YOU WEREN'T THERE- a Poem by Daramola Kayode Babalola

Sentence passed without recourse
an essential commodity for which everyone is an expert
Bad. Wrong. Evil. Inadequate. Not good enough.
Too short. Too fat. Too ugly. Always coming short
Slut. Hoe. Whore, snore. Bore. Always at fault.

But you weren’t there!

When the atrocities for which you blame me are being forged.
Two brothers, taking my pride without so much as a polite ask
Distant parents, absent of barest care, deficient of feelings , always about the task

Where were you bruv?

Big Sir in golden tux, senior Ma in purple fur,
Lost. Cold. Breakfast. Brunch. Dinner. Cover. Shelter.
All a giant blur. 
Beg. hustle. Scavenge. Eat or be eaten.
Run or be ran over, a constant victim of slur 
Every waking, a constant battle.
Hoping. Praying. scared. Scarred.
Always trying to get yourself off the floor 

So before you open your trap to strap me
Understand that though I do not use my situation
to excuse me,
you weren’t there! 
when I was earning my stripes,
treating my bruises.
Didn’t see what I saw, didn’t feel what I felt 
And please, note this and take it to heart:

of the certainty of a beautiful future, there is no question 
But I will make it on my own terms.

Daramola Kayode Babalola is a Writer, Actor, Producer, and Director. He was trained as an Architect and also has an MSc degree in Housing Development from University of Ibadan. An alumnus of the Mount Zion Institute of Christian drama, DKB is a member of faculty/senior instructor at TRECOM international college of technical (film) studies – where he lectures on screenplay, acting and film location ethics from 2006 till date. He is a much sought speaker in conferences and seminars all over the country and a regular columnist in ‘The Reconciliators’ drama/film magazine. He has authored 2 books in the art of screenplay; “SCREENPLAY: tips and tricks”- May 2010, and “BREAD CRUMBS- a comprehensive guide to writing a fantastic screenplay”- January 2016. Kayode is the president and founder of JOGAM INTERNATIONAL through which he has produced 4 films. His acting filmography is about 100 films and he has directed more than 10 films for other production outfits.

He started writing poetry in 1998/1999 but believes his poems are amatory; hence his pen bleeds on sexual/love issues. Yet he writes more when angry or sad over particular issues.

He is married to Pastor Toyosi and resides with his family in Akobo, Ibadan.


Red carpet + Poetry 1pm - Film Show 3pm
22nd October in Ibadan

@ NUSTREAMS Conference & Culture Center, Ibadan
Km 110 Iyaganku Road, Opp Alalubosa GRA Extension, Ibadan
(Air conditioned atmosphere. Refreshments to be served)

(To get Special VIP Invitation call 07034198264 or 08060826506)

VIP Ticket: N1,500
Regular Ticket: N700

... It's all about Poetry. Movie. And Poetry again.