Sunday, 24 July 2016

The Future Of The Past

And it’s not now,
Neither could it be yesterday
Its somewhere

Between tomorrow and infinity

RAVAGED VILLAGE

One day you’ll get to walk through the paths, dusty and beaten, of this village in a remote part of Uasin Gishu County. On that day, there’ll not be anything except orphaned children, neglected mud-walled houses, lands that have been permanently left to fallow and young men wallowing in the fate that has befallen them.  They’ll be chewing miraa, while fondling plastic Coca-Cola bottles with clear liquids inside if you peer closely. They (these young men) will be fathers to their own siblings and would be mulling about the day their parents went wrong. Today I’ll do you a favour.  I’ll walk you through half the journey. I’ll walk you well in advance before that day comes. Be warned though that this is subject to exaggeration on my part and it would have been really great if you walked it by yourself. Let’s begin the journey.

Here, you will catch a glimpse of lands with cypress trees grown on the edges, pruned to the tip. You will wonder how this is possible and give up when you realize that it is a vanity. ‘There have pruning drones, ‘I‘ll lie to you. ‘Haven’t you seen them?’ I’ll ask to rouse your amusement.  Mud-walled houses with rusty tin roofs and many of them grass thatched line haphazardly along the dusty road. Maize plants on these lands speak of neglect. Weeds have choked their growth and most are have very thin stalks with barely anything to harvest. You’ll notice the road painted white from chewed maize stalks. It’s a delicacy during this time of the year.
On the east of this village lies a more affluent village. Large trucks of land where wheat and maize plantations stop your eyes. If it’s your first time, you will find it delightful and you will give in the temptation to take selfies to brag to so many people who don’t know you on social media. Lonesome bricked houses stand solitarily either in the middle or at the edge. There are those who let reason prevail and found it worthwhile to construct their houses close together, but still on their farms. It’s called Chebaon. It would qualify to be a leafy suburb. Let’s call it a leafy village. Yes, Lavingtone.

To the west of Chebaon is Kaoni, where my story is set. A river separates these two villages. Here you will access Kaoni through a dilapidated bridge, constructed when there was still very little difference between the two villages, when Chebaon had very few residents and those who had settled found it worthwhile to have neighbours who they would occasionally borrow each other salt when it became extremely impossible to get to the nearest Kiosk. And they needed a proper bridge. Who would walk through a wooden plank in the dark?  The present doesn’t allow that. Chebaon is almost not a village. A village is rather a backward word that denotes a people who are clueless about civilization. People here upgraded their television sets to pay TVs while the other village still is clueless about television. The other village supplies labour to Chebaon. And that’s the biggest difference.

The kids of Chebaon parents attend the best schools that could be found in the region. Kaoni kids attend local primary schools and in Chebaon, the only school which hosts kids from other villages but its own. Chebaon in very simple terms is a home of people who don’t live there.

Across the river, you’ll find grass thatched houses standing like they’ll collapse any minute. Some even have poles placed to support the leaning houses. The mud-walled houses reveal a sorry state. You’ll see kids dressed in rags, which mostly entail an adult’s shirt or sweater, playing innocently outside these houses. They care less, just relishing in their innocence. One will lend a wail to the rather quiet village, having exhausted means of winning a contest against another who apparently is stronger than him or her.  An older kid will prevail on the young ones and soon the games go on. They will be engrossed till pangs of hunger cannot be contained anymore. Luckily you won’t be here to see that. I’m just being too generous by telling you this.

One of those mud-walled houses belongs to a village elder. He has many children some his own, some not. The extraordinary thing is he doesn’t care about them. Everybody knows he flogs his wife thoroughly yet they will rush to him with domestic cases.  Everybody knows he doesn’t contribute a penny to his children’s upkeep. Their mother can send them away for ages and he won’t badge an eyelid. He could be tempted to ask where they are and the wife’s stern reply would be, “is there anything you want to give them?” He spends all his time away from his home except in the mornings when he milks his cows, (he trusts no one when it comes to his cows.) and when he’s surveying his inherited piece of land, scavenging for something to sell. He is a father, but this title is largely ceremonial. Once he beat his wife senseless, leaving her unconscious and went to tell his kids to go and pick their dead mother.

This elder runs the village. He solves the issues that are way below the scope of the sub-chief. He solves small squabbles that family heads find too tasking to tackle like when the wife wants a more sober approach to their persistent squabbles, sometimes over the excess amount of tea leaves in his tea.     

As you walk through the dusty paths, you won’t fail to feel something ominous in the air. People here seem lethargic. They portray a picture of a people who’ve lost hope such that they view strangers with contempt, like they’ve been sent to take away what’s left of them and for them. They seem like orphans. They seem they are scared more by what they know than what they don’t. Their greetings are hurried, like one is a bearer of bad news, of death perhaps.

The animals too, tethered by the road side, have that look of their owners. Cows are herded along the roads. Trees sway sensually to the wind, almost often against its will. Young men will be sitting aimlessly along the road, waiting vainly to ogle at a girl’s posterior. Here girls are mothers, their innocence taken away at the earliest opportunity.  Their eyes stare at something invisible, the hands clutching impalpable pain. You will be tempted to look at what they are looking at, may be stretch your hand to feel what they feel when their hands are tightly folded. Nothing will yield more disappointment when all you feel is a rough hand born of many hours foraging for food, for their kids.

The disease is in the air. No one wants to talk about it. I feel it every time I inadvertently stroll through this village. There are people am afraid for, the guys we played football together before I left for where it would be easier to cross to greener pastures. The journey is almost complete. A few days and I’ll be done. I’ll show the homes of my childhood enemies. One time they beat me and ran away. I spent almost all my lower primary break time trying to revenge. It’s been ages since I last saw them. I want to meet them and ask them if they still remember the source of our squabble.

That little squabble is among the minor things I remember. Even the day I was flogged thoroughly for a mistake I’m still trying to fathom to date doesn’t rank highly-part of the minor memories. There was this day when the fight against AIDS was in full swing. It was in the curriculum. It was around 2003 and 2003. The head teacher would gather us at random times and tell us about this disease that doesn’t have cure. There was a song she’d sing.

Tell them about AIDS slowly
So that they don’t say they didn’t understand.

And she did spoke of it at lengths. And more importantly slowly. It got me scared, I don’t know how it struck the rest. I stayed off girls as much as I could. One day the school organized an HIV/AIDs awareness day. We all trooped to a neigbhours house to see for ourselves what AIDS could do to a human body. We saw gory videos, of very thin people whose bones were about to escape from their bodies. Effects of AIDS. We also saw of other sexually transmitted diseases. They were equally gory. Unsightly. Nauseating.


All that and my friends didn’t take it seriously. I wonder what happened to their brains. Now they are chewing miraa, staring at their futures fade away. Like they want to salvage, they clench their fists, gnaw their teeth. But it’s too late.

Tell them about AIDS slowly
So that they don’t say they didn’t understand.

I hope your regrets have this sound track. Wait for your fate. Or guide it to a more favourable ending.




Saturday, 23 July 2016

CHROME

Leila had just closed school. After a few exchange of pleasantries through text she asked when I’d be around so that I could buy her a drink. She said her favourite was Chrome. I wondered. Chrome!  Odd name for alcohol. I mean there’s Kenya Cane, Kenya King, Konyagi, Meakins [I can name almost all the brands of cheap liguor-I belong to this class]. Names weren’t yet exhausted to warrant someone naming a vodka Chrome. Like someone woke up one day with a stiff hung over from the other liquors and said, ‘I’m gonna make me a liquor and name it Chrome. I’m gonna make Chrome more than just a browser.’ Five years from now a deep voice will emanate from our speakers….when chrome was just a browser….

My interest was irked. Trouble is I hadn’t enough problems in my Problem Bank to make me visit the liquor store. Every time I felt the urge of communing with eagles I was always repulsed by the Problem Bank customer care. Sweetly she’d say, ‘You have insufficient problems, please find a woman and call back.’ That’s when I realized how it sucked to live without problems. The world would suck even more without problems. There’d be no politics and worst of all journalists would be jobless. Imagine a world like that! A world where people wake up, make love with only their wives, eat, pray and make love again [with their wives only-this is important]. The world would be so freaking boring.

Back to chrome.

So am heading home with my paps. The sound track to our silent conversations has always been Franco’s music. He has an album that he plays every single time I’ve been on that car with him. We drive reveling in our awkward silence. Franco belts his tunes. I used to hate such kind of music. Now I don’t, how else would I survive a six hour journey? We stop at Nakuru. He had some business to attend. He disappears and I spot a huge Chrome advert on a billboard. There was a dude dressed stylishly, with shoes that glowed around the edge of the sole. There were curvy colorful lines imposed on him but not enough to make him indistinguishable. The photo was taken while he was dancing to some hip hop music, I guess, because his hands were in the air and he stood on his toes. Below him was a fancy slogan I forgot to remember. The clear target of this drink was the young broke ass people. Just like me. RRP 180.

‘I’ll buy it one day’ I promised my liver.

We get home in the wee hours, the kind my high school principal used to call satanic hours. That was just one of the few punchlines he managed to pull. One day he claimed our parents were the poorest South of Sahara and north of Limpopo. If weren’t peaceful enough we’d have lynched his car [one of his]. Looking back our parents sure had to be. I mean if you can build a multi-million house immediately after purchasing a Toyota Rav 4, everybody had to be poor surely. I retrieve my bag from the car boot and prance about indulgently. There is something about the village; fresh air, no noise except dogs barking occasionally and cocks crowing-the air is generally serene.
Something about home. No matter how long you’ve been away everything will always seem normal. No matter how changes have taken place it will still be the same place you left a few years or months back. It will still be home.

I should meet Leila, I thought basking on a rock by the stream. I always check on this rock occasionally, but almost always, when I want to clear my mind. The gurgling stream offers the best beats as the birds sing recklessly up the trees. A few texts later we strike a deal. We’d meet the next day, a Sunday. As usual she says she doesn’t have fare. You get a cookie for guessing what I did. Bingo! You got it right.

Is it impatience or is it that girls drag themselves deliberately when they agree to meet you? Or it could be my own problem? She had promised to leave her place at 3.30, add another hour and she’d be there. At four I was there, spruced up. I called. She doesn’t pick. I call again. No answer. An hour later she calls. I rushed out from this dinghy movie place, where retards catch Dj Afro movies. I forced myself in, for time to move. I’d missed Dj Afro anyway, and that was enough an excuse. This is also the place we catch football. Here the roof is dust infested. Woe unto you if a belated Arsenal fan jumps in jubilation, worse still for a replay of goal. It’s not rare to find people celebrating a replay, especially when their team’s behind. I think they should ban replaying from different angles because many people here confuse for another goal.

Leila says she’d be leaving her place in an hour. That’s makes it two. Thinking of two grueling hours in a dinghy place, coupled with sweaty human beings, crammed in one place and the hotness of the place prompts me to ask what’s keeping her that long. I call her back immediately she hangs up. She picks up and barks.

‘I just told you I’ll be there in an hour….is it this money that you are desperate about. I can send them back…’ and she hangs up just like that. Without according me an opportunity of reply. Meager money. I couldn’t count the amount of money Sportpesa and African Spirits Limited have gobbled up-probably a thousand over.

Why would she be irked by a hundred shillings? Why would she even think I would be at a loss with a mere hundred shillings? Just because she wouldn’t be around wouldn’t mean I wouldn’t get where I was to go [apply your poetic knowledge or lack of it]

Just stay wherever you are, do whatever you are doing with whomever you are with, however you lie it. Got nothing to lose.  I text her and head to this pub. It doesn’t have a name now but three years ago it use to be called Metro Pub. It’s deserted. I count only two tables, with a huge space between them. Three high stools are around the counter, unoccupied. Kalenjin music pierces the air. I look around and notice a drunk light skinned girl cuddling or seemed an old rugged looking man. I don’t want guess his age, cheap liquor has a way of aging someone embarrassingly. May he’d just cleared his fourth form. The girl rises once the song changes. I didn’t even notice the change, but I know it was Chelele before as it is now. She dances around trying to move her rigid backside to this Chelele song.  Well, all Chelele songs are the same. And she has the guts to call herself Binti Osama! How would you allow to be killed by a non-entity? Oh, I guess your dad wasn’t there to protect you, blame it on Obama.
I
 order Chrome. This is where we make acquaintances with Chrome.  I hope you aren’t slow like the browser, thinks  I.

‘We only have this,’ a motherly waiter says plainly. Trouble with all the pubs around here is there aren’t any beautiful waiters. No even one. And the serve you in those coloured plastic cups. I see a green liquid inside.

‘Aren’t all supposed to be like this?’ I regretted saying this; probably I’d be thought as an amateur drunkard. Knowing I don’t know she’d be at liberty to charge me any amount. And that’s robbery considering the fact that I’ve emerged from Muthurwa’s unnamed pubs on my goddamn feet. Skilled drunkard!

‘Lemon flavoured, ‘ she says, devoid of any emotion. A rock would say the same words without altering anything.

Green, blue, yellow….whatever (Breaking Bad fans). I want to taste Chrome. I grab it and she demands cash. Like I just stumbled into the pub. I reach for my pocket and retrieve a two hundred shilling note. I hand it to her and she hands me a glass. For the first time I see a glass. Maybe first timers are served in glasses, like most homes do to visitors. Those reserved utensils, you know. I pour a little and gulp it down and waited. Nothing happened. I poured some more and gulped. Nothing happened. The music still sucked. The two lovebirds were still miserable. Me too. Leila is distant. Like she’s never existed. May this Chrome is as slow as the one am used to. I pour half the glass and gulped down.

Then, without notice everything turned beautiful. The music became the best sound one could ever hear. The ugly couple looks sexy. The motherly bartender looks sexy too. I want to rise and gyrate whatever I have. That would wait, I think.

Then she calls. Leila calls. I look at the phone and toss it aside. She calls again. Same procedure. She calls once more. Same procedure. She texts. I look at the text.

I’m sorry.

                  Doesn’t sound real.

I mean it.

                  You’d have texted immediately. Not three hours later

Just received the text now

                 I’ve haven’t seen yours too, will check them tomorrow. Good night.

More and more sorries come in. I’m sorry for her because I wasn’t even reading them. Minutes later, after clearing my drink, I summon a boda boda guy. Ten minutes I’m fumbling with the door lock, it isn’t actually a lock but a nail driven into the edge of the door and curled, just to keep the door in place but not for security.


Lights out.

Thursday, 21 July 2016

LET ME FORGET YOU


It’s rather a strange thing to do today. I’ve found courage and now am raring to go. I want to forget you not because you ever did anything bad to me but because I need to think of fresh things from now on. Truth is, I’ve found it hard to keep you out of my mind. I have raised the rent but you still afforded it, lowered the standards but you still found it fit to live in an abhorrent and deplorable world. I almost left my mind for you, but upon knowing I need it more than you do, I’d like us to strike a deal. Lets part ways in the most amicable manner such that we can greet each other on the streets, corridors and may be sometime we grab a drink without looking like strangers or seeking to patch old differences.

Ever since you walked into this anodyne life of mine I’ve been haunted by the illusion of keeping up to an impossibly high ideal. I’ve tried to act like the man you wanted. I’m haunted still by the thought of us never having amounted to anything. For these haunting thoughts I’ve had to act like an animal around you: talking trash, doing silly stuff and now you think I bear a grudge against you. Actually I do. I wanted revenge to what I considered a callous attitude on your part. But I would provide you what you sought and you had to seek it elsewhere.  I wanted you to desperately want me. I wanted you to find me irresistible without trying to look like it. I wanted you to think of me as much as I think about you (the culmination is this letter).

This letter is a pact on my part. I’m accepting everything as it is. I’ll let you be you without subjecting you to any judgments. I’m accepting you are you and there are things you seek in life that might not be favourable, at least to me, but are to you. I’m accepting everything as it is. I’ll treat everything I’ve heard of you like a rumour; like those peddling it are merely envious of you.

I didn’t see a reflection of me in your eyes. I didn’t want to. I treated you with suspicion and I don’t want to find out if I unjustly did that or not. I’m satisfied of what became of us and I will be more than contented with what you choose to do with your life. I’m letting my mind free of you. Let me think about you when I see you.


You’ve been a nice occupant. Good bye.

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

A Glimpse of Hope

From afar a glimpse of hope
Holding steadfast, like a knot on a rope
A dopey grin and a glint in the eye
A perfect disguise of the about to die

A sigh escapes with a wheeze
Bringing forth a doppelganger in the breeze
Breathtaking and choking all the same
Imperfection laid bare in the name

From afar echoes of laughter recede
Its motion the darkness vainly impedes
A lonely soul locked in an embrace

A phantom creatures’ humane gaze

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

You and I could never be

Yours and mine weren’t ever meant to be
Hearts had similar incompatible destinies
Mine acts worse than thousand piccaninnies’
From the beginning I hoped you’d see

Against advice I fell head over heels for you
Looking for my worth now among the ruins
Among a myriad of should have beens
Pity engulfs me, but I hope to get through

No one knew the truth better than me
How I went home every evening hating me
I knew one day, not by luck, you’d see

You and I could never be

Sunday, 17 July 2016

Grab Your Gun,Son!

He grabbed his gun and told his son
With a stiff and rough voice
'Stop playing with toys, you're not a boy'
The little man rose, having no choice

‘Here is your gun, keep vigil like the sun
Let’s protect our land
The whites ruined us and we must fight thus
Lest we lose where to stand’

The white man came and took our name
Our habits and land
He gave us guns, let us fight as he earns
And we kill each for a place to stand


Saturday, 16 July 2016

Once I Wanted To Die

once i wanted to die 
i felt i'd lived long to ask why 
but dive into an abyss 
where nothing would be amiss 

once i wanted to die 
i'd believed one lie 
that no one would miss 
my breathing days, as this 

once i looked up the sky 
and let out a long sigh 
wondering what would be new 
for i no longer had any dues 

once i wondered about life 
self-consciousness brought about strife 
and i looked up the sky 
and wondered if it was really that high 

Thursday, 14 July 2016

ENTANGLED



Entangled bodies
Oceans drifting beneath
Scents of love wafting
Groans and moans
Unimaginable pleasure
And bodies so desperate
With each and every thrust
To merge and be one for long
Awhile, heavens spring around

Wingless flights, high up the ground
Sighs rent the air
Ghettos,leafy suburbs
every place
is made of this

I LOAN YOU MY DREAMS

Beauty from far, from a tribe which to seek
One must set sail with an advance of a week
To content thyself with hers glowing smile
And lie on her bosom at least for a while
I loan you my dreams

Beauty from far I see you shine so bright
So alone are you- the sun mimics you, right?
So much beauty that fits you perfectly
To make you mine I must eventually
But before then I must loan you my dreams

Here, I loan you my dreams cutie pie
Let them generate interest as high
You belong to the stars and everything above
Take it to the bank-make me the one you love

Take all my dreams for you’ve taken my heart

He Won't Make It Home

Among the many things he was
The best of them all was and could be
He’s the man you’d love to see
The unyielding grasp of eternity

And tonight he won’t make it home
Looks like his usual self, huh?
Occasionally he dines with the star
In the morning, romance and glee

You won’t hear that ear splitting knock 
Or his course voice trying to sound
Like age old Kikuyu romance

You won’t sulk like you do when you open the door

He won't make it home tonight, not ever
He's gone-the police say he tried
To make your ends meet
And they made him stop a bullet

Wednesday, 13 July 2016

BILLY BUYS A BENZ

PHOTO: Courtesy

He said he came from Wareng’
His parents name him Billy
His father owned a few acres
And he a couple of dreams
What would he do with fake dreams?
Gave up on them and staked on his son Billy
Took a loan coz he trusted in his son’s dreams
God fearing and everything a good son would be
He wouldn’t default-as the guarantor
Or better yet his dreams
Billy went to Nairobi to begin the chase

One day out of the blues he came home
Driving his own Mercedes Benz
Billy told his dad he came first in class

‘University is great
when you come they hand you pricey prices
tell Jepleting to stop seeing that bastard
tell her about university and cars
I think she likes other people’s cars
Maybe tell we have our own’
Mused the old man sipping his chang’aa

Billy has car- children scream as the Benz leaves dust behind
He told his ageing dad he was going to see Rachel
‘Whatever you want my son’ he said

He wanted to tell her his was the best box
Rachel’s idea of Billy is of a brother
Billy has enough sisters to call him brother
He wants more than being a brother
He wants love
Perhaps start a family, have kids
Beautiful kids….he muses as he reverses out of the petrol station

Rachel knows Billy well, he seems intelligent
A good man, a man of God
Good hearted, she tells him her plans
He tells her his, but it doesn’t seem to buy a car
So soon, maybe in the near future
Rumour has it that he has a godfather
Perhaps a prominent politician
Who charms university students with expensive gifts
To buy their loyalty


Tuesday, 12 July 2016

THE MERCY OF FREEBIES

It’s Friday. No one recognizes it more or better than a jobless Nairobi lady, a hooker and university students. They all are of the same mettle, all with the some needs. It’s not an ordinary Friday. The month is approaching its final quarter and many wallets have been excessively worked out. Some are malnourished. Some are but a mere burden. It’s cold, a typical July weather. Tracy lay on the couch alone. Her boyfriend Geoffrey should have been around to cuddle had it not been for her niece‘s unprecedented visit. The last thing she wanted was to be a bad example……. no, an inconvenience to her niece−she was grown up. May be she even knew more than her aunt, she turned on the couch.

Tracy had her Samsung Galaxy S3 smart phone in her hands, both the television and home theatre remotes resting on her belly. Westlife music wafted through the room. She would occasionally sing along. It calmed her. It made her feel in control of her thoughts. She would imagine Geoffrey singing to her ear in his rough and rugged voice. She loved to hear his distorted rendition. Pleasant ripples went through her body at that very moment. She smiled to let the memory go away.

She checked her phone again and again. All she could see were messages her girlfriends inquiring if there was a party they would get crash or she’s been invited. She hated replying back with a negative. She has always been the girl they looked up to when it got to having fun−drinking and dancing till dawn without parting with a single cent. They would admit that it was dangerous but would brush it off with ‘we have only one life’ or ‘soon we will be married.’ The only had one chance and it was while they still studied. Tracy, like most of her friends, was post graduate students at the University of Nairobi. Her niece, Stacy was also a student at the same institution.

At the very instant of thinking about Stacy, she knocked on the door with a smile on her face. She couldn’t recall a day she wore a frown on her chubby face.

“What kept you that long?” Tracy asked, just to talk to her. She was not interested in her answer.

 “I met some friends who kept me long, regaling stories of what they’ve been up to…..by the way they invited me to a party that they’ve invited to………”

“Where?”  She cut her short.

“Renault Apartments, rumour has it that a prominent politician will be in attendance,” Stacy said with a blush.

“Can I…..”

“Will you accompany me?” Stacy jibed in with a giggle that revealed a dimple on her left cheek.

The process of making up their already good faces began. Tracy hated it. She hated staring at herself in the mirror applying chemicals on her face. She hated the rigour that accompanied choosing attire for a night out. But she had to look good, perhaps better than any lady in the house that night. It came with many goodies: spanks, stares, complements, cheers and the most coveted of all, drinks from the richest and handsome.

At the end of the evening she had settled on a tight fitting black polka dotted dress that went way above her knees. Her niece had settled for a pair of jeans and a purple top. They were all ready went a cab pulled into their apartments parking lot. It was deserted, silently proclaiming that the tenants were already out having fun.

“Good evening hookers?” The cab greeted them in a heavy Kikuyu accent.

“Were you sent to insult us?” Tracy fumed.

“That was not an insult. It’s a whole world of truth. Do I suppose you are the Mheshimiwa’s daughters, eh? Beauty will ruin you girls.” He said as they settled uneasily into the back seat. Tracy looked into the mirror and caught him staring may be her thighs.

“Shut up and drive!” a visibly agitated Stacy fumed.

Quite moments ensued as the black saloon car eased into the light Nairobi traffic−people had been forced by brokenness to take their cars off the road. Everybody seemed engrossed in their thoughts, desperately hoping that somebody will break the silence. Tracy stared at the tinted cars wheezing past them. She felt like asking the driver to press the gas pedal much harder but checked on herself when she recalled the sneers they had to contend. She seemed to be the only lady who loved speed. Her friends had joked about her being so early for her own funeral days before she died. Stacy sat silently. She was calm and seemed unbothered. She loved her life the way it was. She was busy on her phone, sexting perhaps as Tracy observed they way she would broadly smile periodically before hitting the send button.

The cab pulled up in an exquisite parking lot of the Renault Apartments. Everything spoke of affluence: a beautifully manicured lawn, expensive cars parked and a certain kind of fragrance that had a close affiliation with wealth. This is where sinners converge to multiply their transgressions. This is where married men sought solace in the ever open arms and legs of university students without worrying of cameras and their hawk eyed wives. This is where married men regained their masculinity among university lasses. It was secure too: there was no chance of being blown up by terrorists as had become the norm in this part of sub-Saharan Africa.

They alighted. Tracy adjusted her dress. A uniformed guard rushed to their side and asked them to register before proceeding to where they’d be hosted. Tracy tried to protest but her niece exhorted her to comply with the directive. They strutted to the miniature shelter that housed the watchman. Tracy was visibly annoyed by the idea and she didn’t hide her anger.

“We are not about to blow this place or make away with anything. Kwani where do you have to register to have fun?”

The guard entered their names and identification numbers in a register. It was new and their names appeared third and fourth in the register. Tracy peered and noticed that all the names were feminine. It still safe now, she thought as Stacy took directions from the watchman as she texted. Tracy was all of sudden bored and she seemed to contemplate why she had hoped into a party which she wouldn’t even explain without arousing suspicion. She fell low on the list. She even failed to understand how they would be chauffeured into a party where a friend invited a friend who invited a friend and that friend asked her to come along. Now they were are in Renault Apartments, earlier than those who asked them to come along.

Aunt and niece took the steps one at a time. Their stilettos struck the marbled stair case in unison. Tracy kept quite. She seemed she hadn’t gotten over the altercation between her and the watchman. Stacy on the other hand looked more composed than her aunt. She seemed older and more mature, from the dressing to the facial expression. On the first floor they met a young woman out to hang clothes. She looked at them with spiteful eyes. It wasn’t anything new. Both of them had gotten used to such stares from the fairer sex –their fellows. Those who perceived themselves in the higher class looked down upon those who were the lowly and the lowly despised those in the higher class. A woman is an enemy of her own. Gender parity is a thing that should start with the women appreciating themselves first and working together to tame the men, or at least have the remotest ability to.

They reached the third floor and turned right as they had been instructed. Slow music welcomed them from afar. House number three hundred and four was the destination. A slim young woman in her mid twenties ushered them in. She was clad in a cheap black skirt that went slightly above her knees and a floral filled purple top. She shopped in deplorable places such as Gikomba or Muthurwa, Tracy thought as they settled on white leather couch. Tracy pulled her dress. It showed too much of her thighs and they were no men around to admire them. There were only four ladies in the spacious living room; two others and them. Stacy sat on her right. Everything spoke of opulence: diamond encrusted chandeliers, thirty two inch plasma television, a home theatre (the origin of the music), leather seats and artifacts that hung on the wall−they were souvenirs from around the world. A picture and a calendar hang conspicuously at one end, dwarfed by the artifacts. The decoration would surely make a lady to go on one knee and beg the owner of the house (not the landlord but the tenant) to marry her. It was awe inspiring and breathtaking.

The lady who welcomed them came back. It seemed she was satisfied that they had made themselves at home. Or had had the opulence exhibited by the owner of the house sink into them. She came with a request that had become too familiar to them.

“Whisky or wine?” She asked with a contempt filled voice.

“Wine,” Tracy answered. She didn’t bother to know what Stacy preferred. It wasn’t her who had the same problem. Many have always assumed collective preference for drinks wherever two people sit. Stacy would have loved to complain had it not been her choice too. And they being strangers invited by third parties.

Minutes later she appeared with a tray. She carefully placed two glasses on glass table. They looked at the drink, each waiting for another to pick it first. The silence that ensued, save for the Michael Bolton sounds coming from speakers placed at the corners of the room, was disturbing. Tracy took a sip from the glass. Her niece followed suit before her glass embraced the table. They sipped slowly at long intervals. They didn’t want to get tipsy before the party started. 

As the clock chimed at nine, people started streaming in. Majority of them were girls. Slim. Fat. Light. Dark. Happy and sad. All trooped in bubbling with contagious excitement.  Tracy would spot only two men glad in black suits. Their eyes darted from girl to girl desperately longing to frisk them. May be they were part of the security detail belonging to the dignitary they were to entertain. How would ten of them or more entertain one man? There sure were his friends and psychos who hang around him like a moth to source of light. Most of the girls were half clad. They dresses desperately clung to their bodies in an attempt to conceal the areas around the loins. The furrow on their breasts ran until it disappeared in their stomachs. Their faces were heavily made up. It outshone the bulbs that hung on the roof. Tracy and Stacy looked like they were headed to church. Judging by the precedence set by the other girls; theirs was decent by astronomical proportions.

The party started immediately. The girls chatted animatedly, giggling and clapping, toasting and ordering more. Tracy and Stacy were joined by another girl, a friend of Stacy. She was the one who asked Stacy to come along. They were the silent ones. They watched the lone waiter struggled to cope with their unruly behavior. Drinks flowed swiftly from where they were stored. It became apparent that soon men would have a good time without effort. They hadn’t even arrived except the two men in black suits who were already trying to resist erotic glances from the drunken girls.

Tracy and her company were busy discussing the latest trend in the fashion world that they hardly noticed a man join them. He was clad in a loosely fitting pair of blue jeans and a white shirt. He was clean shaven. He enchanted them with compliments before asking to share the table with them. They obliged. He then called the waiter who hurried to their table. Judging from her posture this was ‘the’ man. He called the shots. The lady went back as the drunk girls escorted her with slutty insults. Obeying the master was worth all the insults. She came back with a bottle of whisky and four glasses. She wanted to pour it into the glasses but the man excused her. He poured into the four glasses and requested a toast. All the girls lifted their glasses and then took a sip simultaneously. Tracy noticed more men in the room. All were busy groping the drunken girl’s breasts some even their loins. They didn’t show any act of resistance. All forms of it had been drained by one too many drinks. She knew it would escalate and soon they would strip and quench their concupiscent thirsts right under their glare.

One more toast….and another. She tried to resist and the man gave her that ‘I said so’ look. All of them obliged begrudgingly, before stupor gave away their inhibitions. Tracy began shouting for more alcohol. She rose, staggered around breaking glasses and hurling expletives at any one that tried to stop her. She was very unruly and had extraordinary strength. Stacy tried to calm her to no avail. The man that they had been drinking with (they didn’t even ask his name) was visibly angry. He mumbled something into the ears of one of the men in black suits then disappeared. No one saw where he went to.

The men in black swiftly approached Tracy. They grabbed her and forced her out. She screamed as kicked but her resistance was no match to the muscular men. They shoved her out of the door and came back. They sighed having executed their master’s orders successfully. Tracy and her friend rose and headed for the door. They were aware of the dangers Nairobi posed especially at that hour of the night. The men in black told them point blank that the boss had said they were not leaving. Stacy begged tears welling in her eyes. It met a resolute no from one of the men. Stacy asked them to consider the safety of their friend at those wee hours of the morning. One of the men told whispered into the ear of his colleague.

“The boss wants one of you. We are going to bring her here and the remaining two of you belongs to us for the night.”

They quickly agreed. They opened the door and locked from outside Stacy wanted to ask why but the thought of her aunt restrained her lips from parting. They hurriedly descended down the stairs. In no time they were done. The watchman at the gate told them that Tracy turned right and went retreated into his shelter. There was no figure or even a silhouette of a woman in the flood lit road. They ran a few metres before the men asked them to stop.

“She isn’t around and the boss will be furious if he finds us missing. We can’t go any further,” one of them said in a deep solemn voice.

“Please lets go just a little distance, she might be around,” Stacy pleaded.

“NO! Let her be a meal to starved Nairobi savages. You must honor our deal,”

“But…”

“Shut up young girl!” she was cut short. One grabbed her and the other her friend. Both were similar in appearance, from the mode of dressing and their facial features. They well built with muscular arms and broad chest. They grabbed them and dragged them into the ditch which wasn’t well lit and had their way into them. It was more of a quickie and the men buckled up their trousers and zipped them and asked them to rise. Tracy had a difficult time pulling her tight fitting trouser up her thighs. Her thoughts were on her aunt and not on their rape. At least they were safe in their arms or so she thought. At last it made through and she zipped as they made their way back into the den.

They stepped back into the room to a cigar stained air. It was smelly when they left. A furious ‘boss‘greeted them at the door. He demanded to know why he was deprived his status as a very important person to a deplorable prisoner and worse still in his own house. The security aide cowered under his breath. Though they were more muscular than he was they dared not challenge him and suddenly one blurted:

“These sluts tried to escape…we….we captured these two but one managed to escape…..”

“What!!!??? You mean after taking my expensive liquor you try to run away? What’s your name?”

“Stacy.”

“That’s not a name. Your second name,” he thundered.

“Jeptum,” Stacy cowardly replied. He pointed at her friend by elongating his lips.

“Chebet,” she barely whispered.




I CRAVE YOUR SENSES


Let me forsake my own mind
For the sake of my own sanity
Let me lie about truths I hold of you
I don’t like you,
I don’t hate you
I don’t love you

I crave your senses like blind to light
I am, wherever you are I see light

I crave your ears
I crave your eyes
I crave your tongue
I crave your nose
I crave your touch
All of you
All you have, all angels do,

But yours is all theirs, combined

Beauty Unfit For Verse

Through the meanders and wanders
The maze and the labyrinths
I find your beauty leading me to light
And your smile!
Ah! Your smile belittles all alight
I can’t believe I’m trying to fit your person in verse

I’ve never imagined you would till you insinuated 

Monday, 11 July 2016

EXCUSE MY DISGUST

Disgust
“Excuse me!!” she retorts
Ah! Man with a womb and a cunt
Because your dick grew inwards

Filth
“Excuse me!!” she menstruates
You are trash
You need someone to take you out
The garbage truck or the hit man
I’m the later

Whore
“Excuse me?!!!” wide eyed response
Poetry is beyond your understanding
Ah! You’re limited to sexts-
I know I’m insensitive
When it pays your bills

“Excuse me!!”
Multiple sorries dear heart
I now understand your distaste of her

Fuck you
“Excuse me!!!” she cringes
Yes I said it, fuck you
Go to hell for heaven’s sake
FUCK YOU



I HEAR THE ECHO OF YOUR LAUGHTER

I hear the echo of your laughter
Ringing in my mind like a strum to a guitar
It’s my favourite song
You laughter is my favourite song

Away from you everything seems a wander
And I must wonder
How beautiful life is beside you
Though sometimes I wonder if it’s true

I’d take a bullet if that would make you happy
I’d stop a train just to see you happy
For I’ve stopped bullets before
I’m desperate to see this love grow

For the moment let me indulge in the song
The one that makes me long
A touch of your lips and a tight embrace

And that immortal smile on your pretty face 

A MILLION 'I LOVE YOU'

Last night he had a crazy dream
A wish was granted just for him
It could be for anything
He  didn't ask for money
Or a mansion in Kitusuru
He simply wished, for one more day with you

One more time
One more sunset, maybe he'd be satisfied
But then again
He knows what it would do
It would leave him wishing still, for one more day with you

First thing he'd do, is pray for time to crawl
Then he’d switch his phone off
And keep the TV off
He'd hold you every second
Say a million ‘I love you's’
That's what he'd do, with one more day with you

OF THINGS TAKEN FOR GRANTED

Granted twenty four hours of health
How have you used it differently
From he who was bedridden?

Granted two eyes to see
What have you seen
That a blind man would envy?

Granted food to give you energy
What have you done with the energy
That makes a difference to one who had none?

Granted shelter and clothing
What’s it with self-loathing
Wanting what your neighbor has?

Granted a computer to study
What’s the difference between you
And those who have none?

Granted the feet to walk
Where have you been on this earth
To show a little bit of compassion?

Granted parents who have stuck with you
Through their own inadequacies and troubles
What do have to show them at the end of the day?

Granted books and the ability to read
Granted the time and the brains
What is the difference between you
And those who can’t read?

Granted people who care about you
What would you give them

When you walk like they don’t exist?

SHE LEFT ME ONCE

She left me once and I allowed her to leave
I didn’t fight for us, maybe I didn’t believe
I thought I was so immune to grieve
Sometimes, many times I cried to seek relief

I remember that Monday morning, chilly and cold
She’d be gone for a while and I had a feeling
That someday somewhere I’d be told
The saddest news that’d leave me reeling

I turned my phone on, at six or thereabouts
Previously I had written her a poem
That I had painstakingly labored to write
And I knew I would get a reply, or I hoped

Sure the reply came through
I struggled to adjust my eyes to the blinding light
Then I read her message and heaved
Read once more and hit the delete button
Maybe it would help to think I didn’t receive

Before I could act, she called and asked
“Have you seen the message I sent you?”
I lied I hadn’t seen it, it was better to lie
Than to imagine she was gone
All within a blink of an eye
I had been anticipating that day, though
But it just came too soon for me

“I know how sad it is for you to bear this news….”
You know?!! I fumed inside but just could tell
If she was right beside me, I’d have given her hell
I could have given away everything
Just to take away that feeling
But then how could that have been possible
When she was my everything?
I rose from my bed, without a thought of the cold
Put on my brown heavy jacket, it reminded me
Of cold nights I braved the drizzles drizzled
Just to talk to her on a high ground where
I my phone would catch the network
A chill down my spine- all that had been to vain

And headed out to recharge my phone
I conversed with myself all the way the kiosk
‘I enjoyed all the moments we had together
And I wish you all the best in the new chapter’
No, how about this
‘I didn’t love you anyway
I lied to have sex with you by the way’
That looked worse
‘I have all along suspected you are a whore
I’m glad I’m getting back to my life as before’
No, worst of all
‘How about I love you and I want the best for you
Wherever you’ll go just know that I always was true
I can’t figure out how to love anyone, not ever
Because I was sure you were my forever ‘
That would make her guilty,
Yes, I wanted to make her guilty

‘But she’s gone,’ my conscience tried to argue
‘For better things, for a better life
Or for things you couldn’t provide
That which she’d choose to be a wife’

I was mad at myself, I was mad at things I didn’t do
Things I couldn’t even explain, I just knew there were things
She loved me, I heard her tell me several times
She said she loved me, I told her the same thing
But then, I felt there was something more to back it up
To reinforce it like steel to concrete

Hoping it wasn’t too late, I told her straight
‘I love you…and I can’t ever figure out
Any being on this earth whom I’ll love like you
Maybe I made mistakes in the past …
…and I want to make it right….just name the price’

She didn’t like hesitate, she told me like she’d rehearsed
“I’m afraid it’s too late for that”

“Why do this to me? Why?”

“You wouldn’t understand….circumstances
Everything is hard right now…..
….and I don’t think you’ll help me
I wish you would but I know you can’t
…just live your life”

Damn money!! Damn the world
Money robbed me the precious
Of all my possessions
The prized among all, love

‘I’ll wait for you,’ I bluttered
I wondered why it wasn’t easy to let go
Chart a new destiny and live life anew
Or get used to be alone
Probably I wouldn’t be too alone

She said she loved me
She’d leave him when things get better
Maybe we could be together
Once more, till forever knocks at our doorstep

It wasn’t the easiest decision I ever made
Days crawled, the sun seemed stuck up the sky
I still asked myself why
Why I wouldn’t let go, to start letting the memories fade

My world was suddenly confined to an ominous gloom
The flowers even in its full bloom spelled doom
And my heart seemed to be giving away slowly
I longed for a way of forgetting things, instantly
But the more I longed the more she became engraved in my mind