The Zimbabwe We Want Poetry Campaign

September 19, 2017 Poetry , POETRY / FICTION

AP photo

 

By

Mbizo Chirasha

 

Happy International Peace Month (ART-ACTIVISM FOR PEACE). We are all aware that September is the month of peace and in this month all nations, governments and organizations, writers, poets, artists and schools recognize the need for peace in and around their spaces.

While we commemorate the PEACE MONTH, the Zimbabwe We Want Poetry Campaign word slingers continue to raise therir voice. We remind the Zimbabwean government under the corrupt, violent and hegemonic regime of Mugabe that PEACE begins with everyone else. That the talks for PEACE have to be walked not to be used as a propaganda rhetoric.

We can’t forget the disappreance of social and citizen justice Activist – Bravest Voice ITAI DZAMARA. We lost a lot of MDC Opposition activists since 1998, more than 1,000 activists disappeared, maimed and were killed throughout the years. We are in solidarity with the all brave and powerful filmmaker, Art- Activism Creativism Expert, the VOICE OF REASON – Silvanos Bhanditi Mudzvova who was arrested, attacked and eventually abducted and left for dead in Nharira hills near Harare. We are also  in solidarity with peace and justice activist/expert – Jestina Mukoko, the Founder/ Executive Director of  Zimbabwe Peace Project.

We are in solidarity with those who are in pursuit of a peaceful, tolerant and just Zimbabwe. Let your pen and your voice defend you and the suffering Zimbabwean masses – Mbizo Chirasha 

 

 

 

 

THEIR TRUE TESTIMONY IS UPON THEIR OWN EPITAPHS

 

 

I’m done of walking up and down
in conditioned ignorance and legalized false hope
like a madman chasing nothing
upon these pot-holed and sewage-flooded streets
of this cold and bleak city
in search of employment
but in vain.
Streets laden and nicknamed with sacred names
of the lied of,
the abducted
and the lynched; the eliminated role models
of our betrayed struggle.
Names of the victims
of our today’s top political echelon
whose lives in great sacrifice were hell-spent
behind bars and sometimes in hiding,
in the woods and in exiles,
in honest pursuit of their people’s freedom.
A noble dream that never became a reality
but rather died a sad death of a sperm in a condom,
not guilty but perishing in incarceration.
Names of those who were labeled criminals yesterday
and brutally doomed!
but today
for the sins they committed not
have been ironically granted a posthumous repentance
and then canonized heroes.
Madness!
But in this blind contradiction,
by inscribing epitaphs upon their concrete tombs,
the villain’s bloody hand
had honestly given a true testimony
of his own victims in clarity
that shall linger forever in history
but unawares!
In their undiscerned sincerity, those few lines, due to censorship,
still are descriptive enough
for the generations to come
to read and know
these fallen victims were indeed the founding fathers
of our sold out resistance.

 

 

(By Blessing T Masenga a bold word  guerilla, a fiery poet through his writings tirelessly and boldy seek to strip nude the oppression and the violations of basic human rights)

 

 

 

 

RED…

 

 

Bowed, bent, low

“16 years old and
off to school I go
for the hundredth time –
and for the millionth moment
I tweek my smile
till it glows”.

Icy tears sting
frozen cheeks.

“I gallop, I prance,
I pray that she’ll loose the noose someday,
A prayer I pray every day”.

Midnight.
welcome smiles;
Coke and candy relieves the bile.
Nikita sheds her skin
like a practiced chameleon.
not shy, no shiver
from the cool fanned air.
Pimped, pinched, and pummeled
Johns and Jills come out to play
dimmed lights along a fast night;

Nikita stares from a faraway place
Inside her soul.

“Silent sneers
ready derision
Jibes and jeers,
Eyes that know me not
neither sees
the girl in me”.

“I love you”,
serenades the paying “perv”.
Pleas for flavored popsicles.
Red turns to no one in particular –
“I pray that you,
yes you who sees me not
undo this tightened yoke,
lift from me this sexually marinated blob –

Stoke the fiery flames,
bring Nikita back to life.
Undo this choke inside my throat,
cuffed like a dog to a pole –
perfumed bodice too strong
for a slender 16 year old.

Mother,
what have you done –
Stop this revolutionary disease.
am I the consequence of poverty?
a plaything that stirs a man’s generosity –
like a mannequin who boasts her lost virginity.

Perhaps hope will someday deliver me
from this never ending hell
Of candy-coated popsicles
and dresses too tight
for a little girl parading at night”.

Red holds Nikitas hand tightly –
the two must never become one.
But for this night only
Nikita needs a trusted friend.
Welcome smiles
coke and candy relieves rising bile.

Nikita stares from a faraway place inside her soul –
and sheds her skin
like a practiced chameleon.

“Mother
What have you done”.

Bowed, bent, low

“16 years old
And off to school I go”.

 

 

(Beulah Kleinveldt AKA Jambiya, is an emotive writer who weaves the tragedy and victory of the human experience into a tapestry of memorable imagery and metaphor? She speaks with honesty on the spiritual and social challenges of our time. Jambiya’s works are a must read for those accustomed to the jaded perfunctory cleverness of modern wordsmiths)

 

 

 

 

 

I WANT TO BE A DEAD POET

 

 

I want to be a dead poet
Sitting at a corner table
In our neighborhood café
Just up the street from the redwood grove
And City Lights Bookstore

They will serve me innumerable
Free cappuccino’s with heavy frost
And floating hearts on top of the cream
Never complaining over the hours
I spend eyeing angelic young men
In Dusty Levi is
Drinking beer or espresso

I want to be a dead public
For all of eternity
And learn how to speak the great
Languages of the world

I want to sit with John Milton
Dance with Emily Dickinson
Grab young Rimbaud’s blond ass
On a side street in St. Germain
I must say it one more time
With the surrealist poet
Philip Lamantia and my old pal –
Teacher Charles Bukowski
Yet another run to the liquor store up on Sunset Boulevard where the old man smokes cheap cigars
Sales us beer by the case
On sultry summer evenings

I’m tired of being an old man
My feet ache
Knees are weak
They are taking away my license
To drive
My poems were never published
By broad shouldered New York houses

Rain threatens our beloved town
I will stand in it with arms outspread
Petition the gods

I want to be a dead poe
And walk with old Homer
Along an Ionian shore
I need to embrace Dante
In Verona before the Roman ruins

Now it is 5 AM
I grow older by the minute
Yes life is good
Yes I love breathing
Every minute counts
Teach your children how to tell time
Hammer a moment
Into gold coins to tuck
Under a blanket

I want to be a dead poet
Famous in the eyes of those
Who remain behind
Stuck in the give-and-take
Of life on earth

Last week I walked
With my beloved
In the Deer Park
And saw two deer
Eating sugar from
The blessed hands
Of Gotoma

Next week I will climb
High five not the mountains
In order to probe sturdy junipers
Where the snow is like ass
And purple lichen
Clings to rock

Let me make that a young man again
Whose blond fingers
Hold a cigarette and espresso
In Franco’s café
Down the block from my usual hang out

I would become a saint
And wear a name tag throughout
Eternity at the literary convention
Until Walt Whitman comes up to me
And tears the name tag
From around my neck

I would return to life
only if the monarch butterfly
Speaks my name
On a delving day late spring

I would return so that
I might see baby Julian
As a young man
In the afternoon
A spark of my light in his

I want to be a dead Poet
Because nothing else matters
Nothing else ever mattered
Life depended on such a thing

I will count butterflies
In the death to come
And eat the sound of distant stars
Until my head is lit like
A Roman Candle

I I want to get up this morning
And take one last drive to Funston Beach
And walk the cliff
With little Orion at my side
For balance
He weighs 9 pounds and carries
Our planet on his back

I want to be a dead poet
And drink cappuccino all day long
In my favorite cafe
With all my Jacks and Jills
And far into the night
Because there is no night
We do not sleep in the afterlife
Which is a dead zone

 

 

(By Neeli Cherkovski – a Poet from San Francisco, United States)

 

 

 

 

AWAKE / SVINURAI

 

 

I don’t want to lie brethren’s and sisters
True, Chimurenga* was fought and ceased
The Mau Mau
Herero, Yoruba
Ashanti and the Maji-maji uprisings of this African Homeland
Black heroes
Black patriots died for the liberation of Africans
The liberation that was murdered in its infancy
For its flesh was already devoured
By them; the cannibals
We must rise up again to sacrifice ourselves
For the betterment of the nation
In active reality not with stories of blood pools of guerrillas
Stories of past pains left to be the center of attraction
Of betrayers and traitors of black freedom
The traitors who lie and claim summit positions
That they played crucial roles during and past the war of liberation
That they were detained together with Takawira
Edison Sithole and Tekere
That they were victims in the woods
Just like Chitepo
And Jason Moyo
Now this Chimurenga*
Has left few and incomplete lines to laugh at
For the posterity
Do we need to be fooled my people?
Svinurai!

 

 

(By Haile Saize I a Word guerilla, a fighter of human rights, a Word slinger in the Campaign against despotism)

 

 

 

 

GOLGOTHA EPISODE

 

 

Ballot defecating shadows of hunger over
poverty creased napkins of my mind
Slums farting anopheles into the gutters of my blood
Long departed hunters urinated bullets into iron uterus of
war tired peasants
giving birth to atomic bombs
and suckling grenades
media wizards imbibing propaganda salami
and slogan pizza
hunger- mandraxed rabbis licking fingers after chalk dust noon meals
I am word dynamite fumigating corrupt economic bedbugs
sucking out the fertility of our sunshine
clouds of hungry bellies rumble with formulae
sunrise with virus graffiti scribbled on its forehead
moonrise with roaches corrupting its eczema eaten breasts
bread buttered with tustiville blood, sanguages cheesed with
Darfur wounds
gore dripping diamonds auctioned for flesh guzzling guns
brown teethed nights grazing green mealies before fingers
of dawn caress vendetta wounded minds
unrepentant Ngo bishops pimping vulnerables for fat cheque books, gong and bling
greenback laureates double crossing peacecrats and warcrats in donor shebeens
economic whores dipping their sperm-ducts in diplomatic brothels
paparazzi gutters vomiting garbage of spray painted columns
slogan dogs parodying Hiroshima farce and bag dad comedy
greenhorns licking leftovers of propaganda braai packs after ballot arithmetic
undersized zealots fitting political G-strings in springs of delimitation
political morons mastering propaganda syllabus in their gimmick-
tired memories.
I am poetic chlorine puritising political mental conveyor belts
from the crude oil of corruption
I am a metaphoric lotion peeling off eczema of the decade election hepatitis

 

 

(Mbizo Chirasha the Founder, Editor and Promotions Executive at Large- the Zimbabwe We Want Poetry Campaign)

 

 

 

 

TEARS

 

 

tears,tears,tears
tattered clothes
ripped paper
burst pipes
wet eyes
torn hearts
death
pain
All are tears

 

 

(By Jane Nkiwane – a Poet who comes from Bulawayo who loves poetry and believes in the power of poetry changing communities for the better)

 

 

 

 

THE FIG

 

 

Impetuous is my poetry to reveal that Fig
The Fig that causes havoc and to have
Caused a reign of terror in the hamlet
That Fig to have strained my zealous
Thoughts of being in a rinsed civilization
And framed a portal of misconceptions

To reminisce about you in the hamlet
everyone hallows the Fig, and to seat
Underneath your shade, You inflicts more
Than the piercing breeze. The thoughts
Are of lumbering you down for firewood
Yet you blaze in mist of soothe that is elusive.

The Fig, to have bored me toils and enslaves
Mine crafted axes made blunt as l had
Striven to chop you for virtuous reasons
And my energies thwarted in the action
Impetuous then be my poetry
For I will live to cheer your demise

As I thought of watering you, and that
Maybe morrow would bored better prospects
It was just an eyesore, and your leaves
Heated to red hot, my peel to the heats
That was all the Fig could bore me,
A rinsed warmth and apathy

As I thought of ploughing your course
I damn longed for your branches to build
A shade, but all I got was your coldness
And now the craving be to pluck you out
From mother earth, Your deep roots my
Hindrance and never the Fig be uprooted.

 

 

(By Wilson Waison a rising Zimbabwean poet, a Word Slinger and a rights Activist)

 

 

 

 

HARRY and GERTRUDE (The Chifamba kids)

 

 

When famine hit,
an abusive stepmom
dumped her husbands kids
inside a Harare wilderness.
Third time round and lost,
desiring a bed and frothy bliss
the starving kids find
what their tummies need;
but what appeared
to be an answer to prayer
turned out to be a witches lair –

Walls of stick candy and
dunkin doughnuts,
cake and concoctions of confectionery
was in fact, enticement
and a cannibals trap.

The kids were doomed to die like that,
for evil believed in its conquering feat –
but the brother and sister
showed the witch her teeth;
the fire she built for their demise
was primed for her fate
when God opened their eyes
and the witch ate her words
as the flames,
gobbled her mirth.

Diamonds, gems and a golden vase
were their gifts for perpetual praise.
It was their prayerful wit
that granted unattainable measure;
Hope and trust turned into invaluable treasure.

It all started with little stones
That would eventually lead
back home.

Before you believe in myths
let me assure you,
The Chifamba kids
exist.

 

 

This is a prayer we pray for every abused and lost child- to find their way to a safe place they can call home.

From the story of Nyasha – This is based upon a true story – names have been changed.

Inspired by the tale of Hansel and Gretel by Brothers Grimm

 

 

(Beulah Kleinveldt AKA Jambiya, is an emotive writer who weaves the tragedy and victory of the human experience into a tapestry of memorable imagery and metaphor? She speaks with honesty on the spiritual and social challenges of our time. Jambiya’s works are a must read for those accustomed to the jaded perfunctory cleverness of modern wordsmiths)

 

 

 

 

SANCTUM SANCTORUM

 

 

The heart of cities present,
and past.
Known to every man,
whoever became a man.
Where much means less,
and less means much.
That idle rock the sea
could never wash,
but only could splash.

Where not the chirrup of
birds.
But the cries of infants against
The cold morning breeze gets
People out of their beds.
As they get ready to
welcome the sun that
soon sets, but not
allowing them time to rest.

Lush green sea of
half-baked structures,
masked by yellow clouds of
dust, smoke, rot and poverty.
Where a ray of smiles, laughter
whimpers, sudden noises,
never forgets to shine.

Truly it’s as rare site indeed
but a fortress for a soul in need.
call in the refugee camp of
the world, for the washed down,
the poor, the broken, the persecuted,
the thirsty, the lost and rootless.
COME! all who are weary and drink
your fill of the slums ,the squatters
and the ghettos.

 

 

(By Nyashadzashe Chikumbu – A rising Zimbabwean Poet, Citizen Rights Activist and Student)

 

 

 

 

CHILL IN MY SPINE

 

 

Ominous darkness

Flashes of lightning

Maggots in the corpse

Vulture beaks

The competing crows everywhere

The shrieking vampires

Hellish bats in eerie caves

The echoes

Slogans of death

A chill through my spine runs

 

 

 

 

THAT BLOOD

 

 

A lot of my people’s blood

On the hands of the slave drivers

More of it on the colonizers

A lot of my people’s blood

On the hands of my people

Aftermaths of tribal superiority

Aftermaths of intolerance

Fratricide, matricide, patricide…

Suicide

 

 

HEALING THE NATION

 

 

Warped are the ideals

Suiting the opportunists

The barrenness abounds

A frigid history

To posterity revolting

The spin doctors’ manipulation repelled

That is the consciousness

Transforming slaves into real men

Shaping our derailed destiny

Kicking official history in the face

That selflessness of old

That revolutionary love

The youths should know

Posterity should hold firmly

For the health of this nation.

 

 

(By Jabulani Mzinyathi – a Zimbabwean to the marrow. A firm believer in the peter tosh philosophy that there will be no peace if there is no justice. Jabulani is a pan African and a world citizen)

 

 

 

 

The Zimbabwe We Want Poetry Campaign

 

Editor review

1 Comment

  1. Jambiya September 20, at 06:28

    Pray and speak out against abuse, enslavement - corruption that has bound the hands of the people, stripping them of their livelihood.Zimbabwe needs her neighbours to feel her pain more intensely.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Leave a Reply