“A great man is a torch in the darkness, a beacon in superstition’s night, an inspiration and a prophecy“.
– Robert Green
The first test of a truly great man is his humility. By humility, I don’t mean doubt of his powers or hesitation in speaking his opinion, but merely an understanding of the relationship of what he can say and what he can do. We may not really know where this rain of joy started falling neither are we going to know where it’ll end but one thing is for sure, men of great will don’t even know where their rain of greatness will start and this rain doesn’t stop even life afterlife. Such are imageries of life interwoven with a passionately driven man whose smile awakes the magical powers of words in brevity and contextual prowess. He is divine in words and spiritual in construction of these words to build castles of hope and faith between the knitted scarf of the sky’s golden corral faces.
I met him in Ibadan in December 2017, although we never spoke to each other because it was actually my first time of travelling a long distance like that for a literary event. We passed each other at the entrance of the hall and the breeze of his greatness swung open to the store of my heart. I turned but I could not call him back or his attention. The next I saw him was when he was on stage with Sir Chinaza reading from his book: There is a storm in my head, which I was yet to know. Then I saw him again when he recited a poem with Akudo Nkemjikaku. He was full of smiles and love as he read and Nkemjikaku did the respond.
I listened attentively from the back seat. I saw how he was thrilling the audience with his lines. In that manner, I beheld a legend in my memory hoping that someday, we would have to sit down and talk about life and it’s mysteries relating it to poetry and the act of writing. I thought of a journey relating the powers of the universe through the door of his wisdom and knowledge hence, not leaving any stone untouched.
The forthcoming of the African melodies are the light of the tunnel holding vision and anxiety together in the pavement of lighter laughter. Under the cover of the seasonal weather has men learnt to write histories backwards but he decided to bring out the storm in his head through the eyes of his pen on a paper of imageries.
You may likely not see the same thing I saw when you get to sit on a long table with him or with my thought because sometimes, the closed door is not always the only door to our escape, the other times, the burning door is locked for you to know the importance of freedom.
Jide Badmus is a reflection of what a writer is, he is a reflection of what poetry is to the universe, the eyes and head that knows what good poetry is. He is the reference of the African style of poetry which pave ways to generations coming after him hoping to lay down bridges that will help them cross the line of greatness and the mysteries hidden in the camera of life. He just doesn’t write, he writes with purpose breaking boundaries, holding waters, basking and driving home the points he is trying to clear.
He is divine; an influence, he allows you get lost in erotic lines and rhythms. He is mysterious with his poetic verses, his critiques are sometimes encored utterance enchanted through the glamouring dawn of art. I followed him up recently watching every of his comments on the post. His expressions are poetry itself making you feel like being the rhythms of whatsoever life tries to put down on paper. There are men out there but there are men that are called men and he is one of those called men.
A great man is different from an eminent one in that he is ready to be the servant of society. It is a grand mistake to think of being great without goodness and I pronounce it as certain that there was never a truly great man that was not at the same time truly virtuous. Every great man, every successful man, no matter what the field of endeavour, has known the magic that lies in these words: every adversity has the seed of an equivalent or greater benefit. Love of glory can only create a great hero; contempt of glory creates a great man.
About his Scripture, he delivered undiluted lines of poetry from the store of his muse. He wrote life and nature and African miseries and love, erotic love interwoven by passion. When he told me he is an engineer, I couldn’t believe my ear. I wondered how an engineer like him could find time to maintain writing, family and work and still have his sanity to himself. Writing is indeed engaging. It makes people see you as a loner because you are always alone trying to craft something out from what is not visible.
A great man does not seek applause or place; he seeks for truth; he seeks the road to happiness, and what he ascertains, he gives to others. By a great man, however, I mean a man who, because of his spiritual gifts, his character, and other qualities, deserves to be called great and who as a result earns the power to influence others. Jide Badmus is one great personality everyone would like to associate with.
Jide BADMUS is truly here to stay behind the scripture of time even if there is a storm in his head, he is ever ready to calm it down.
“My father was truly a great man. I remember one day putting my feet in my father’s shoes. I was amazed at the size. Would I ever be big enough to fill his shoes? Could I ever grow into the man my father was? I wondered.”
– Joseph B.
Written by John Chizoba Vincent