at the Newsstands

Each morning, idly they stand

And analyse, ten topics each

From Pat’s English to Jona’s speech


An evangelist saunters by

Oversized shirt, incongruous tie

“The Master is still on the throne!”

He shouts into his megaphone


A coggling toddler showers dirt

At native fowls scratching earth

He’s looking smug as a stray dog,

His last victim, hobbles along


A young relentless applicant

Promptly leaves a cheap restaurant

The frown on his face spells regret

As he seeks the nearest toilet


A drunk waves his arms lazily

At houseflies buzzing noisily

He yawns, followed by a hiccup

Then giggles at his table top


Up in an internet café

Someone Google’s his school essay

A new Facebook user clicks “Like”

On her own status, and types “nice.”


A traffic warden holds his head

Frustration etched on his forehead

Taxis honking, traffic building

Exhausts smoking, drivers pleading


Street hawkers rant as they putter

“Fresh garden eggs!”  “Sachet water!”

School ends early, children head back

With full stomachs, empty food flasks


Busybodies in hair salons

Weave old tales and new gossip tunes

Housewives watch with rapt attention

Home videos, favourite station


Evening soccer, neighbourhood teams

Local champions, overseas dreams,

Loudspeakers steal the evening’s peace

Broadcasting the Midweek Service


A young author writes a story

A child recites a poem slowly

An old man is falling in love

With his grandchild, “sent from above”


High up, beneath the fading sun

The flag that makes these stories one

In peace and battle, thick and thin

Is ever waving green white green


26 thoughts on “My Little Naija Street” by Zazu (@literati)

  1. Well, don’t sink, “dirt and earth” go
    nor “applicant and restaurant.”
    Café and essay are incongruous,
    and ‘Like’ and ‘nice’ really quarrel
    in rhythmic anthem and cadence!

    Great job.

  2. Really nice poem that defines the word everyday…Well written, well done Zuaz…$ß.

  3. This one real “everyday poem” well done

  4. sounds to me so real, nice try, since u could actually capture everything happenning around, nice paid attention.

    1. @chisom yh. Glad it appeals to you in that way. Thanks a lot for reading.

  5. Wow! This is lovely. What event is it about?

    1. @nicolebassey thanks! Its about life na, the one we live everyday. As they say, Life’s an occasion; rise to it.

  6. Nice poem Zazu. And I like the rhythm. Well done.

    1. thank u @chemokopi It takes a good poet *like u* to kno a good poem, or note its rhythm for that matter.

    2. @Sibbylwhyte Esé ma. How u dey na? (and how’s my former classmate?)

    1. @francis I hope the judges think so too.

  7. @ostar thanks. Point noted.

  8. this one all my replies r getting misplaced…apologies everyone. Must be my phone.

  9. Oh my! That last stanza gathered it all together. Wonderful poem. Even though I don’t know how school kids go home with full stomachs.
    Beaut still abeg.

  10. The whole nation in a poem , great idea @literati , I really like it. “From Pat’s English to Jona’s speech” had to include that didn’t you ? !

  11. It truly captures the every day event. Good job.nice poem

  12. Why haven’t they given you the winning price yet?

    Wait… lemme make some calls…

    1. @kaycee wait na! haba. y should he win when I need the pay more? ;) @literati, hope you aint mind shey?
      cool piece, LONG and it attempted to capture the whole of naija in a piece and you rocked it. Commendable bhai. Impressive. :)

  13. I must say this is a winner. Well done great poet

  14. I’m beginning to think I am the only one who didn’t quite get the contest instructions right. Great poem, poet. Well done.

  15. Really love the poem…but school children going home with full stomach? I have never seen, especially not with food in flask from home.

  16. You always write well.

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