A Diary of Wisdom,: unscrambling Motifs in King Saheed Osupa new release; By Adesokan Babatunde Waliyullah.

by Adabanija Kamorudeen

By Adesokan Babatunde Waliyullah

1. Introduction

The word philosophy is from the Greek roots “Philos” / “Sophos” which mean love of / Wisdom, respectively. And this new release of King Saheed Osupa is replete with wisdom. For the sake of this discourse we would surmise every discussion under the recurring motifs that run in several releases that we have examined before (Special Request and Eni Olohun). We would succinctly stick to three motifs in this the diary, other write-ups that will invariably follow will treat some other themes.

Like a camera man would tell you that the background is as important as the foreground, a truism against which everyone lives is “Asiko laiye” “Time is life”. When you spend your time, you are spending your life. Against this backdrop, it is exigent for youths to be advised of how to make judicious use of their time/life. So, this new banger is melodiously and rhythmically ready to bite your feet into “gbese” and “shake bodi” while teaching the quintessential conducts of life.

2. The Three Motifs

Just as the Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary defines wisdom as “knowledge, and the capacity to make due use of it”, we also remember that Prophet Sulaiman (King Solomon in the bible) not only asked for knowledge from God but how to apply such knowledge effectively. And that is wisdom. When he used that, he got the riches, the wealth, and the honor.

Take a moment and read through. This is where you can glean both the wisdom and how to apply it. Though, advice on “Hard work”, “Prayer” and “Modelling” may seem very pedestrian, but the analogies employed to hammer it home in the “Diary” promise us an edifying experience.

2. 1 Wisdom of Hard work

Before being industrious, what is the goal of working hard? Especially when to laze around is so easy? Our philosopher answers with fuji, the goal to motivate, to live and to work hard is:

Excerpt 1.

‘Tori ebi la se n sise f’aayo
Tori egbin lan sen pese n loro
Tori ise lan se n sise lowo’

Because of hunger we strive for contentment
Because of disgrace we stockpile for convenience
Because of poverty we work for wealth

Excerpt 2.

‘Gbogbo Eni sise ko sa rere je o
Ise e pe ku laye ko Saye ole
Won se ise logun ise, e je kaa mura sise’

For everyone that works may they be profitable
Work does not kill & does not befit the lazy
Reason of the saying that work is the antidote of poverty
Let us intensify efforts at our work

Excerpt 3.

‘Eni ti o ba farajiya sha ni iya leje
Lofi ye ki afara sise ni rewerewe.
Tori nti aba jiya fun ni o maa ntojo’

For he who does not strive may suffer
The pestilence of poverty.
That is why we intensify efforts at work
In young age.
For it is what we strive for that lasts a lifetime.

One of the major take-home here is how to make our wealth last. Obviously, there are vicious ways of making money but would it last if it is not by your sweat? Our fuji-losopher sings of hard work not “bad-work” or “evil work” (our reference to crooked means of making money). He notably chastises that:

Excerpt 4.

‘Opo loti di giran ni ibi ki aso ibaje di owo
Won di baba oloye ni ibi ki a se ilara Eni
Yeye atu-ilu ni ibi ki a puro a nta ko Eni
Kilode ti a feran ki a bankan je gan
Ti a n ki ro pe kaa parapo ka tun se’

Some has turned making money from vices
To a craft
They have chieftaincy in malicious envy
Some become the priestess of disunity in
Craft of confrontational lies
Why do we like destruction
That we cannot think of uniting to make things better

Things can only get better for the nation when we uphold each other and unite to make things better. Remember the Maslow’s theory / Hierarchy of needs, once hard work takes us above the aforementioned: poverty, hunger and other immediate physiological needs, we can then think of those goodness that follow:

Excerpt 5.

‘Kalowo lowo kabimo ke emi eyan degun
Ni ire meta Tin be laye’

Wealth, offspring, and long life
Is the three goodness of this life

The urgency of this hard work while young is because time waits for no one. Sun sets, sun rises. Those who move slow and apart like snails shares same time with those who work diligently together like ants. Have you heard of “bi omode o ku agba ni on da”? It does not stop there. We work hard now and to make our latter years better.

Excerpt 7.

‘Eyin omode e maa se fi akoko sere
Igba ara sa lan bura asiko laye
Fi Eni re seto fun ola
Komaa lo jiya ni ola. Ola tan wi ope mo’

Oh, young ones do not tarry with time
May this hay while you still young, for time is life
Employ your today to position your tomorrow
To avert future suffering. The tomorrow comes quick

Excerpt 8.

‘Oromodie iwoyi Ana maa lo di akuko ton koh
Akuko gagara eyi ti awon Mon, tewe tagba wan fe.’

The hapless chick of yesterday is now the cock that crows
The behemoth cock that people now know, that young
and old now revere.

‘Bi omode o ku o maa dagba lola
Gbogbo ibi ti agbalagba ba wa lomo kekere nba’

A child that survives will be of age tomorrow
The child will grow to match every feat of the elder

Finally, at any point you feel like giving up or the country impresses her depressing situation on your psyche, King Saheed psyches you up. To him, resilience is the mark of champions:

Excerpt 9.

‘Boti wu ki Oju di owo o sina enu
bose di gaga to, a de ibi tan lo
Korogbo sibe sibe a dee ile ileri’

No matter how shrouded, the hand will not miss
Its way to the mouth and no matter how foggy
We would get to our destiny
It is strenuous yet we would reach our promised land.

2.2 Wisdom of Prayer

Being a Nigerian, most of us know the fundaments of prayer. The reason for prayer cannot be overemphasized. And our musician cum prayer-warrior still feels it must be impressed on us. For when we have done the best of our hard work, there are variables (like place of birth and choice of parents) beyond our circle of influence or control that may make or mar our efforts. And thus, death as abortion of everything, as the ultimate mortician, needs to be prayed away for our grace to manifest.

Excerpt 10.

‘Iseda iku leleru iku fi ban ni
Ko se ni ti apa iku oleka
Enit to oba fe pa a a ku’

The emergence of death frightens us
No one can escape its encampment
Death can take anyone without doubt

We can borrow his lines when he did an important prayer for the newly crowned chief of Iba.

Excerpt 11.
‘Emi gigun k’Olorun oba o fi se eso e
Kogbo kujeje kofi owo pawu’

May God enchant him with long life
Longevity with his hands combing
Through his grey hair.

After God preserves us, we pray for profit in our efforts. Hard work without commensurate profit is hell-work or Donkey work.

Excerpt 2.

‘Gbogbo Eni sise ko sa rere je o
Ise e pe ku laye ko Saye ole
Won se ise logun ise, e je kaa mura sise’

For everyone that works may they be profitable
Work does not kill & does not befit the lazy
Reason of the saying that work is the antidote of poverty
Let us intensify efforts at our work

There are still miracles in life. Where hard work has not yielded, grace can still find us:

Excerpt 12.

‘Oba to da ori to fi irun sike ori,
oba to da enu to fi ito sikenu,
Baba loke wa fola sikemi
Somi di Oloro dakun je ki oro mi dale’

The Lord who creates head and adorns it with hair
He who creates mouth and adorns it with saliva
Lord of heavens adorn me with richness
Please enrich me with a wealth that would last.

Excerpt 13.

‘Ninu ola mi Kaye maa weje wemu
Ki ogun sunkun wole ki igba maa ferin jade
Kindi aso ibora kari aye titi kan alaini
Biwon ba ti ri mi ki inu won maa dun
Ki won sope “afuni lounje maa wo ibe lo de yen’

In the ocean of my wealth let people feast and dine
If twenty come crying for help, let two hundred leave with a smile
Let me be a cloth of succor for all including the poor
So that they will gladden when they see me and say
” that’s a philanthropist without showoff”.

Excerpt 14.

Eni ti o ni to maa ba ebi sun lati ale moju
Bi Olorun ba fe ole ji kan ola bi ile ba motan.

A poor person that sleeps at night with hunger
God willing his tomorrow may wake him with wealth

2.3 Wisdom of Modelling One’s Life after a Great man.

What is the important of entering tutelage, or seeking mentor or role model? Why would we need to role-model a person or enter a formal tutelage of someone? It is necessary because they have passed through the furnace of struggle we may be contending with. They have not only passed through, but they emerge unscathed.

Importantly, who else should be the role model for the Yoruba if not the unifying colossal Oba Adeyemi, Alaafin Oyo, Iku Baba Yeye. Coronated on 18th November 1970, Baba has spent more than 50years on the ancestral stool. He is the perfect embodiment of the Yoruba culture and the ‘synthesis of our aspirations.’

Excerpt 14.

Adeyemi Obanla Lamidi Atanda o
Efinrin baba aso Olayiwola o.
Alari ni baba ewu lode o

Adeyemi the great King Lamidi Atanda
The best of cotton Olayiwola
The best of shining color
that fathers all clothes

Omura si iisokan yoruba pata
Ni Atanda fi ni iyi kaari aye

He strives for the unity of Yoruba
And that is why he has untainted
Repute worldwide

Iku Baba yeye has the power but he is meek and kind to all. A pointer to us that we must not succumb to the lure of abuse when we get the power and the money. You need to feel the resonating power in these lines.

Excerpt 15.

‘Kaakan ota, kaakan etu
Kaakan ikadesi Oba Adeyemi
Oba gbogbo Yoruba
Oba bi Odo Oba bi Olo’

One facet full of pellets,
One facet full of gun powder,
One facet a repository of crowns for king Adeyemi
The king of all the Yoruba
The king like mortar
The king like grindstone

This discourse cannot contain the depth of encomium our praise singer accords Alaafin Iku Baba yeye. There must be another attempt to assess this hopefully. But our entertainer King Saheed Osupa will most certainly prompt Alaafin Iku Baba Yeye into legworks with this line:

Excerpt 16.

‘Ojo pe o maa Jo…ojo pe o maa Jo,
Kokoro nje o lese wulewule’

It seems you will dance
It seems you will dance
This music biting your legs
Into rhythmic legworks

3. Conclusion

This work the “Diary” entertains and educates us. In an era where our span of attention wanes easily, he has coupled sweet fuji music with moral restitution both delivered in philosophical twine that we have just unscrambled. Therefore, reading this you need to complement it with listening to the record. Then the import of the message will be felt. And like philosopher of old, we shall all become active social change agents. By being conscientious at work to boost economy, being prayerful with grace and follow the right path of great exemplar wherever we are confused.

Albeit there are other lessons not mentioned yet. That of the alarming growth of baby-mama-ism, the standoff between responsibility and liability in unions, etc. Other write ups will aim to address that but for the sake of early motifs espoused in our engagement of King Saheed past two releases, we herein stick to three wisdom against the back drop of “Asiko Laiye”. Once again, words alone can not do justice to the musicality that endears the “Diary” to the public. Big Daddy S-A-H-E-E-SINGLE D has done it again and here we are writing again.

Writer’s bio:
Babatunde Waliyullah Adesokan (Toonday) writes from Oyo State, Nigeria. He works with Firstbank. He is a lover of poetry; a lover of everything that breathes poetry. His works appeared in Pangolin Review, Calamuss, the QuillS, Wales Haiku, Ethel-Zine etc.
Instagram: @toondayatkins
Facebook: tunde.w.adesokan

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