SONGS OF A ROBBER

We are brothers
We are not comrades
I serve one master; myself
And you serve one in addition; the government
You are in uniform
But a balaclava is enough uniform for me
You need me
You thrive on my existence
You do the same things I do
You shake my hand and dine with me in the cover of the shadows
But still you despise me before people
You pledge your loyalty before the public
To smoulder the life out of my living
To live for my death
And yet you wouldn’t do it
Because
You need me
You thrive on my existence
You do the same things I do

I steal,
You confiscate for yourself
I kidnap for a ransom
You ‘arrest’ and grant bail for a fee
I rob
You stand at the roadblocks for folded naira notes to be squeezed into your palms
I rob with a pistol
You brandish a rifle

We are brothers, we aren’t comrades
We will never be
Your pledge to your other master stands between us in the daylight.

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