Love Literati Contest: ‘Two Worlds, One Love’ by Salim Yunusa

Love literati contest - elsieisy blog


This is harder than I thought it’d be. However, I am willing to brace any storm in order to write this to you. Forgive me for being somber and not being in the festive spirit. My friends have particularly been annoying these days, always blabbing over their Valentine’s plans while I’m around.

This is it. There is no other way to say this, so I’ll say it as it comes.

The worse have happened. What I’ve been dreading since we’ve met has indeed come to pass. I am crazily, madly, Head over heels in love with you, and I can’t help it. I never saw this coming. This is my one weakness, which I hate myself for; falling hard and quick. Allow me to explain why this is the worst thing that has happened to me in a long while:

I am a Nigerian, a Northerner and a Muslim. Loving someone like you is a crime; an actual crime punishable by long term imprisonment by the Nigerian authorities, and punishable by death by Islam. The society I’ve found myself is mired in illiteracy, and people who, like me, have dared expressed their feelings publicly often face the worst fate you could imagine – lynching by irate mobs – or worse.

I always knew I was different; maybe it’s because of the rough childhood that had, among others, bullying and sexual molestation, or maybe – just maybe – I was born this way. All my life, I’ve tried to blend in, to be normal, to NOT be different, and well, just live but I couldn’t. I am surviving, and I have actually accepted my fate of living a perfectly unhappy life – until you came along.

I remember that hot afternoon, with the sun scorching everything along it’s path, when I first saw you. It was the annual Argungu fishing festival. I was there by fate; I was simply bored at home and wanted – literally – fresh air, so I went to my refuge, the River Argungu. I totally forgot about the festival until I saw hundreds of people as I approached it. You were there, for the first time, not only in Kebbi, in the North, or in Nigeria but in Africa. You had that gleam in your eyes as you snapped your camera away; that excited flash in your grey eyes that sparked every time you saw something or somewhere new. Your excitement made me annoyed; it was just fish and water, damn!

I remembered the first words ever that you uttered, asking whether I was having fun. It must have been sarcastic, for I was far from having fun. The peace – and fresh air – that I wanted had been violently violated by the fishermen and the blaring coming from the local musical instruments. Looking up, I wiped a tear from my eye and answered in the negative. You were so concerned, and took me to a less crowded place and calmed me down. We talked nearly for half an hour, about utterly meaningless things like galaxies, music and stuff. It was enchanting. When the crowd behind us erupted with shouts and jubilation, I knew it was time to announce the winner. We quickly exchanged contacts so that you could go back to your snapping.

As I was about to sleep, you called, wanting to know how I was doing. We talked for another hour before I hung up, but not before promising to help you tour the town and show you around for the next few days.

The next few days were simply amazing; we walked around, saw different places and had those long, soul calming conversations! Oh, how I miss those! We talked about family, religion, living in two different worlds, sexuality, philosophy and so many other things. We spilled each others’ darkest secrets, our fears and our doubts. We complimented each other. I remember when we climbed Mount Barkindo, went to a local music festival and did many wonderful things together. At the end of each day, I escort you back to your hotel and eagerly wait for the next day to carry on.

The last night before you left,  we went for a local wrestling match and were so engrossed that we didn’t notice it was well past midnight. There was no way transport you back to your hotel, so we went to my room. I remember how we laid, tense and nervous, for the chemistry between us was too powerful. Our fingers, in the dark, found themselves and intertwined. I felt the warm rush of blood in your fingers, and the softness of your palm. The next thing I knew was that we froze time when our lips met for what seemed like an eternity. One thing led to another and there I was, listening to your heartbeat after both climaxing and emptying the wells of desires in us.

You left the next morning, shattering my heart. You took me to high heavens the night before and you left me in this hellhole. This was a fairy tale that ended before it began. Once again, my music folder is filled with breakup songs like Adele’s someone like you, Celine Dion, Backstreet Boiz and so on.

I still love you. Pathetic, right? I love you with all my heart and soul. I’ve never felt more right and confident about how I feel like I do now. I believe only God will judge me, and that love is love.

So, my dear Pierre, you’re free and under no obligation to feel guilty about me. I want you to be under the Eiffel tower on 14th February, with someone – anyone – and have fun. I believe love is sacrifice, and I’m sacrificing not only my love, but my happiness for yours. The moments, memories and pictures I have of you is enough for me. I’ll be alright; I’ve been strong once and I can be again.

Happy Valentine’s day!

With Love, Adam.

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