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The Shackles of Fears Printable Version PRINTABLE VERSION
by AJAO OLUSINA TUNDE, Nigeria May 12, 2005
Human Rights   Short Stories


The old woman then made an inquiry about the purpose of their journey. Ifeloju’s father narrated the whole story to her. He also told her of his intention to compel his daughter to marry the prince. The old woman shook her head in disapproval. She advised and dissuaded him from continuing with his intention: “A woman must not be denied of the man she loves, for the substance of marriage is love and not just money or influence”, she said. The man said that he agreed but he had no power to change the decision of the king. “The drum of nature has been beaten and we must dance to its rhythm”, he said. “You’re wrong my son!”, the old woman retorted. “The world is what it is for the bondage of fears and minds; the real world is what you make it”, she added.

On getting to Olugba village, Ifeloju’s father saw his daughter once again alive. With tears of love, they embraced each other. He narrated his initial intention and how it was intercepted by an old woman. Thereby, he blessed the two young lovers and joined them together in marriage. He also told them about the condition and order given by the king. “I shall go and fight for our destiny. I shall fight the old serpent. Even if I die, I know that you shall live and my dream shall live”, he said. Again, tears streamed out of their eyes as the father and his men departed.

After the killing of the fearful old serpent, Ifeloju’s father too died from the grave injury he sustained. However, he left a landmark in the history of the Iberuju village. He did not only change the decision of the king, but he also destroyed the poisonous serpent, that had long held the land captive. Therefore, he bought their freedom through his mind and life.

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