Thats done now.

He used to rest his elbow, at the base of the window, in our big yellow toyota pick up. He was so tall, that his hand rested comfortably, simultaniously, on the grip, above it.

And I was sure that I could grow up to have an arm that tall,

Sometimes he would laugh it off,

Sometimes, join me in imaginary awe.

At how tall, sometimes try to manage my expectations by explaining that, though life sometimes has surprises,

Its not likely, as Daddy is not that tall.

He didn’t realise that from a little girls perspective, they were both giants,

That to me, there was no difference between their kinds of tall.

And there was, as I see it now, a small, inconsiquential cultural disconect, between my manner of speaking, and his consern for my cognitive developement.

But we sorted that one out.

We sorted many things out.

We never quite sorted out how, or why he taught me to be boujie without planning to ensure it was provided for. He spoilt me,

rotten, with gifts and affirmations, it’s just,

That

He wasn’t always there.

That

Sometimes, even when he was there, he wasn’t there.

That, sometimes, I was the most priceless princess, and sometimes, I wasnt there, when I was there.

That,

Mteja hapatikani, and somehow, I knew, not to apeal to,

That,

side of him.

Mama, kept me safely precious, all the while. All the while affirming me.

All the upheavals, where simply adventures to me. Her and I, the couragious warriors.

In this patriarchal sea.

That gives men options to change their minds,

Move on,

Temporarily,

Or permanently

‘Justifiably’ and legaly

and neglects to do the same for women.

But I rest my arm, just fine today,

Without having to have fitted into, his mould, his car, or his frame.

Sadly, out of the many lessons he actually took time to teach, one shouts over an abandoned haze.

That, it is not given,

That,

someone will catch you tomorrow, even if they spin you around,

Today.

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Wewe ni?

Wewe ni?

Wah!!!
Hiyo swali ikona jibu nyingi,
But I can guess what you’re asking,
and the answer is,
Baba yangu nimzungu,
Ni Mwengereza.
The question is,
why are you so white.
But kaa ulikuwa na uliza mi ninani..
Kwa mafupi,mimi ni Mmama,
mimi ni Mkenya,
Mimi ni Mwalimu Mshairi.
But to cut you short, on what a Kenyan looks like,
I am a Nairobian, Diani baby,
Whose mothering mission spans a nation.

I always felt I was a mother,
I always knew I would never know
what being a mother felt like,
till I became a mother
I was right.
At that point when you place your hand on your belly and know you are sharing your own internal space,
Or are blessed to be arms for a baby you know has no other place.
You find out that there was more room,
in you…
than you knew could fit into,
one soul.
you discover that nothing is to heavy,
for their sake, you break walls.
But I had always felt I was a mother,
and on that too I was right.
You see,
my view of the world is one of an unabashed empath,
And so, the worlds soul resonates with my bones.
The mother in me, knows, intrinsicly, that no one is ok,
unless everyone is ok.
That all oppression is related,
that it can not be understated that we fight these wars for our young,
and yet, still manage to forget,
to try to leave the world less messed up,
for when their child rearing turns come.

I always felt I was a Kenyan,
a biracial Kenyan, and yes, I am half British,
which has obvious implications on my biology,
and less obvious implications of my expectations of integrity,
but I have never felt I was anything but Kenyan, and Kenyans come in all sorts.
We too, our Kenya, we children of different nose shape, hair texture and skin hue,
we are your children too.
Nakuna venye,popote Mungu ataniwezesha kuenda,
Nitasifuu tu Kenya, na roho yangu itaililia mpaka nirudi home vyema.
Soooo, waeza nichukua tu venye utajiskia,
lakini ukiamua kunisengenya,
Jua hii; Ukenya yangu ilituma jue kusengenya na lugha mbili, nakuelewa kaa tano,
So please nisengenye na lugha sielewi kaa kichina, au kiitaliano.

I have always felt I was a teacher,
I will literally jump up and down at opportunities to teach on something I am informed on.
I have early memories of trying to teach babys,
to sing, and talk and count,
everything I have learned from then on, I will still teach,
given a moments span of attention.
I love to share information,
it is an all purpose tool.
Information is anything from a cradle,
to a light bulb, to a weapon.
Akili ni mali, si mchezo.
Na haki ndio gari yakufikisha pokeo.
Kaakunakitu ninajua, yanaeza kukusaidia,
Mii nitakushow.

I have known I was a poet since I was five,
and in the years of handwriting practice Mama insisted I do,
I had plenty of time to visualise rhyming words too.
So by the time I met Eminem then Maya Angelous world veiws,
I knew for sure that my horrizons were lined with puns,
metaphors, punch lines and earth moving viewers.
Yes, viewers.
Because I’ll tell you, a performance poet never makes themselves,
Our Spoken Word artists are created by you.
In your ability,
you have the power to crush the poet,
as soon as they step on stage.
So, you made me, a possibility.

Kwahivyo kwamafupi,
mimi ni Mmama,
Mkenya,
Mwalimu na Mshairi.
Kwa zote, namshukuru Mungu,
Lakini pia,
hiyo ya mwisho,inastahili, niwashukuru nyinyi.

Thank you.

 

Watch live performance.

 

 

 

Dear Mama

I have to confess,

     it is strange to write to you,

As every time I step on stage,

I take you with me too.

In English enunciations crisp as morning dew

In sing speaking Kiswahili,

That play lulabys and bed time stories,

My first imaginative and schollarly journeys,

My earliest memories,

Are you.

You are omnipresent to my existance.

 

To the extent that, when I get on stage,

Talking to you gives me a sense

Of talking to oneself.

 

I am only able to take you with me on stage,

Because you gave and gave and gave,

So today I would just like to say

Thank you.

Resist

I have taken time to ponder the #Resist movement, and I have decided to say my piece.

Firstly, I am relieved that we have finally started boycotting as a political instrument, but I will expound on that later. After I talk about Safaricom.

Safaricom had twenty three point three five Million consumer customers in 2015. A report that takes time too, to mention road accident fatalities. In 2017, their services assisted 1 Million Kenyans in accessing healthcare. Aside from their actual micro health insurance policies, when someone has had an accident, that’s not the time to walk for one hour ukitafuta Airtel money. No bad blood for Airtel here, awesome clarity.

Amongst us there are actual owners of Safaricom, share holders, and for them, asking them to resist Safaricom is asking them to boycott themselves.

For many of us, asking us to boycott Safaricom is asking us to boycott ourselves.

Which brings me to why I agree with boycotting as a method of political resistance. I am tired, of lower class Kenyans dying in the street for elitism. Violence, or “civil unrest” and police brutality or “raids” as they are sanitized are an infinitely cruel way to convince people to do anything.

In fact it is the presupposed premise of the upper classes, that those who have not reached ‘there’ are just not trying hard enough and if they really fight for what they believe in their dreams will come true. Basi give guys a chance. Don’t allow any eventuality of neighbour, burning neighbour, chopping neighbour, No!!

That, is what is called oppression. Spreading hate, is oppression, whatever side you are on, political waves will come, and they will go, and they will come again, that is the way democracy works, according to history. We have to work from the bottom up, lift each other up and re-establish a new sense of community.

Ultimately, whatever our leaders political aspirations for the country are, the truth is too, that there is generally a lot of money in the stakes. So why should Kenyans then too speak with their own pockets. Buy based on principles, thereby effecting influence, where it is most likely to cause attention.

I have only two issues with the #Resist movement;

  1. Don’t ask us to boycott Safaricom. We are Safaricom. Just remove it from the list.
  2. It should have happened months sooner.

I am happy the #Resist movement is here. I hope it is the dawn of bloodless politics.

 

 

Baba

You stand above the mantle Baba,

And any description of you

Can not evade the word smart.

Each Guka and Cucu has placed you there,

You were very handsome Baba.

Even those of us who never met you ,

Remember you.

We have evidence.

There is evidence,

in a time when photographs and uniforms were privilege.

Baba, i see pride in your eyes,

I see surity, that you saw

What you were doing was right.

And I hear stories, of how

You went too soon.

But thats all we descuss of it.
Ive read the history books Baba,

The ones that say that the men who wore uniforms like yours were bad Baba.

They say they took the side of the oppressors.

They call them home guard.
I heard whispers of depression once,

And wondered how could you not be.

When you discovered that progress and literacy would come by any means possible,

That your side, brought a tide of atrocities,

When you caught wind of butchered babies.

Of bottles or human chains…

If you heard screams.
You may already know Baba,

Myto looked after the family.

Watoto wote wali soma,

Maybe thats why I write to you in English.

She is still here, we give thanks,

And she still remembers how handsome you were.

She remembers you with a full smile, and she gave us all her strong teeth.
You stand above the mantle, Baba,

and any description of you can not evade the word smart.

Each Guka and Cucu has placed you there.

You were very handsom Baba,

Even those of us who never met you,

Remember you.

On Dyslexia

I am not proudly dyslexic 

  I am openly dyslexic.
ie. I would like to share

my flaws, with the purpose of

inspiring, on Instagram/

facebook, photos of my note book.
Let no rule measure Your

creativity, and find it too 

Individual.
That is the Point.
Be free with your manufacturing.