E No Easy by Ko-Jo Cue (Adinkra Poetry Prize 2023 Runner-Up)

Our blood pressure is ‘directly proportional’ to the letter

That’s a white man’s word which means; 

When one rears its head, the other rises with it 

It’s one of those words politicians use to bully us into submission  

Because if we don’t understand it 

Then we can never understand E-nflation 

After all, we are just market women 

What can we possibly know about E-conomics

We know how to lower prices when tomato is in season,  

and increase it when it’s not 

We know when it’s time to supply more cassava than yam  

because our customers are demanding for the lot 

We know when to let people pay less  

We know when to give Jaara 

Or give them goods on credit 

So they keep coming to our stalls 

But how can we ever understand a big word like E-ncentives

We know that going to Ɛsrɛm for onions  

Takes more time than getting tomatoes from Akomadan 

But onions are easier to preserve and sell faster 

What works best, onions or tomatoes? 

Long journey or short shelf life? 

We are masters at trading time for profit 

No formula, just experience and instincts

Of course, we’ve never read about Opportunity Cost,  We can’t even read. 

We have no idea what E-conomic E-ndicators are We just know that E-Levy, E-CG 

And hearing politicians screaming about the E-conomy Is very bad for our health. 

Neɛ ɔnnim sua ɔhu  

but how we go learn E-conomics 

If every time we hear the letter E,  

our pressure hits high notes?

Meet the Poet

Linford Kennedy Amankwaa, popularly known as Ko-Jo Cue, is an award winning, Hip-Hop artist, journalist and digital marketer with over six years of experience in the Ghanaian creative industry. Writing fiction and poetry has always been Kojo’s first love. Kojo’s creative writing is immensely influenced by his early childhood encounters with the writing of Stephen King, John Milton, Ngugi Wa Thiong’o, Chinua Achebe and Peggy Oppong. He studied Literature in High School and received a Bachelor’s degree in Communication from The Ghana Institute of Journalism. This led him to rap, the art form he is widely known for, which is a form of poetry. He has released three rap EPs/LPs including Pen and Paper (with Lil Shaker), For My Brothers, and his most recent EP, 21 Memory Lane, all of which have received critical acclaim.

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