THE ORIGIN OF EKWENSU ACT ii

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ACT i, SCENE vii

AWAIOMA: My eyes flew open into a new darkness, a woman I see looks very mean but she smiles to me. Her walking stick thronging the earth. Chi m ooo

WOMAN: You saw something while you slept. O!Ppoor woman. How can life push you aside alone?

AWAIOMA:(scared) You know that I saw something?

WOMAN: Yes because I have sought deep into your heart and watch you run, chasing the spirit of your beloved husband.

AWAIOMA:(weeping) Please have you seen my husband? Did you see Badiwe? Please return him to me I beg you.

WOMAN: I have that power.

AWAIOMA:(rising to her, she falls back in pain) Aaargh! Please I am pregnant and I need my husband, please bring his spirits back to me. Please. Biko.

WOMAN: That you will give your child?

AWAIOMA: My child? My son that I carry in my womb?

WOMAN: It is not even a son. You can still have more of them when your husband is back. What you saw was a child that was dead. You had a still birth so give me the child and let your husband live.

AWAIOMA: Yes I saw a dead child that I bear in my hand. She was a woman.

WOMAN: Now you see why you should give the child to me and have your husband. I am most lovely and merciful to even request a dead child.

AWAIOMA: When shall my husband return if I agree to this?

WOMAN: Before you make it home. Go! He is waiting for you. Bury the child close to Udele river and beware that your labour shall be painful.



ACT i, SCENE viii

AWAIOMA: Badiwe screams in pain as Wori applies palm oil to the wound on his shoulder. I am very happy, though you feel pain my lord. You were dead.

BADIWE: I was not dead, how can I be dead and still breathe?

WORI: You were not breathing Badiwe. You died and your people wept for you. Ele eri even composed songs for you.

AWAIOMA: He is favoured by our ancestors. I am most happy Badiwe. I could not survive without you.

WORI: You were gone for just two days and your wife ran into the forest.

BADIWE: I cannot still believe my ears. If Okpaka, Chenzo and many other warriors are dead then why am I alive?

WORI: Hmmmmm. The gods are there.

AWAIOMA: You must be favoured by our ancestors I say. Let me get you some leaves Wori, you have done well.

(Exit Awaioma)

ACT i, SCENE ix

AWAIOMA: The farming season has blessed us with good crops. I tie yams in the barn with my children, one woman and two men that stay with me like their father. Dike, bring me the small yams.

DIKE:(giving her yams) Mama why has Papa not still returned with the grasshopper with thorns. He said he might kill one today.

AWAIOMA: He might because evi mkpor the grasshopper with thorns does not stroll often in the forest.

DIKE: I want to pull out the horns.

ADA: As if you have the strength. The last one he killed was when you were born. It was difficult for me and Odenigbo to pull the thorns. Evi mkpor is a stubborn animal.

AWAIOMA:(laughs) But it still entered the pot of soup.

ODENIGBO: I ate the head as the first son. I am saving the skull for when a battle will come. I shall tie the skull around my neck.

ADA: Nkita, dog that is what you will look like.

AWAIOMA: These children be fast before your father comes back. We must pound the cocoyam to eat it with the soup this night.



ACT ii, SCENE i

CHISALE: In tears and sorrow, I spread fourth my hands to the forest of Eli to seek my justice. Eli o, oh greatest of all gods. Eli I seek your vengeance now more than before. I am Chisale, daughter of Odenigbo son of Badiwe, my grandfather Badiwe was a great warrior, how can his generations be wiped out like a plague? What have I done to be the one alive to witness this? My first child cut his first teeth up and was killed. My second pregnancy brought forth a twin and they were killed. On the night of my labour for Udo my only child, my husband died mysteriously. Eli why? Take me, take me now. Why was I chosen to be alive…?

(Enter Udo with a race)

UDO: Hah mama, stop it. Dinma told me she saw you running  towards eli forest. Please things will be well.

CHISALE:(weeping) When will things be well. Eli look at Udo my only child o, Eli do not let the evil people doing this see her. Her name means peace, let her bring me peace, I pray you. Eli forgive whatever we have done and avenge us. Eli biko.

UDO: Iiyaah! It is done, let us go home. You will have a cough if you keep screaming like this viko…biko….please.

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