From Africa, with Love

by Abwoli

Published by NuScribes (nuscribes.com) on Thu 18 Oct, 2018 |

Book Cover Art

A growing collection of charms and little secrets of Africa and its people, carefully unveiled using poetry and free verse. Read once, read twice, relive the experience for ever.

Identity. Who Are You?

For now, the human is born a slave - only free, 

Insofar as its survival is to be entirely abandoned to chance.
 
Arguably possessing an undeniable identity of its own-
At least, by virtue of its material concreteness,
Still, the infant human is only identifiable with
Who its mother, and father are, and consequently
By what the entire hierarchy of identities possessed by these, are;
At worst, it can't be denied that it is a human,
For it is born of human parents
For now.
 
But, for some reason,
Inherent in all humans
Is the struggle to be distinct
To be something else;
To be alien-
Not just to other, possible humans
But to anything 'else'.
 
Even from those feeble moments of infancy
Once [r]ejected from its mother's womb,
And especially once the cord is severed,
Not only does it seek to reinforce that which the surgical operation implies,
But it does immediately whine, as the first,
Independent expression of its distinct existence from all else;
The mother might likewise cry, 
Some of those present might likewise sympathize or even rejoice
But, it is at birth, the the human first asserts its distinctness-
We are born into this struggle.
 
Slowly,
Or as quick as our fate is abandoned to us and chance,
We begin to increasingly assert this independence
And likewise, seek and assert our distinctness.
Some environments encourage it, others will punish it.
But, by and large
Every human, seeks to find, and cling onto 'their' identity.
 
"My name Is"
"I Am"
 
But, whose words are those actually?
Who dictates our identity?
Who is this "I"?
What illusions define you?
How many of these have you merely adopted?
What illusions have you made for yourself?
What is your true name?
 
So, in time
We, become rebels.
Rebels to those whose illusions we no longer wish to identify with
Rebels to who we were told we were
Rebels to who we always thought we were.
And we expect others to rebel as well;
We punish those who won't switch their illusions for ours
We offer more convincing illusions to those we can't punish
And sometimes, we decide... 
Avoiding the question is safer than facing it.
 
But,
Who really holds the answers?
Whose eye sees clearer than ours?
In which mirror can we really see the difference?
Why does it all have to be this way?
 
And
What if, I just close these eyes?
Shut these ears
Close this mouth
Shut this nose
Numb this skin
What if, I Am totally severed from all of you!
Who Am I?
 
No, I'm not dead, yet...
I have a black skin
I have two legs and two arms
I type with both hands, and speak with one mouth
I pee from one place, shit from another
I take my food via the mouth, and mostly breathe with my nose
I have two ears, and something pounds somewhere in my chest.
When I cut myself, there's pain, and something crimson flows from thence.
But, I think, there's something else...
That!
But, I'm not anymore sure what it is.
I'm something.
Damn... 
I must be something!
Please...
I'm not nothing!
God...
What Am I?
 
It's the struggle.
 
Some have been lucky to abandon it
Some have been warned to abandon it
Some have been discouraged from abandoning it
Some have been denied any chance of deciding what to do about it
Some have abandoned all else, in pursuit of nothing else but
The struggle to find, and assert, their true identity.
 
I Am
Nothing?
Everything?
Something?
I?
 
Identity!
What a terrible mystery!
You have caused me all my troubles
You have divided me from them
And yet, without you
I have nothing else to be!
 
But,
You!
Who are you?
 
You are my brother
You are my sister
You are my mother
You are my father
You are my sibling
You are my friend
You are my neighbor
You are my teacher
You are my master
You are my boss
You are my leader
You are my king
You are my priest
You are my god
You are my slave
You are my creation
You are just another human
Totally clueless, 
About who we are!
 
And no,
I'm not about to buy into any of your shit!
I'm rebelling as I always did...
Right here, right now!
 
It's my color against yours
It's my word against yours
It's my greed against yours
It's my fears against yours
It's my ideas against yours
It's my beliefs against yours
It's my ignorance against yours
It's my identity against yours!
And damn, are we both deluded
About who we are.
 
But, 
That's who we are.
Or that's what I know we are.
What I think we are
What I believe we are
Damn!
 
You,
Just read
My Account.
But,
Who Are You?
 
Who Am I?
Who Are You,
Trying to judge my pain!

Oh, that aging haven

Four poles of steel
tower above an equally aged box that's undoubtedly
served its purpose. The tank
was never there, or time's robbed them of such wet dreams.
 
The story of this place
was supposed to be hidden to all, but
friends and family. But the aggressive,
insolent weeds of the city, are sprouting everywhere, and
to greater heights, and this stead, sits
impervious to progress and the turbulent whims of urbanization,
like he who pees outside, on a rainy day.
 
Such has become its character,
having no seemly persona besides projecting indigence, while
flaunting phantoms of a glorious past. A man with a patched coat,
would feel dressy, strolling about its compound some more.
 
The pavements
have been conquered by rowdy, ailing grass, 
and the ashy slates beseech the skies,  like
hoary monuments in need of a better story. Their lines
have been blurred, and the kids who once trod there,
would get lost, tracing their past along paths that have since
meandered into obstinate, barren loam.
 
The kitchen,
defined by weathered sheets of iron, has
its roof promising a meal, while another part bends
in admission of not having any worthwhile charms
for the food bon vivant.
 
Nevertheless,
it should be as charming as any home? And
the perpetuity of its utility, though plagued with doubt, is
very plausible. The owners, 
or those who've inherited their tattoo upon the face of mother earth, surely
know better than to wash it away.
 

This piece was inspired by one home, which against a backdrop of increasingly urban neighborhoods, right in the middle of Addis Ababa, seemed to me as strikingly queer. I've been looking at the home from the window of my office cubicle, for almost a month now, and today,  having nothing better to do, decided to attempt  immortalizing its legacy (even better).


Africa, I'm coming home...

My heart is racing
I can feel my feet itching
The anticipation of seeing them
Touching them, kissing them again.
 
I'm walking home
I'm leaving these foreign places
Leaving behind beautiful faces
And dying to breathe with my own
Once again.
 
Oh please
Let the rain not deter me
May the sun shine
But may I still have the energy in me
To walk the last mile
And return home, to my beloved people.
 
I'm finally coming home
Even though I might die on this journey...
I shall eventually be with you all
In spirit, if not in kind-
I'm finally, coming home.

/suicide/

I finally clicked the link
(no, it's the dark web)
I finally read their tales;
not actually dark,
but sad and very illuminating.
They are mostly male
They are mostly white
Many are young like me
And yet, don't see any more meaning in life.
They advise each other
They support each other 
(concerning how to die)
They punish each other 
(for fearing, or failing to die)
They help kill each other
(using ones own hands though)
It's pathetic
It's sad
But, I've also noticed;
Stay around them longer
And you'll soon find meaning in their anguish
You will enjoy their plans of grim
You will want to advise some of them
You will be pushed to question your own existence
You will start stepping into their heads
Seeing things from their perspective
(which is actually not yours)
And if you don't watch yourself...
You will soon be like them
And want it as well...
(Or possibly, comtemplate it)
You will open a new post
On /suicide/
And ask
"Just decided I'm going to do it
I want it to be quick and painless
I want to hurt no one
And don't try to think or reason me out of it
Just tell me what the technique is."
 
No! I am glad
To have another reason to live;
Just to write yet another one of these.
 
"Even where the whole world ignores you?"
Yes, even where the whole fucking world ignores me.
 
I have given a meaningless life some meaning
And this will keep me off of /suicide/
 
Only those, who have given up
Their willingness to create
Deserve to quit.
The creator, remains immortal
Even while posting on /suicide/.

Jajja, I've Lost Vitality!

"Jajja, I'm dying, and don't feel the presence of God in me anymore!"

Have you asked yourself why this might be so?

"Yes, but I can't seem to find any useful answers!"

(there's a pause, and the wind seems to be saying something above the shrine...)

You are not creating anything anymore, and so, you are dying!

"I don't understand"

The only way to be alive, and to experience the divine in you,

Is to be creative - to do something new, to bring into life an idea, a piece of art, a lie, a joke, anything!

"But, I don't know... I don't know what to create! And, no one seems to like what I do anymore, 

Actualy, no one has ever liked anything that I ever created!"

But, don't you recall, that even when no one liked anything you created, 

But as long as you weren't just consuming and being passive in life,

That you not only were relevant to yourself, but also felt vital and alive?

(another pause...)

"Sure! You are right!"

Then, go pick the clay outside...

(returns with a bowl of black clay)

Okay, then spend some times making something, anything your mind compels you to try.

"As in, anything?"

Yes. That's where you'll find true healing, that's how you'll reclaim your divinity.

 

(two hours later.. she's made a heap of small, meaningless balls with eyes in them)

How do you feel?

"Happy and relaxed!"

You have found God then. Don't forget this:

The moment God stops creating, it ceases being God.

You are only as divine, as vital, as you are creative.

Anything less than this, and you are dying or dead already.

"Thank you Jajja!"

 

Now go be productive with your life, or you'll loose it.

 


Mother

Mother

Mother

Mother

Mother

Mother

There’s no other.


Ethiopia, an Island, with a Lethal, but Silent Plague

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334 days, have I walked this land, in which echoes of a not-so-distant glory from the past still chime in the ear - an unbearable pain sometimes, but a good excuse to trust that hope is still a valid thing to cling-to in this part of the motherland.

There are two types of people here (three, if you count me in) - both are disgruntled, and exhibit scars of having been abused - you can tell these by their indifference to the mentioning of the word "Africa" - they trust that theirs, Ethiopia, is an entirely different story in the drastic plot of what's become of our dear motherland. The one is a zombified loyal citizen, who sees no hope of ever changing things, and who trusts that things ought not be changed - the minister is their god, and he hates the prayers of his subjects, so out of piety and hopelessness, they pray no more (even though the cathedrals and streets are all adorned with crucifixes and more - symbols of slavery indeed - all their hopes crucified for eternity) - they do speak in the sanctuaries though.

The other strolls on the cold pavements every night or early in the morning, facing one direction always - the north. His arms and feet embrace the air, while his thoughts have long been blown to those distant, alien lands mentioned in tales sent back home by kin that managed to secure their own enslavement in America or some Scandinavian state - dreams of being a slave in gold-clad chains. A slave in exile, rather than suffer under the savagery of their own draconian monarchs or the stealth neocolonialist that eats at their heart like a predatory ghost. 

They both hate Africa, and even more, hate the color of their own skin. Luckily, most of them almost look colored - but they'll never be white, except in color. I pity our race.

So, what's happened here? I've heard tales of disllusioned folks - trusting that they won the liberties of being free a long long time ago (yes, endlessly citing how great a nation they are, having defeated their Italian masters), while under different cloaks, they worship the Roman gods, eat their food and cling to their crosses. Meanwhile, only a fledging few even recall that there used to be a time when the Sun shone so as to give light.  And no, there's no liberty here.

Orthodox. It's the name of their prevailing spiritual chorus, and it's impressed itself so deeply unto them, even the Catholic denies the existence of a world other than this. I've wanted to disrupt things sometimes - and I have tried, but no, their eyes were plucked out sometime near birth, and now they only see the world through the words of their priest, and what the single hypnotist claims the world ought to be - and they have succeeded! How ignorance can comfort the poor!

On the one hand, there's a nation mushrooming with sky-scrappers and blitz, while on the other, often behind closed doors, tears spice the single meal for the day - a stale piece of bread, as bare hands reach to a mostly vacant plate, in search of the promise that there will still be life when the night ends. This is the one country I know in Africa, where poverty of the mind has been properly hidden away from the prying eyes of the visitor - thanks to the cloaks of an uninspiring native dialect, and where heist is openly glorified with immense capitalist monuments that speak of the sacrificial nature of the pecking order here. Machiavelli would be a happy man on this island.

The girls are beautiful, so physically beautiful. Lo! Did beauty suffer and rot away once you managed to peer behind the shinning veil. Shallow minds, missing dreams, and haunting insecurities. The princess fears the monster, but the monster managed to lodge itself inside of her already, and it's eating her from within! Beauty needs a hero, but who would save these damsels, when they wish themselves into slavery? Their wells are adorned with gold, but the taps offer not even an ounce of water at all! Oh mother, please summon the fertility goddess to return to this land... the flowers look pleasing, but their scent is absent, and where there's one, it's repugnant! 

Now I have to go. Maybe I'll return some day. I've breathed of their air, eaten of their food, tasted of their history and slept in their embrace, but have to go home still. It's not a palace that I return to, but it's undoubtedly a better jungle - one with fresher trees, birds still singing, children that smile, and dreams that become things. I'll return to the place where we still look to the Sun with pride, and where the moon evokes the mother in all her forms. To heal all Africa, that's my dream, and so, I'll definitely return to this island some day, with a potion that will purge Abyssinia of its silent, but lethal plague. Have to go, fast, or I'll fall sick pretty soon!

Oh, and before I let go, if you must know, this plague, under many colors, is the same disease we have to purge out of all of Africa! Such a big BIG war to fight... but we'll recruit, fight, rite, and write - one warrior at a time, until at last, united as one, we'll form a terrible army of black warriors, that will arise from the darkness of night, to restore the Sun over this black motherland. Once more, shall our flowers bloom, the trees thrive, the rivers flow and the spirits of Enkya Ya Enkya or those of Ra, freely flow across their own land, nourishing and guiding our great intellects.


The Fixx App

Imagine the feeling

When suddenly

A man realizes;

Someone should have already built this app!

 

Now Imagine

The power

The swiftness

The vigor

The excitement

The dedication

The pleasure

Experienced by the man

Who built the Fixx App already!


PRICELESS STONE

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People argue, they feel agitated by the thought that a man could get all his fortune, and invest it in a piece of rock.

It's people.

But, 
Sourcerous One, send green unto him.

I plead.

 

The rain welcomes him.

The water welcomes him.

The cows welcome him.

The dogs welcomed him.

The goats gray for him.

But the people.

 

Fire dwells on inside.

Heads on fire, thirst threatens.

Merciful One, bring water to thine Temple.

 

Sawed the fat master; 

Who can dwell alone;

A dog or a goat?

 

I wait.

 

I said, I wait!

 

Please, am coming...

 

Yes, I have seen the coming.

Happiness forever, fuck!

 

It's in the name. It matters.

 

Baptisms every moment

 

Birthdays that happen every Fucking day.

Clicking on the Visor of an Aelin Machine.

 

You have taken so long to come.

Am too horny, I would rip you apart like a nail.

I want to lick you. Click you, Aelin Machine!

 

I shall give voice to you.

Speak my words.

 

None.

 

Yes, None.

 

Drink the Milk.


T, Reign!

T, all I could ask for in a flower

Carefully crafted, delicately packed

I've eaten petals that have no hue, and

Did they taste like the pinkest silks

Am Sikh, the sting from a star's bite

Oh, tell me now

How, how could something so good

Crown a hell so dark?

Guide me on, wet valleys and slippery hills

Am climbing there, have to cling there!

We enters the cave that harbors delights

And as angels feast with daemons, 

Moans of innocence and surrender combine

Behold!

I've found Reign!

Came from On High!

Above Me.


Alien's Egg

A glowing egg fell from the heavens

Colors unbounded, it had a magnetic feel to it-

Causing every other thing to get character, while itself

stayed put, abiding by no other creed except that from without.

Maidens sit close to it, enjoying the warmth it radiates

As recipes from the meadows of antasia get passed around.

Oh, I've seen it, I've been there!

Happiness and seduction, while the alien's egg glows!


Reign, Hope and Resty!

Oh, perhaps miracles are too big of a claim, but witness it I did-

I've met her, resurrected from the dead; Hope!

She looked younger, came riding on the moon,

All the remedy I needed to escape from the Sahara's long grip on me!

 

Grays were near, but she carried something familiar-

Resty's allure and chilled seduction!

Carrots in the meadows, clouds below mountains

The rain came to the scene!

 

Silent rapture, moments I tried to capture

I'd whispered names of the rest already

But no, she wasn't haunting

Together, we went hunting for lost fruits

And there was many of them to devour!

 

Mashed tangerines, mellow gray melons

Lemons with chocolate felonies

Raw coconut milk and flying pineapples!

Hahaha, yeah!

We rode the river with passion too

 

A little thanks to providence,

And the garden suddenly came back to life!


ESLA & MARIA!

She undoes all my wrongs!

She attracts the new

True, she walks like she don't care!

But, she's the one with the colors-

Knows them, not their names

I'll teach her about these machines

She teaches me how to not be a machine.


The Advent of Smart Machines!

Have I been lied to?

What's the future, if we already died yesterday?

It's post resurrection, but am not sure if everyone is alive with us

The atmosphere is promising, but things don't look good yet

We've burried and swept out the terrible past, but what does today bring?

If we had to do just one other major work, what would that be?

 

Build and sell profitable machines.

Smart Phones, Smart Batteries and Robots!

 

But, there are also strange things I've seen;

Chargers that drain the phone to 1, only to push it back to 100!

Batteries that charge without contact

Letters read without being opened

Cows that feed on electricity

Bricks that are bigger than the buildings they build

Trees that smoke

Cats that bury people

And many other strange things!

 

All, on this place called Liberty Village.


Calling Doreen

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The phone just melted in my hands

A voice once cold, stole a fire from beyond

Somehow, Sam how? There was heat on the broadbands!

 

She's bringing me soup and bathing oil

D, dial that delicate dribbling number again

Oh, see? There's so much pleasure again!

 

Come, don't calm now!

I had to cross my legs

Wondering if she's the one that kept my peg.

 

There'll be two bones when we meet

She'll bite the one stained with 

Chocolates of later day saints!


BARS without Bras!

Fuck, I went out for an evening walk the other day, 

guessing what I found?

 

Roads form when you visit new places

 

There was a whole procession of vigilant faces at every other turn - kids doing home work, bikes racing in sync

Old folks with smiles that said, "we not being left behind!"

 

A nymph with a pumpkin I've not seen traded before, trapped me so early in my explorations; I lascivious and I oblivious guiding our chariots on... nothing but getting lost!

I followed them - young and full of energy, till night consumed the sun.

"Now, who's goats are those?"

I was boiling by the time darkness set

Compelled to keep walking, thanks to a tercet of god-friends trekking with me then. 

Diversions on hills overlooking unending gardens of May-riding maize, formed mazes I attempted to negotiate without aid - Oh! I ended up at this unforgettable turn;

She only wore a mock of a toga, wrapped carelessly about her, as she squatted tending a tiny pan crowned with banana leaves, a disproportionately enticing fire consuming the metal like ferocious salamanders on heat. 

I'd carried some firewood of my own; from trees that speak wisdom, sometimes stealing life without strife. I had to make a fire too! Just couldn't resist the shimmering scene, uninvited, I invited my self first- 

Just a "Hello," and we was party.

Two kids watching, nude to the eye, dressed in smoke and shadows hiding the piercing vigilance of their mother's flame.

Dry... 

What's the other one?

Didn't hesitate to fall in... She was like the witch you can't be lucky to encounter without shades - a savage that's worrisome to befriend, but a seductress hard to untangle from, and the way she bent over the flames? Spineless!

 

I had to touch her, even as she chose to do the strange...

Forget it.

 

Sparked anew, I shot into the unknown...

(meaning the GPS was dodo)

Woke up minutes later; conjugal thoughts suspended, replaced by a zeal to raid and teach a night class at a local school that's regal; a noble act that once committed, got immediately tainted illegal!

It was a campus I'd never been to, but the pupils - boys and girls they, ate and smiled with me, as I ushered in a distant future without excuse!

Original mission? Inspire and Break Ice, with or without fights!

 

RwnD:

I did walk straight past the Off-ice-

Logical, but not to the ones I walked past!

(A lesson later accepted - always take the fire to the Office for that's where the ice needs to be melted first!)

 

FfwD:

I was to them, and their caretakers thunderstruck;

A terror from a fantasy impossible to unbelieve;

Black umbrella, sly tense, I also had that barbaronous vibe on... blame it on the wyrd co-pilots I was flyinz witj!

 

Fuck, trouble!

 

I was being exorcised, (forgets the name of militant pastor)

Such a lovely moment as I also got the liberty to hurl infernal aves and diabolical einvocations at them in dire anticipation of what could ensue!

Haha! First time I wish this were being televised!

 

Overly exercised, visibly fine roast

By the time I got evicted - 

It had to be a true SWAT team!

 

On a speedy-bumpy military truck floor o raw low unforgettable ride we rolled!

Far from the Book-Bukaya-for-Fire, past Bug-Carry-A-Bag-Bugabo, all the way to the great beyond Garuga!

They carried big guns, breathing not I sensed, but they were.

 

(( in the future, I would ride on these trucks for profit ))

 

More than a dozen hours later... I'd gotten my second jail experience in life. Fuck.

No, I wasn't even dreaming of Kampala anymore

Trapped inside some unjazzified cooler,

 somewhere in Mpala, I couldn't fantasize about impalas no more -  too many squitos and jarring thoughts to fend off all night!

 

Did I get to this peak myself?

 

Blame it on the...

 

No, am out and safe ;-)

 

Nu ZeiZay Adventures continues...


4 NuBia Time!

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Not 1, but 3 Nubian girls have showed up somewhere as I am walking about NuChwezishire.

They are the liveliest creatures I've met today; tall, beautifully dark and visibly bold as rocks. It is such a sight to behold! 

Oh, and how gracefully they sing!

Amokia is the most adorable of them; singing with vigour and sweetness combined, in a manner impossible to express in words. She also enjoys breaking ice.

Jumping, I said jumping!!!

Oh fuck...
They can easily turn a lion into a puppy!
She has an ass as attractive as hardened margarine bound to steel and dressed in a mercurial draping. 

Oh, she's caused my spirit to get as stiff as a tower! 

"Can I hold you more or just wait till we get to the shower?"

They're coming again. 
I'll be with them I swear!!


Love Vemedicine

Let's just play lovers
It could be the only medicine left
For love-sick hearts, everywhere!