The poem emphasizes the moral standard of the people and warns against hypocrisy. It continues to advise that one should do accordingly as one wants the people to do to you. This life is balanced for everybody to live if people can adjust well. The poem has been appreciated so that the researchers and readers can learn more and criticize for analysis.
Why disturb God for praises
When you blame people
Why preach forgiveness
When you are not a forgiver
Why look for a promotion
When you are a blockade of the promotion
Why seek success
When you are a hindrance to the success
Why pray for wealth
When you are stingy to Talakawas
Why mount Everest for an open heaven
When you are an oppressor of Mekunus
Why expect respect
When you disrespect your superiors
Why seek peace
When you are a riotous person
Why look for assistance
When you are not an assistant
Why fear assassination
When you are an assassinator
What you sow, they say, you reap
‘Tis possible to sow onions and reap yams
Poet: Deola Adelakun
Briefs of the book
The poem emphasizes the moral standard of the people and warns against hypocrisy. It continues to advise that one should do accordingly as one wants the people to do to you. This life is balanced for everybody to live if people can adjust well.
The poet is concerned about why people will act badly to people and expect others to do good to them. It is 50-50. what you want people to do to you, you are expected to do the same to people. the poet calls our attention to this.
The poet states you disturb God for praises, but you blame people; you preach forgiveness, but you are not a forgiver; you want promotion and success, but you are a hindrance to the promotion and success of others.
He continues you pray for wealth and open heaven, but you are stingy and miserly. You want people to respect you, but you disrespect others. Why seek peace when you are violent and riotous people? That is, all that people want here are expected of them to do them too.
You want peace, but you are a violent person; you look for assistance, but you cannot assist anybody; you fear assassination, but you are an assassin. If you want all this, they try to offer people the same.
The poet affirms that what you sow is what you will expect to reap. Stop being hypocritical and do exactly how you want people to do to you. Do good to receive good.
The poem, “Why”, is a poem which teaches moral lessons and good virtues. The poet sees the people who live in our society as those who do not love one another. That is the call of the poet. There are themes in the poem that discussed attitudes. Some of those themes have been discussed below.
The theme of a good attitude
Good attitude matters to the poet as he tries to correct the error of bad attitude in our society. The poet points out many behavior and actions which people cannot accommodate but they do them. Such habits and actions are blame, unforgiveness, hindrances of promotion and success, stinginess, oppression, disrespect, violence, not ready being to assist, etc. The poet is worried about how people hate all these things but they are doing them to people. What can make this world more peaceful and beings to live in casinos do excitedly how we love people to do to us. Your thoughts, behaviors, etc. must not contradict with what you expect from people.
The theme of respect and good virtues
An adage says, “Respect begets respect”. And good virtues make people become a man. If one shows respect, definitely one will be respected. One of the major things our society lacks at this t respect and that is why the poet uses his poetic tool to suppress it in this poem. If our society will be what it will be boasted of, it is important to take respect and good virtues a priority.
The theme of bad behaviors and actions
The poet advises people to shun bad behaviors a behavior towards one another. The habits you cannot tolerate, don’t do it to other people; the actions you cannot tolerate, don’t do them to other people; the behaviors you cannot accommodate, don’t do to other people because what you sow, you reap. According to the poet, everyone should stop assassination th, stinginess, bad attitudes to success and promotion, oppression, violence, unforgiveness, etc.
Languages and Poetic Devices
The poet makes use of several languages and poetic devices to enrich his work and allow other researchers and readers to criticize and appreciate his poem. Some of the languages and poetic devices are discussed below.
Stanzas and lines
The poem has 11 stanzas and 22 lines. The stanza has two lines which is a couplet. Each stanza opens with questions and the second lines complete s the questions. The structure and the mind of the poet is to seek the opinion are the people and point out people who are swimming in bad behaviors in society.
Rhymes and rhyming schemes
Each stanza has a good rhyme which makes the poem have a rhythmic effect. Stanza 1 has rhyming schemes of ab, stanza 2 has ab, stanza 3 has aa, stanza 4 has aa, stanza 5 has ab, stanza 6 has ab, stanza 7 has ab, stanza 8 has ab, stanza 9 has ab, stanza 10 has ab, stanza 11 has ab.
The poet feels concerned about how people cannot tolerate what they do to other people in our society. His mind is to correct those errors and make things right.
The poem is didactic in nature. The poet tries to correct all errors and imbibe standards and culture.
The poet makes use of some local languages to communicate strongly to Nigerian society. Some the ex example of neologism are “Talakas” “poor people” (line 10), “Mekunus” which mean ordinary citizen” (lines 12)
Figures of Speech
The poet makes use of several figures of speech to enrich his work and allow other researchers to criticize and appreciate his poem. Some of the figures of speech are discussed below.
The poet makes use of rhetorical questions and the questions are predominant figures of speech. Almost every line has a rhetorical question. Check lines 1, 3, 5, 6, 9, 11, 13, 15, 17, 19, 21)
The poet makes use of proverbs such as “What you sow, you reap”(line 21) and “Farmers that sow bitter leaves cannot reap sugarcanes”.
The poet makes use of hyperbole such as “Why mount Everest for open heaven”.
Word List and meanings
Tanaka was: The poor
Menus: The ordinary citizens
Assassinator: He who assassinates people
Blockade: Something that is used to stop people from entering or leaving a place
Assassination: Killing or murder
Riotous: Noisy or violent, especially in a public
Everest: One of the largest mountains in the world
1. Comment on the use of rhetorical questions and repetitions used in the poem.
2. Explicate the message of the poem.
3. Discuss the themes of the poem.