Thursday, June 14, 2007

4 Kiosk

I was born by the name Atich
Christianized and called Grace
My husband Njoroge
Was called John
We were happy

Obtained a license for setting up a kiosk
Freshi was its name
Chai, chevro, sodas and sweets
Were just a few things we sold
We were happy

A girl,
Followed by a boy
I gave birth to
Our customers loved them
We were happy

My children began school
Enjoyed it they immensely
Accessories they also needed
We worked long to keep up their demands
We were still happy

Now Kapuki and Wajaro are in university
My husband and I have tired ourselves
Just four more years of struggle
The children will soon be on their feet
We are still happy

My daughter dreams,
Of becoming a teacher
She yearns
To train future leaders
My son dreams,
Of becoming a doctor,
Opening his clinic
Is his aspiration

The media spreads disturbing images
Of a clash with a shop owner and kiosk
Awareness is raised
All kiosks are automatically termed bad
We try to be happy

Now we must be careful
For we are under prying eyes
We live in fear
Of being incapable to fulfill the dreams of our dear ones
We struggle to be happy

Those askaris, they harass us
Do they not understand?
This is not a crime
It is the only form of living we have known
It is difficult to be happy

The sun rises
what a beautiful day
We go to work
But there is no work
We are no longer happy

They have come,
With their pangas and bulldozers
Destroyed our kiosk
Destroyed our life
We are sad

My son cannot complete his studies
Neither can my daughter
They have dropped out
And instead are doing odd jobs

We sit here on Mama Ngina Street,
Selling what we have at home,
Whilst the bruises from the beatings
Are still visible,
We are torn apart


serina said...

Stumbled upon your blog...moving poetry...fine images...keep it up!

sayyeda said...

Thanks for stopping by Serina :)

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