I Remember

I remember the sound of Abimbola’s laughter and her wide toothy grin
I remember Veronica’s gentle nudge to fess up to the boy I liked
I remember the day the heavens threatened to let loose and sent us running home, bags on our head
Is it a curse or blessing, I remember it all.

I remember the quick whispers of gossip Enitan fed me in the Biology lab
I remember the closing hours of painted legs and lips, with powdered faces just to draw the attention of the boys
I remember the first stirrings of attraction on Adebayo’s face from the first time
Is it pain or bliss, I remember it all

I remember the stolen kisses, faint protests and the badly written love letters
I remember the truth and dare games I could never escape from
I remember the taste of Iya Sukura’s rice and beans after which we would beg each other for ten naira ice cream.
Is it nostalgia or want, I remember it all.

I remember when women were girls and all that we had were a few chest bumps to show
I remember the anxiety and finally joy on seeing the first blood
I remember when men were boys and all they could boast of were a few kisses here and there.
Is it joy, I can’t tell, I remember it all

I remember when Azonto was the only dance step we knew
And how sex was a forbidden word that mustn’t be said
I remember the guilty moments of adventure and fun playing Daddy and Mummy gave us
And the day a boy first told me I was beautiful.
I remember it all like yesterday

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