Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Mistakes/Faux Pas // Makosa -- January 15, 2013

CONFESSIONAL PROCESSION//Amanda Leigh Lichtenstein

A kind arrives in kissing.
A kind hides in the corner.
A kind stomps through a tall, split house.
A kind is written careful in blood.
A kind blows cold through bones.
A kind unwinds in your lap.

A kind objects to any reference to the past.
A kind wishes it were kinder to you.
A kind winds wool around its finger.
A kind kills the light in every room and weeps.
A kind crams letters into a metal bucket.
A kind gives birth to a club-footed babe.  

A kind doesn't care if you return.
A kind washes your hair in a sink.
A kind loosens the noose.
A kind wills us to forget.
A kind disappears into dust.
A kind can’t listen to your sobbing.

A kind is signed on the dotted line.
A kind is undressing for you tonight.
A kind is madder than you knew.
A kind is begging for a coin.
A kind wants you to answer.
A kind is sleeping on your couch.

A kind won’t kiss you.
A kind calls it mother. 
A kind climbs tall trees.
A kind is drenched in sunlight.
A kind is on its knees, 
Praying for you. 


It is mistaken to say
Mzungu mzungu like I hear from many a child
I am reduced to a color or race so it seems.
Whatever the color or whatever my race
I am a person, an individual
Don’t you see?
See the mistake that we all so often make
Lumping each one to a given class color or cast
Mzungu, Mswahili, Mwarabu, or Massai and so forth
We are who we are and that we be.
My origins are my father’s
And my mother’s in turn
Together they made what is now
The part of me visible to you.
But t’is I who have made what there is of that me just now.
I have made that man that you see.
But on my outer edges you view a reflection
Of my mom and of my dad’s genes of course
But Inside you see the story that’s me
The real and true discernable me.
Take some time and examine and source
And maybe you will finally see
I am not just an Mzungu,
but I am the one and true essence of me.
Swahili Swahili, and so that you may be,
Judge people not from the cover alone
Like a book you should read
For it is what’s inside that counts
Cover to cover inside each and every one
One and all a distinct and special book.


Mistakes are the human condition
Literally, not metaphorically
Humans -
arguably the pinnacle of evolution
actually the biggest mutants of them all.
Mankind is just a messy mixed up blueprint:

"Let's . . build an amoeba
No, wait, something more complex
Let's make it bigger
Less hairy
Take off the tail
Okay . . . done"

And this is the human condition too
We plan.
We have intentions and ambitions.
If we never aimed at anything,
we would never miss.
Do amoebas make mistakes?
Do apes?

REPORTER KILLED IN COLD BLOOD, KIGOMA (as reported in The Citizen http://www.thecitizen.co.tz/news/-/28098-reporter-killed-in-cold-blood)
Amanda Leigh Lichtenstein

Pastoralist Paulo
Is said to have eaten parts
Of his shepherd’s body.
Susuruka the shepherd
Survived and told a reporter,
Who was later found dead:
Was shot in the arm
Neglected in a forest,
Hand gun and two mobiles
Found nearby. They say
He was murdered
For telling the shepherd’s tale,
Forcing Pastoralist Paulo
To face charges.
Do you mind me asking:
How did the shepherd survive?
Which parts were eaten?
Were there words exchanged?
What did Paulo do to convince
The killer of his deed?
Where is Pastoralist Paulo now
And who loves him still?
What of his glassy-eyed sheep
Who follow without rage?
If Jesus himself was a shepherd,
Was Paulo attempting to eat god?
Is Paulo’s shepherd still roaming?
Tell me, angels and citizens,
Who can digest this news,
Wash it down with disbelief
And get on with it, the day I mean,
Of all us wandering humans,
eating, killing, grazing
In the wild, rolling fields.