Aniebiet Effiong: “NUMBER 60 & boys who walked away”

NUMBER 60 & boys who walked away


They are out to haunt us all. This I know. I’ve always known. Many of us too know this. But sometimes we pretend not to. Where do I begin this rant? You’ve been busy jumping and jubilating for victory. I laugh. You think you’ve won? You feel they want to see you win? Wait for a reformation. Maybe in the next six month or so when you all might have forgotten everything, you’ll all be shot again. One by one.


A woman’s head, her body, and soul is on fire,

She runs round everywhere, wailing her voice away

She says her only son was shot dead by some men

with faces like demon,

She cries till her eyes runs out of tears.

This is what happened,

Many years ago, lets say seventeen or eighteen, or so,

She birthed a beautiful creature, eyes full of

Salvation, redemption and hope

But today the young lad lies stone cold – gone in a


They said he was too young to drive his Father’s car,

They said he appeared so S L E E K,

They said he looked like a rogue so they had to shape

his life short.

A boy says he dislikes number 60, he says that,

– Number sixty is betrayal, corruption, shame, hatred, bloodshed, death.

– Number sixty is hunger amidst plenty

– Number sixty is an old rich beggar

– Number sixty is being dependently independent.

– Number sixty is being shot for dreadlocks and I phones.

Somewhere here, a boy is carrying the weight of the whole world on his shoulders. Crumbling, Telling tales of how sour depression tastes on the tongue of a boy like him. He says it is better to die a peaceful death, than live a troubled life. While others are fighting to live.


The unknown grumblings of the transparent,

The unheard words of the broken,

The unseen tears of the cheerful,

A soul is sinking into depression. Who is there to sing a boy out of trauma?A boy is slowly dying alone. He says that, though they be many, yet no one has time to listen to his plights. So he decides to go to bed.

Dear sixty,

I wished never to distract you from the things that really mattered to you. I will always do so, even at my departure.


Though we gulp our grieves in tons, and

swallow our sorrows in drums,

We shall never hesitate to say our pledge

What are you looking for?