And was the holy Lamb of God,
On Englands pleasant pastures seen!
- And did those feet, William Blake

lørdag 30. juni 2018

Portrait - a poem by Ngwatilo Mawiyoo

As an end to this month's blogging, and as a sort of farewell as I leave Denmark for Norway for my summer holiday, I present to you a poem by Kenyan poet Ngwatilo Mawiyoo from her collection Dagoretti Corner (Akashic Books, 2016).


For Nairobi

And we are the dust that has no place,
that lines the walls and leaves.

Daily, almost daily, a woman -
a man - wipes a floor;
head down, bottom high.
Pivoting a swirling shuffle,
left right and back: the path
of a clean woman, a good woman,
man a faithful servant.
When the floor dries the white line

My grandfathers are in the ground,
they are bone and smoothed tree.
My last Susu has lost her sight.
When her mind went, she listened for it
in our voices. She's losing interest.

Tom Mboya Street defies rot.
The dust tells what we buried, calls
our memory to the good,
to grass, thorn trees, cool water.

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