A Poem on Hypocrisy: Fake Life by Deola Adelakun


Fake Life

I puff I am international when I am local

I jive I am an American when I am an African

I brag I am Dangote’s son when my father is struggling in the village


My real color is hidden

I always change garments like a chameleon

Whether I am yellow or blue

Pink or purple like a rainbow

Whether I am dark or white like a sky

Nobody can say


What I am today is not tomorrow!

I seem like a gorilla today but a lion tomorrow!

I seem like a dove today but a parrot tomorrow!

I seem like a giver today but a snatcher tomorrow!

I seem like a human today but a masquerade tomorrow!

I seem like an earthworm today but a viper tomorrow!


I hold beef today but a sword tomorrow

I entertain with a delicious meal today but poison tomorrow

I am difficult to know

People can hardly explain me


I pretend to be white when I am a black

I eat like an American when I am an African

I dress like a white when I am a black

I talk like an American when I am an African

I always choose to be a copy-copy man

If people ask, I always reply, all is packaging

The modern style is the packaging.


The lie is substituted for packaging

Fake life is replaced with packaging

Packaging is a lie

Deceit is called packaging

All and sundry who are like me

It will be best if the world can grasp who you are!

Briefs of the Poem

‘Fake Life’ is another poem addressing hypocrisy. The poet reveals how many people live fake life. He continues to expose the ways of life of African people as we bend low and inferior to other cultures and values.

The poet points to the people that always puff, jive and brag to be international, American, and Dangote’s son but they are not. They don’t want to be known as local, African, and poor/ordinary citizens. This is hypocrisy!

Many people like pretenses. They always hide their personality. Other people cannot say who they are. I think that is not a manifestation of integrity.

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These pretenders claim to be good today but something else tomorrow. The hypocritical people will seem like a gorilla, doves givers, humans, and earthworms today, but the lion, parrots, snatchers, masquerade, and vipers tomorrow. This is hypocrisy!

Many blacks are inferior in their ways of life. They think their culture is not a good one. These people eventually imbibe the foreign culture in terms of language, dress, etc. Is it not hypocrisy?

Our people’s hypocrisy leads us to switch to the slang of ‘packaging’. The modern style is packaging and deceit are called packaging. This is also hypocrisy!

The poet advises that it will be best if people can stop pretending and deceiving people. Let people know you!

Practice Questions

1. Discuss the subject matter of the poem.

2. Explain the poetic devices of the poem.

3. Comment on the use of figurative expressions in the poem.

4. Say about the stanzas of the poem.

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