Thursday, January 24, 2008

Wananere te , , ,

I would like to sing you a song
But i dont know its tone, i dont know its words.
i dont know the mood that it must set, the message it should send or the beat it must hit.
I dont know if it should be a song of war or a dirge, an anthem or a harvest chorus. i dont know if i must mourn your demise or celebrate your courage.
I cant know really, for i know not how you feel, how you felt. I dont know the pain you had, as the enemy closed in, the smoke filled your nose and baked your lungs as your feet faintly kicked. i can only imagine the scorch of the fire, blazing the roof of your church away. i can imagine, your wondering why the Lord had deserted his own house and left you to smolder like dry wood in a kiln. i don't know, if you tried to flee but was trampled on by your fellow victims. For that am unable to sing your song.

I want to sing you a song, but i cant, for i know not which pained more, the sharp, cold iron , tearing through your side, like the Lord on that Friday. or was it theft of the vote, that you saw in broad day light. i cant tell if the heavy boots that kicked your side and cracked your ribs, hurt more, as your blood rushed out and your heart collapsed for lack of work to do. i dont know really the beat for the song.

I feel i must sing you a song, to try and live your moments, walking alone in the wee of morning, wise like an early bird to look for your daily bread, for your wife, your child and maybe your other relative. that you felt the sharp cold machete, slicing through your left shoulder, or the blunt metal, hitting hard on your head. i don't know what other insults pierced your heart at that moment before your soul deserted your body.

I can only wonder, what you had promised your small baby girl that morning, that daddy will come back with a sweet? chips? crayon? a toy? books? or a meal that she may have gone without for weeks. i dont know what you had hoped for your son going into form one next month, or for your daughter so full of promise.

Your song must be sung, for the bravery, that bore the sharp, hooked arrow, that took the tear gas, the bone crushing 'rungu' the itchy water and the bullet. the bullet that tore through your tin shanty, snapping off your life as you held your only daughters dress in your hand. i dont know the stories you were telling her. i can only imagine. maybe you were reassuring her young heart, that the noise would cease, that the tin walls would protect her and her mother from the rage of the state which had turned against its own people. maybe you were praying for her in your heart that her future would be different and she would not have to live in a tin. its all an imagination.

your song is being sung in my heart, i hummed it last night as i whispered a prayer. i gave it the beat of my heart, still fortunate, still running, as the image of your lifeless body, severed limbs, charred remains ,and wasted blood filed my screen. you heard that the cost of having one of your own at the house of meals would only be a million bob a plate, which million was paid by a few thousand men, whose blood isnt as red as yours, nor bone as white. but you were not forewarned that in absence of a million, your contribution would be your blood that would be drawn to quench this dry and thirsty land of Kenya. that you would be roasted to ashes, in the very presence of the Lord you serve.

your song must be sung , you young angels, of thirteen, ten, eight or maybe barely months. who could not live to be sextu, septu or octogenerians, who hold onto power like a drowning man to a straw. i salute your innocent lives that have gone before us for our nations belligerence. i salute you, you whose lives were taken in your mothers wombs, when they suffered, defilement and crushed under that vile sin. your song must be sung

i have sung the song, with a beat of my heart, i have sung it to God, with no words, no murmurs, with a mind blank and numb like that of a fool. With a hope strong like your will of iron. your hope for Kenya, your faith in your neighbor, in your vote , in your state that feeds off your very sweat, but who took your life away! your lives reduced to statistics, the five hundred. six hundred . the thousand . two thousand. the nothing. just the statistics
I have sung your song to God. you will hear your song. for God will sing it back to you.

... nindi maber, wananere te.


  1. OD: I'm sharing the link to your blog with everyone I know; this really tugs at my heart's strings. There has been so much division out here where I live that I think everyone, regardless of what part of the country they're from, needs to see what is happening through open eyes and an open heart like you have done in this poem. Good job in being able to condnense the emotions, injustices, helplessness, and hopelessness of the past three weeks in one very touching poem.

  2. @no-spin, thank you for sharing this pain with us. the continuing murders in our country have left me very numb and lifeless

  3. OD, Thanks for that excellent piece.

    However hope you realize that with "6% economic growth" not many will be getting your msg, due to lack of access to computer leave alone the internet.

    That is one change I really yearned for. You know what happened!!!

    God Bless You.


  4. OD,
    What do you make of the current negotiations? Do we have leaders who are sincere enough to make sure that the innocent lives were not lost in vain? Can Mwai Kibaki, who trashed an earlier MoU be sincere this time in his last term?
    Just wondering.

  5. We all know that Kibaki does not have any iota of goodness in him. he has trashed every single promise he made since 2002. the MOU, the constitution, the respect of law etc name it. so i don't know how people still think this man can be trusted.

    for that matter i think those so called negotiations are a waste of time.

    secondly, when a thug snatches your phone, do you negotiate with him? what are u negotiating? if the thug wanted you to negotiate he would have done that before robbing you of the phone in the first place!!!

  6. Thanks for sharing such and emotional poem. The senseless killings have gone uncondemned by our leaders. Its true that this affects every single one of us, it doesn't matter what party you belong to, which tribe you belong to, which religion you belong to, which part of the country you come from, it is all so senseless. I wish we would all open our eyes and see that we are on our own. We need to save ourselves from ourselves, I don't know what makes sense anymore, anything. Thanks Odegle for sharing this.


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