A letter from a lady in prison who has sentenced been sentenced to death, to her friend Kelly who she kept her children in charge of.
Though we parted ways when the storm came and our feet were unable to carry the tides. But your thoughts still remain fresh in my mind. You are the lioness among lions. The dream aborted to save perishing lives. Perfection made among the stars of heaven.You are the rose waiting to be harvested by a man of peace. Though they said peace is an illusion but I still believe that one exist between mankind. I am lost in the lust of love. The love I see in front of me is lust not love. Men have seen the bleeding part of me and they have decided to punish me without cause. I have also made up my mind to see that I ruin the life of anyone who dares strike the madness in me.
Obinna left me in the middle of the road, Williams saw my end before moving on with his own life. Then Fidel came into my life like a dove and I married him without knowing that I am going into hell in the hands of my in-laws and my husband also. Of a truth, your friend has seen the other phase of life where lions are meant to watch over the lonely goat. I am not writing this so that you can pity me but I am writing so that it can serve as a lesson to you and to my growing children. To my pleas, I call for peace but was rejected in between life and death. But to those beating around the bush, tell them that I made it to the other side in sorrow and pains. You know how it started , you know how he treated me, you know how he pushed me to the wall before he envoked the madness in me. Tell my children that their mother was innocent, brave and stronger than they thought. I didn’t kill their father as the story went. I didn’t kill their father and they should know that. And the girls must know that men are not to be trusted with their lives. We share different perspective about life, women are more vulnerable than men. Though stronger emotionally but we are vulnerable. Where ever they find love, let them marry and move on with their lives. I may return home to them or not, I may come back home to them if fate decide but let them know that I didn’t contribute to the death of their father, friend.
That Friday night, he came back drunk as usual. Although we had a little misunderstanding before he left for work that day. We quarreled because I caught him with another woman in our bedroom. So, when I confronted him, he threatened to beat me up and my people won’t do him anything because they have sold me to him. We fought over the issue that morning before he left for work. So when he came back that night drunk. I saw him inside the bedroom sprawled on the floor like a snake that swallowed a human being. I tried moving him to the bed when I saw him like that, he pounced on me like a leopard. He started beating me like a child. He lifted up the table in the bedroom and was about to bash it on my head then, I pushed him aside with the table. He fell down on the ground, and the table hit him on the forehead, then he died writing on a piece of paper that I killed him. It was an act of self defence. I didn’t kill my husband. How could I kill a man that I loved so much despite his manners towards me? I didn’t kill him Kelly. This you must tell them, my children and the world if I didn’t survive this hardship in this prison yard.
My children you must take good care of, keep them away from those viper of in-laws.
In the bedroom are the document to my buildings in Lagos and Abuja. Go there tomorrow before his brothers arrive, pick up those document and leave. I trust the future of my children in your hands. Don’t fail me because I know that those people will never look their side. They will prefer going after their brother’s properties than my children. Uju came here yesterday threatening that he would kill all of them from the first to the last. And he meant it. I don’t want to lose those children, they are the only thing I am leaving behind. Kelly, if I didn’t make it out of this dungeon, guide my children. The boys must learn the value of love of woman to man, they must value time and learn the tradition and custom of our people. They must get married when they are ripe for marriage. Let them know that braveness does not lie in explanation, braveness is in the mind. They should be taught the value of creatures, no one should take anyone’s life. The girls must learn the act of motherhood. They must be educated on honesty and sex; teach them love and truth. If tomorrow doesn’t come, tell them that I care about them. Tell them I was not weak to the end, let them know the travails of their mother. In the other side of life are things precious than here.
If tomorrow comes and I am not here, one thing I must let you know is that I didn’t kill him and this you must tell my children for posterity seek. I will drop my pen here waiting for the covering of my face as ruled by the jury and fate. Thanks for everything we’ve shared together in life. I believe we will share more in the world beyond when we meet again with tears of joy not of sorrow, in our eyes.
©John Chizoba Vincent