More Great African Poetry with Tendai Rinos Mwanaka

Ntensibe Joseph: Is passionate when it comes to writing poetry although he embraces other genres. Being a high school teacher of Literature and English, he works with young people, with writing. He is also an editor. He graduated from Makerere University with honours in English, Literature and Education. He is published in print and online, he appears in, Best New African Poets 2016 Anthology, Africanization and Americanization Anthology among others.

 

WITH RAGS SACKS OF CLOTHES

 

With rags sacks of clothes

And...bugs

She trods the streets in

Vain hope

And darkness

 

With rags sacks of clothes

And…tears

She faces the wrath of authority

As her existence is of no worth now

-as though they didn’t witness her birth!

 

With rags sacks of clothes

And …dust

She eats dirt of the passing Benz

Perhaps it is holy dust –she thinks

Quenches hunger-she eats

 

With rags sacks of clothes

And…wails

She goes to once upon, a home…

Of adults who seem parents by default

She screams “How did I miss to hold the pen…”

Her tears are lost in her mucus

 

With rags sack of clothes

And…blood

She trod, wobbling, haggard

Robbed of her babyhood

A pain despicable –mind and body

Her rags sacks of clothes

Soaked in blood

-too many they were-too weak to resist

-and help never-because she is in rags sacks of clothes!

And…and…

Was left with a hollow heart

                                                                    an empty soul

a vacuum life….and

Blood-on rags sacks of clothes and blood

                                And empty, murky

 

With rags sacks of clothes

And bugs

And wails

And dust

And tears

And blood

                               And with blood

 

With rags sacks of clothes

She with the sum;

Drags

 

Not someone-but somebody

Looks through her eyes, through her heart

And SMILES…

 

-Now with a smile, laughter and the

Sum-erased   

She lives…


MY LITTLE ONE

 

My little one

I love the morning squeal

That ear piercing song!

You rise like the sun so strong, lovely and

gentle

-you slept well; I  feel.

 

Mucus flowing so slowly down your sweet nose,

-earth in your little mouth,

You knead and devour the dough!

I love it for you are from our land,

your land.

 

Oh! little one,

Your yellowings are too beautiful this

Sunrise.

You massage your innocent sun burnt

legs with feaces.

-I love it for you are my little one

Of the land our land your land!

Tendai R Mwanka

Tendai Rinos Mwanaka is a leading poet and writer of the new generation of African writers and works hard to promote African writing through anthologies he has curated and co edited. Mwanaka has been shortlisted and won several writing awards, including being shortlisted for a record 7 times for the UK based Erbacce poetry award, 3 times nominated for the Pushcart, The Caine African Writing Award etc.

Catherine Magodo~Mutukwa is a Zimbabwean born poet/author currently based in South Africa.She has published several books and has some of her works also published on various online journals and anthologies.

 

Echoes~OfAStrong(Black)Woman

 

She said
they take and take and take
You see,
there're no more songs left in me
'cept rhythm playing upon silence…
So,
She bade no one farewell
when she left an angry black woman
stuck, with all the trash they had
discarded in the backyard of her
mind
I'll be on my way now,
to make room, to empty my mind of
all the mountains of stinking dirt
(Of their unevolved thoughts) ~ trying
to shrink me
No~no! no more room for insults
telling me that I'm too much, too
much woman, too much of everything,
'assailed, impervious, indestructive!'
and
can no longer fit into their 'box'…
You see, finally
I cleared the space, I made room
for all the unconscious artistry in
my head!
she said,
For a very long time,
I clung desperately to their ideas
for me
how it pulled me back, ah! almost killed me
trying to please the ungrateful lot…

 

 

The Father Of Her Children

 

He left the door ajar
disappearing into the night of his troubles
driven by strange forces, always
the strange forces…
leaving behind a suffocating stench
of a decaying mind-dead man walking
He left her there, standing, alone
in the one-walled roofless room
of her own thoughts
envisioning an end to a beginning
perhaps that never was,
to begin with
but she did not cry, not for him
He was long gone by the time
she searched for him there
But him, he was lost in the street
of self-gratification never mind
the consequences…
he was high on cloud nine with being
MALE, spraying them seeds as if
he had just discovered the use of
his 'member' like a child experimenting with a new toy
He was an open avenue leading
straight to Sin City where morals died
an early death while the evil entities
drove him to insanity like a vessel
without its captain
oblivious to the trail of destruction left
behind
Demons! he would always cry out
bloody demons, forever haunting me…
drowning his sorrows with 'cold ones'
'strong ones' never 'flat ones'
these spirits clothed in bottles!
He wouldn't fight them, no, he
couldn't
What! with all his strength long gone, left with the many Delailahs and
Jezebels he bedded…
The end wouldn't come, no,
not until the very end, where utter
loneliness befriended him
and regret caressed his open wounds
of guilt and shame, he would never heal,
He expired right there, while still alive
in the age of white hair,
with nothing there to write home about…

Unlike most books paraded as representing Africa while only touching a small portion of the continent and its people and poets, this anthology shows Africa in its multiplicity of races, languages, countries, cultures etc... blacks, whites, Arabic, Indian ... that is really what Africa is about!

Best "New" African Poets 2016 Anthology

All 5 poets have poems in this anthology (link embedded above).

Please visit the link to purchase a copy. Its a massive African Literary offering as it touches on everything that is Africa...over 430pages