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how I see it – Tůrí

Rail road home 

Am on a rail road home, 

strangers beside…

engulfed with tales, 

Chortles from the back, 

My mind a mirador ,a view of thoughts… , 

Don’t know what’s ahead,

what I’ve left behind,

My present ungifted,

How does it feel to be joyous, to smile, having the heart gladden?

I remember not…serenity I crave.

Life Wounds 

Days after, 

Feels like the other minute,

You were here, 

Is this real, 

A dream I can’t awake from, 

I miss everything about you, 

Our shared laughs, 

How you glowed up when smiling, 

Not many get to share love with their own, 

Love has pained me, 

Whatever way I look at it, 

Death has me in grief, 

My heart is frozen,

Vacuum created, 

It longs to see you again, 

Help me live with this, 

Inside I’m just a child, 

Your child,

Who loved you dearly, 

Give me a sign, 

That you are here with me now.

You’re son.

My jewel

I had one jewel in my life 

Lord you took it ,

It was as shining at day as it was at night, 

It brought light when it was dark, and brought us up when we were drowning, brought calmness when we were afraid of the storm, 

Everyone loved it, 

But you loved it more, 

Please Lord Jesus, grant us strength as we live without this jewel, may it’s light always shine upon us, even as you possess it.
Rest In Peace Mom, it hurts to loose a priceless jewel, Dear Lord please grant us strength. 

Politically incorrect 

‘Nìríwaabîa…huyo jamaa hatawasaidia ‘(I told you that guy won’t help you) this was me 5 years later after I lost the local Member of County Assembly (MCA) seat by a slide. 

In 2013, I had decided to put myself in the ballot paper to run as an mca in my local Kiaritha-ini sub-county. I owned a fairly big vegetable shop which had grown over the years from a kiosk that I used to sell everything green, from sukuma wiki(kales) to managu(edible weeds) name it, for that reason people there knew me as ‘Mboga Fresh’. My idea to run had come from one of my workers who had approached my and said, ‘Mboga fresh mûndù, vile huwa unarisha hawa njamaa wa huku thukuma(sukuma wiki) , si usimame kájùra(MCA) utulishe hadi nyama sasa’ That got me thinking, the guy was right, I’ve literally been the reason why everyone in Kiaritha-ini was so healthy, I mean there were more maternity clinics than dispensaries at my area, guys were that healthy imagine 😀  At some point, I thought the government would come and have me as a minister of nutrition and make my mboga business a national one. So I decided to put myself in the run for local MCA. I sincerely didn’t know anything about politics, all I knew was that I needed the numbers, elections being 3 months away,  I had to bring my A-game. My most fierce contestant was a guy called Weru, a local ndùthí (motorbike) operator who had a big following from his fellow guys in the nduthi business. He used to move around with tens of nduthi guys hooting as if they wanted to wake the dead, at one point I used to believe that all those guys were deaf because of how loudly they used to talk while conversing at ‘low tones’. For me I did my campaigns differently, I sourced for a group of 50 women and youth who I used to walk around with singing songs of my praise while ululating. They used to chant ‘Mboga fresh wa leo, nyama fresh ya kesho’ this really acted as a selling point as most of the people wanted to have meat as part of their meal other than the usual greens daily. That translated to them wanting to have a better life, and they wanted me to deliver them to their ‘Canaan’. That made me feel like some sort of a savior .  We did campaigns tirelessly from door to door, churches and also at the shopping center . The problem with this was, in many occasions I used to meet my competitor Weru near the nduthi stage at the shopping center, and himself and his goons throwed stones at us. Due to this, I had hired my own group of youth who I had promised an unlimited supply of vegetables whose work was to guard me. Fast forward to the weekend to the general elections, the electoral commission had suspended any kind of campaigns two days to elections that were to be held that Monday. I had done my campaigns vigorously and I was very confident of a win, but that Sunday morning I was greeted by the shock of my life. 

Just as I had woken up I heard a group of youth chanting songs against me outside my house, I hurriedly put on my brown jacket and went out. There stood police officers and a group of youth allied to Weru wanting to skin me alive.  The police took me by my belt and threw me in their Land Rover with no explanation  ‘ni nini afisa? ‘ I asked,  ‘ingia ndani wewe!  utajulia mbele!’. When we arrived at the police station,  I was told that my competitor Weru was missing and his bodaboda had been found abandoned by the roadside that morning and it was believed that I was the man behind his disappearance, being his main political rival. It was an absurd allegation and I was quickly thrown into the cell. The cell was horrific,  it was dark and stinking of urine and dead mice. I was sharing the cell with seven other guys who all seemed to be drunkards.

That evening,  I heard news from the officers that Weru had mysteriously re-appeared and the whole village believed that I was behind his disappearance , a rumour that was being fueled by Weru himself to tarnish my name and I knew Weru had plotted the whole plan and had faked his disappearance to destroy my name. Come election day, I lost miserably to Weru as everyone believed I was a criminal and gave Weru their sympathy votes. That was when I learnt my lesson…politics is a dirty game and nice guys indeed finish last. 

I can’t adult

The 1st sip, down my unlucky throat…that burning sensation all the way down. I can literally hear my stomach cursing me for introducing such kind of ‘liquid fire’ . For a moment i feel awake, then it takes form in my body, I feel more alive, the bulb in the room is less dimmer, so this is how 42.8% of ‘poison’ takes effect…I smile to myself, feeling my body less powerful. Who let me adult, I indeed can’t adult 😀

Not so urban 

Then i arrive at my countryside, located deep inside the Aberdare ranges. This was the kind of places one would have to board a train to the main town, then a bus to the town center, then a modified pickup known as ‘face you face me’ where there were sits at the opposite sides of the pickup and as the name suggests, people would sit at positions facing each other. The sad part about this mode of transport was that, if one of the passengers happened to have ubnormal luggage like live chicken, large amounts of raw fish or even a live goat, it would be put just beside you, at the same place you were sitted. So it was rather unfortunate if one was heading to a wedding then found himself in this ordeal, because he/she would end up having some kind of stench overthrowing the cheap perfum that you had worn , so people used to carry perfumes around like handkerchiefs just in case. Another thing was the dusty roads Headed to my country side were so bad that the ‘face you face me’s’ used to throw us around while they were racing to drop us at our destinations. Sometimes I used to have deep sympathy for the school goers who had to board these vehicles while heading to school in the morning, I tell you the way one is thrown around while the car is racing down the dusty  road, is enough to have you forget all that you have read that previous night for an exam….and long term usage of those vehicles may have one even going insane. 

I finally arrive at my grand mothers place, tired and dusty. She must have heared the vehicle stopping past the house and racing away afterwards because she came towards the gate running having the idea that she had a visitor. Then she saw me, trust me I’ve seen alot of people smile, but hers was real. Even with her notable number of scarce teeth she would still show her joy in one of the most selling smiles I’ve seen so far. She came then hugged me, she hugged me so tight that I could read that part of that hug was anger of me not coming to see her more often, but it was still filled with love. 

She then leads me to the living room and immediately prepares a meal of roasted chicken and rice to kill my appetite….what can i say , the lady knows me 😀 . I showed her my prowess in that field as i had taken part in several eating competitions and the kind of hunger that i was going through in campus did not allow me to play with food….most of all chicken. After giving her my story’s of my experience in school using my crooked mother-tongue  dialect which made be believe that we were not on the same page for almost half the time I was talking, but the fact that she was laughing and nodding her head while i was narrating was enough proof of communication. 

Then just as i was getting done eating, my cousin, Mungai, came in and greeted me half heartedly as half of his mind was on the chicken. He asked me to escort him to watch an Arsenal game at a nearby bar and I hurriedly accepted being the loyalist I was of Arsenal. But the glutton of a man had to eat first and you could see the way he was tearing those bones, it was like he had  some knowledge of chicken anatomy because he cleared the meat in those bones like if it was some kind of surgery, and finally we headed to the bar. Mungai told me he had ‘forgotten’ his cash at home but he would appreciate if I would buy him 2 beers and 3 glasses of Mùràtínâ (a traditional brew for the Kikuyu community) I knew the guy was taking advantage me expecting I had cash due to the fact I was from town, not knowing I had 20oksh in my pocket that I ordered a jug of mùràtínâ with, promising to buy him beer after the match had ended. When the brew was served, Mungai was so excited you would think he had won some lottery….he served his first glass and gulped it down his throat like it was tap water. 

The game finally started, Arsenal Vs Manchester United, the screen we were viewing from was a JCV model ( China copy of the original JVC) and the TV was so small that I was having a hard time tracing the ball in the screen. Another thing was that the TV was on mute and the radio was the one giving commentary, so as we watched the game the commentary was from a local radio station ( Inóóró FM ) that was giving vernacular commentary of the match since most of the people there couldn’t understand English. The problem was that, the radio would sometimes announce a goal while in the Tv no goal had been scored.

The game ended at a draw 0-0 and as I was seeping my brew, I realized Mungai had finnished the whole jug and was now looking at me suggesting for the beer I had promised, knowing I didn’t have money I had to act fast…..so I faked beeing drunk by talking aimlessly and staggering as we were heading back home….Mungai seemed very disapponted…but don’t blame me, a mans gotta do what a mans gotta do 😀

(The picture is an artwork showing an artists impression of a rural township in Kenya. Follow him @jrsketchbook on instagram) 

Grant us peace

Have you ever sat and took interest in reality? I mean something other than what others have posted on instagram or which is the latest brand of shoes or movie in the market?
So this is what is happening… in some parts of the world, there is war, whattever name you decide to give it, either genocide or violence,  people are dying . But the saddest part is that the young are also dying….the kids, the ones who haven’t lived yet, the innocent ones who still haven’t who don’t even know what their dreams are,But just because it happened that they were unlucky enough to be born in these war stricken parts of the world , their childhood gets stolen from them just like that…..I myself have some of my best moments as a child,  from me learning how to ride a bike to watching cartoons the whole day. For kids like Omran Dagneesh, a 5 year old who was unfortunate enough to find himself in a battle field and got injuries on his face, what will they have as their childhood memories??? Is it the loud gun shots and bombs clouding the air every night making them sleepless or its the bloodshed all around them as a kid? I myself at I’m at my youth but I still have a phobia for  blood,something about blood just gives me chills, what about a 5 year old? Something should be done, and immediately by everyone. And by that, i don’t mean useless hash tags on twitter that cause rage for some days only to be overtaken by another hashtag concerning celebrity gossip. People are dying…..wars are not a fun thing. People lose their loved ones. The ones they cherish most, the sons lose their mothers while the daughters lose their fathers. People get displaced and have no where to call home, and wherever they settle eventually….they are never at peace because it just doesn’t feel right…because its just not Home.I mean, you end up not having your silly classmates at that new place or those fun neighbours u used to have before. Life changes completely. I myself have never experienced war but I’ve been in the sitiation of a riot in school at 11pm in the night during the my first year first semester and its not a funny ordeal…what started as a peacefull night ended up in chaos. U can imagine being in bed then lights suddenly go off then you hear people running outside some screaming and confusion hits you…but then you hear gun shots……the gun shots i tell you ……made my mind race, my heart beat and body  numb as i really tried to find a tune of sanity. I then jump out of bed then wore two different shoes…a red and black converse (i didn’t even notice it) then ran for safety. That…one may think was a cowardly act….but trust me nothing makes the past a better place to visit than the prospect of imminent death. At that moment so many things hit your head, your family and friends, things you havent accomplished yet and things that you have indeed accomplished  and you cant let them go, and to me thats enough excuse to run. But that was a riot setting, what of a war? That kid in Syria, Somalia or South Sudan, do they really deserve it? Having their whole life being thrown a way just like that, and their only mistake was being born in a family which stays in the war stricken areas, the same way i didn’t have a say in the family I was to be born in, is the same way they didn’t and is the same way others get born being princes and princesses in royalties.  Did these ‘warkids’  wrong God by accepting to be born? If someone would be able to see the outside world that he/she is going to be born into before being born….for their case…would they have decided not to come out of their mothers womb just to save themselves the misery and pain of war? I personally believe that something should be done to bring long lasting peace, this is the little thing I can do at least, write about it to bring concern to others. But what if everyone played a role, and the world leaders played their significant role? I think the World would be a better place as peace shall prevail and everyone shall be having that sense of serenity in them.
(the photo is an artwork of Omran Dagneesh, a 5 year old boy from Syria who sustained injuries when an airstrike hit their neighbourhood)

Watch me grow👦👨

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At times i visualize my life…long before i had a memory lane deep enough to be excavated. When i was a kid….how was I? Was i really that much of a trouble or too good to be true…did my mother always look at me and see a true version of love and affection every time she held me…even at those times that i cried….mostly at those times in fact. did everyone who watched me grow from a toddler, see a future in me…a concurer.  If i could have a  meeting with my 2 year old self (having some sense obviously) would he be glad of what he’ll be at one point of his life…will he see that the damned sleepless nights, the lonely Cry’s and the heart full laughs are worth it? Will he have the anxiety of growing old  and meet people….make and loose friends.Will having him chew food be a very big step to experiencing the tasty cosines that the world has to offer? Will the burning sensation of alcohol ( vodka actually ) passing through his throat as an adult feel better than him lactating from his mother as a child? Will the feeling of being drunk or high worth living for?  Will he see that life is that adventurous and the places he craves to visit are truly worth going to?…will the long train rides and the sleepy road trips be worth his time?…will having hot climate  at home means its really not worth it going to the cold places and experience the goosebumps on his skin? Will the joy of accomplishment not grow into pride and the brokenness of failure push him to giving up?…Are all these memories worth him having….but if u ask me. Ill tell him its worth it. Every single one of them.

Foodie chronicles :-P

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‘You’re the light, you’re the night
You’re the color of my blood’

Some of the deepest lines in a song. But… why think of a person while it plays while you can dedicate it to sth which is really a ‘light’ and does biologically  make your blood.  food.
When i get hold of a good meal, kwanza the chapatis,  damn…Is like the breasts of an angel,taking a form of baked floor…laying gently on my mouth as i take the 1st bite, then the 2nd and the 3rd till i loose count. Then the soup… Rich flavoured soup playing in my tongue in a seductive deluxe. Then a chunk of chicken so fine and elegant, French kissing my mouth like a steamy love scene in a soap opera. now the two dishes  in my mouth breaking down and reassembling, the saliva forming , my stomach filled with anticipation for me to swallow and me longing for another bite even before i’m done with the 1st one, like a cheating spouse.
Now you sit there with your hunger n imagine me feed my craving, perfect foodporn. Bon appetit 😉

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