Dear Jessica : Remember Tomorrow

Canduh

IMG_5427Portrait shot on the streets of Lamu – April 2017 

8th October 2017

Dear Jessica;

Some todays are like freshly baked buttery cinnamon rolls; pleasant to the senses. The orchestra of glazed crispy dough, melted cinnamon sugar and raisins as they swirl in your mouth is all so perfect. On those today’s; you bask in love and light; and you wish those todays would last forever.

Some todays are like Thorn Melon; cultivated in the depths of  Hades. You have no time to savor nor describe their taste and texture.  The faster they end, the better. My todays the past week were the latter. Long, stressful, tiring, unpleasant.

On days like those, I like to reflect on the tragedy that is life and its different todays.  I have lived through a lot of those todays. Todays that were batshit crazy and  you felt like calling it quits there and then…

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COCKTAIL FEELINGS.

FloEt

My friends say something is wrong with me.

I have this flaw that drives them up to the wall, infuriates them and it seems I am the only one who cannot seem to see it.

It was really a beautiful day before it all went down the gutters. Now, am knee deep in the murk of my mind trying to figure out what’s this thing that I have got that makes people so mad at me.

This ought to be my very first, 1000 words project and it had better be worthwhile and feel good.

Apparently, I do not get things. Shit is clear right in front of me and it just flows on by. Or maybe am on my menses and am just over-reacting, again.

I really have no idea what is happening around me right now. I wish people would just speak up and not expect me to…

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Troy Onyango

La shamba

The Transfiguration

I am thinking of how to tell my mother that she is a bad woman; that she did not raise me well. The woman with a bleached face and knuckles blacker than the tip of a quill told me so. “The matters of a husband and wife you leave to them. You don’t interfere. Didn’t your mother teach you that? Go tell her to raise you again. No wonder you behave like a woman. Mscheeeew!” She yelled from the window of her apartment which is right above mine. Apartment 4B. I had gone to save her from her husband’s daily beating. Despite all that pounding, the woman didn’t want me to intervene. You don’t save someone who doesn’t want to be saved, mother used to say.

I sit, pen in hand. My palms are sweaty. As my trembling hand presses the pen against the paper, my life cascades…

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Time Travel

#Guest post | Author prefers anonymity but willing to show face over a beer or two.


The time. Twenty friggin’ future. Place. My cluttered mind of course. Muse. The girl on parliament road. My past. Life on its knees facing inevitable death from drowning in the murky sea of depression. My present. Perfect utopia only seen in the movies and at night with our eyes sealed shut by the weight of magic dust and some busy fairies.

Am peeking into the future through a spy glass.

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I see Jo, tall in all his majesty, spinning his lover across the living room floor of their retirement home. He has that spark in his eyes when he is excited about something…or someone, in this case. Jo is my low-key best friend. An unspoken agreement between gentlemen to anger and infuriate each other whenever we can when people are looking. Secretly, Jo and I share mysteries of the world and all the knowledge bequeathed upon us and giggle at the vanity of others. We also judged them. Screw what you are thinking of us.

When Jo fell sick, however, I got scared. I lived up to the notion of its impossibility. Such absurdity. We’d all die and leave Jo behind. He was indestructible. Then Jo died. Death has been that lover who always fooled me and chose his other mistresses and I always came back to grovel at his feet. Squirm. Crave. But he never loved me back. He relished at seeing me suffer. Lived for the pain and agony that I went through each time. And when he took Jo that was the last straw. Something inside me relaxed and lessened its grip. Another thing contracted and chocked me.

I re-adjust the lenses and see something else.

I see love. I see the gap between the rich and the poor as non-existent. I see people content with what they have and nobody is out to get the other for what’s not theirs. I see love when religion is being used to ease indescribable pain and heartache and not as a mantra to vanquish a people for not sharing in your beliefs. I see freedom in love and love in freedom. I see a people not tied behind some social, political and economic construct but a love so overwhelming it makes your chest want to explode till there is no hate no more, but only love.

I see a love that doesn’t have to make any sense.

I see love in its grandest form. Free like the birds of the air and as powerful as the stormy gales. I see a love gentle like a sea breeze. Calm like the eye of the storm. I see love curved on the arch of my muse’s back when she succumbs to ecstasy. When she lets herself ride the waves of passion coursing through our bodies and screams my name. When she wakes up in the middle of the night to kiss my forehead and whisper her undying love to me and the great expanse of the sky.

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“Time was passing like a hand waving from a train I wanted to be on. 
I hope you never have to think about anything as much as I think about you.”
–Jonathan Safran Foeraption .                              Picture courtesy of @berlinartparasites 

I see a love whereby I can be with the person who wants me as much as I want them and not having to wonder, ‘what if?’

Sadly, people are fighting people alongside diseases and alien attacks. When did we get to points like these where the sight of another person’s blood gushing and splashing all over you invokes a sense of pride? When did we relish the idea of causing immeasurable suffering upon others without even a shadow of remorse? When did we get so callous with humanity?

“Preacher don’t send me to a ghetto in the sky. Don’t promise me streets of gold and free milk…promise me families will be loyal and strangers will be kind. Promise me that or nothing at all.”

See, as I peered into the future, I saw everything that I crave for. Yearned for. I saw myself happy as we all deserve to be and never having to lie between our teeth and with tears in our souls that, ‘it is okay.’ I saw a piece of heaven here on earth.

But who am I kidding, ey?

 

 

 

This Girl

#Guestpost | The author prefers anonymity


5:45 pm, Nairobi time.

I am fuckin’ in love.

I think am in love with a girl that I met on parliament road. When she stopped to ask me about my piercings, ghastly-looking hand tattoo and faded denim jeans my eyes lit up and the whole world came to a standstill. Everything else fell in sync with what the universe was conspiring to do. I was ecstatic that this cool looking hippie was actually talking to me. Oh and how she looked! Dressed like a rock star with her dreadlocks held up tight in a knot, her boots so black but also grey and had this rustic feel and look. She gave sense to the song on apple bottom jeans…But it was her smile that bedazzled me first, then how her eyes sparkled like crystal water. Her laughter resonated like a sonnet in my ears. Her touch felt like the caress of wind on my skin at sundown by the beach. She flicked an imaginary loose strand of hair out of habit and I reached for her lips and wiped out the chocolate smudge from the muffin she was eating. Our fingers creased each other and electrifying sparks cut through me like a double edged sword. It was a touch I knew I’d never forget. At that very instance I was hooked to this beautiful being and all I wanted for just a few more minutes, maybe hours, days, weeks…forever, was to talk and walk with this female along parliament road.

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GETTING ON DOWN THIS VERY ARBITRARY ROAD.

If you don’t know how to deal with emotion, other people’s feelings can hit you like a drug.
— Jael McHenry

#GUEST POST | The author of this piece prefers anonymity and so it shall remain. 


Well, I did this thing and fell for a fling. I swear it was just meant to be ‘not a thing’ but silly me, kept love ringing on the other line while clinging on my fling. She was just supposed to be a crush, and if need be make a quick dash but silly me fell for her smile, wide eyes and twisted heart with a loud crash.

I did this other thing and let my rage and hate swell from within. I could feel it to my brim and I kid you not, it was not meant to be controlling. My anger has turned into some sort of a monster. Like metastatic cancer that is malignant; shifting from one individual to the next. It is sporadic. Sometimes, I sit in the dark and feel it. I close my eyes and the emptiness behind my eye lids invites me over…and keeps me there. With the eyes outside my body, I look at my chest heaving. Breathing. Pushing. At first its fast, short breathes and scary. Then the calm makes a grand entrance and I feel myself subside. Quiet.

I am not the type of girl who was always down for anything but these days, am up for it. So I took the wheel and now am driving at 120mph. I feel like life, my life, is becoming vaguely disturbing and empty. Life gives you people to hopelessly love and care for, then puts you on the front row seat as you watch them slip right through your fingers like water. Am having people walk in and out of my life that I’ve had to have that street closed. Permanently. Am counting the people that I can totally count on with the fingers on my right hand.

My best friend found his thing and now he has a thing with this chic from down south and am completely stoked that dude got his shit going on but now I gatta bounce ‘cuz I don’t have an ounce of energy left in me to deal with their drama now. Apparently she sees me now as a threat and my hommie of over five years decides that I should maybe straighten it out with his girl. Shit man!! Grow some stones for yourself. You set yourself on fire and when it starts to hurt is when you remember me? Fuck off!!

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Photo courtesy of @theartidote

 

So apparently am cussing a lot and now am fine with it. What do I got to lose? My grammar pedantry syndrome?

I feel like I should pull out a string of those to maybe, get it out of my system? I swear, it’s not my thing.

Also stumbled upon another thing; whereby my family, the entire lot, is going to burn in hell. We are a bunch of polka faced psychos. I swear, this took me by surprise and I cussed at how long I’ve looked the other side and played the dutiful daughter. That shit about blood being thicker than water is a lot of horse shit!! (See! Told you am cussing so much but I promise I’ll get it over with quickly.) So, we been putting up this front of a good, Christian family but underneath all that church charade? Is a bunch of self- seeking, conniving, selfish, lying, untrustworthy, hypocritical, two-timing people. Harboring so much filth beneath our Bibles, finger nails and long skirts to the ankles leaving nothing to imagination. Yeap! That’s us! Am so not going to be a good mum because I sometimes find myself hating on my three year old nephew and making him pay for his dad’s enormous mound of mistakes and wrongs. I know, am sick in the head but I already told you, we all stepping on that gas pedal to damnation. Am sitting across my uncle and hoping he chokes on his potato. Am staring at my grandma and tears well up my dry eyes.

The heart has to be the most fertile ground for it can grow both love and hate in equal measure. So I feel incredibly disgusted and hurt by a third of my family members and with the same heart and mind I love and adore the other third. The remaining third? I don’t even acknowledge their existence.

So lately I have turned to a sad little thing. The other day I had this thought crossing my mind and it stopped. Stark, right in the middle of traffic and now I cannot get rid of it. See, I was seeing myself get a small heart attack, not so serious but enough to knock me down. My left arm starts paining up, the hypochondriac in me starts reviewing all she’s read and heard about heart attacks, how to resuscitate a person before it’s a beat too late. For some reason, I never get to see that part. Not once. Other times, it’s a gunshot to the chest. Through and through. My person says am suffering from white people’s diseases. Apparently going mental is a race thing too. Who knew? Maybe am an Oreo…black don’t crack on the outside and creamy white on the inside.

During the day, I make myself really small and pretty and sweet…more acceptable to society. I become less adventurous, I become ‘not always angry’, I become perfect according to their pre-determined standards of living. Then I wait for night with a yearning so strong that my heart aches. Only then do I get to live and experience the world how I want to. With indescribable rage, unbearable sadness and an intense passion.

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Image courtesy of @theartidote

Am a sad little thing, walking around with my hands deep in my pocket but my head held up high and smiling at strange people. Am smiling a lot and am afraid am saying goodbye. Am I the only one?