Lamentation

By Temba Munsaka
The undulations where my people strut alone,

Porous they bleed at every aperture,

cadavers of dreamers they have become,

in pursuit of sustenance,

if only, to just fill bellies-

for those with patents to rule over us,

have abdicated their duties-

enablers AWOL in contemporary society,

presumed captured by oligopolies!

 

There is a place between the rocks,

where we used to pick mushrooms-

it grew liberally up the slope,

but now, demitted gods are MIA.

Our weepers are devoid of life,

sunken to shield despair.

 

Yesteryear is remembered with nostalgic fondness,

when a penny for obtuse was all that mattered.

The mighty lake shrinks at every election,

cutting off livelihood to the Tonga people

Even Nyaminyami recoils,

Irked without pretense,

to roll his eyes before moseying away deep,

for centuries he roamed the white waters,

ambling on the blue deep,

as locals benefited from his benevolence

 

Electoral choice is death,

negation to the fringes of development,

but then, emancipation doesn’t come cheap!

Like a short gun muzzle blast,

anger reverberates across the escarpments,

the echoes alone ensnare-

construed as a rebellion in the corridors of corrupted power

 

Elephants are sold for coinage,

other species poached,

to deny the locals jerked meat

 

Once upon a time,

the hinterlands were infested with the game,

today’s children have never seen a porcupine,

let alone witness polyandry in animals!

 

Hicksville, they call us,

an unsophisticated people,

our life, our decisions,

They forget that,

the ballot reigns supreme!

—Zambezi Valley Enclave — A collection of protest pieces

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