The Zimbabwe We Want Poetry Campaign

January 11, 2018 Poetry , POETRY / FICTION

IMSD photo

 

By

Mbizo Chirasha

 

FROM THE CALABASH – The Zimbabwe We Want Poetry Campaign is dedicated to Zimbabwe and its leadership of 2018, the leadership in parliament, the leadership in municipals and the whole national leadership.

Zimbabwe is a rich country endowed with natural resources that include water bodies and vast minerals, raw wealth – Diamonds, Gold, Platinum, Vanadium, Copper, Iron and Chrome. Zimbabweans are in a sorry state, they are poor, thirsty and hungry. People do not get decent health facilities from hospitals and clinics.

All roads in every province, district, village or ward are potholed and rough. It is difficult to access to various destinations properly thus derailing national development. We do not have decent roads and we lose lives every day through road accidents. PATHETIC!

We have been victims of deadly typhoid and cholera endemics for years. Townships and streets have been highways of sewage. We have been experiencing poor water reticulation for many years now. Zimbabweans of 2018 want CLEAN WATER, GOOD ROADS AND DECENT HOUSING.

Corruption has replaced the rights of the masses. The few looted all the money and resources to better their lives neglecting the HAVENOTS who have been relegated to peripheral hems of our country. Many Zimbabweans have remained poor and they must be freed from the bondage of poverty and the burden of suffering.

The BRAVE AND SOLIDARITY VOICES in this article call upon the 2018 Zimbabwean Leadership to quickly address these matters for a best Zimbabwe from this year of 2018 onwards.

The platinum dollar question is where is the money from resources, taxes and rate payers going? WHY are they letting sons and daughters of the soil suffer the brunt of poverty up to this end? Citizens require redemption. MR GOVERNMENT. No development is development when citizens remain shelterless, without water/clean water, without proper roads, suffering from water borne ailments and all.

Thank you Brave and Solidarity Voices from Zimbabwe, Africa and around the globe, VIVA BRAVE VOICES VIVA! – Mbizo Chirasha.

 

 

 

 

DIARY OF A STREET VAGABOND

 

1.

I have been here for eons

Sharsharing contending for space and cast-off casserole

with the fetid felines, mongrels and vermin of this alley;

Here there is no master, foe or ally

We are all equal in our lowliness

(Or is it lawlessness?) –

The only attribute that gels us like an alloy.

 

2.

Last night, I was jolted from my cardboard sleep

By fireworks popping a sudden loud report,

A feverish stomping stampede on the pavement

By a cavalcade of rowdy merrymakers

Who had brought business to a standstill

To make way for the festal carnival

Dubbed: “Switching on the Mayor’s Lights.”

 

3.

The affluent were here too

With their deluxe cars and whimpering vixens

Munching on oily victuals and sipping from aerated bottles and cans

To satisfy their gastronomic whims

Whilst we the pack from the alley

Watched furtively and with assiduity

In anticipation of catching succulent projectiles

Sailing through the air to the ground we belong

To pacify our Adam’s apples which were being ruthlessly assailed.

After the switching on of the Mayor’s Lights,

And the fixing on of the gaudy festoons,

And the carousel had stopped,

And the music had died,

And the people had cleared off the street,

Leaving it deserted

As if on a night of curfew,

That is when I dusted off the cobwebs from my old cashmere

And sleep from my eyes

And together with the pack from the alley

Went out on a rampage –

Our party had officially started!

 

4

This morning we woke up the streets littered with broken bottles, gnawed bones,

Cigarette butts, fast-food cartons, deformed cans, used condoms;

And here I am standing in front of this departmental store

Nursing a quart of beer left-over from last night’s euphoria

Talking to the life-sized mannequin in the display shop-window

As if it has ears to hear and a mouth to respond to my barbed jibes.

 

5.

“You fool you think you’re smarter than me decked in those trumperies?”

Its crime – being dressed well than me

in the trendsetting haute couture that is in vogue:

Designer Versace suit, elegant Giorgio Armani shirt, shoes, a tie and hat even

Behind that air-conditioned glass panelling

While I a human being tramp the streets in rags half-nude

In this broiling sun?

 

6

Then, I hurl the bottle of beer at the mannequin

And shards of broken glass shower onto the pavement.

 

 

(By Richmore Tera – Poet, short story writer, playwright, actor and freelance journalist who once worked for Zimpapers (writing for The Herald, Sunday Mail, Kwayedza, Manica Post, H-Metro) as a reporter but currently focusing on his creative work. Currently, he is the Associate Editor of Chitungiwza Central Hospital’s weekly online newsletter. His works have been read in Zimbabwe, Africa and the Dispora in various publications which he contributes to. He is the author of the monograph, “Here Leaves Silently Fall, a collection of poems, which was published by Arts Initiates in Namibia in 2009)

 

 

 

 

MY VILLAGE

 

 

My village packed a powerful poetry meal.

A drum beat,

A wail of freedom from thirsty patched throats of peasants waiting for hope.

 

 

(By Mbizo Chirasha – the Originator/Instigator of the Zimbabwe We Want Poetry Campaign( Brave Voices Poetry Journal-Tuck Magazine , Word Guerrillas Protest Poetry Journal – Zimsphere Magazine, Poets Free Zimbabwe blog- MiomboPublishing) Mbizo Chirasha is the participant of International Human Rights Arts Festival , Exiled in Africa Program in New York , United States. The Poet is a member of Global Arts and Political Alliance)

 

 

 

 

THE WRITING ON THE WALL

 

 

By the road side citizens watch

Watching the tragicomedy unfold

Watching a display of ostentation

The flagrant abuse of scarce resources

A shameless display of profligacy

 

Impecunious and impoverished they watch

Selling their shrivelled vegetables

The consumer class gobbling resources

Not a thought spared for the citizens

The naked profligacy on display

 

But that deafening silence is gone

No longer are the voices muffled

The hare brained schemes now trashed

The looming implosion and explosion

That emasculation totally rejected

 

 

(By Jabulani Mzinyathi – 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)

 

 

 

 

I SPEAK MY LANGUAGE; THE PEOPLE’S TONGUE!

 

 

I speak the language of the majority!

I speak the language of the poor,

the failed,

the oppressed,

the deprived,

the suffering

the hungry,

the unemployed,

the despised,

the ignored,

the shunned,

the segregated,

the forgotten,

the bitter.

I don’t speak your language,

that is why you are always

this indifferent!

I don’t speak the language

of the deviant and apostates!

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

A SONG OF HOPE

 

 

The sky burned with a revolutionary fire

and everyone was ladened with worried anticipation

Unsure of when the rain of flames would fall.

Someone made a drum from human skin

decorated it with blood, spilled to appease evil gods

and drummed it in the streets of Harare.

We danced to the new tune, chanting slogans

that roused sleeping giants in distant lands

and drifted despotic demons out of our homeland.

Now, standing before the ruins of a once rich homestead

whose pieces lie breathless in Dambudzo’s bloodstained hands

Our heart’s burn with a raging fire of hope

That our dreams shall regain weight, colour & meaning

and children bathe in glory, of the place we call home;

where corruption, poverty, unemployment & other maladies

are archived in museums of the past tense!

 

 

(By Wafula P’Khisa – poet, writer and teacher from Kenya. He has been published in The Legendary, Aubade Magazine, Basil O’ Flaherty Journal, Scarlet Leaf Review, Lunaris Review, Best ‘New’ African Poets 2015, Best ‘New’ African Poets 2016 and elsewhere in the world. His poetry is revolutionary, combative and (sometimes military)

 

 

 

 

AFRICA

 

(For George Nelson Preston)

 

 

Hungry, as in haven’t eaten for days,

weeks, belly full of scorpions

from insults hurled like grenades.

The League of Nations reincorporated,

but the new League of Nations has a budget

that doesn’t include my bursting belly;

the new League of Nations has bigger

fish to fry; meanwhile my belly full

of Aunts, Uncles, Cousins,

& distant birth parents doesn’t

qualify me for the neediest continent

on this planet.

Their vision.

 

 

(By Alan Britt – published over 3,000 poems nationally and internationally in such places as Agni, Bitter Oleander, Bloomsbury Review, Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review, Christian Science Monitor, Confrontation, English Journal, Epoch, Flint Hills Review, International Gallerie (India), Kansas Quarterly, Letras (Chile), Magyar Naplo (Hungary), Midwest Quarterly, Minnesota Review, Missouri Review, New Letters, A New Ulster (Ireland), Northwest Review, Osiris, Pedrada Zurda (Ecuador), Poet’s Market, Queen’s Quarterly (Canada), Revista/Review Interamericana (Puerto Rico), Revista Solar (Mexico), Roanoke Review, Steaua (Romania), Sunstone, Tulane Review, Wasafiri (UK), The Writer’s Journal, and Zaira Journal (Philippines). His interview at The Library of Congress for The Poet and the Poem aired on Pacifica Radio, January 2013. He has published 16 books of poetry. He teaches English/Creative Writing at Towson University)

 

 

 

 

THE REFUGE

 

 

The sanctuary

Should be place of peace

A haven for the poor

Where they may find hope

A place to seek rest

From this worlds test

Not a battlefield

By the few chosen ones

Resplendent in flowing garbs

who seek worldly wealth

At expense of public health

Their solemn mission forgotten

Vested interest in the vestry

The sheep desolate in the wilderness

Waiting to be salvaged…

 

 

(By Michael Mwangi Macharia – poet based in the Rift Valley region, Kenya. He contributes literary and education articles to the Kenyan dailies. He is also involved in directing, adjudication of music and drama. He has developing interest in History, Fine art and photography)

 

 

 

 

FROM CONSCIOUS PEOPLE

 

 

From a conscious people

We became like a sheep to the slaughter

Murdered for meat

Slaughtered only to be a delicacy

Only to be marketed and sold as good

As good as appetizing

Good for their pockets

Shall we weep and uprise in their stomachs

Make their children suffer indigestion

Cause them constipation

Our life; meaningless

Like a spiced chicken on the braai stand

Prepared to be chowed down but labelled as dressed

Dressed in a naked suit

And exhibited for a better price.

Or to be accompanied with cooked rice.

 

 

(By Sydney Saize – A freedom fighter spearheaded piercing the heart of misrule maladmistration, corruption and injustice. Socio-political commentator only narrates the political ills and suffers the consequences)

 

 

 

 

HERDSMEN

 

 

I “heard men” that once wielded sticks to weather bushes

now use guns to wield bush paths.

People who peaceably strolled with ruminants

now peaceably dissipate agony.

These men are Louvre painters

see how smokes colour the sky with cries;

of mothers whose children went to streams

and returned with stale blood water,

of wives who blinked and became virgin widows,

of bread eaters who lost both the breadwinner along with the bread.

These men are classical composers,

how they make you want to sleep

and imagine this was only a dream,

how they make an orchestra out of village farmers,

Songs of songs, loving songs of lamentation.

They’re neither terrorists nor insurgents,

but our father’s roof is no longer safe for us,

we can’t dare to harvest our farms,

our maids may only cover their braids with black linen.

But one day soon very soon

the sheep will roar louder than the Lion,

and the water yam will drown it’s eater.

Even the sun will rejoice with its sons

Then they’ll say that

We “heard men” who eclipsed killer “herdsmen “.

 

 

(By Attah Ojonumi – Nigerian Poet, I’m a lover of God, a pursuer of vast knowledge and peace and a believer of destiny and purpose)

 

 

 

 

VOICE OF JAMBIYA

 

 

It’s not about the Water

Mandates and Mania are

the cartoonists of control –

the stalking daddy long legs

ugly as a 3 eyed prickly pear on stilts;

every child’s nightmare –

the fly in our soup.

The long legged poppenspeler

gets his kicks from

Parliamentary puppets

pleading Jameson Red;

pour whisky for the weary –

appease the thirsty

with appetising irony –

much better than bread;

like Marie-Antoinette

Children of the soil beg

like refugees for a place

to rest their heads;

for a spring to quench their thirst

while the stick man with

bulging eyes and sly smile

fattens his pouch from

the sweat of slave trade.

Union masters line their wallets,

shop stewards walk with

widened palms and

the people beg fair defence.

The glint of hades glows

from the tyrant’s soul,

bouncing about in frenzied

fake contentment.

Africa is ablaze with the

sacrifice of new borns

spilled into the valley

of baals belly –

all for the love of money.

The mad man chuckles;

The son of Amin

doubles over with glee –

Pharoah feasts on duck and deer

while famine sneers.

Africa mourns;

her tears are tresses flung

from towers where the lofty lord –

and on the streets below

the Knights mount their horses;

David plays his harp and

Saul falls upon his sword.

The mad man laughs no more.

 

 

(By Beulah Kleinveldt/Jambiya – Jambiya is an emotive writer and storyteller who weaves the tragedy and victory of the human experience into a tapestry of memorable imagery and metaphor. She speaks with honesty on the socio-spiritual challenges of our time. Jambiya’s works are trail to a feast for those accustomed to the jaded perfunctory cleverness of modern wordsmith)

 

 

 

 

BLACK NEW YEAR

 

 

Dancing joyfully for a

glorious crossover to

a new year,

With New year wishes

humming all over.

Phone calls, text messages

all interpreting goodwill’s.

Their Smiles saying

“I made it”

Their Hearts

Ready for changes.

Resolutions made,

Prayers for the year said,

Goals for the year set,

Seed of faith sown,

Prophecy to see

year end germinates.

Minutes after,

Walking home to

continue the celebration,

Birds scampered to safety,

Fireworks ceased,

Greater firework takes over.

Sporadic gunshots

Great Bloodshed

Blind search for shelter,

Cries of fear

of pain

of death

A Painful crossover to death.

Celebration, Expectations,

resolutions, Everything,

Have been Cut short.

Gunmen gone

No link, no trace.

Leaving a bitter

first day gift,

Comprising of

People to mourn

Bodies to bury and an

Indelible memory on this

BLACK NEW YEAR’ day.

 

 

(By Ambassador Daniel Amakor (ADA) – a young Nigerian playwright, short story writer, actor and poet, who took into professional writing since 2013 and has since then served as a local poetry consultant. He has all forms of poetry beautifully interwoven to form a unique and formidable style of writing with its main purpose to cause necessary transformation. His writing subject ranges from the ultramicrosopic things on earth to the most significant things around. Having written for tele stages and journals, he was awarded a barge as an outstanding poet. Ambassador Daniel Amakor lives in Abia state, Nigeria)

 

 

 

 

ZVAZVINENGE KUKWIRA GOMO

 

 

Ndichaziva paya ndichitsvanzvadzira

Kutsvaga inzwi mukati mamanzwi

Kuti nderipi ringava rakareruka

Risingaremeri rwangu rurimi

Inzwi rinongoti tsvedzu risingabatiriri pamuromo

Ako meso achitya kusanganidzana neangu

Achimheya-mheya kutsvaga paangazorora

Pave paya simba ndakazokoka

Daku, rikadauka riya inzwi

Sare ndotura befu sendabviswa mutoro

Iwe bva wotamba nhonho sewakatsika mazimbe

Nokuti zvino ndakanga ndamirira mhinduro

Ndongoti hameno kunowira tsvimbo nedohwe

Chakanga chava kwauri chitsvambe

Wotsvanzvadzirawo kutsvaga rako inzwi

Pava payewo ndiye aaa

Kandiro kaenda kandiro kadzoka

Newewo ndikaona wotura befu

Ndiye paya ndocherechedza nguva

Wanei zvinhambwe zvangunduruka!

Nako kungotambidzana manzwi maviri?

Zvazvinenge kukwira gomo!

 

 

(By Norlan Chitopota Makwarimba – Akakurira mumusha weKuwadzana, Harare umo akaitira zvidzidzo zvake uye akazotanga kunyora arimo. Akatsikisa nhetembo mumiunganidzwa inoti Jakwara renhetembo (Mambo Press), Mutakunanzva weNhetembo (Booklove), Nduri dzendyaringo nedzidziso (Mambo Press) uye nemimwe miunganidzwa yavapadyo kupakurwa)

 

 

 

 

FEELS SO WRONG

 

 

Most at times she is happy with you

Until someone comes in

And show her a different

Meaning to happiness

I wonder if it’s something we do wrong

That we feel too perfect to be true

They know we are the right ones

Yet they still prefer the wrong ones

It hurts them to watch us bleed

By their own claws they cut us open with

So they heartlessly cut us loose

To fall miserably like dried leaves

At the mercies of the harsh Harmattan

And Watch us bleed profusely as we suffocate

From the chokes of a broken heart

Only few strong men like myself

Can survive this period of tormenting memories

Letting go hurts, holding on kills

But what if letting go lands her

In the firm grips of Satan?

Those are her choices and choices

Must be treated with respect

That is the hall mark of gentleness

It is hard for me to trade her memory from my head

How much more clean her name

Inscribed across my heart

Sometimes ladies throw away

The most perfect gentlemen

And fake happiness in empty homes

True love comes with a connection

A divine connection from God which is unbreakable

Even if we are worlds apart

The mere mention of my name will bring

Shivers to her spines and the thought

Of her will hit me like a ray of light

She feels all these but takes it as normal

But it isn’t, God is speaking

Let love guide us back unto our lost ways

For that is where true happiness resides

 

 

(By S Kojo Frimpong – A writer from West Africa Tema, Ghana to be precise. A lover of poetry and a reading addict. My greatest influence is Joseph Yaw Frimpong a Ghanaian writer, Poems from the graves www.skojofrimpong.blogspot.com)

 

 

 

 

MIRAGE

 

 

So the years teach

Though one disintegrated

One seed no more

Unison song a mirage?

So the gods are the kings

The aftermath of blood and sweat

Our own raped

Our own maimed

On the altar of liberty?

So the years teaches

Soul searching to no avail

A breed of self-opinionated ones

Driven by a hurricane of avarice

Immortal god’s on altar of liberty?

So the years teaches

Denigration of nationhood

Myopic mind boggling philosophies

Strutting kings in opulence

We beasts of burdens in sighs?

So the years teaches

No today no tomorrow..

No front no underneath

On quicksand I stand

A sand dune in a whirlwind?

So the year teaches

That some have grief

That some have hunger

That some have desires

But we, rock- passionless?

 

 

(By Patrick Kamau – a graduate in literature and special education from Kenyatta university. He hails from Murang’a County in Kenya. Currently he is a special education teacher. Kamau loves reading, making friends and writing poetry. His dream is to publish an anthology in collaboration with other like-minded poets)

 

 

 

 

I SPEAK MY LANGUAGE; THE PEOPLE’S TONGUE!

 

 

I speak the language of the majority!

I speak the language of the poor,

the failed,

the oppressed,

the deprived,

the suffering

the hungry,

the unemployed,

the despised,

the ignored,

the shunned,

the segregated,

the forgotten,

the bitter.

I don’t speak your language,

that is why you are always

this indifferent!

I don’t speak the language

of the deviant and apostates!

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

YOU ARE ENOUGH

 

 

You are enough

In spite of the pain and prejudice

The hate and malice

The limitations and exclusions

Your gender and fertility

Your problems and challenges

As long as you carry light and love within

There is strength to rise above the shadows

And You are enough

 

 

(By Temitope Aina– Born August 16, 1978, studied Accounting at the University of Lagos, Nigeria, love writing poetry, reading and classical music, married with three children)

 

 

 

 

LONG WAY FROM HOME

 

 

Long way from home

(In memory of those who drowned in the mediterranean)

There are things that tell me

There are ghosts in the sea

Though ignorant I now know some waters are firecrackers

Absorbing your bodies until you are no more

Forgive me, I turned my face away as the sun set

Only to realise you were drowning and not waving

You see, some things are so big

They eat and eat and eat

Until only our tears can hold you as memories

 

 

(By Julius Muriithi – A student of international relations and diplomacy)

 

 

 

 

A TYRANT’S PILGRIMAGE

 

 

We sell man’s white

flower.

Life blood of a sovereign

people.

Fortitude of a wondering king

a desperate dom-

Best democracy money can buy.

A womb of sanctity-

For all soberness from

Heart throbbing pauperism.

For every pervert soul.

Mind not the tattered bones-

All these mindless drones.

Ready to serve ye!

Oh, humble pirates.

 

 

(By Nyashadzashe Chikumbu – I’m a young man who is very ambitious and strives for complete self expression. Very interested in all words of art and strives to see art gaining its former glory)

 

 

 

 

BEGIN HUMBLE

 

 

Begin humble and remember those –

Who the night did not celebrate,

Those who with life grapple,

Those ill those who ail numberless,

Whose eyes wait endless

For a happening in their hallow living

Merriment be a resolve onward –

Much talked about peace and erst love,

Let’s our thought inward introspect

It’s a moment to meditate and ponder –

Our habits correct and actions delineate

Our intents holy our hearts big –

Our success cherish and with care

With hope and blessings into new year

Tread. Let’s not forget let’s not forget –

Whilst we cross a league thenceforth on.

 

 

(By Sadiqullah Khan – Dr Sadiqullah Khan is a gifted poet of immense insights and creativity. Writing on a range of subjects his themes are social, spiritual and politically aware. Looking the domains of day to day living, delving deep into the sufferings and joys he seems to be the voice of dispossessed and the vast majority of poor he passionately identifies, yet his art touches the high mark of existential writing, unique in style and composition, he appears to lead his own genre. He belongs to Wana, South Waziristan in Pakistan)

 

 

 

 

 

The Zimbabwe We Want Poetry Campaign

 

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