we Themes in a Government Driver on his Retirement by Onu Kingsley Chibuike ~ Naija Poets


There are many themes in the poem, such as (a) the theme of disobedience, (b) the theme of freedom, (c) the theme of endurance, (d) the theme of servitude, (e) the theme of death,  (f) the theme of imperfection, etc.

As regards the theme of freedom, the whole poem resonates freedom because the celebration of retirement is synonymous to celebration of freedom.

The poet expressed the importance of freedom by employing words like "freeman" in line 7, "Today frees" in line 23, "Celebrating the celebration of his retirement" in line 26.

And now to the theme of death.

The poem "A Government Driver On His Retirement" also reminds the readers that no matter how long humans hunger for freedom or even get to the point of celebrating it_ death is a boss to freedom (no human being is free from death).

Another theme in the poem is the theme of imperfection.

Humans lack perfection in the same way the government driver in the poem. Unexpected actions or events could transform to error. A mere celebration of job retirement became the downfall of the government chauffeur.

The theme of endurance. Endurance and patience are siblings and both are very rewarding.

The reward for endurance in the context of the poem are freedom and gift (a brand new car).

As seen from line 17 - 24:
"More joy to send him home.
A brand new car in his name
An appreciative symbol
For undented thirty-five years of service to

"Come, friends and rejoice more,
Joy till no more joy to joy
Today frees and makes me a king
My patience rewarded".

The theme of disobedience.

The theme is absolutely nothing but warning.

The government driver's refusal to obey the regulations which he foolishly thought was only guiding his duty, made him kicked bucket of untimely death.

The theme of servitude is obvious in the poem.

Servitude is a state of being subject to a powerful authority.

Serving or being in civil service can be viewed from different perspective.

The character in the poem considered it to be a yoke or bondage which was why he craved freedom.

To be candid, thirty five years of engaging in a routine is not a joke.

Probably, that could be the reason why he considered himself suffering in line 15:
"I'll booze to sleep away my sufferings"


Post a Comment

Popular Posts

Article Index

website traffic

Blog Archive


1. Strange Horizons.

2. Cricket Media

3. The Antigonish Review

4. Arts & Letters.

5. 50 Haikus

6. Three Line Poetry

7. The American Journal of Nursing

8. New Letters

9. Poetry Magazine


1. The Sillerman First Book Prize for African Poets

2. Brunel International African Poetry Prize

3. Writing Contests, Grants & Awards | Poets & Writers

4. Mississippi Review Poetry Contest

5. Bayou Magazine's Kay Murphy Prize for Poetry

6. Gemini Magazine Poetry Open

7. The Colorado Review Prize for Poetry

8. USA Gold Pencils Student Poetry Contest

9. The Marsh Hawk Press Poetry Prize

10. The Backwaters Prize

11. Black River Chapbook Competition

12. Grist's Pro Forma Writing Contest

13. Tethered by Letters 2020 Spring Literary Contest

14. Juxtaprose 2020 Poetry Contest

15. The Cossack Review's October Poetry Prize

16. Boston Review Annual Poetry Contest

17. TIFERET Writing Contest

18. Boulevard Emerging Poets Contest

19. The Bitter Oleander Press Library of Poetry Award

20. Annual Gival Press Oscar Wilde Award