Paradise of Withered Roses

It is not a paradise, it is a hell! But don’t tell anybody, don’t tell a soul.



Come my fellow ladies
let me show you the road that led me into the dungeon of shame
let me show you the pathway of every girl into the ever-flowing rivers of tears.

It was on a cold evening last September,
when the pride of my womanhood was stolen by men whom I knew not.
I still smell the odour of their bodies,
it scares me like a child that sees a ghost in thunder;
as the thunder runs down the street
wailing and shouting over a lonely street.

Every time I close my eyes or lay alone in the dark,
I still see the nightmares of the drunk men like a horror movie before my eyes;
I still see them as they turned my nakedness to their game of fun;
I still see them as they tore my clothes and turned my pride into an ocean of blood,
As they turned the joy of my being into a sea of tears
Not only my virginity did they steal,
They broke my spirit and tore my soul
They crushed my spirit and rend my soul into pieces.
I cried, I shouted, I screamed, but the gate of heaven was shut out on me.
Not a single soul saved me from them.

For the first time I asked myself –
Is it a sin to have a vagina between your thighs and two big breasts on your chest?
Is it a sin to be born a lady?

Finally they were done, but had stolen my innocence
and my shame they left to flow endlessly like an ocean of bitterness.

My parents said to keep shut, they said
“don’t tell nobody, don’t tell a soul”

Please keep the dignity of the family and your father’s pride;

Ah! how can my vagina be my family’s dignity?
How can the hole between my thighs be my father’s pride?
What is this? what custom is this?
But they said I’m not the only one
Even Ewatomi, my best friend, is a culprit too.

Is it a sin to be born a lady?
Is it a sin to have vagina between your two thighs?

My soul has been imprisoned in a memory,
My soul has been put in a cell of regrets for a sin I never choose to commit.
No one sees my wound, but I’m bleeding blood
and those memories still haunt my peace.

My fellow ladies, for this rain of shame who is to be blamed?
Is the King of the land to be blamed if the market square goes up in flames?

Or the one-eyed priest who sees nothing but the skirts of our young maidens?
Or the elders of our land, who though have eyes are too blind to see?

If this rain of shame doesn’t stop, people of my village, do not be amazed
Do not be surprised when the rays of sunshine that comes
from the breast of a lady refuses to shine no more in the king’s palace,
do not be surprised when this rain turns into a flood of revenge.

Remember, flood knows no rich nor the poor, it knows no slave nor royalty.
Treat our ladies with respect and love.
Ladies are not sex toys, they are meant to be loved.

Victor Towoju

Bio: Victor Towoju is a Nigerian Poet. He is currently a 400L Geology student of Ekiti State University where he was awarded the Best Geosciences Student writer in 2018 and also nominated for ESUCA Award's best Student Poet. He is a lover of books, travelling and good music. He believe that good music means a good life and better inspiration. He has passion for reading literature works. His works has been published in anthologies like “the Written Rock”


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