She Wears the Rainbow on her Waist|Adeola Juwon |One Act Play



Dewunmi: A village maiden.


Funmilade: A village maiden – Dewunmi’s friend.


Dare: A young man – Dewunmi’s admirer.





The early hours of a Saturday morning, two young women are on their way to the only borehole in the village of Alara. They have only their wrappers on. One, Funmilade, has her bucket balanced on her head. The other, Dewunmi, holds hers in her hand. They’re gossiping about the latest scandal in the village.


Dewunmi: My friend, that was how he stopped visiting her o. He went away drenched in soapy waters. I heard he had to stop at Femi’s house to borrow a shirt he wore home.


Funmi: (Laughs). Serves him right! What’s the matter with men of nowadays? Ehn? He has his own wife at home, yet he won’t just let the poor girl be. It is good what her mother did. I’m sure he has learnt his lesson.


Dewunmi: Are you sure? You know men, they won’t stop pestering you until they eat the goodies at the bottom of the pot (she points between her thighs and they both giggled.) Once they see a wriggling behind, they lose the use of their senses. God help them!


Funmi: You are right, my friend. Take Ola for example. That wretched boy won’t just let me be.


Dewunmi: It is the way of the world, my dear. Men will always chase women the way a cock chases a hen.


Funmi: (Taps Dewunmi on the shoulder.) Talking about wooers, here comes your lover.


Dewunmi: (Feigning ignorance.) Who? Who do you betroth me to? Funmi, you joke too much!


Funmi: (Laughs.) As if the dove doesn’t know what happens in the house. The dove knows, it just decides to bridle its mouth with silence (She winks.). See, he comes for you.


(Dare swaggers towards them)


Dare: Eh. What do I have here? Two beautiful flowers for my eyes to feed on. Good morning beautiful ones. (He greets the two but his eyes are set on Dewunmi.)


Funmi: Good morning to you too.


Dare: (Dare to Dewunmi.) And you, won’t you greet me? Courtesy says you should reply greetings. Or, (He moves closer to her) will you say you didn’t see a handsome man standing before you? (He pushed his shoulders up with pride.)


Dewunmi: (Throws him an arrogant look and hissed.) Funmi, we’d better make haste lest this talkative delays us.


Funmi: (Aside: As if she’s not been dying to see him.) Okay. I still have two rounds to make.


Dare: (To Dewunmi) It is rude of you, you know? Walking away from a man (He beats his chest.) Me, you don’t know? All the girls in this village will die for my attention and here you are being rude. Tueh!


Dewunmi: Then go. Go to them. Those dying for your attention and leave me alone.


Dare: (He smiles and his voice softens.) Dewunmi mi. The jewel of my heart. Truly, there are lots of birds in the bush, but it is the beauty of your peacock that sets my heart racing. There are thousands of roses in the garden, but it is yours that conjures butterflies and make them flutter in my belly.


Dewunmi: (Holds a finger to the air.) Stop already! You have no work early in the morning than to woo? Eh! And, don’t you dare call me yours again! I’m not a property for you to claim. Also, you compare me to a bird? A peacock? (Turns to Funmi.) My friend, please let’s leave this fool. My mother waits for me.


Dare: (Rushes towards her and holds her hand.) No. I didn’t mean it like that. Yes. Yes. You’re not a property to claim, Dewunmi. And the peacock. Haven’t you heard of her beauty? She stands out among the birds of the bush and yet she’s no match to your beauty.


Funmi: (Her face is washed with jealousy.) Men and flattery!


Dare: (Draws Dewunmi closer, his face broadens, showing a perfect set of white teeth.) Dewunmi, why do you pride in tormenting my heart? Why?


Dewunmi: (Snatches her hands away from his and feigns anger) Away with you! Where are your manners, how dare you hold me in such a manner?

(She struggles to hide the excitement bubbling in her stomach.)


Funmi: We really have to go. The sun is coming out in all its strength and the borehole is getting choked with crowd now.


Dare: (To Funmi) Please, help me talk to your friend. I love her. I really do.


Funmi: (Aside: The agony of love. The one you love loves another. Are you so blind to not to see that I’m in love with you?)

And when did I assume the title of alarena, am I a matchmaker?  Shior! Akindanidani Only a jobless man wakes with the thoughts of a woman on his mind.

(To Dewunmi)  Friend, let’s leave this clown alone.


(The two leave Dare standing alone and continue their chatter.)


Dare: (Soliloquy)

I’m in love with a deaf mule,

How do I bare my heart to her?

I’ve borrowed sweet lines of poetry from Akanni,

the one with the honeyed voice,

Yet her cheeks refuse to blush.

I have buttered words with promises,

still she won’t warm towards me.

Love, Dewunmi, your love torments my heart and

I don’t know how much I can bare it anymore.

(He looks up and stretches his hands to the sky)

If there are gods in heaven, have mercy on my plight,

and make her heart soften towards me.

(He turns to go but is taken aback when he sees Dewunmi standing behind him.)


Dare: Ha (His face lit with surprise), Dewunmi, I thought you’ve left!


Dewunmi: (Shrugs.) I came back… for you. (She looks at him and turns her face down shyly.)


Dare: (Raises his hands to the heavens.) Ha, the queen of my heart. The light of my eyes. Have my words yield a fruit in your heart? Are you willing to give me a chance to love you?


Dewunmi: (She looks away coyly.) So it is.


Dare: (Rolls up the helm of his kenbe, jumps up and does a little dance)

Emi la o ni yosi              (Why won’t we be grateful.)

            Emi la o ni yosi               (Why won’t we be grateful)                                               

Baa ti fe kori, be na lori         (It has turned out just the way we wanted                             

Emi la o ni yosi                    (Why won’t we be grateful?)

Dewunmi: (Breaks into a soulful song and  walks towards Dare who has stop dancing.)

Se ileri pe ooni koju mi si orun ale

(Promise me you won’t disappoint me.)

Se ileri ooni fi oju ife mi gbole

(Promise you’ll not take my love for granted)

Nitori mo se tan lati ba e lo

(Because I am ready to follow you.)

Dare: Dewunmi, I promise you my love for you will be steadfast and sure like the rising of the sun. I promise to stay with you come rain come shine. The beans and kernel are eternally entwined in love, so will I be to you. (He opens his arms for a hug and Dewunmi gives in to him.)




Photo by Jessica Felicio on Unsplash



Adeola Juwon is a Nigerian poet and ghost-writer. His works have appeared in Kalahari Review, EroGospel, ArtMosterrific, African Writer and elsewhere. He daydreams and writes to the cooing of doves from his room in Lagos, Nigeria.

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2 Responses to “She Wears the Rainbow on her Waist|Adeola Juwon |One Act Play”

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Juwon is at it again!
The way you play with words is just amazing. You’re an amazing writer.

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Enthralling read. I imagined that love wouldn’t find it’s way, yet it did.

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