This is a poem about contemporary youth. If you’re a teenager or young adult, see if you recognise yourself or anyone you know in the poem. For parents, check if this poem describes the lives of your kids.


Counted the ceiling boards all over again
Thinking maybe something’s changed
Doodled on every piece of paper at hand
Tried words but nothing meaningful emerged
Then reached deep within to the artist in me
Drew masks, owls and a goat with a beard
Heard shouts, jumped to flick the switch
Disappointed, turned to bang on the desk
Cell and laptop down, frustration at its peak
This poor teenager is so lost without power

Ⓒ Edith Ugochi Ohaja 2016

This is the story of today’s youths (and some adults) whose lives revolve around electronic gadgets of the digital era. These devices open them up to endless possibilities of activities online and offline but they are all contingent on the availability of steady electricity supply. When that is disrupted, their whole world seems to be plunged into darkness. Such inactivity or ennui was unheard of among youths before this era.

Are you or anyone you know addicted to digital devices? How much of a reading culture do you have? This presupposes that you don’t consider reading hardcopy books a distress. How do you relate with your friends and family? Do you have meaningful face-to-face interactions? It’s been observed that even when those afflicted by this malaise meet, each one is engrossed with his or her device, making mutual engagement limited. Do you belong to clubs and fellowships that foster activities which take you away from your computerised toys?

Believe me, there’s life outside your computer and mobile phone. Live a full life now while you can. THERE IS ALWAYS SOMETHING TO DO!
What can a Christian do to fill the time when things are slow?
How do you as an individual take up the slack when power is off?

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  • Ozor Chukwuebuka

    This is so true… even in Church, it’s rapidly becoming trendy to read the Bible from a phone or other electronic devices.

    • Edith Ohaja

      Yes, many of us do that and I doubt that it is wrong. I’m just against being devastated when these things are non-functional because we have programmed ourselves to be 100% dependent on them and shutting ourselves off from physical human company because of them.


    nice one

  • Anyaka Osmond Ifeanyi

    There is seriously life apart from our electronic devices. That’s what youths and teenagers like us don’t know. We have forgotten the physical mutual interaction and moved to the digital interaction only. We have also forgotten about some of our creative abilities to do things apart from the use of electronic gadgets. We think this is good for us but truly we are keeping ourselves in darkness.
    I like the simplicity of the words used to show “boredom”.. Good choice of title also.

  • chidiogo Georginah

    I know someone in this group, it is really frustrating for them when their phone is off or no electricity I think they need to read this poem

    • Edith Ohaja

      I think many young people are in the group. They just need to get a grip… But some people work with their laptops, etc. and need those devices powered. That is understandable.

  • victor Ezeja

    You really pointed out the fact ma! Addiction to electronic devices in this digital era has really rendered many people lazy especially in the area of academics and domestic works.

  • Ahuekwe Chioma

    I have a friend, so shy to start a conversation with someone physically but can go on for hours on endless chats with newly found social network friends.
    Now i dnt knw if that is a good or bad thing but we sure need to step out of the confinement of our phones and other digital gadgets and see d world out dia. I love the poem, very descriptive yet simple nd captures the attitude of most of us youths and teenagers. Ride on ma’am.

  • Mbadugha Ifeanyi

    So true. Separating some youths from their gadgets is like the “end of days” for them. It’s so bad that some no longer know how to converse with people in real life and technology isn’t helping because these devices are just getting better. But not everyone in this category is addicted for the fun factor, some see their gadgets as their only friend especially those ones that are abused by family or in school or those single children whose parents always have episodes. In all, they all need intervention because as Osmond said, there is life outside electronic devices.

    • Edith Ohaja

      Thanks for sharing some of the reasons young people get addicted to their digital devices besides recreation. Nice insight there. You are highly blessed in Jesus’ name.

  • Akwolu Chiamaka MaryAnn

    The world is becoming globalised some would argue, “so why not keep that bulky book and go electronic? ”
    My take: no Bible app will give me the feeling the hard Bible copy would. We have to be proud of printed Bible texts.

  • deuce emm

    So trueeeee

  • deuce emm

    it happens everyday

  • Irumekhai Mariam

    Aunt, this is so true about our generation. many youths have allowed this computer age to eat them so deep that they give limited time to their studies. also, you see most of them pressing their phones when adults (parents especially) are communicating with them without showing a sign of respect by listening attentively to them. worse still,they handle their phones even in the house of God when the sermon is on-going. there are also stories about some youths who met their untimely death in the course of using ear piece, listening to music on the high way.
    wish most of us could have a rethink about the way we use most of these gadgets and not allow our lives to be fully dependent on them.

  • Achebe Winifred

    I definitely recognize myself and most if not all of my peers in this poem. And the poem literally defines how we feel when we don’t have our electronic devices on and active. This is a problem we won’t come out of easily but we can definitely minimize it. Like Aunty Edith has said there is life outside our mobile phones and computer. I hope we all see that

  • Joy

    I had a roommate in my first year who was always complaining that the money her mum gives her for upkeep is not enough but do you know that she uses the little money for subscription not for browsing but for chat and downloading the latest music and videos. Infact, throughout my stay with her in Aja -Nwachukwu I didn’t see her open her book to read or do any assignment.she was always busy with her phone and when I tried talking to her she told me that I was only a ‘cub ‘ that I will soon join her because then I was still using a Nokia torch. Students of this era no longer see anything else except phone and other electronic gadgets.I pray we realize that there’s more we can do with our life without phone and electronic gadgets before it’s too late. I love the title of this poem Aunty.

  • Onyekaozuru Florence

    I for one believe in life outside the information superhighway “the internet” unlike my peers. I get tired of using my phone or laptop, not to be quoted wrongly I don’t see anything bad in it nor will I say I don’t do it but the fact is that I am not addicted to and hope never to but then in my point of view the rate of this madness is alarming, the youth are not only a part of it both parent those who need to checkmate such excesses are now part of it, with everything happening I wonder what our society will be like in the next let’s say ten years, people will sit at home and do whatever they want to do even travel the world in their comfort zone and then forget what it feels like to gather and talk under a mango tree for hours,what it feels like to stroll around the street or playing ball in the street,so many outside life activities will be forgotten, well we pray that our morals would not be forgotten too…….

  • These days people spend more time with their gadgets especially phones because they basically use it for a lot of things like communicating with friends and family, surfing the net, games, music, reading online novels, movies, videos and when one is on a hundred social media, it’s difficult to be away from his/her phone. When we forget to charge our phones and power goes off, it stings the heart. And when the phone bat3 dies, it’s like losing a best friend for a moment.
    I wonder if it’s charm sometimes that’s so greedy to steal most of our attention. Sometimes we can’t help it. When my phone spoilt i could not rest till someone helped me install an Android app on my laptop. Lol. I think what would help is keeping away for sometime. This aided me when my laptop screen blacked out. Though i thought i lost the world, “No phone, no laptop”, I realized i could do without it, and guess what? It felt good feeling like a normal Nigerian teenager living in the 80s or 90s. I wanted to spend more time with my friends physically instead of texting, “hey, sup… “. We hung out a lot and most especially i spent more time in fellowship. We can help ourselves if we want to. Jst keep away for a while. Don’t let it dominate your life.

  • The upsurge in technology is doing the youth more harm than good. Today, everyone is technological savvy. The internet is awash with different socaI media platforms. And everyone now and then they are online, charting with friends and exchanging pleasantries. In church, during sermons and during classes. I would not be wrong to assert that the social media has taken the place of God in the lives of many. It has killed reading culture. Its side effects are numerous. But there are still people who make good use of the social media.such persons are not buried in it. They give it time.

  • Njoku Israel

    Its a problem I had often suffered from too. Whenever my battery goes down, I find my self lost and isolated. I find myself bored.
    It’s important we realise as youths that there is a very lively life outside our devices with potentials for eventfulness and promises for adventure. Instead of chatting online, we can go out and meet new people, engaging in meaningful relationships and securing our social sanity, which I fear digitization or gadget addiction is damaging seriously.
    Thanks ma, for such an eye opening post

  • Amadi Chibuzor .J

    No power, cell down, nowhere to play or watch football. What else am I supposed to do? This is one question I always ask myself when faced with a situation like this. And to me the answer is always SLEEP.

    • Edith Ohaja

      Maybe you should try reading a novel or magazine. You could be entertained and learn a few things in the process.

  • Gadget gadget gadget… I saw a video recently on the millennial generation. What struck me was that they said our gadgets induce a chemical called dopamine. Which is also got from alcohol and other addictive stuff. So I think there should be a restriction because this thing is new to our society and not much research was done before it was fully implemented here. Even though I am a victim… But we are aware of its negative impact so we work to get better. Rom.12:2 were are charged not to conform ourselves to this world or the things of the world but to be transformed by renewing our minds. May God help us break free from all addictions in Jesus Name.

  • Uzor, Oge Juliet

    Thanks very much. Going through your posts was enlightening. Really, what we need is to be in control of the social media and not the other way round. Well done, ma.

  • Ugwu patience

    I can see myself clearly in this poem. It is only God’s grace & self discipline that will help us to cope because this is technology age.

  • emekaobi ijeoma rita

    this is so true…lol. thanks for educating me

  • Obetta Collins Odinakachukwu

    Such things normally happen when you are alone on a sunny, quiet afternoon. Nobody to talk with, Absolutely nothing to keep you company. And if NEPA refused to shine the light, no movies or a TV programme to watch. Even your mobile phones would not give you the ultimate satisfaction you really need at that time. I mean, you will loose interest in all of it. To read self go be wahala… Just close your eyes and try to get some sleep, that how to get rid of the boredom.

  • Ishiwu Victor Chinonso

    What a boring day it is for you when you have nothing doing at home… But you have a company, who is the Holy Spirit. Why not try and engage Him in a discussion?

  • Ike Faustina Uchechukwu

    i know a friend who will rather read online novels than to read the recommended text given to her for the semester

    • Edith Ohaja

      You see, that’s the problem of misplaced priority. May God help your friends and others like him or her before they ruin their final results.

  • covenant

    This is obviously true even among christians today, people no longer go to church with bible in their hands, instead they tell you that it is in their phone. So tell me, what happens when your device goes out of power, automatically the rest of the scriptures mentioned become useless to you…

  • walter nkemakonam onukwue

    what many call boredom is whta i call state of confusion..u can’t be bored when there are lots of things to do… just like u rightly said diversification of interest will solve the problem am sure

  • Ugezu Chisolum.

    Seriously, its all true. especially with me, i must say it has impacted in me alot but in a postive manner but better still, the be told. it should be curtailed cos even walking on the road i see myself pressing my phone keys. this is called addiction…i should curtail it and this is a reminder.

    • Edith Ohaja

      Lol! Almost every youth is caught in and lately, I too have been tied to my digital devices because of my blogging. But discipline is needed as too much of anything is bad.

  • Jenifer Adaeze Lisa

    So true, at times, we get so lost in these gadgets that we become of no use in reality. Nice one ma. God bless you.

  • keswet mercy

    with the way the world is developing things are quite alarming…most people dont even carry bible to church anymore because of they have the app in their phone this is sooooo uncultured and wrong it has made most youth deviate from the right way ma i think you should be posting more of this so as to educate youths especially

    • Edith Ohaja

      Thank you so much for the encouragement. But is there really anything wrong in reading the Bible from an app?

  • Oparaugo shalom

    this is very true. nice one aunty

  • This is true. Some people can’t do without their cellphones and my cousin is a good example of them. Imagine when you will be talking to someone and it takes minutes for him to give a response because he is busy on social media with his phone. It’s very annoying. May God help us.

  • Okoye chidi

    I tink dere is ntin wrng wit the trend in technology bt we should b careful nt to abuse it

  • Nnamani Adanna Mary

    This is so true abt today’s youth and its a social problem that should be preached against. Imagine inviting ppl to ur birthday day party and at d end of the day its looking like a phone operating competition. with everyone engrossed in their phones. Very frustrating!

  • Henrietta Okoye

    At a point I was addicted to my digital gadgets until my mum saw it as a big problem and hid it from me during the holidays and I had to change and give something else my whole time and that was how I stopped being addicted to it and I now use my time on special things… Youths should know that time wasted can never be gained back

  • ononso akwueke

    If you’re bored, just chew paper and throw it up to the ceiling, i promise you it will stick

  • Oluchi Ekeruche

    I can remember when I just got my phone, my mum said this is the beginning of joblessness for me and it was so true. Its like I can’t drop my phone except the battery is low. But sometimes I learn to discipline myself, that’s the only way I can do better things with myself.

  • Benjamin C.Nweke

    my dad had to break my phone three times before i could get to curtail the excess time i spend with the device.
    thanks for the peice. it’s a good reminder.

  • Kat

    I can relate to this poem.The electronic gadgets we have in this age have become so addictive,the youth can hardly do without them especially the mobile phones.Truth be told,i may not be a technology freak but without the internet,the boredom is all too overpowering!

  • Otti Uzoma Augusta

    I know someone that sleeps only when her phone is down.Thank God I’m not addicted but sometimes I get bored when my phone is down.

  • Dike Gerald Osinachi

    It’s very certain. Parents get annoyed whenever they see the youths religiously addicted to their gadgets. Funny enough, those gadgets are aliens alienating many values from us.

  • Onwusonye Promise

    Yes, they are really addictive. An illiterate today is addicted to gadgets tomorrow. I wonder what is inside these gadgets


    It’s like am a victim of this poem. i like my electronic gadget and I dont’ think i can do without them even on a daily basis. However, i can have a face- to -face conversation with my friends and family members. That is , I am not addicted to it totally.
    This poem simply tells me that Aunty Edith Ohaja is contemporary.

  • onyibalu kosisochukwu maureen

    Hahaha. This is just amazing. this is really the fact as electronic gadgets are killing swiftly face to face coversations between fellows. Wonderful poem ma.

  • Akogu Juliet Aniema

    This thing always happen to me and its quite frustrating. But i have learnt to always get a book to read whenever i find myself in such situation again. nice post ma.

  • Ugwu Ifunanya

    Technology has really helped us to broaden our knowledge on certain issues that would help improve our life, but the issue,so many atimes people get too attached to it which has cost us alot harm. So when enjoying it, make sure to be conversant with your immediate environment and try and enjoy the life outside of it.

  • Ezeme Evans Ejike

    I most say that the social media is greatly influencing our generation. We are now more likely to interact and engage online than the conventional way of social gathering. The only thing needed now, is a little discipline.

  • Abugu Chinazom

    Boredom could just be likened to a DISEASE, something everyone despises.
    Boredom would make people do things they ordinarily wouldn’t do; counting the number of clothes in their wardrobe, checking how much hours is still left before the day comes to an end.
    Lol! Boredom is sure an enemy!

  • Amarachi Deborah Ugwu

    ahahahahahahahahahahah ooh my goodness those memories, even up till now it still happens to me ohh, i can count ceiling boards eehhh, chaiiiii no be small boredomness.

  • onyema chinonyelum cynthia

    with all my gadgets down and no power- plus no place to go,hmm i feel more than bored. i believe 99% of the world population will share my view.

  • Joseph Edidiong

    I used to feel this same way until I decided to place less value on material things and focus my mind on the profitable. I still get bored at times but not as often as before. Just once In a while

  • Ozoguejiofor Uche Jacinta

    Hahahah. This Is so me. I get extremely bored without my handset. I have this awful feeling of loneliness. I begin to look for things to distract me. But nothing I do can be more entertaining than social media asides watching mobies of course.

  • Edeh Cynthia oluomachi

    I dnt really feel bored without my phones,because i actually have alot of things to do when i feel lonely, i love this poem ma

  • Ibe Chinwe Cynthia

    This is so me. I won’t necessarily say I’m addicted to my phone but I need it constantly charged. Asides being connected to the world via social media, it helps me access the internet for information. It equally educates. I can’t imagine preparing for a test or an exam without my phone. It is, however, necessary to know how to cutoff giving excess attention to social media alone

  • Egbo Rita Somtochukwu

    This post is so talking to me, not that I am addicted to it but up to a point. As youths, we shouldn’t allow electronic gadgets to deprive us from the real thing to be done. Aside from using our phones in our free time, we should use it to build our hope, trust and believe in Christ through prayer and dedication.

  • I would say you caught virtually every youth with this poem. Am inclusive. Nice poem ma. Thanks for this inspiring poem. Gadgets have wasted many. It’s about time we harness the potentials in us and not wasting our time on gadgets.

  • Nwele Euphemia Uzoamaka

    I can relate to this lines – “Tried words but nothing meaningful emerged
    Then reached deep within to the artist in me
    Drew masks, owls and a goat with a beard”. There was a time i subdued to painting anything that passes me by. More so, did i try creating magic with words. Indeed i can relate

  • Odo Collins Nnaemeka

    minimize the time you spend in electronic gadgets……study your Bible to fill in the time when it is slow.

  • Ewurum john

    Most of us that always rest on the shoulders of our phones whenever we are bored tend to have lenient parents or guardians that don’t consider immense discipline as a tool for child upbringing. Its now a modus operandi in the society. Nice piece ma

  • Chioma Harmony

    This is a problem everyone suffers from. There was a point where I couldn’t watch my phone go off. Even if I wasn’t doing anything with it. I always made sure it was on. This habit stopped me from trying other things.. .i know better now. There is a life outside those screens

  • Nwankwo Amanda

    This is an actual fact, most teenagers of this 21st century can’t cope without gadget, some would rather make friends online than in reality.

  • judith

    This is a serious issue and i applaud you for writing on the boredom caused by the influence of this gadgets on the 21st century youths, when these devices are gone, its like the most important thing in their life is all gone. which is so sad.

  • Lynda chisom

    This poem just said it all about youths addiction to cellphone and the resulting effect in their lives when not available which is boredom,hence the popular saying,”An idle mind is a devil’s workshop”

  • The use of these gadgets has done more harm than good to the youths of this days, they can’t even stay without them .And these encourages laziness in terms of reading and doing other things among the youths.

  • This poem really depict the exact issue trending in the contemporary world among the youth. The addiction to electronic gadget most especially phones has became the cankerworm that has eaten deep into the fabrics of our analytical mind. we no longer think of any reasonable thing than moving and chatting unnecessarily om Whatsapp, Facebook etc. although they are important, but we prefer to use them for unimportant purposes. so I thank you ma for making us to realize the errors we have been making. And I Belief that by this great exposure we shall make corrections to our errors. It’s a nice poem.

  • the electronic gadgets has done more harm than good as majority of teens and youth no longer have time for their books and due to the competition on who types fast writes in shorthand which is not advisable for a student

  • Afunanya Chiamaka Lilian

    I think am guilty of that I really feel frustrated whenever my phone and laptop are down..BOREDOM INDEED!!!

  • Jibulu Ngozi

    This poem truly depicts the 21st century era we are living now, the addiction of electronic gadgets has become a serious problem that without these devices, boredom eats deep in the mind of young people.

  • Eze Chioma

    It’s a sad thing that todays youth has depended so much on phones and social media that whenever one of these things are taken from them, it feels like the whole world will soon end. We should not depend so much on our cell phones for entertainment that we actually forget to live life

  • Nwoye Chiamaka Favour

    Phones phones phones. I can’t barely survive a day without my phone. It’s hard to see life as interesting aside these gadgets. They give a sort of comfort to teenagers and youths. It’s time consuming but what can I do that gives so much pleasure as operating them. But am trying my best to put myself into something more lucrative though.

  • Harriet

    I can survive without phone but not power supply to watch movie at least

  • Paul-kayode praise c

    This is so relatable, thanks to you ma, I’d start learning to explore the world outside social media, electronic media and the likes.

  • Onoyima jane

    I don’t see any lie on this post because I am also part of it. I would change.

  • Oshana Oyaku Endurance

    True! Young people today are so addicted to their phones, to them its the only thing that can keep them away from boredom which is very bad. The poem is not just for fun, it calls for a shame.

  • Mirian Ndawe

    I don’t think I can do without my phone not because I am addicted to social media, my media consumption is intact below moderate but I write with my phone. When electricity blacks out and my battery is flat, I usually see it as a sign from heaven to read my books. I am a twenty first century teen and it is not my fault, it’s the world I live in.

  • I can absolutely do without digital gadgets. I can safely say that these gadgets might be what is hindering mist of our youths purpose or goal in life. I stayed without gadgets just to know what I wanted in life and it turned my life for good. I can write intriguing and amazing poems and articles and I am getting better day in day out. A month without digital gadgets pays off well. It is not harmful neither is it useful but moderate use of it can help.

  • Chinelobi Treasure Oluchi

    Well there are so many billion things to do for a few of us… So cells and laptops is not our own power.

  • Eze Nnenna

    Well well…
    Most teens and young adults can’t do with the phones or electronic gadgets, lol, their life is all in them.. They spend most of their days and time there.. They haven’t learnt to build lives outside that, but they build their lives around it.

  • ogbonnaya chioma .F

    this is so true ooo. am a very good example of this poem. I am so addicted to my phone that I even go to the bathroom with it. mine is so bad that even during morning and night family devotion I still find myself manipulating my phone, I Cook with my phone, I wash cloths with my phone, I discuss with people and at the same time manipulating my phone. in fact, even in church my phone is everything. and as soon as the power supply goes off I become so restless that I look for all means to get my phone charge…. without the power supply I feel am empty, that’s how bored I feel… this poem just exposed a very bad part of my life I so wish to change, but when I look that it I feel like am already addicted to it. my parents and friends complain a lot about this my bad habit and I really wish I could turn around and fave a better view and meaning of lift outside the electronic life. but of recent I think I can also stand to say that am learning to build my life outside this electronic stuff. ma you really caught me here. thanks for this exposure.

  • Okorie Adaora N.

    Cell and laptop down, frustration at it’s peak. Majority of youth can actually relate to this. Well, I won’t say I am addicted to my phone and laptop but I get really bored without them and I’m so lost without power.

  • Nnabuihe Victoria

    Many teen in this era can’t do without their phone, they carry it
    everywhere they go, it has goon so bad that even in the church while the preaching is on, they still operate their phone. I won’t say I know what they do with it that make their hands always glue to their phone all the time. Some say it not their fault it is the era, but i know of a truth that too much of anything is not good.

  • Nwannah Juliana ngozi

    This is a typical example of youths this days with myself included.once our mobile gadgets are not up and running,we become bored.those gadgets seem to have gotten the better part of is not some thing to be proud of.

  • Chukwunwenwa Chinenye

    Most of us are guilty of this addiction. I can’t really say that I’m addicted or not but sometimes I get bored when my gadgets are switched off. ?

    I’ve tried to utilize mine by opening an online store though.

  • Adiukwu Desire

    I don’t see anything wrong in using electronic gadgets to curbing ones boredom. But one thing i know for sure is that too much of things is not good. At least am curbing my boredom by reading posts on this blog through the help of the electronic gadgets. But the point is, don’t use these gadgets in way that you can’t do without them. Don’t make them become lord of you. You see ladies turning to prostitute in other to acquire these gadgets and men involving in money rituals. Please and please be warned

  • Boredom can make you glued to your phone for hours without noticing people around you.. But the thing is, what exactly is keeping you busy in your phone.. As long as it is positive and harmless.. Its not bad. But then you should not prioritize that to the extent that you literally can’t do without it.. Let it be something you do at you leisure EXCEPT , If you earn your living through online businesses, blogging etc.. Let’s all be guided..

  • Ejiofor Emmanuel

    Phones takes much of our time. Sometimes I wonder whether it has a spirit behind it.
    Too much of everything is bad.

  • Anabude oluchi

    Quite educating!
    The gadgets are not really the problem but it just boils down to how we use it, it should not be in control of us as we see around us today especially among the youth but we should be in control.
    We should avoid replacing phone communication to our supposed physical communication we should have with one another. Have a blessed day ma!

  • Aunty Edith!
    I never get tired of reading your work. Absolutely inspirational.

    Personally, I don’t get bored from low battery (my devices are usually charged). But I have an entire world outside it.

    I plan to become a regular again.

  • Nancy Njoku

    So true!!
    I’m guilty of what this post describes though. Lol!!
    May God help me!

  • Jacenta ossai.

    This is poem is very relatable, sometimes I see social media as a platform to escape reality. Indeed there’s life outside social media.

  • Uzochukwu Angel

    The advance in this digital age has done harm to the mentality of the contemporary youths. Most of us are addicted to our digitals without knowing life’s essence asides them.

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