Categories
Africa Poetry rhyme

Hometown by Peniel Gifted

That magnificent city
Built beautifully

Its walls painted in great colours
Furnished with happy diamonds
Its streets with the unceasing glitters.

My hometown
The city of the two great hills
The city where I feel the cool breeze of nativity
Beholding the swaying tulips and smiling sun
The love of nature, giving me the mild spirit of liberty.

Yeah! I love you dearest hometown
For all I wished, is to be with you right now
I remember there is no place like home
Even though, I daily dwell in Rome


She writes well. Just discovered another African talent.

Categories
Africa, Poetry and Love nature poems Poetry

Sun rays

Tall tree canopies,
Sun rays filter
Morning their phantom

Categories
Poetry Series Short story

Reflection: A Cold World

An empathetic mindset and love is what we need for a better world.

It’s a perfectly monstrous weather out there. Each time the breeze touch my skin I shudder and sneeze. I’m cuddled on bed, clutching a phone in one hand in a dark room, too lazy to read or even find a light. No candlelight anyway. My windows and doors are shut tight yet the cold still came through. I grab the blanket to cast it over the tips of my exposed foot. And to determine where the burst of wind came from. It’s a cold world no doubt and a dark one for that matter. It’s a lonely world for those who can’t afford blankets.

The homeless have literally nothing. I’m left with thoughts for those who feel this cold but can’t afford a blanket or a roof. Life can be so cruel. I’m sure that someone needs help. Somewhere around the street corner you will see them. I trust that some good people will consider giving out old blankets or get new ones for those who can’t afford it.

From my bed, I wish for the stars on an extremely cold night. I don’t know, maybe they could somehow warm the night for the homeless. I feel sickly: bitter tongued, laziness, fever, and headache, all signs and symptoms of a tropical illness. So no poetry for me tonight, just my thoughts and bed.

I ask myself this: If I under a roof can feel this sinister cold, how will the homeless manage? I really hope that homeless children and women are safe in this weather. It’s unusual for me to sleep without thinking and praying for the less privileged.

If you have a bed and a roof, you should be super grateful. Let your empathy make people grateful to live. Remember the homeless in your prayers and almsgiving.

Categories
Africa, Poetry and Love

Hangout with Njabulo Nkambule from eSwatini

Hello everyone. I’ve with me a friend and African brother who is passionate about poetry and his motherland.

Please let’s welcome Njabulo Nkambule, a poet from eSwatini. I admire his work so much and if you follow my blog you might have seen a couple of his poems. So on this post I’ll be asking him some questions on his private life and of course his work.

OI: Welcome Njabulo. Can we get to know you better?

NN: Well, I’m Njabulo Nkambule from the Kingdom of Eswatini. Currently, I’m a student at the University of Eswatini studying Journalism and Mass Communication. I’m one person who admires and love art. I breathe it.

OI: Tell us more about your work.

NN: Talking about my work, there’s still a lot to be done and maybe discovered in the near future. But for now, I do both music and poetry. Like I had said, I breath art, I eat it, I live through art and without I don’t find my self belonging in this universe, I just lose the sense of belonging. I’ve done so much right now, I’ve a lot of poems that I wrote and never shared with anyone. I’ve a collection of poems focusing on daily basis challenges/ issues that are faced by the humankind. I don’t just write anything from the air, I write from the depth of my heart, with my mind focusing on everything, reason I do it’s because I want people to relate to my poems and feel the way I felt when writing that poem.

OI: Each time I read your poems it feels like that of black American freedom fighters. Do you think poetry can play a role in gender equality and freedom fighting?

NN: I believe poetry can play a major role in changing the society, changing people’s perception as how they look at things. Poetry can help achieve gender equality. Words are a powerful weapon. If used well can heal a soul. Poetry is powerful, with it’s words and everything around it, it can change the whole society.

OI: What’s your best work yet?

NN: Since I do both music and poetry, so far I feel like there’s still much that I’ve done. Early this month, I and my brother Mpendulo “Roman Dutch” Mdluli released a 6 tracks EP, a kind of music that we believe it can change someone’s way of thinking, the kind of music that heals a soul. So I’d say that for now, I feel like that project is still my best simply because people still relate to our tracks.

OI: Do you think poetry is over rated in Africa?

NN: For me I feel that poetry is underrated simply because they take us poets serious like they do with actors and musicians.

Poetry is not easy like some may think, it’s not good to underestimate us poets because it’s more like they’re testing our intelligence. Africa still needs to do a lot about this issue.

OI: You know Africa is a musical continent, full of sounds and songs. It’s generally believed that poets can sing. Yet I barely sing and funny enough can only play an instrument called whistle. Can you play any musical instrument? Can you sing?

NN: Haha. For me, I’m only good with the words, I don’t know how to use any musical instrument. I’m one person who’s good with coming up with concepts. That’s my field.

OI: Who’s your favourite writer, poet, actor?

NN: I love Emily Dickinson’s writings, her poems are simply out of this world, and also Maya Angelou, she’s good. I admire her work. I’m also a big fan of Prince Ea, his works is out of this world. My favourite is Denzel Washington, simply because he’s just a total package; an actor, a motivator and inspirer. I just love his work.

OI: Have you traveled to any African country? If no, where will you like to go first if you have the chance to?

NN: Only my neighboring countries, South Africa and Mozambique. An African country that I wish to visit one day is either Ghana or Nigeria mainly because those countries feel closer to us now with their entertainment industry being known globally.

OI: What’s your take on grooming young talents on poetry?

NN: When it comes to poetry, we really need to groom young people to do more, write poems that people can relate to, not just writing diaries or watching explicit content that can pollute their minds. It helps one to get over something. We really need young energy when it comes to poetry.

OI: What do you do when you are not writing poetry?

NN: Nothing much, either writing lyrics or doing school work. It’s a challenging world out there.

OI: I have seen you include the #Wegoodbro slang in your work. Do you want to talk about it?

NN: Yeah bro… The #WeGoodBro started way back, I think if I’m not mistaken in 2015, the goal is to feel good in the eyes of everyone, don’t show your tears in public because you don’t know who really is your companion or enemy.

OI: Any advice to fellow African youth?

NN: It’s good that we remain the Africans that we’re supposed to be. Using insults on your craft doesn’t make you better. It’s best to always use words that heal rather than words that kill.

Remember Words can either Kill or Heal…

OI: Can you share links to your work?

NN:. Sure,

Wattpad: https://my.w.tt/uN6j1pqcO9

Writco: https://www.writco.in/profile/Dablu7537

Audiomack:
https://audiomack.com/dablue_kiddie

Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/DablueKiddie.Nkambule

You are an amazing poet. You have a great future ahead of you and it’s great to have you on my Hangout. I hope to read more of your work. Thanks for your time.

Categories
Africa Africa, Poetry and Love

Musical Africa: Talking Drum

The Talking Drum is peculiar to the Yoruba people of West Africa.

Musical Africa
You will agree with me that Africa is a musical continent. It’s full of sounds and songs. Every tribe and nation has a peculiar musical identity. As dressing and languages differ so do musical instruments. I will like to share a musical instrument common to the Yoruba people of West Africa.

The talking drum
The pitch of the talking drum is varied to mimic the tone patterns of speech. This is done by varying the tension placed on the drumhead: the opposing drum heads are connected by a common tension chord. The waist of the drum is held between the player’s arm and ribs, so that when squeezed the drumhead is tightened, producing a higher note than when it’s in its relaxed state; the pitch can be changed during a single beat, producing a warbling note. The drum can thus capture the pitch, volume, and rhythm of human speech, though not the qualities of vowels or consonants.

Categories
Africa love Nature

Morning Sun

I’m glad to see the rising sun
It tells by sight stories unspoken
And paints my curtain perfect green
Divine love woke me to a new start,
A new life, something to celebrate
When I gather the curtains
To glance through tree lines
And green field glittering in the sun,
The rays catch my breath,
Birds chirp and take flight
Morning is my grateful moment

Categories
Africa, Poetry and Love love poems nature poems night poems Poetry

Poem: Love Conquers

If dreams are colourless
Then love is a magical dream
That teaches and encourages,
It trusts from the heart
Builds bridges over water
To bring worlds together
True love shared
Fear no colour or creed

I lay my head
On your shoulders
Let’s take this love to moments
Where all eyes see its beauty

Categories
love poems lullaby Poetry

Lullaby: Sing for me a Lullaby

Sing for me dear nightingale
Gather your host of voices
Rant through the early night
Tweet away joyfully from heart
Let my ears quiver from your song
Let frogs and crickets listen to it
To respond with their baritone
Sing for the sweet nectar
For red roses and hibiscus
And the traveling sunlight
Tell the stars your stories
And the wind the days you saw
Let me hear your voice sing for me,
To ring through quiet nights a lullaby

Categories
Africa proverbs quotes

African Proverb: A Young Tree

A tree is straightened while it is still young – Proverb from Burundi.

Meaning:

I chose to take this proverb in its literal form because it’s pretty obvious that a fully grown tree can’t be transplanted or manipulated in any way. What I mean is that it’s not stressful to try to make a sapling grow straight. ‘To straighten’ means ‘to correct’ when we apply this proverb in real life. For instance I do go to the garden to check and support fresh yam tendrils with sticks. This is to help them grow straight. It will be much difficult to attempt that when they are matured and stiff.

It’s easy to correct something while it’s still fresh and tender. A metaphoric expression related to the proverb is ‘to nip in the bud’ which means to halt something at an early stage. The difference is that while our proverb concentrates on correcting, the metaphoric expression talks about stopping or halting at the earliest moment.

This proverb can also translate to:

1. A person (a child) can be corrected while he/she is tender.

2. A thing (mistake, action, etc.) can be corrected at the early stages.

What is your take on this?

Categories
Africa, Poetry and Love lullaby Muse Nature night poems

Night rain on my window

Night rain upon my window panes
While clouds rumble in protest
The lightning picture through my curtains
And shadows dance away from candlelight

Categories
Short story

We are all brothers

‘Excuse me,’ said he, ‘but that’s a question I never like to hear asked. What does it matter where a man is from? Is it fair to judge a man by his post-office address? Why, I’ve seen Kentuckians who hated whisky, Virginians who weren’t descended from Pocahontas, Indians who hadn’t written a novel, Mexicans who didn’t wear velvet trousers with silver dollars sewed along the seams, funny Englishmen, spendthrift Yankees, cold-blooded Southerners, narrow-minded Westerners, and New Yorkers who were too busy to stop for an hour on the street to watch a one-armed grocer’s clerk do up cranberries in paper bags. Let a man be a man and don’t handicap him with the label of any section.’

‘Pardon me,’ I said, ‘but my curiosity was not altogether an idle one. I know the South, and when the band plays “Dixie” I like to observe. I have formed the belief that the man who applauds that air with special violence and ostensible sectional loyalty is invariably a native of either Secaucus, N.J., or the district between Murray Hill Lyceum and the Harlem River, this city. I was about to put my opinion to the test by inquiring of this gentleman when you interrupted with your own – larger theory, I must confess.’

And now the dark-haired young man spoke to me, and it became evident that his mind also moved along its own set of grooves.

‘I should like to be a periwinkle,’ said he, mysteriously, ‘on the top of a valley, and sing too-ralloo-ralloo.’

This was clearly too obscure, so I turned again to Coglan.

‘I’ve been around the world twelve times,’ said he. ‘I know an Esquimau in Upernavik who sends to Cincinnati for his neckties, and I saw a goat-herder in Uruguay who won a prize in a Battle Creek breakfast-food puzzle competition. I pay rent on a room in Cairo, Egypt, and another in Yokohama all the year round. I’ve got slippers waiting for me in a tea-house in Shanghai, and I don’t have to tell ’em how to cook my eggs in Rio de Janeiro or Seattle. It’s a mighty little old world. What’s the use of bragging about being from the North, or the South, or the old manor-house in the dale, or Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, or Pike’s Peak, or Fairfax County, Va., or Hooligan’s Flats or any place? It’ll be a better world when we quit being fools about some mildewed town or ten acres of swampland just because we happened to be born there.’

‘You seem to be a genuine cosmopolite,’ I said admiringly. ‘But it also seems that you would decry patriotism.’

‘A relic of the stone age,’ declared Coglan warmly. ‘We are all brothers – Chinamen, Englishmen, Zulus, Patagonians, and the people in the bend of the Kaw River. Some day all this petty pride in one’s city or state or section or country will be wiped out, and we’ll all be citizens of the world, as we ought to be.’

‘But while you are wandering in foreign lands,’ I persisted, ‘do not your thoughts revert to some spot – some dear and – ‘

‘Nary a spot,’ interrupted E. R. Coglan flippantly. ‘The terrestrial, globular, planetary hunk of matter, slightly flattened at the poles, and known as the Earth, is my abode. I’ve met a good many object-bound citizens of this country abroad. I’ve seen men from
Chicago sit in a gondola in Venice on a moonlight night and brag about their drainage canal. I’ve seen a Southerner on being introduced to the King of England hand that monarch, without batting his eyes, the information that his grandaunt on his mother’s side
was related by marriage to the Perkinses, of Charleston. I knew a New Yorker who was kidnapped for ransom by some Afghanistan bandits. His people sent over the money and he came back to Kabul with the agent. “Afghanistan?” the natives said to him
through an interpreter. “Well, not so slow, do you think?” “Oh, I don’t know,” says he, and he begins to tell them about a cab-driver at Sixth Avenue and Broadway. Those ideas don’t suit me. I’m not tied down to anything that isn’t 8,000 miles in diameter. Just put me down as E. Rushmore Coglan, citizen of the terrestrial sphere.’

My cosmopolite made a large adieu and left me, for he thought that he saw someone through the chatter and smoke whom he knew. So I was left with the would-be periwinkle, who was reduced to Würzburger without further ability to voice his aspirations to perch, melodious, upon the summit of a valley.

I sat reflecting upon my evident cosmopolite and wondering how the poet had managed to miss him. He was my discovery and I believed in him. How was it? ‘The men that breed from them they traffic up and down, but cling to their cities’ hem as a child to the mother’s gown.’


In memory of September 11 attacks on America.

Categories
love reflection

Parenting

Power in words

This is a touching story. When I read it I felt very bad. It’s not imagined.


In South Africa, an 11 year old child committed suicide on his mother’s birthday as a birthday gift to his mother.

He left a letter saying, “On today’s special day, I want you to be the happiest ever. Everyday you used to say that happiness left your life the day I was born. You told me dad left because of me. So today, I want to change things. I want you to be very happy and live as if I never existed. You told me you’d never look at me with love but I always loved you and admire you as the best mom on earth. I hope one day you will think of me, I hope in heaven you will finally hold me and kiss me. The best gift I could give you is leaving your life as you’ve always told me you wished I was never born. I love you mom. Happy birthday”.

Please parents be careful of what you say to your kids. Words do cut so deep.

Categories
Africa proverbs

African Proverb: On A Snake’s Ability

Igbo Proverb: If a snake fails to show its venom, little kids will use it in tying firewood.

Origin: A snake is a dangerous reptile. Snake poison can kill an adult in minutes. In Africa snake bites contribute to deaths. In Igbo land where this proverb originated from, snakes are not toyed with. In some African traditions, snakes are reverred and in others it’s a delicacy or a deity. The proverb emphasises on the lethal poison, which is a feature snakes are known for. Literally I can translate this proverb to if one doesn’t show his abilities, he may be taken for granted.

Meaning: There are times when one defends ones capability.

What do you think about this proverb? Do you know another African proverb? You can drop it here and I will discuss it with you.

Categories
opinion quotes reflection thoughts

Racism

It costs absolutely nothing to be kind

Live and Let Live

An Igbo (African) proverb goes thus: Let the Eagle perch, let the Kite (bird) perch also. Any that forbids the other from perching let his wings break!

We say that as prayers in West Africa because it’s a reminder and belief that all men are born equal and so must have equal rights and privileges and (I add) should be free from ALL prejudice and discrimination. When I talk about men, women and children’s rights are included. All men are equal and everybody should have the opportunity to be their best selves. In summary the above idea is founded on the African concept of live and let live.

Racism

Consider racism as a weed. It’s existence can suffocate other useful plants in the garden. Racism is worse than cancer. When it attacks, it destroys the human soul. It’s like locust infestation which leaves behind destruction.

Racism is an evil root that is no good to anyone. If it stays unchallenged it may grow deeper and can alter a society’s sense of reasoning.

Pumpkins begat pumpkins. Not only that, little pumpkins will learn to be one either by association or emulation. Children are easily influenced with what they are taught or perceive.

We can never foretell the full extent or form racism can take or assume. For instance consider Hitler’s hatred for Jews and the consequences that followed.

Humanity will die when good people look away from racist acts and words.

Truth and Love

Good news is that many people are joining the fight against all manner of racism and oppression. That’s a good thing to be thankful for. At least there’s some good out there.

Truth is a bitter pill when swallowed. But it can set the world free! When we truly understand that we are one people and that we are equal before the law and society then a bulk of the problem is solved.

While we talk about the truth we must know that love is key to our fight against racism. Racism can be stopped when we let true love reign. Love suppresses discrimination and prejudices. It stops mistrust and fear. It’s the foundation of all human values.

With truth and love we can lay a greater future for our children and their children. Live and let others live.

Categories
Muse Poetry

Some Lucky Men

Some men are born to good luck
All they do or try to do comes right
All their geese are swans
All their cards are trumps
Toss them which way you will
They will always like poor puss alight upon their legs
And only move so much the faster

Categories
Lessons from Experiences lifestyle Muse reflection

Time

Make hay while it shines

This talent of mine…

This is one talent I find solace in. It’s an avenue to paint my heart on ink, to play with the soul of nature and record lovely and beautiful memories. In my mind I create a happy and peaceful world; where I live in fine images and thoughts. It’s safe from all manner of pollution. I guard this world jealously.

Each time I pick a pen to write, thousands of little word fairies cloud my mind. Sometimes it feels like magic and other times I’m just the squirrel jumping off the tree. Haha! I’m left to pick the deserving, to mine and enjoy this wealth. It’s really nice to have such a gift. It’s a blessing and I’m grateful for it. I hope every writer, budding and established can relate.

Time

This evening as I write I feel my eyes lazy, my thumbs almost numb but time strings surge forward consuming moments and events as it went. I’m cold but time won’t pause while I fall sick.

Tick tock,” says the clock, “I wait for no man.”

Time is like a moving train. Its seconds and minutes can never be recovered or reversed. Something becomes nothing with time, vice versa. Even nature’s acts have it’s way of working with time; dew can’t wait for the sun, frogs croak when it rains at night, the moon and fireflies light up dark skies and worms burrow when the sun shines. Everything plays its role with time.

Now time won’t mind the weak and lazy, nor those who refuse to work. It flies on, because it’s a pompous but precious commodity. I wish I could spend more of it creating. But if I do I may starve! So I must find a better job to make ends meet, to make income to buy important things like pen and paper. The stress and pressure is so awful but I really want a job related to my gift or turn my gift to work. Either way I could have fun while doing what I love most. I also hope many writers relate.

Epilogue

I do read something before I retire each night. By that I train my mind to make a record for reading time. Also when I read I allow my characters to interact with my real self and other characters from people’s books. In my mind, I can be anything. I can be the emperor, the nun, a horse rider, the little daffodil, a waterfall sometimes and even the stars and sunlight. I can assume any role and find joy playing it. Time is very precious. It’s nice to find some of it to study.

It was a long day for me. I hope that we will never give up on our gifts and learn to manage our time. Have a good night.

Categories
opinion Poetry reflection Series thoughts

Poets Corner: Difference between Wisdom, Knowledge and Education.

My take on this…

It’s generally believed that knowledge is power. Yet many find it difficult to differentiate between wisdom and knowledge. For me knowledge is having the stuff while wisdom boils down to application of the stuff. To differentiate both from education is even a thing of further logic.

In my opinion education should come first, followed by knowledge and wisdom. That’s the order most of us acquire them in.

What’s the difference?

My aim on todays blog is to identify the differences between education, knowledge and wisdom through the minds of writers and poets. Have fun.

Suzanne Uchytil offered that “Education isn’t a type of intelligence – it’s something that is usually forced on us. Whenever someone is called educated, it usually means they’re knowledgeable (they know facts). Education can be good, though, if we choose to gain knowledge from it. (For instance, I’ve never had a college class that I didn’t find at least interesting and learn at least a little bit from, because I approached all my classes as opportunities to gain knowledge.) Then wisdom means applying that knowledge in real life and understanding consequences.” This sounds exactly like my thoughts.

Gareth John Jones opined that knowledge is understanding and remembering your education (formal or not). Wisdom is knowing how to use your knowledge. I surely agree with this definition.

David Franklin has this to say “Education is when people try to stuff knowledge into you. Knowledge is what you know for yourself. Wisdom, though, that’s something else. I know very knowledgeable people who are fools, and fairly simple people who are very wise. It’s about using one’s judgment about situations, knowing which piece of knowledge to apply when. Knowledge may be power, but wisdom is control of power.”

For Fiona Margaret Jones, education is only what can be given to you. Knowledge is what you take from it and wisdom is what you make of it.

Jimi Gardner says that education is received for outside. Knowledge is created by testing education. Wisdom is created by diligently observing the outcomes of testing knowledge.

David Gilbert observed that one can’t buy wisdom, education means plaque on the wall gates opened and knowledgeable is your cumulative wisdom.

Annette Bergman has this to say: “Selling real estate for over 30 years I can say I have met educated people who were not very knowledgeable. For instance I showed a house to an Engineer and he asked me what the line out to the garage was. It is an electrical so you have lights in the garage. Another engineer went directly to the sellers and negotiated a small possession problem. He agreed to 60 days after closing for possession.I praised him for his brilliant compromise. I will bet money when he had two mortgage payments to make plus his two months of rent, he had to have figured it out. It takes all kinds and the creative people only need a skilled traded to make a great living. Another college education person said to me. Those of us who went to college know that The United States wasn’t founded religion. She probably still thinks that and will vote accordingly.”

J Christopher Harman showed his disappointment on others opinion. He said, “How sad that so many of you have such poor views of education. Education should be the key to both. What a shame we live in a world (at least for most countries) where education is such a dire experience.”

I hope this discussion was helpful. What is your opinion on it?

Categories
Africa Africa, Poetry and Love night poems Poetry

This Day, This Year, This Life By Pam Impson

So much gone, so much wrong
So much sorrow in this song
Teary in my isolation
Weary in my desperation
Panting in my desolation
Ranting in complete frustration
So much yearning to belong
So much is gone, so much is wrong

This day
It rolled me like a cheap cigar
Stale inside a crowded bar
Choked me in the acrid smoke
Teased me like a dirty joke
Paralyzed my soggy brain
Dropped me with complete disdain
Soggy butt to clog the gutter
Numbed my tongue and made me stutter
Promised me I won’t get far
And left a stain of sticky tar

This year
A deck of cards with missing queens
A dirty game by dirty means
Lured me with a glimpse of riches
Lying, cheating poker bitches
Dealt two kings and read my face
Laughed and trumped me with an ace
Torched the table and the chairs
Kicked me down a flight of stairs
Left me in my dirty jeans
With tarry stains that nothing cleans

This life
A stranger with an evil eye
Careless curtain, jealous lie
Hopeless hopes by impulse cheapened
Belly flops into the deep end
Sickness, wounds, all self-inflicted
Weak and lazy, drunk, addicted
Laughing at the dirty joke
Floating like a puff of smoke
Hope against the hopeless lie
Pink balloon adrift up high
Raised a torch up to the sky
With a giggle and a sigh

Categories
love poems nature poems Poetry

Love Poem: Dream Together

Faint voices speak,
Loud in my mind
I look in your eyes
It tells sweet stories
If I look away
It is to smile, in my heart
We live beautiful moments,
Laughter, peace, kindness,
Harmony, playful fights
And you, a perfect inspiration;
Pouting red lips
That reminds of cherries,
Hair dancing in the breeze
That spoke of dark nights,
Very light brown eyes
That talks of golden wheat,
Happy moments together;
Watching stars glitter
Singing away to hearts desire
Or the quiet gaze into sunset
Yes we dream together
Our beginning and end

Categories
Africa opinion reflection thoughts

Farewell Nkosi, the Black Panther

Life like the mist is temporal but legacies live and last forever

The Black Panther

I get easily bored with movies. It’s hard to see me watching TeeVee anyway. No matter how much I try, I can only watch National Geographic Wild and Discovery Documentaries. But when a movie gets me hooked I can see it a hundred times without losing interest. I saw The Black Panther early last year. Then it didn’t make much sense to me (again with the little interest on movies). But I saw it again and again because I was impressed with a lot of things. First the casting; the actors and actresses were top-notch. I was impressed with the display of African culture and tradition: the casts intonation, dressing, setting and more. Talking about the setting, Wakanda portrayed beautiful Africa. Each scene even the fighting ones had a view of something spectacular at the background: hills and vales, waterfalls and rivers, chains of mountains and vast forests. Diverse tribes fought for dominance and this added some taste to the plot. This was Wakanda (Africa), an advanced modern technology driven society which managed to maintain her ancient tradition despite contact with external forces. I was excited that the directors brought in reality too. The rigour and stress of power tussle shown in the movie reveals the norm in African societies. Such tussles normally drain the people and her resources. I give Marvel Pictures a big thumbs up. Also, the use of domesticated Rhinos as a war animal kept me glued to the screen. I wanted to see more, though afterwards I was left to ponder on the directors ingenuity. The Black Panther is a good movie. No wonder it is Marvel’s biggest hit yet.

Chadwick Boseman

I can write a long story about this down to earth actor, but that won’t be today. Instead I aim to highlight the exceptional qualities that made him a true king both in cinema and real life.

Chadwick’s fictional character brought colour to the movie. Just like Bruce Wayne with his Batman and Peter Parker with the Spiderman, he switched from being the kind King T’challa to being the strong community vigilante (Black Panther). The good thing is that he used his powers to protect and lead his people. But there’s more to the man who played the Black Panther. He was open, humble, kind, considerate and determined. He wasn’t the loud type so I barely noticed or heard him on the news.

Chadwick’s determination is worth emulating. He didn’t give up when he was diagnosed with colon cancer. Instead he went forward to gift the world great movies. It’s sad to know he did these movies amidst chemotherapies and treatments. Nothing could be depressing. It’s even sadder that he was just starting to a greater future. Who knows, he could have been the next Denzel Washington or Will Smith.

To the King T’challa I’ve this to say: “You brought hope to many African youth“. He has taught that we can be anything we want to be. I picked another lesson from the life of Chadwick Boseman: never jump to judge people because you don’t know the secret battles they are fighting.

Rest in peace King, the Black Panther. Africa mourns you. Wakanda forever!


**Nkosi: King

Categories
Africa Africa, Poetry and Love love poems night poems Poetry

Breathe Again by Njabulo N.

Breathe again,
Like you have just gained yet another chance to live,
Life is not promised but experienced and lived.
I have grown to be a different person,
Different from normal people who do everything like everyone.

My life is not the same anymore,
I wonder why everyone is worried about it,
I no longer pay much attention,
To what the world brings or take,
I no longer pay much attention to the world ending,
I have seen it end for me countless times,
Going to my sleep with no hope left,
Then beginning again the next day.

I breathe again,
To see the darkness leave my life,
I feel like a small forest surviving off of a moon alone,
But I know that my light is extraordinary,
One that can light up the whole universe.
As I breathe again,
I have seen the world coming to an end,
My mind experiencing too many clashes,
Ideas, thoughts arguments, debates,
As my head goes in circles,
I can’t think straight no more.

As I breathe again,
I have lost trust, hope, love and respect,
I don’t believe in that anymore,
I broke the ocean in half to be somewhere,
Only to get there and I was alone,
Felt betrayed as my world crushed into so many pieces.
I lost a smile,
I find it hard to chin up,
As I bury my flower of innocence,
Because my world has shut down, crashed out yet again.

As I breathe again,
I even doubt that I still exist.
I even doubt that I have feelings.
I’m not the same being anymore,
I’m not the one you used to know before.
As I breathe again,
I learnt not to construct forever foundations,
On temporary people.
As I breathe again,
I doubt I will ever see tomorrow,
I don’t see any need of breathing again.

Categories
Africa History love reflection

Mary Slessor and The Killing of Twins

Tradition can be wrong

Sometimes tradition can be wrong. This story is a good one because it tells of a good hearted woman who saved innocent babies and it’s a gruesome story because it exposes the wickedness of ancient African tradition.

Mary Slessor

Mary Slessor, Scottish missionary in Eastern Nigeria, was born in 1848 in Aberdeen. Her father was a shoemaker and her mother a deeply religious woman. The family moved to Dundee in 1858 where Slessor began working in the linen mills at the age of eleven. She joined the local Christian Youth Club and became convinced of a call to be a missionary.

In 1876 the United Presbyterian Church agreed to send her to Calabar as a mission teacher. She worked first in the missions in Old Town and Creek Town but in 1888 went alone to work among the Okoyong. For the rest of her life Slessor lived a simple life in a traditional house with West Africans, concentrating on pioneering. Her insistence on lone stations often led her into conflict with the authorities and gained her a reputation as somewhat eccentric, but she was heralded in Britain as the ‘White Queen of Okoyong’. She was not primarily an evangelist but concentrated on settling disputes, encouraging trade, establishing social changes and introducing Western education.

Slessor frequently campaigned against injustices against women, took in outcasts and adopted unwanted children. In 1892 she was made vice-consul in Okoyong, presiding over the native court and in 1905 was named vice-president of Ikot Obong native court. In 1913 she was awarded the Order of St John of Jerusalem. Slessor suffered failing health in her later years but remained in Africa where she died in 1915.

Mary Slessor lived for a long time among the Efik people in Calabar in present day Nigeria. There she successfully fought against the killing of twins at infancy. Witchcraft and superstition were prevalent in Nigeria when she arrived there because traditional society had been torn apart by the slave trade. Human sacrifice routinely followed the death of a village dignitary, and the ritual murder of twins was viewed by the new missionary with particular abhorrence. Her dedicated efforts to forestall this irrational superstition were to prove a resounding success, as photographs of Mary with her beloved children testify.

She died in Calabar in 1915 and was given a state burial.


My mother lent some of her knowledge: Though as a growing child in thee village, she recalled twins being disposed in forests. As she told this story I imagined crying infants, left in the open forest, clad with nothing but blood fresh from birth and when they cease to cry what fate that befell them.

Mary Slessor was indeed an angel sent to liberate natives of West Africa from barbaric traditional practices.

Categories
Africa Inspiration/Motivation opinion quotes reflection thoughts

Quote on Courage

I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear. Nelson MandelaAt a time colonial forces and indigenous South Africans fought over land rights and freedoms, a courageous man spoke up for his people. He was imprisoned for decades but that didn’t deter him. His resilience contributed to a free South Africa. We call him Madiba.

Categories
love love poems nature poems night poems Poetry

Poem: Man and Nature

It is pleasant to sit in the green wood,
and to watch the Sun in his chariot of gold,
and the Moon in her chariot of pearl.
Sweet is the scent of the hawthorn,
and sweet are the bluebells that hide in the valleys
and the heather that blows on the hill.
Yet love may be better than life,
I ask can the heart of nature be compared to the heart of man?

Categories
Africa painting quotes reflection thoughts

Muse: The Happy Wind

Poem: The Happy Wind

Greet the happy wind,
Tell him when I waved
My fingers got him bursted

When morning dew is upon the tree line
The sky is sometimes blue and grass is green
Far up the blue horizon the sun shine

Birds sing from the trees all morning
Yet the happy wind: timid and soft will bring
Her entourage to fly on their backs and wings

I open my curtains and window to feel and behold
The beautiful sight of trees, grass and happy wind
A perfect picture never to be imagined

Explaining the painting

This is the first in my paint-writing attempt. I like to paint and then write about the inspiration behind it. I’ve several imperfect drawings and paintings scattered here and there. Some are on the internet, some in the drawer, some under piles of books and others lost.

This is a painting of three palm trees under the hot sun, cloudy skies and strong wind. It may look like grasses on vases but on closer observation will reveal that it’s a view of the horizon. Initially I thought of featuring the Iroko as its greatness will play a better role on the little poem above. But the Iroko is perceived as a great tree and the king of trees in West Africa and it’s not common to see one. Three Iroko trees standing together will even be a bit of stretched imagination.

The bulk of work fell on determining the best layout for the skies. I’m sure no one can define perfectly any natural colour and infact those of the cloud. It will take more than human ingenuity or imagination to achieve that. So no painting can illustrate natural things exactly. Painters just assume. It might be sunny and the clouds blue, it might be rainy and it won’t. I made the passing clouds look like the skies by mixing two blue-based hues. But this is my own version of what the clouds look like.

What do you think? I’ll be doing more painting this weekend. It’s a beautiful morning here. Have a great weekend. ❤️💚

Categories
Christianity Inspiration/Motivation Love and Christianity opinion quotes reflection thoughts

Quotes on Resilience

You’re going to go through tough times – that’s life. But I say, ‘Nothing happens to you, it happens for you.’ Joel Osteen.

A difficult time can be more readily endured if we retain the conviction that our existence holds a purpose. John Maxwell.

I love the light for it shows me the way to go, but I love the darkness more for it shows me the stars. Og Mandino.

We can’t speak about resilience without speaking about hope. Hope is the bedrock of resilience. Reeta Roy

You can stay fours days without food, but the minute you lose hope, you’re dead! Eliud Kipchoge


Always remember that when battles are like a flood there is a standard, a red line it cannot cross. We gain strength by overcoming obstacles.

Ever had to give up? Remember why you started at first. That purpose is the reason why you must persist. Have a great day.

Categories
Africa, Poetry and Love love poems nature poems Poetry rhyme

Poem: Sail away

Evening skies – sparkle of gold,
Brewing mills across the clouds,
While it may sail to faraway lands

Categories
Africa Africa, Poetry and Love opinion reflection thoughts

Reflection: Counting the Costs 1

At times you need to stop everything you are doing to sit by yourself and mend your broken wings.

Cold evening and a To do list

I sit outside. A cold evening out here with me. A community of crickets quizzing through the grassland. A gust of wind upon my face, swinging my helpless lamp back and forth. The crickets, just like myself must be musing over the changes in weather conditions. Before now the noon was hot. Strong wind blew hot air and it has been two weeks since we saw the last rain. So all is dry. The mud on the once flooded road is cracked up, exposing the debris. I overheard an elderly man speak that the harmattan will come a little bit earlier this year. To me it’s too early to predict. Maybe the earth is recovering after all. I think.

The year is far spent and almost over. Memories of New year’s eve still fresh on my mind. I remember my wish to start my graduate education and to support some friends and relatives with their endeavours. Then the coronavirus pandemic struck and had most plans canceled or postponed. In spite of that, I’ve made outstanding success in some areas. But the year is not over yet.

On relationships

I’ve learned many things about relationships (dating). Sometimes it scares the trees out of my head to even think about those.

I’m not an expert when it comes to dating. In fact I’m not into one at the moment. I’ve observed my close friends try and it’s crystal clear that managing another person’s emotion(s) can be one huge task. Toxic people and relationships can suck the life out of other people. I’ve seen it happen. Yet I know that many relationships can change things for the better.

Categories
Africa proverbs quotes

African Proverb: Be Nice

Be nice to everyone. You never know who your in-laws are going to be.

We won’t know who can be of help tomorrow. Compassion and kindness are great virtues. It can open greater doors!

Ponder on this and have a goodnight. 💕

Categories
Inspiration/Motivation Love and Christianity love poems opinion quotes thoughts

Quote on Love

Of all the magic in the world, none is more powerful than love.

…And that’s if we accept that any other thing qualify as magic.

Love is a driving force. It can change things; perceptions and imaginations. Great achievements are accomplished through it. Great writers wrote about it. It’s something beautiful to love. Imagine what the world will look like when we love genuinely. Show love today.

Categories
Africa, Poetry and Love Nature Pastoral Poetry

Thoughts: I Wonder

Sometimes it’s hard to stop a rolling stone, but whenever it may roll, it always seems to find its way back home. Brett Boyett

Home Forever

Dear motherland, I’m proud to call you my home. I’m reminded of sunset, it tells that it ends where it began. From tree branches on the hilly countryside, I see shadows of land retreat with the setting sun. When the sun travels away the shadows of trees and shrubs fall upon the ground, timid firmament blocked by passing grey clouds and day becomes a shadow of itself. Such beautiful landscape and sight I’ll give all to behold every day.

Dancing figures of butterflies and fireflies contradict day and light. Light, dark. Sunlight, moonshine. Beautiful wings spread over this damp earth my fathers walked and tilled.

Everything is magical when I think of you Africa. I truly love you.

Beautiful Land

My beautiful home sits up those ancient majestic hills and spread across fertile green valleys. A land carved by Providence itself, combining both the simplicity of the forest land and sophistication of human civilization. When cold hands of night descend, the beauty is unmasked and seen through mist and moonshine. If you must see, you will wait for the moon. When the moon appears, she is dressed in white. It let’s her light upon the great land and the vast wilderness. Forces of light and darkness may battle. I ponder on what courage that walk the dark night but queer fireflies that fly in droves and glitter randomly. Their light add to the night’s beauty, which words cannot describe exactly. Then I ponder further, fearing for the future of this beautiful land and her people.

I wonder…

I wonder oh Africa, how much gold you worth and yet fall to the wicked hands of poverty. I wonder how you love and in return you are hated. I wonder why there’s so much but yet little to go around. I wonder if I’ll ever grow out of this love I’ve for you. I wonder if I can retain this loving mindset for man and nature forever. But how long should your children wait to become great again?

Categories
education Inspiration/Motivation lifestyle quotes reflection thoughts

Quotes on Helping Others

1. Nothing makes life sweeter than making people happy.

2. The people you help today become your soldiers in the battle of life tomorrow.

3. To invest in properties is good, but to invest in people is far better.

4. To make money, make people.

5. Your greatest trophies are the tears you wipe away from people’s faces not the things you acquire.

6. Your greatest achievement should be raising achievers.

7. People will defend, stand by you & honour you when they realise you value them.

8. Don’t let other people’s ungratefulness stop you from making others great.

Categories
lifestyle love poems nature poems night poems Poetry

Poetry: I’ll Wait

Love can be crazy
Yet I am amused
I try to figure the words
You pelt me with,
When we spoke of love
It was zenith of all, everything
Days and nights
It fell in and out
Maybe this was right,
I look farther away
Towards sunrise
A pint of love on my breast
And strong hope waiting…
To behold another beginning
So I let this patient heart beat
While it wait for you
Time will surely fade
But I will wait for your return

Categories
Africa culture/tradition Igbo culture lullaby Pastoral

Folklore: The Hippo and His Seven Wives

I heard the Wind tell this story

Storyteller: Ifochakpii!

Audience: Waa!!!

Gather my friends. It’s time to tell a story. It’s time also to hear a tale. Gather by the fireside, warm yourselves. Bring the little ones to the centre. Keep them warmer, for night and her cold hands is nigh. Sit under the branches of the mango tree. From there everyone can see streaks of moon light on the grassland. As you watch the fire lick those dry wood pay attention to this short tale of mine. I’ve heard the wind and sky tell it in different tongues, styles and climes. Listen, because there may be a lesson or two. If not, it might just be another lullaby waiting to help a good night sleep! A good day ends with a good story. Will you like to tell me the lessons you picked? Ifochakpii!! Waaaa!!!

The Hippo and his seven wives

Long time ago when things were not as it was today, there lived a proud Hippo chief. He had seven wives as was the tradition for wealthy animals then. He had a secret name known only to his wives. They knew to keep it unknown to anyone.

One day the Hippo hosted a party and when he made his speech, he put out a challenge to his village people. “I’m afraid my people, if you can’t reveal my name you have to go home hungry. The dishes here will only be available to all when you reveal my name!” The whole congregation was left aghast. All those mouth watering dishes will be left unattended to. Ah! Well some tried to guess his name but got it all wrong.

The animals dispersed hungry. And they say a hungry person is an angry person. Many weeks passed and he hosted another feast. No one was able to reveal his name. Many animals guessed and was wrong. Then the Tortoise rose to speak. “Sir,” he started. “Since you have shamed us severally, can I ask what we stand to gain apart from the feast you have here?” The chief replied him, “Well, I’ll give you my land and retire to live in the river!” It was a tough challenge. He really believed that no one could get his name right. The crowd dispersed hungry again.

Now the Hippo and his wives had a favourite bathing stream, just by the foot of the great baobab. It was a luxurious and private bathing spot acquired by the Hippo for his household.

One day the hippos went down to the stream for a dip. The Tortoise well aware of their movement dug and hid on the soft sand with his hard shell stuck out but disguised as stone. He waited and waited. At last the hippos started back to the village. The chief led the way and was followed by the eldest wife. They went in a single file thereby leaving the youngest wife behind.

When the last wife came to the soft sands the Tortoise raised his shell a little, so that she struck her foot on the hard shell and yelled: “Nnayi ukwu dim oma my husband, come and help me. I struck my foot on a stone!” When the hippos finally left the scene, Tortoise ran back with joy.

A few weeks later the hippos hosted another feast. They had fun mocking other animals. When it was time for name revealing the Hippo marched majestically to the podium to allow animals guess his name. All the animals tried but none could get it. The Tortoise was the last to try.

“Your name is Nnayi ukwu dim oma!”

There was complete silence. Which was broken by a round of applause and sudden feasting when the Hippo’s face dropped. Without words the hippos marched to the river with their belongings. To this day my friends they lived in water. Never to return to land again!

Retold by Oke Iroegbu

Categories
Africa Africa, Poetry and Love night poems

Muse: Look in my eyes

image

Look into my eyes
See how special you are
Feel my heart jump with joy
And that is because you are here

Categories
Inspiration/Motivation reflection thoughts

Selflessness

Someone is an answer to your prayers as you are to others

Seasons: Things just don’t happen

One beautiful thing about life is: there are seasons for everything so things just don’t happen. Everything happens to serve different purposes. Even in nature there are seasons. There are times for flowers to blossom, time for the night and day and time to eat or rest. In West Africa we have the rainy season and dry season. Each season has a role to play and must fulfil it’s purpose.

Selflessness

Here is a story from ODM that talks about selflessness and compassion. The lessons in this story goes beyond self.

A man was out taking pictures of eagles on a Sunday afternoon in Bellevue, Nebraska in the United States when he witnessed a Sedan (car) containing 3 men which lost control while crossing rail road tracks. The vehicle is a fire hydrant (big container where water is stored to put out fire) and then landed upside down in an ice-cold pond. According to ABC News Omaha affiliate station, KETV the man said “The car just came right in front of me; they hit the fire hydrant and I don’t think they even touched the ground They were airborne”. The man heard the occupants screaming for help and immediately jumped into action. He panicked when he heard the voice of one of them say, “Get me out, it’s filling of water”. But he overcame his initial fear, took a dive into the freezing water and managed to pull one of the car door open. Immediately he did, water started gushing out of the car. The man who screamed for help started making his way out of the car. He pulled him and got him out. He pulled another man and there after pulled another man. Gradually, he got three men out of the overturned and submerged vehicle. The man who was later hailed as the hero for saving the lives of this three men, said he will always look back at the pictures he took that day and be thankful because his timing was right and that he was lucky to be in the right place at the right time.

Remember always
Everyone on earth is here for a purpose. No one is extra human or excess human being. Abhijit Naskar reasoned thus, “Without purpose, we are just good looking animals.” Life is a place of inter connectivity! You were created to be an answer to somebody’s prayer. You are someone’s bundle of joy and someone was made to be your bundle of joy!

Categories
Africa, Poetry and Love opinion Pastoral reflection thoughts

Poem: Twilight

Beginning and end
Light after dark
Dark before light
Darkened skies
With dancing fireflies
Breezy evening
Joyful moonlight
And glittering stars
A shepherd’s lore
Down the country
Sheep and goats,
Green and gold,
Patches of life,
Water and fire,
Dust and wind,
Heaven and earth
All in fine contrast
But happy unison
Shallow roots shoot
Masqueraded shadows
Of life or death,
Again beginning and end

Categories
Africa, Poetry and Love lifestyle opinion reflection thoughts

Beirut

Beautiful Beirut and AUB

I’m writing about this lovely Mediterranean city because of my connection and attachment to it. I’ve seen several YouTube videos of it’s beautiful landscape and neighborhood. Beirut combines the tranquil setting of ancient history with the thrill of a modern city. I followed some Beirut based vlog channels and it’s always exciting to see another video made in this fine ancient city. Honestly I fell in love with Beirut.

The city lay on the foot of swift flowing and tumbling waters of the Mediterranean sea. AUB videos showed white beaches under the mild romance of sunshine. Date palms and coconuts, typical of such climate stand here and there. Perfect weather for outdoor reflection and relaxation, one unique only to Beirut’s position and location. Tall buildings block away the sun when the day was far spent. And just behind those skyscrapers you will find the view of spectacular mountains. I also saw restaurants preparing mouth watering dishes and surely this appealed to me. I love good food and admire places known for it. Paris and Beirut are my favourite good food cities in Europe and Asia respectively.

What actually brought my attention to the city at first was my application to the American University of Beirut (AUB). During this online application process I met compassionate and kind people who turned out to become friends. One in particular helped to keep me informed of school activities. Fortunately my application to the Master of Finance (MFIN) was accepted at the Olayan Business School (OSB). But for financial reasons I deferred this offer.

Unfortunate events

Few months ago Lebanon suffered from economic depression. The national currency lost its value and inflation went hyper. Food was scarce and cases of suicide was reported. At the background, reports of human rights abuses were rampant. Domestic maids who came from Africa and Asia were abused and many left unpaid for months long. Echoes of modern slavery rang out through this beautiful hilly country.

Early August, an explosion devastated the port and surrounding neighborhood. Hundreds died and more went missing. The wounded was in thousands. Hospitals and medical centres were overwhelmed. It was horrific. The video I saw captured the fumes as it enveloped the port, sending shattered glasses and debris across it. Cars and buildings were overturned and damaged. The cost of lives and property destroyed in this blast was in millions of USD.

Pray for Beirut

I read some heartwarming news. Several countries sent aid to Beirut. Greece, France and others contributed to this aid. Even the French President visited Beirut. This shows that the world stood with the people of Lebanon at this trying time. I also read promises made by other nations and corporate individuals.

No matter what led to the explosion or what really happened on that fateful day; the reaction and aid from the international community proved that Lebanon is truly loved. I only hope that the cruel treatment of domestic workers are stopped and that the radiant beauty of this city shine forth upon her residents. I’ll always remember Beirut in my prayers.

Categories
Africa Africa, Poetry and Love lullaby nature poems night poems Poetry

Night Poem: Stars Glitter

I watch pretty stars glitter
From this fine little window,
When night a perfect picture
Hung across the wide horizon

Fireflies dance around light bulbs
Mighty shadows cast upon my paper
Distracting a work full of life and art
Yet I stare out to behold stars glitter

Categories
Africa Africa, Poetry and Love love poems nature poems Poetry

Tender Love by Njabulo N.

Wasn’t my love enough for you?
In my mind I had concluded that you loved only me,
I thought you were cut from a different cloth,
Like you were not the same like everyone I’ve met.
But clearly, I was lying to myself,
You loved everybody like a campaigning candidate.
I could tell from my basic instincts that the universe loved you also.

You were a loaded gun and I was just a boy,
Because of lust and envy,
They took you for granted, like you were a cheap toy.
Only if I had the courage of pulling the trigger,
I’d had shot you on your head just to blow out your weak brain.

With my mind and heart filled with only love,
I hadn’t imagined my head searching for love lost,
As the absence of love was playing on your mind.
You preferred games over love,
I had promised myself to love you eternally,
I had a feeling that you were exceptional,
Like you were totally different from the rest.

I discovered that I was bluffing,
Only lying to myself, feeding my mind with toxic waste.
You proved me that my love was not enough for you,
I never imagined that you were promiscuous.
You had me believing that I mattered the most,
Of course you were buying my heart.

Our love withered so fast, before the flowers I had on my hands.
It only lasted for just a moment and nothing was left for me,
It was clear that the light was about to reach the night.
My tender love lasted for just a moment,
A moment that cost me,
Had me doubting a lot around me,
I had lost trust on everything, everyone.
Nothing was left on me,
Nothing was left for me.