Ijeoma Okoli - 2022

This is how we die

Are we doomed to re-live history because we haven't learnt from it?
This is how we die

They all died

Chionye died.

Ini died.

Hussain died.

Jeremy and Muyiwa died.

Five of my friends, including my lover, died.

But by a sheer stroke of luck, I was spared.

Perhaps so that I can tell this story,

In a feeble attempt to keep their names alive.

Before it went south

We had spent the new year touring the choicest hotels in Asia,

North America and Europe.

A trip that we all checked on our bucket list;

Not that we had any thoughts of kicking the bucket.

We were living this life to the fullest.

We deserved it.

The Whirlwind

Back in the country with the connections we made.

And new ideas to change our world…

But the whirlwind came with us, swallowing and spitting out the lifeless bodies of my best friends.

I’ve tried to cry; I’ve tried to scream but I can’t find my voice.

Our plans, our strategies, our hopes became collateral damage as we faced the scary demon.

I need to say their names again

Chionye, Ini, Hussain, Jeremy and Muyiwa.

People may have heard that thirty-six more people died of Covid-19 few weeks ago.

But you are not just statistics.

Chionye, Ini, Hussain, Jeremy and Muyiwa and other humans who meant the world to someone;

were smothered by the Covid demon.

Looking in the mirror

I see someone.

But that’s not my reflection.

A ghost?

That’s my grandfather, telling once again a story that never left his lips while he lived.

The second wave of the 1918 influenza.

The history we are bound to repeat because we have not cared enough to learn.

It killed them when their life was the sweetest

They were done burying their loved ones, or so they thought.

They came out to celebrate what they thought was a victory.

Men and women filled the streets, to sing, to transact, to live as though the demon had been buried with the dead.

But the demon stifled them whilst the songs were still on their lips.

Their lifeless bluish corpses littering the earth.

Fifty million bodies.

This is how we die

Son he said, humans haven’t learnt.

They’ve thrown their masks to the wind and replaced the sanitizers with carelessness.

They haven’t learnt…

And this is how they will all die.


*the war on Covid19 is not over yet. Wear a mask to protect your self and your loved ones.

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  1. Enegbeta Cyril

    Wao! Beautiful write up. I wish the earth can be wise and get ready for the second wave of covid. All will be well

    1. Ijeoma Okoli

      Thank you Cyril. Stay safe

  2. Meji A

    Hmmm u write so well

    1. Ijeoma Okoli

      Thanks! 🙂

  3. Remi

    Sad, but needed reminder! Thanks Ijeoma

  4. Lanre

    Awesome write up

    1. Ijeoma Okoli

      Thank you Lanre

  5. Nnenna

    Imagery, imagery, you’re simply amazing!

    1. Ijeoma Okoli

      Thanks Nnenna

      1. Obembe Opeyemi

        Nice one IJ 🤗

  6. Ikenna Chendo

    Great write up!

  7. Kingsley Akpolor

    This is very apt and the need to continue the crusade to observe all safety protocols.

    Thanks for the write up.!

    1. Ijeoma Okoli

      Thanks Boss!

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