About the Poet

The poem Locusts by Femi Osofisan aimed at revealing how tiny disagreement open door for marauders, he referred to as "locusts" "parasites" "carrions". The poet born somewhere in Ogun State on June 1946 is a novelist, poet and critique. His full name goes by Babafemi Adeyemi Osofisan. 

About the Poem

Locusts are type of grasshoppers in the family Acrididae that fly in swarms and are very destructive to crops and vegetables. But Osofisan's locusts were more devilish in the sense that they lurked around waiting for opportunities to reap where they did not sow. He used the word "Locusts" to symbolize the Military and the
Missionaries; since they are the ones who laid the solid foundation for corruption in Nigeria.

[Read: My Husband Tongue Is Bitter]

The Stanzaic Summary

According to the 4th stanza, the locusts symbolized exploiters in the nation, using the opportunity of chaos to acquire the mineral resources of the land:

"they bare their teeth on the silos of our soil
on the baskets of our riches, our pots of oil…"

The poet cleared the air in the 6th stanza of the poem by pointing directly at the parasites:
"parasites in stiff khaki cloth or flowing gown
they eat our harvests and our virgins…"

The locusts were seen perpetrating their crimes in places where helping hands were supposed to be rendered:
"and young men and women are scattering everywhere/ like discarded leaves" (in line 2-3)
"offals on a crossroads abandoned…" (in line 4)
"continuous division among the victims/ is what the conqueror needs" (in lines 10-11)

The poem has the themes of nature, corruption, deception,
exploitation, dissension, death, etc

Samuel C. Enunwa aka samueldpoetry
(the Leo with wings flying)


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