Saturday, January 26, 2008

RECOLLECTION - by Shimmer Chinodya, Zimbabwe, born 1957. Winner of the Noma Award 2007.

I remember this wood only too well.
I remember these crouching thorn trees (- it seems
they've hardly grown ever since I last saw them -)
And these criss-crossing bush paths
Bordering a coarse crop of grass yellowed
With the dust stirred up
By swishing feet of children, and
The wind of course.
I remember too, the chirping of the timid little birds.

I remember how we used to run barefoot
Under these thorn trees.
Three brothers with feet full of thorns -
Bird-shooting we were, with rough made little catapults
That exploded into our own faces.
And pockets full of jingling stones picked up somewhere.
Between us we shot down one bird in a year.

I remember the big sign that said
Something about people not being allowed in -
And we, heedless, half ignorant prowlers
Made the wood our hunting-ground
And birds and bitter little berries our prey.

I remember it only too well...
I remember even more now, how young we were then
And how this scrub bush
Growing patched and ungreen - a short walk
From the township's street of grim houses
Satisfied our boyish dreams.
from EXPLORINGS: a collection of poems for the young people of southern Africa compiled by Robin Malan.

No access to internet this week (more on that later) - back blogging on the 4th.



Blogger Bradly Jones said...

Thanks for the post. It's like five years of not being in Nigeria has finally made me out-dated for this to be news to me. The change is amazing. Great blog!

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4:11 pm  

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