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barua


Letter to my 13-year old self.

Dude, first of all let’s get one thing straight: chicks do not dig guys who do not wear socks. It is not a ‘murui’ look… they say it is just stupid. I have no idea why. Its just a chick thing. So from now on, always ...always wear socks with those safariboots!

Anyway, I guess I should warn you to keep off Lingala music, contrary to what your older brother is telling you...Kanda Bongo Man will not save humanity and Shabba Ranks is not a long lost cousin. And ‘slope’ the hairstyle is not immortal. I know stuff is pretty confusing right now. So some advice…

To begin with, that neighbour chick that keeps asking you for the Topmark textbook isn’t that interested in History. She digs you! Big time! So strike while the iron is hot! If you don’t, she will hate you for he next 5 years then you will have a love-hate relationship thereafter.

I know mum is always telling you that you watch too much TV. She is definitely right…it ain’t right to spend the whole day at a neighbours place watching cartoons, help out a bit. But just to set the record straight, TV CANNOT make you retarded. It’s all a lie invented by mother to make you read a bit more! If it’s a consolation, the future you watches thrice as much TV!

Boarding school sucks. Get over it already, its been five years since you reported to that military camp. You got used to the weevils in the beans, the quarter cup of porridge for breakfast and the omni present hunger pangs. You will not die. This letter is proof that we made it into the future *insert loud cheer here*

You know that dream we had while in Std 3? The one in which we got employed as a driver for a No.9 manyanga? Well, it didn’t come true…we are currently employed though I have no idea how we landed the job! Sports pays. A lot! So wachana na bano na rounders uanze kucheza futa! PS: we no longer call them manyanga’s.

We are not rich….yet. But am working on it…hio Datsun kama ya uncle Brown tutanunua through hook or crook. We have the internet now. I cant tell you what it is. You guys haven’t invented the right vocabulary yet.
By the way, before you fret, the creativity and the random stuppidity is still there. The light hasn’t dimmed one bit.

I know dad is always on your case about mathematics. In fact, tell him the worst is yet to come. You will score a series of E’s in math exams over the next few years. This will in no way darken your future. Tell him in a few years, you’ll be sharing beer with him. LOL! LMFAO! (Refer to glossary for meaning)!

So ndio venye kuko. Keep doing what you do. Next year in secondary school, you will be accused of trying to burn down the school coz of the world cup. This should be your defense: DENY! DENY! DENY!

Bye for now, before you go to bed, hide that porn magazine somewhere else! A random raid by mum will discover the stash, and if she does, trust me, she will never look at you the same!

Oh? Ati love? Discover my friend…live and learn.

PS:1: when you write back, do not use sheng…hio mambo ya ma sonyi na ma ponyi hatutumii siku hizi.
PS:2: Hizo mocassin zako zimechapa mbaya.
PS:3: You will meet friends and foes along the way
PS:4: Sex is awesome!
PS:5: Alcohol is good for you.
PS:6: Future you still has big eyes. They haven’t invented corrective surgery for that yet. Fingers crossed!
Xoxo: (again, refer to glossary)

Baadeye mboys…

NB: that @Urbanekenyan dude is still black as hell!

Evolution


Evolution…

Kutoka kati na blada
Cha mama na cha baba
Chobo ua na futa
Na kuona Tv kwa ma neigbour

Kutoka slippers na sandak
Bata bullets na ngoma
Sunday best na sahunya
Na uniform pair moja


Now even the estate joke
Dreams of greatness
Each thought dedicated to the pursuit of richness
In a world so soulless
That the dirtiest of us all
Stand tall as this decade’s heroes.

After innocence is dropped
Other people’s blood shed
And the books balanced
To reflect just a little more
Than previously owned
Or previously owed
We wake up again
And do it all the same

Change.
Running away from ourselves
Running towards no one else
To find ourselves
Alone
Evolved.
Survived
By nothing
But raw ambition
In a quest
To be different
From who we really are.

Evolution.

Kila mtu anahama mtaani
Kuishi kule anatamani
Hakuna kitu poa kutoka zamani
Tunasahau mpaka si ni nani.


Look in the mirror
Horror?
Pleasure?

Evolution: Revealing you to yourself since 0000B.C

ThEkEpTpReGnAnCyFrOmPoStElEcTiOnRaPeS.



Now I know why
Why they don’t celebrate my birthday
Or shower me with candy
Once annually
To appease their restlessness
In an attempt to cleanse
Their conscienceless wickedness.

Now I know why
Why on every eve
They are like thieves
Uneasy in their silence
The only exchange is that of glances
Or a regret of missed chances.

Now I know why
Why she can never look me in the eye
Without a tear
Or a sneer
Or an unsaid sigh
That brings me from a high
To a low
That only she and I
Understand.

Now I know why
Why she vowed never again
To stand in line
At the pretence of democracy
To speak her mind
Through the silence of her vote.

Now I know why
Why I am light
And everyone around is dark
Why I am plump
And everyone else is slight
Why my teeth are white
And everyone else’s are not
Why they call me ‘Amani’
Yet every eye
That looks towards me
Recognises the traces of the enemy
Stamped all over me

Now I know why
Why 5 years later
I do not know the language of my father
Or the ways of his people
All I know
From muted mutterings
Is that he did something wrong.
Something so wrong to my mother
That even he cannot explain.

“God left me for a moment,”
So he says.

No one else believes him.
By default,
They await their turn
To avenge their daughter’s pain.

Solitude at the mosque…(Rants of an old shoe)




Why are they looking at me this way?
As if am one of those who sway
This way
And that.

Its all a bunch of crap

Really.

They stare at the mud on my skin.
Yet they know well beauty isn’t skin deep.
I may not be as hip
As Mr Adidas over there,
Nor with it like Ms Nike over here.
But as a 7 year old moccasin
I know I have character
And Ms Peeptoe digs me.

I think.

But as they coo at the brush strokes,
And melt the kiwi with their hot skins,
They know they can’t match me.
Am soft and warm inside.
I keep my master warm..
In all these years of our relationship,
He’s never looked elsewhere

I just don’t know,
Whether it’s the look in his eyes every morning before he enters me,
Or the way he keeps me dry
As he hops, steps and jumps over sewers
Or when he defends me whenever somebody steps on me.
I don’t know.
I just don’t know.
But our relationship is royal.


Not always though
Once, it almost went up in flames
Just because of Ms Bathroom Slippers.
That whore!
She was spending all the quality time with him
Just because he was on leave
And wasn’t leaving home each dawn
She thought she owned him!
How dare she!
But I showed master!
One day when we went for a walk,
I slit my wrist as he tried to jump over broken glass.
He rushed me to the ICU
Down at Otieno’s
Shoe repairer ExtraOrdiNaire
It was he who first solemnized our marriage.

So they have nothing on me!
I saw the Tims come and go.
Did away with the Northstars,
And the Hushpuppies too.
Not to mention the Airforce ones.
So what the hell are they all about.
I may be old,
But the thing between me and my master
Is real.

strangers


Isn’t it strange?
So strange?
That after all this time
A smile is all I get?

That after all the history
My arm can’t go past your elbow?
Come on,
I thought we had chemistry!
In fact,
One full of mystery!
Then why do you give me the shoulder,
That was once oh so tender?
But you returned didn’t you!
They said you would sue
That it’s you I used.
Touched.
Probed.
Poked.
Then robbed?
But you sobbed
So they had to believe,
That relief
Wasn’t what I claimed to give.

Isn’t it strange
That after I held out my palm
You flew?
Up…
Up…
And away…
Leaving me with no calm.
The sky seemed so bright
Lights.
Camera.
Action.
But just for a while.
Then the clouds.
Then the darkness.
Then the fall.
And back onto my palm again.
And onto the page
And onto the blog.

Isn’t it strange?
How we always end up together?
How our letters always cross
And fall into a perfect simple symphony
Of words so sweet
So…
So…
Strange…