Zimbabwe: Letter to my unborn child (excerpt) | Batsirai Chigama

Child
I want you to be proud in your skin
So comfortable no one can convince you otherwise
Be weary of brain-pickers i would say
Those who will pick on your brains with shamboks
Like they did on the backs of grandma
In the cotton plantations
Just like your daddy
You will be gifted with brawn
But child that does not mean you are to be a slave
And when you are old like these locks
Tying my world together, at 8
I want your world to be open
To  limitless possibility
I want you to be brave
Just like me when I brought you into this world
To labour for your own happiness
To strive to cut the fences, prejudices
Around the skin you will unashamedly be proud of
Child I seek you to find
All-weather wings
A heart as warm
I want you to find love
Give love
And above all, I want you to be you…

Batsirai E. Chigama is a spoken word poet from Zimbabwe. Her work has been featured in nine poetry anthologies in USA, England, New Zealand and Zimbabwe. Batsirai has participated in a number of festivals and her work is featured on Badilisha Poetry X-Change (Cape Town) and Indiefeed (USA). A published short-story writer, Batsirai also writes on the arts and culture in Zimbabwe, Zimbo Jam. Her website is http://www.batsiraichigama.maumbile.com/ 

Read the Full Poem Here

Zambia: Absentee Husband | Denny Moonde

Its late in the night has he called you yet?
Is he heaven sent?
How can love be absent?
Is what you share fair and decent?

You cry silently, gravely torn.
You have been left on your own
The conclusion is foregone
Where he is you are forgotten.

Maybe he bumped into some bar lady
And forgotten about his fairlady.
To her he sings the same melody
That makes him part of your body

In the bar past midnight staggering with stardom
He must be a big don
His table full of intoxicating liquor
Oblivious of a marriage in troubled water.

 

Denny Moonde is a poet from Lumwana, Zambia.

Uganda: Falling | Betty Kituyi

The rain is gently
clapping at the rocks
outside my kitchen.

Its music
waters
my desert.

A new song forms,
the sound of raindrops
washing my face.

The rain is steadily
Taking me home
By twilight.

I am learning
from the weeping clouds
that falling isn’t dying.

Betty Kituyi is a writer and scientist from Uganda. She is the coordinator of Café Scientifique-Uganda, a robotics program for youth, and the third winner of the fourth BN Poetry Award, 2012, Uganda. She is also a high school educator with decades of experience in the Ugandan education sector.

Tunisia: The Beauty of Tunisian Women | Ali Znaidi

The beauty of Tunisian women
comes w/ the scents of spring,
the roses of spring,
& the almonds of spring.
Though anchored in history & myths,
the beauty of Tunisian women
is always in bloom.
It always opens onto expansive skies.
The beauty of Tunisian women
is always free, & it won’t be ever
your fuel to burn aesthetics & free will.
& it won’t be ever
your flour to bake new bread of fear.

 

Ali Znaidi lives in Redeyef, Tunisia where he teaches English. His work has appeared in Mad SwirlStride MagazineRed FezBlazeVox,Otolithsstreetcake, and elsewhere. His debut poetry chapbook Experimental Ruminations was published in September 2012 by Fowlpox Press (Canada). He reviews Tunisian literature at http://tunisianlit.wordpress.com and blogs at aliznaidi.blogspot.com.