Poems

Lay where?

Do you see this black thick hair with roots as deep as the Japanese Pagoda? This brown skin that has birthed beautiful moles the shade of roasted coffee beans? My deep voice synonym narrating love and loss from my ancestors. Through sails of rough seas, mountains of forests and jungles and individuals with the unfortunate name of a human being whose characters are dark, ghostly and full of hatred. Do you see this cut by my cheek marked by a machete when I resisted rape and thieving of my soul and dignity? Commited by a young man who could have been my son, is my son. You will give me what I want! You will give me what I want! And I wanted to understand what had brought him to this situation where his innocence was robbed. And his heart homed hate and anger. And fear grips my soul for tommorow it will happen to another soul and another. So when they tell us women are precious, are caregivers, are providers, are everything of inbetween, that heaven lay at our feet, am not sure I belive them.

©️SMS
https://vikombeviwilivyakahawa.wordpress.com/

Poems

Maybe freedom is a fabrication.

June 7, ‪2020. 08‬: 32 am
We are still crying
We are still screaming
We are still yearning
We are still standing
Knees without strength, on unknown deserted graves, weeping

For a land deemed land of the free
Where men and women walk in style
Sashaying between narrow streets
Crowded with diverse souls all searching for their dreams

They claim they are happy
Yet spend hours and hours bending front and backwards in slow motion to ease the heart, put the muscles at ease
Reading page after page from a book teaching you how to be happy, write five things you are grateful for,it says, and you will be happy, it says
Vote, is says, and your voice shall be heard, it says
Pray, to him, to her, to Allah, to Jesus, to Buddha, to Brahman, to Haile Selassie, to the moon and the sun, you are advised, they will hear you, they will answer to you, you are told
Run, you are told, run, you will be healthy, your heart will carry you through, you are told
Be kind, you are told, it will come back in many ways, you are informed
Resilience, is the road less taken, those who are resilient eventually see the light, you believe

But your ancestors meditated
And they ran
And they read
And they prayed
And some were kind
Many were resilient
Yet their bodies were ordered and instructed
And when they resisted, they were raped and burnt

It’s a fallacy is it not, this thing we call life
Where we are still not afraid of a naked man offering us his shirt
Where the preachers are the perpetrators
And the perpetrators are the victims
And the innocent the bystanders

Just ask Charles Bukowiski who will tell you,
Those who preach God, need God
Those who preach peace, do not have peace
Those who fight for peace, do not have love
Who are the preachers?
Who are afraid of what they do not know

You are standing outside your balcony this sunny morning
Holding your hand high in a fist
Dressed in a black hoodie with a message
Fierce
Hoping your story will be different
That your generational will be less hierarchical
Less judgemental, more open
Because information is now at your fingertips
A chicken is born on a monday, served on a plate on thursday
I can depart Dar es salaam at 09 in the morning and I will standing outside your door in Pretoria by 05 in the evening, with snoopy wiggling his tail trying to get my attention, my cuddles and ofcourse my generous wet kisses
Breakfast in Muscat, dinner in London
Just like that.

You can be anything you want to be
Yet here you are, hoping for peace, praying to a God you do not believe in, hoping for love whilst your heart is filled with hate and anger,
Meditating, running, praying, trying to be resilient, hopeful
But Anthony, if you live in a land of the free
Why are you not?

©️SMS

https://vikombeviwilivyakahawa.wordpress.com/

Poems

Kunguru asubuhi hii

Ndege aina ya kunguru weusi wanasambaza mabao yao alfajiri hii na kuwika mimbo ya kikwao kikwao. Nyota yu kimywa, hazisemi wala kunong’ona, zinanitazama tu. Nautafuta mwezi niupapase na kuchambua kama ulikuona kwenye giza la usiku kuamka alfajiri ya Leo, lakini mwezi, kama mwezi, kajificha. Anasubiri jua atokeze, yeye akalale, na siri za walimwengu na yote tufanyao tukiamini hatuoni wala kutusikia.

Nachanganya tangawizi na sukari kidogo na kuchemsha kwenye maji. Kisha nakata punje la kitumbua nilichobakiza jana na kumumunya. Giza bado limetambaa na fikra zangu zimewaka na kupiga mayoe kama firimbi limsakao mwizi. Mara hiki, Mara kile.

Lakini Leo mbona zimekusahau wangu laaziz? Ulieteka moyo wangu na kuuweka rimandi kama chizi? Usiku na mchana, Natoka masaki mpaka mlandizi. Nikiamini nafsi zetu zitakuwa kutoka ujanani mpaka mautini?

©️SMS
https://vikombeviwilivyakahawa.wordpress.com

Poems

This warm sunshine may recognize my loneliness and tell you.

Ripened purple figs and melon pears on a small wooden bowl. Warm sunshine and soft winds sipping through my steel window frames. Noisy boda bodas uncertain of an income today or tommorow. Cardamon Kilimanjaro coffee in a cup the size of my head. Sip one, sip two, sip one million and am still counting. My grateful heart and wonderous mind. Thinking of you and of us. In times when you’s and us’s do not really mean you and us. But my mind is thinking of you and of us. Through my warm breath and through my gently pained soul. I am curious of the sunshine and the wind sipping through. I hope they will not notice my loneliness. And the tears slowly forming puddles beneath my brown eyes. What of you? Harith.

©️SMS
https://vikombeviwilivyakahawa.wordpress.com

Poems

This 4 48 in the morning.

Harith,

The early morning waves are rough but manageable. I push my board this way and that way and finally manage to stand and surf on them. Your handsome self stands by the sand, barefoot, drinking black coffee with a warm chocolate croissant. I look at you, from a distance, as you look back at me. The water separates our bodies in physique but not in spirit. It’s true what they say, we have to break to let light come through.

You, through.

©️SMS
https://vikombeviwilivyakahawa.wordpress.com

Poems

Maulana

Maulana, kwani unatosha wewe kuwa wangu mlinzi
Wangu msaidizi
Wangu shahidi na wangu jasiri

Upepo unahama mashariki kwenda madharibi
Naomba zangu dua ziwafikie waliotupwa nyuma za nondo zilizochoka na kuota kutu bila hakika yeyote ya kupata haki zao
Kwani haki ya myonge sio mahakama, haki ya myonge ni mungu

Huu ndio ulimwengu wa sasa, kutu kwenye ngozi hadi damu
Nyoyo zina sura ya karanga ya korosho lakini kwa mbali zina ng’aa kama bibo

Maulana, nikinge na balaa hizi
Fitna na macho ya walimwengu wanaodhani wanafahamu na kuelewa yangu maisha
Zangu shida na wangu ujasiri pale giza linaponikumba na upepo kuzipa mapafu yangu

Maulana, tumetoka mbali mimi na wewe
Tangu siku uliponipokea nilipotoka kwenye tumbo la mama yangu
Wewe ndie muumba wa mbigu na ardhi
Na wewe Ndio utakaye nipokea siku yangu itakavyofika kurudi ardhini

Ikumbatie yangu nafsi
Ilinde, Ibebe, Ipakate
Wewe ni maulana
Usikiae, uonae, ujuae
Muumba wa mbigu na ardhi
Jua na mwezi
Ni kwako nilikotoka
Ni kwako nitarudi

©️SMS
https://vikombeviwilivyakahawa.wordpress.com

Poems

This morning. May 3.

Good things this morning.

Black cardamon coffee from the Mbeya highlands. Flipping through the pages of Great Goddesses by Nikita Gill. Waking up to the early silent hours of the morning before the world wakes up so I can read and drink that damn coffee. Fantasizing of life lessons from myths and monsters. The sounds of flying bats outside my carefully furnished wooden window trying to make their way home before the sun rises and shines. The bitterness on my tongue, the sweetness to my soul. The world at peace, my heart at peace. Recognizing that you are enough, worthy and whole. Plans for the day that remain unknown. Plans for a tommorow that has not arrived. Life and it’s taste of faith. It’s trials of its beings. Because after through them all, you realise you are still standing. You are still standing. And that you are enough, and whole.

©️SMS
https://vikombeviwilivyakahawa.wordpress.com

Poems

Khaled.

I remember the bakery near our house and the smell of Madeira cake and soft orange buns each morning. I remember the gospel music from the church opposite our home and the screams for Jesus to come back and save us. I remember most times, sitting on my mat as I tried to pray listening to both the call to prayer from the mosque and the gospel cries at the same time. We were all turning to a Lord we had yet to meet. Our voices with love, sorrow, anguish and joy, desperate to understand this thing we call life.

Morning prayers, morning thoughts, morning walks, morning swims, morning travels, morning love makings have a funny way of making you believe that you are free. On top of the world. With it, on it. Perhaps we are free when it’s just us and the world ahead of us and not us and us ahead. Perhaps the silence of the early morning is a reminder of the joy that silence sometimes brings.

I lay half asleep on my clean bedsheets this morning dreaming of Khaled and what could have been. Soft cuddles and wet kisses as I made cardamon coffee and told you of my heroic dreams the night before and you pretending to listening but the sugar in the madjool dates infront of you have taken more attention that me.

Me, savoring you strong broad shoulders and calm eyes as the black pupils dart from the window frames curious of the morning movements then back to my face. My small heart engulfed in emotions of love, warmth, life, laughs and hopes. Hopes of a life free of worry and anger and war and systematic oppression. Hopes of love, writing poetry as I drank cranberry sparkling cider and listened to the angelic voice of Miss Ella Fitzgerald. Hopes of walks down the beach in Camps Bay as I grow tired or surfing and you pull my board, place it to the side, slide your manly fingers into mine and ask that we walk and watch the sun come up. Hopes of you, Khaled. And all that is you.With you. You.

©️SMS
https://vikombeviwilivyakahawa.wordpress.com

Poems

She

She
She was born
She was raised
She was grown
She was informed
She was questioned
She was judged
She tried to respond
She tried to explain
She was shut down

She realised of expectations
She tried to meet these expectations
She failed
She failed hard
She cried
She thought someone would comfort her
She got no one
She thought she failed
She failed again

She compared
She compared to all those around her
She then compared herself to the sun and the moon
She realised the sun was a star, shining bright
She realised the moon was a milky pathway with pebbles made of soft brown sands
She realised she did not match with them
She realised she would never be like them
She belived she was ugly
She belived she was ugly and had failed at life because she could not compare with them, match with them, be like them

She was expectant
She was hopeful
She lived in a dreamland where her happiness was dependent on people’s opinions and time, and sometimes also money
She became disappointed
She became resentful
She became someone else but she.

But…

She
She was, is different
She is tall
She is vibrant
She is soulful
She has full lips
She has curvy, fat hips
She has a chest full of big ripe breasts
She has large feet
She has thick Afro hair
She has wide brown eyes
She has strong firm fingernails

She
She has a love for cooking
She practices mid wifery bringing dancing little feet with eyes full of curiosity into the world
She dances in the rain
She enjoys coffee flavored ice cream the most
She enjoys dressing in long dress that cover her neck down to her rainbow colored toes

She
She opposes war, systematic oppression and bullying
She does not buy that which was assisted by ‘modern medicine’ and harvested before its due date from the earth’s soils
She reads of Rumi, Khalil Gibran, Ngung’i wa Thiongo, Adam Shafi, Nikita Gill, Shaaban Robert, Gora Haji Gora, Khaled Hosseini, Paulo Coelho and Naguib Mahfouz
She writes under the sun’s wings
She sleeps beneath the moon and her unkept secrets

She
She breathes in
She
She breathes out
She dreams of a tommorow where, in the midst of preying masculine eyes, she will dance till her strong well fed feminine bones ache
She breathes florals
She spits violets
She is not hopeful
She is prayerful
She is different

She
She is she
She
She is she
She.

©️SMS
https://vikombeviwilivyakahawa.wordpress.com

Poems

Nirvanah?

My nirvanah? Rain drops on my small yet confortable wooden home. The smell of rain as it meanders through soils leaving it moist and satisfied. The smell of baked banana bread as it surfaces the top and calls for the oven to open. The call to prayers by the Muadhin and the tasbeeh slipping through my fingers… I’ve lost count. Where was I? Does it matter? My clean and grateful soul drinking hot ginger tea and listening calmy as it wakes up my already asleep intenstines. My eyes, my two gifts, my gates to vision, and narratives. I see, I write. I write, I see. You. You again. You, yesterday. You, today. You, tommorow. You, every damn other day. You.

©️SMS
https://vikombeviwilivyakahawa.wordpress.com