Source: "Short Plays for Juniors" by Irene Salami

  1. Enoma - A farmer
  2. Isoken - His wife
  3. Uyi - Enoma's friend
  4. Adesuwa - Uyi's wife
  5. Divisional Officer
  6. Messenger

SCENE ONE: Enoma sitting by a wooden stool with empty plates of food on it.

Enoma: Isoken! Isoken!! Come right here.

Isoken: Here I am, my beloved. What can I do for you?

Enoma: How many times will I tell you to remove my plates immediately I finish eating? You are a very forgetful woman.

Isoken: I am sorry, Enoma. I will never forget again.

(packs the plates and re-arranges the surrounding.)

Enoma: Hurry up and don't delay. You know we have a lot of work awaiting us in the farm.

Isoken: Enoma, you don't seem to be in a very good mood this morning. What is the matter?

Enoma: How can I be in a good mood when nothing is going on well with me? I cannot even afford to have three meals; look at all my friends, they are doing well. They all work for the white man.

Isoken: That is not the right spirit. Be satisfied with the little you have and look up to God to provide more for you. He is a great provider.

Enoma: Thank you, Isoken, for your encouraging talk. Somehow one is tempted to be unhappy. All the same, we need money to buy food. You know, Isoken, that I am not a very strong man. Farm work is too tedious for me. The animals also eat the little we plant.

Isoken: But you have been trying. You have been doing your best.

Enoma: Yes, my dear, but my best cannot do the magic. Our harvest is always the poorest. We are forever begging for yam seedlings.

Isoken: Why don't we try the white man's job then? I hear they give the people working for them free food and clothes.

Enoma: That is true. But who will employ a lazy fool like me? A wretched, dull fellow like myself.

Isoken: Don't under-rate yourself. You don't know what God has in store for you. Just wait for tomorrow. Tomorrow may yet bring good things.

Enoma: Let's hope so. Right now, the problem is where to get money to buy us food tomorrow.

Isoken: Why don't you go to Uyi? He is your very good friend, he will not fail you.

Enoma: Okay, tomorrow I will go and see him. Meanwhile, let's go and see what we can do in the farm.

SCENE TWO: Uyi's House (beautifully decorated)

Uyi: Adesuwa, go and see who is at the door.

(Adesuwa goes to the door and hisses at the visitors)

Adesuwa: What do you want?

Isoken: (Joyfully) Ade, it is me your friend, Isoken and my husband, Enoma.

Adesuwa: And is that news? What brought you here?

Enoma: We want Uyi, I mean my friend.

Uyi: Who is your friend? When did we become friends? Who gave you the right to come into my house, anyhow? We are not equals, you know, so, mind how you address me.

Enoma: But it is me, Enoma, your childhood friend.

Uyi: Rubbish. If you have nothing better to say, please find your way out.

Isoken: Please, I came to beg for some money to enable us to eat tomorrow.

Adesuwa: What impudence! You mean you just live your life not knowing where your next meal will come from? Aren't you a farmer? Can't you grow enough food to feed your family?

Isoken: We are sorry to disturb you. For some time things have not been too good for us. We thought you could help us out.

Adesuwa: I am sorry for both of you. You have come to the wrong place. Just get out of here.

(Flings open the door for them to get out.)

Isoken: We are awfully sorry to have disturbed you. But don't forget, no condition is permanent.

Adesuwa: Say what you like. Good night.

(Exit Enoma and Isoken)

Adesuwa: These people are mad. What do they take us for? Gold-diggers? Nonsense.

Uyi: Don't mind them. They want to reap where they haven't sown. Please serve me my supper.

Uyi: The next time they come here, I will ask the D. O.'s dog to chase them out.

SCENE THREE: Enoma is weaving a mat

Enoma: Isoken, what a humiliation! Did you think Uyi and his wife could treat us that way? I can't believe it. God, if this is what it's like to be a rich man, please don't make me one.

Isoken: Take no notice of them. It is their moon that is shining. God will look with favour on us one day and also provide us a white man's job.

Enoma: I have an idea. Why don't I go and see the D. O. myself? Who knows? He might have something for me.

Isoken: (Laughing) Don't be so sure; after all, there are many other people more qualified than you that he has not found a place for.

Enoma: That is not my business. I am sure he will find something for me to do; I will go and see him tomorrow. God will touch his heart.

Isoken: Good luck! Who knows? You may find favour in his sight.

SCENE FOUR: D.O.'s Office

Knock, knock.

Messenger: Come in.

Enoma: Good morning! Please, can I see the D.O.?

Messenger: (In a hostile mood) Who are you and what do you want?

Enoma: I am Enoma and I want a job.

Messenger: Then go to the Labour Office.

Enoma: I want to see the D.O., I know he can help me.

Messenger: Okay, if you insist. I know he will ask his dog to drive you out of this compound. Fill this form (giving him a form to fill)

Enoma: But I can neither read nor write

Messenger: Then, what do you need a white man's job for if you cannot read and write?

D.O.: Messenger! Messenger!!

(Calling from his office)

Messenger: Yes sir.

D.O.: Who is that?

Messenger: A bush man from the village.

D.O.: What does he want?

Messenger: A job, sir!

D.O.: Send him in.

Messenger: Yes sir! (to Enoma) Go in.

(Enoma hurriedly goes into the D.O.'s office)

D.O.: Yes, young man, can I be of any help to you?

Enoma: Yes sir, I need a job.

D.O.: What about your farm? Who will take care of it - while you are away?

Enoma: Sir, for some time now my farm has not yielded much. Not even enough to feed my family.

D.O.: You are a lazy farmer. If you work hard on your farm, you'll have a good harvest.

Enoma: I work hard sir, but some animals come from the neighbouring bush to eat up my crops.

D.O.: That's sad. Anyway, I don't have much for you, as I guess you can neither read nor write. But all the same, you will make a good gardener.

Enoma: Sir, I cannot guard. I did not fight in the World War.

D.O.: Blunt head! A gardener is one who cares for the plants and flowers around a compound. Is that clear?

Enoma: Yes sir.

D.O.: Messenger! Messenger!!

Messenger: Yes sir!

D.O.: Tell Mr. John to give this man a new pair of uniforms and the keys to my boy's quarters.

Messenger: But sir, that's where Mr. Uyi stays.

D.O.: Mr. Uyi was dismissed yesterday. He was found stealing money from my drawer.

Messenger: Okay sir. Come along (motioning to Mr. Enoma)

SCENE FIVE: Enoma's New House (The Setting is as of Uyi's)

Enoma: My wife, I really thank God for this new job. Now we can have enough to eat and wear.

Isoken: I told you to wait for tomorrow. I told you tomorrow may bring good luck.

(there is a knock on the door)

Isoken: Yes, come in.

(Uyi and his wife Adesuwa enter)

Uyi: Good evening, my friend.

Enoma: Uyi, good evening. What is the matter? You look so worried.

Uyi: That is true. Everything is wrong. We have no food to eat and no home to put up in.

Enoma: That's sad. Uyi, my friend, don't worry. I have saved money since I started working here. So I can give it to you to look for a house and buy some food. You know, the D.O. will not allow me to put you up here.

Uyi: That's true. My friend, Enoma, I am very grateful. I feel ashamed of myself for the way I treated you. You were right when you said no condition is permanent.

Enoma: That's true, my friend. Anywhere we find ourselves, we should try to help others.

Adesuwa: Thank you very much Enoma and Isoken. We have learned our lesson now. God bless both of you. Whatever God has given us, we should bless others with it because no one knows tomorrow.

(Lights Out)