When things began to change

When things began to change

Prologue

Ocean begins

When current rises

Rivers begins 

When water starts to flow

At the bank of the river

At the edge of the ocean

Breezed by the calming

Sound of the wind

Things  start to change

               My story

I woke up one day to the worrisome sound of children crying,

It was night,not day

They were strippen, sores everywhere on both arms and feet

Their slippers mocked their Robes

Their feet conquered their slippers

Their mouth watered like an ancestry fountain

Eyes and lips dried and parched, they shivered under the nightly wind

Tortured and oppressed, red black stains coloured their nightly robe

Stripes of wound attached to backs, bellies everywhere! 

But what I saw next was what affected me most

It wasn’t an animal attacking them

An insect oppressing them

It was they themselves,

But they themselves were not to blame.

2. You ask who is to blame?

If Africa had a history,a legacy

One that was written in pen and paper

Not just- ‘in the past’

Stories I heard from my teachers

Would we be here today?

And can our stories be rewritten?

I’ve watched the shores of Asia

‘ they who knew their past knows their future ‘ they say

But I’ve never known my past

Only the few sheets of notes on my desk

Written and rewritten by the White man’s fingers

Or my contemporary authors

Not the tongue which tasted and licked

Not the feet which felt

And my children would ask me where I am from?

How it would be to retrace my traditional footpaths

To imagine the past that feels surreal

To dance to the sound of the talking drum or the BATA drums

To kneel at my elder’s feet by day

Or to kiss the earth’s soil in greetings

Ten lashes at my back by family members and my mother’s sister

Or father’s sister whom I’ll call, mama

Folktales of the cunning tortoise by moonlight.

But now, if they ask me where I am from

I’ll say, I don’t know

But….who is to blame?

3. In every way I close my eyes,

To listen to the wild bustle of trees as it brushes against each other

The evening making its introduction with the crickets song

I can’t do anything about it!

Or can I?

Nature became nature before man was formed from clay

But I am it’s ruler, it’s champion, it’s supervisor

Shouldn’t I listen more? I hear the little birds sing far from me, crying in a language I still don’t understand

In the ‘dinning table’ the revolutionary’s boots were too heavy to carry him

Mine has grown weary

My little legs can’t seem to stand properly

When I then open my eyes, the only thing I see is an image of me staring, under the translucent sight of the river

If things began to change right before I was born, right before my little legs kicked in my mother’s womb, without dancing freely to the sounds of the bata drums, without tasting, touching or feeling 

Things would begin to change when I take my throne as a ruler

Accept and conquer

Things would begin to change

When I tell my people, fellow Africans, we can live in peace, only when we stick together

The battle is not yet lost,

We may have made a mistake

Lost many along the way,

As children even hurt our mother,

But it’s alright, things would begin to change for the better

And it does change, it will only last forever

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