The Zimbabwe We Want Poetry Campaign

July 11, 2018 Poetry , POETRY / FICTION

UNAMID photo

 

By

Mbizo Chirasha

 

 

Drumbeat- “Raising Mukondi” Phase2 (Brave voices Poetry Journals – The Zimbabwe We Want Poetry Campaign is this time of the year in partnership with Campio Burns Group- “From Ashes of the Fire”.  We are in solidarity with the burn survivors – Solidarity with Victims of Xenophobia, domestic and political violence, we are in solidarity with victims and survivors of burns and domestic violence, we are in solidarity with the victors who managed to pull through defying the aftermath, scars, pain and trauma.

 

We say write it, say it, talk about it, tell a story. We say poetry heals and words are a form of therapy. Let Poets from across the globe write on this cause alongside victims of burns, violence, xenophobia and maltreatment of refugees. Let’s tell our story through poetry, testimonials and flash fiction.

 

The Intervention is offered space at the Zimbabwe We Want Poetry Campaign Facebook platform (100 thousand poets for peace-Zimbabwe on Facebook). Campio Burns Group –“From Ashes of the Fire” is founded by Beulah Faith Kay, an advocate for peace, life skills coach, Poet and a literary arts activist. She works along with other great people around the world. The organisation is doing great through integrating burn survivors into communities by telling their story. We are proud to say that poetry is a refreshing form of therapy that serves heals scars, wounds and burns from inner to the outer.

 

We continue to invite our poets, new voices, regular voices, victims and now victors to send poetryrelating to the above mentioned cause and themes to Mbizo Chirasha. Thank you Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa, Pakistan, Cameroon, India, Zimbabwe, United States of America, Liberia  and Zimbabwe for taking part – Mbizo Chirasha

 

 

 

 

PEACE POETRY FIRST TURNS 11 YEARS

 

 

Cries rent the air

Shocks echo all time

Earth turns red with blood

 

Terror orchestras

Symphonies of peace

Dances of devils

Rattling of skulls and bones

Fill our year’s calendar

 

The wind should change

Our wish should come true

If not this year in the years to come

 

We watered our wish with tears

We nourished our wish with words

We rowed our boat for ten years

 

Dear mate we have the same smile

We didn’t see the island for ten years

The tears we shed were lost in the sea

 

Dear mate once in a year

Our poets come and pat

We sail our boat to another year

 

Amidst the ocean of silence

We spend our time to plan for another Fest

On the distant shores we see some Fests

 

I know your heart has a wish

To go and see the Fest

But dear mate they forgot us

 

Or busy to invite us or may not know us

Dear mate let us row the boat

You on the north, I on the south

Of the same boat to the peace shores

 

To keep the boat steady and strong

We hurt each other, our wounds are deep

But lovely for our cause is noble

 

May not be for the world

But that is our only world

We steered safe through storms

 

One day we will reach the goal

Someday we may be lost in the sea

Let us keep the smile till we fade

 

 

(By Gopichand Paruchuri – International recognized Publisher, Academic and great English Poet in India)

 

 

 

 

THE LIBERTY THEY WERE DENIED

 

 

The streets that we walk

in frivolous garbs

with our lovely family and friends

is the same streets that are nurturing abandoned children

Children who are homeless

Destitute

and hungry

The food that we call leftovers

and we deliberately through away in a rubbish bit

in Durban Street

and High Street

are but delicacies

for them who are starving

The money that you rob the poor

can you give it away for charity

to rescue a terrified society

of children who survived the burns

the flames

the fire

That stole their beauty

their comeliness

Their  imbue

their liberty

their confidence

To have them ripped

robbed

and raped.

 

 

(By Sydney Haile Saize I – a word guerrilla, a fighter for justice and a Poet in Residence for the Zimbabwe We Want Poetry Campaign. Haile is also a journalist, social change activist and a writer)

 

 

 

 

SYRIAN NIGHTMARES IN KANSAS CITY

 

 

Thought it was a tank

rolling down the street

but it wasn’t.

It was leaves rustling

in the wild wind.

Thought it was a gun shot

in the street below

but it wasn’t.

It was a gaping gate

shut by the wild wind.

Thought it was a scream

in the neighborhood

but it wasn’t.

It was a piercing whistle

of the wild wind.

Thought it was the wild wind

hissing past my door

but it wasn’t.

It was an Israeli missile

claiming my blood, and more…

 

 

 

 

(By Bina Sarkar Ellias – International Creative Brand, Arts Director, Curator, Writer and Publisher from India)

 

 

 

 

WHEN I WAS SLAVE

 

 

From night in day

And twilight in dawn

A sound rings in my ear

Of slavery dinner

That scrub me drafting

the comfort of my next home

 

In ship of canoes

I was never good

In bleeding the pus

Of my jungle skin

Like kunta kinty

 

In the air of the ground

I was brought the life of torment

That curse the spirit of judgement

In secure mess that led to my suffering room

Of beautiful sore in slavery

 

In my body was the beating of drum

That entertains the lives

Of Portuguese master

And the soul of American masters

That makes the European nobles

Flip the hair of their happy daughters..

 

The triangle of slavery

Was the meat to my gut

Rice to my saliva

In the cost of shocking salad

That bath and choked me in hunger

 

I was the life of kunta kinty

That ran in imbuktu

For the ownership of my land

To flow in the memory of my brain

And the remembrance of my heart

 

For the place of my ancestors

Is in the mind of my skull

Even in the boat of their slaves

And the plane of their disheartenment..

 

Instead of bathing with soap

and water,

I was forcefully scrubbed

with sand and wring with mud

 

Indeed I envisaged freedom for the talent of my dance amused their children In the midst of guiltiness

For the cost of my godly gifts

was the only happiness to their joy

That makes their food tasteless in their tongues..

 

Dancing kitikata katakiti

I was used to entertained

their children

With my ancestry dance

from Timbuktu..

 

And so I smell the stars

of emancipation

In the seven ground of my

Dreamless ribs that shows

Me the real dream at last…

 

 

(By Mohammed C. Jalloh – an academician, writer and Child right advocate. He’s a Liberian by nationality and graduated from the Monrovia College and Industrial training School. He’s now studying Public administration and Sociology at the University of African Methodist Episcopal University (AMEU) at camp Johnson road Monrovia, Liberia. Mohammed is very passionate about his education and advocacy for children whose rights are violated in a daily basis; as such he developed a way of expressing himself through poetry, advocacy and articles. His main goal is to see a Liberia and Africa at large free from Sexual Gender base violence and all other forms of violence)

 

 

 

 

LOVE YELLOW ROSE

 

 

We bloom and fade

According to passions

You bloom as per season’s call

 

Like hope springs

you sprinkle anxious rays

in our eyes every hour

 

We cast our looks

as new lovers wait for their sweethearts

one fine day the bloom gives festive delights

 

Lovely rose with heavenly grace

fills our hearts with boundless bliss

a rare memory lives forever in our hearts

 

 

(By Gopichand Paruchuri – International recognized Publisher, Academic and great English Poet in India)

 

 

 

 

SCARRED

 

 

The heat scorched tender skin burnt

Scarred beyond recognition who would have thought

This element could hurt and char what was once tender

What anguish and pain beyond description

 

Fire burnt me but loving hands healed me

The bandages like ghosts still haunt me

Why deceive please relieve me

The stigma deepens in to the soul

The jagged lines molded into my skin

Oil soothes balm caresses

The desperation is extremely soul deadening

 

Road to recovery and ensuing therapy

Leads me to your hospice

Your kind smile renews

Pray whilst I open up give me healing for these sores

The fire is doused but my heart hurts

It could never be like before as the needles

 

 

(By Temitope Aina – writes passionately and inspiringly and her themes are love, peace, harmony and self development. She loves to read African literature and is enamoured with poetry. She writes from Lagos, Nigeria)

 

 

 

 

FIRED

 

 

By a flame distantly close,

Doubt consumed by prose,

From a well bubbling in faith,

Of a dream long held in breath,

No day is like another,

Though sameness is the theme,

Matters of the heart its cream,

Hold court in high strung seconds,

A race of time in stoppage of records,

The calendar looks on bemuse,

As the clock locks on the muse,

A high note of poesy divine,

A land opens its gates fine,

Home is more than the castle high,

House is special abode right,

Such is the tale of doves of love,

Pecking cheeks on the highways of life,

Silence in tears of dizzy spell,

Magical in i’s tone of tell,

For dew speaks of a dimming night,

And too a whetting of an appetite right,

Who sings but he who is happy,

Who whistles but he who secretly knows joy,

The rain is known to ride on a cloud,

Not so love in the crowd,

But in couplets of time spent,

The debt of love in emotions pent,

Such is the applause of final call,

When the sun in its glory fall,

At the supplicants knee,

Thanking deity for bringing hope in feel,

That which completes the circuit of pangs long in wait,

Love is a river,

Lovers are the drops,

That the entire river twirl in dance,

As two becomes one,

Undiluted,

Undaunted,

Unafraid,

For difference is assumption,

And same is accession,

To heights only the unafraid dare.

 

 

(By Nancy Ndeke – Literary Arts Heroine, Queen of satire and Poet from Kenya)

 

 

 

 

AN INAUGURATION

 

 

He, the politician inaugurates –

They clap, – softly then vigorously –

What a claim on their lives

Drinking water from hand pump,

A blue ribbon is cut with new scissor –

Smaller than pick-pocket’s, and

Bigger than they cut their moustache with

Or the sweets called ludos cooked –

In the milk-fat of yellow cows –

They hail him, – and hers, thoroughfed –

But he tramples on their knees

Having come out from scheming

All charging slants of blames –

Spitting on lies, – he defends what?

Borrowed and bought slogans

‘give them a piece of bread’

They are your unpaid servants

Rights are little charities –

Dignity is just giving them enough

Of the old clothes too long too short

‘they must look dirty and absurd’

These servants and little creature –

This unconscious mass of humans,

After holy recitation and anthem

They raise their hands –

For his long life and his thieving ways.

 

 

(By Sadiqullah Khan – The Brave Voices Poetry Journal Solidarity Voice from Pakistan, 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)

 

 

 

 

INNOCENCE BETRAYED

 

 

So excited was she

Telling all her friends

Of her upcoming trip

During the school vacation with her dad

Not yet twelve her first time on a train

 

Lately dad had been moody

Get snappy and taciturn

If she got home late

From sports at school or playing

Outside around the neighborhood

With friends. She overheard him

Tell mother it wasn’t safe.

 

Overheard him say

How she was rapidly growing

Her hips, behind, budding breasts

Straining against the fabric of her dress.

 

With an impending business trip looming

He’d suggested she come along

She’d choose new clothes

Lots of other stuff too

 

Alas! When alone

in their private compartment on the train

He began touching the very parts

He’d noticed were growing and had

vowed to protect. Silenced her shocked

Protests and screams, took her innocence.

 

Confused, bewildered and scared barely twelve

too small to fight him off in the motel room

throughout the duration of their stay

Again and over again

 

None of the fancy things he bought

could erase the terror from her eyes

or bring back her gorgeous dimpled smile.

When they returned she fell

on her mother sobbing

but he made sure they never got time alone

saying she must have really missed home.

 

Her chance came as chance would have it

she got to tell mother all

behind closed door a mother’s world

came crashing down. To hear tell that her

Precious little girl had been violated

By the man her mother married

When she was but three

A man she’d trusted and known as father

He’d raped her and taken away her innocence.

 

 

(By Khadijah Finesse – Artist: Composer in Verse/Song Writer/Performance POET and Advocate of girl child issues and rights)

 

 

 

 

THE BOY

 

 

I was asked a closing question after what seemed a relatively relaxed interview about burn survivors and my experience in witnessing child burns trauma –

 

“Beulah, what would you say to a child who has suffered full thickness burns trauma and sees his disfigured face in a mirror for the first time when the bandages come off”.

 

I opened my mouth with a ready, clever answer and burst into tears. I couldn’t speak – all I saw and heard was the face and screams of a boy whom I will never forget – the boy whose father poured boiled water over his body and the sorrow of a guilt-ridden mother.

 

In an instant the past trauma shot through me and hurt like it did 7 years ago.

 

“I don’t know, I didn’t then and I still don’t.

I would hold him till the first of countless agonizing tears subsided – I would hold him”.

 

I couldn’t hold him then –

It hurt to say, “I don’t know” –

If I can give love in your darkest hours I hope you will feel my hope.

That’s the only answer I have…

I will hold you.

 

 

(By Beulah Kay aka Jambiya Kai – 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)

 

 

 

 

SATIRE

 

 

Before the black man’s turmoil was his foster

And race amongst them was an imposter too

No wonder I grew to watch from a black and

White television set… from infancy to juvenile

 

Ages had past, each day break Ma got rinsed

Busking became a hobby… Never was I eager

To question the brother’s ill treat, I grew too,

To acknowledge his inflictions and incursions

 

Now that I had proudly waved the colonial fleet

As the show got clear and clearer, letting off

By-gones be by-gones another race was being

Bred… Blackism rose. Brothers upon brothers.

 

The spirit of Madhibha never sort Xenophobia

Zulu ramps BaShona, Mfecane of the 21st century

Africa now a war zone tribe against tribe awry…

Nehanda was this your plight Ma?

 

 

(By Wilson Waison Tinotenda. A poet and flash fiction writer. The editor of Deem.lit.org and its founding father. A human rights activist, an ardent follower of the Zimbabwe We want campaign)

 

 

 

 

UNTITLED

 

 

“That deaf and imperceptible voice that resonates in us,

those signs that accumulate

as if in each moment we are only one look

that says it all

These secret bridges that unite us

and that nourish the silences

and also most of our nights,

the water, the atoms, the whole existence

and the invisible compass of our lives.

That imperceptible desire to be others

through us

that fills us with possibilities

and maybe

or maybe…

This will that moves mountains

this special thirst for elevation

these wounds that accompany us

and what they do for our acts,

his reason for being.

These deep and inexplicable friendships

these ephemeral encounters

that they never forget,

that click where suddenly

one feels so capable and so incapable

those absences that one carries in oneself as presences.

That imperceptible gift that slips in our beings

and fills us in possibilities

maybe

or maybe…

Those crises that are lived according to the ages

those seasons that happen and they make us

and undo.

Those mistakes that make us wise

those experiences that sugar us

those unexpected gestures at the right time.

Those little things that are essential to us

like the music you hear for being still alive.

These underground emotions

intense and plural

this imperceptible gift that slips

in our being and makes us possible

and maybe

or maybe

 

 

(By Hector Berenguer – Poet and Writer from Spain)

 

 

 

 

AFTER THE WAR

 

 

After the bloody war-

there’s no better narrator-

but confused lost sandals-

floating on ripples of rivers-

like the ark of Noah-

bearing cheetah and hyena-,

they bear the coagulated blood-

of legs that kicked death’s bucket-

and bled badly to death,

from Niger to Benue-

under heaven’s saintly gaze.

 

When the war finally slumber-

skeletons are found in man’s chamber-

snoring silently- the snores of death-

Skulls claim a new Golgotha there.

 

Once the war repent its sin-

whose blood is sacrificed on a cross for it?

Wrappers wailing in the weary wind-

wrappers of shamed buttocks of women-

buttocks once lively with blessed tweaks…

now frozen- still- green like fresh pickled toads-

now the home- the food of maggots- and their road.

 

After the war fold it’s painful tentacles-

Vultures become dubious oracles-

taking- without- requesting for-

the intestines of men- that are drunk

to the gin of death- by bottles of gun.

 

When the war decide to leave a land-

after stripping off the breast of a women-

casting their braziers on a foreign land-

those breasts- those sized breasts of dead women-,

those breasts of breastfeeding women!-

Lying on the floor- like loaves or sliced bread-

beside babies laughing sadly in starvation-

beside babies- singing- songs of lamentation-

till death give them a place among the heavenly choir-

to sing their songs- songs- that plants tears on galvanized wire-

songs- of tears that will feed the blazing of hell fire.

 

After the war- what is it?

Fallen trays- broken teeth!

Cracked skulls- galvanized blood!

Roasted nose- per boiled umbilical cord!

Lost knee caps- folded ears!

Acid burn gives permanent masks!

 

Why then war?

Why- then war?

Lord let the lust of men for power be cursed!

Let the greed of men breathe its last tonight.

 

 

(By Ibrahim Clouds – Nigerian poet. He spends 90% of his time in seclusion, meditating, reading spiritual books and writing. He studied science for three years in Wesley college of science Elekuro Ibadan Nigeria. He is currently studying architecture in the polytechnic Ibadan Nigeria. He was born a poet, identified as a poet since he was 4 years of age and started writing 5 years ago)

 

 

 

 

 

The Zimbabwe We Want Poetry Campaign

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