Commentary on current affairs. The literature that runs around us everywhere, unwritten, the songs of bird: mockingbird, sinsonte in Spanish, Soccoro Mockingbird. Etterligne. Sounds, tunes and words that inspire. Reactions that inspire. Sometimes take a U-turn, U-vingsomBolt.
I did not know that Langaa Research and Publishing Common Initiative Group... had entered this book for a prize, therefore I am in a sweet surprise mood.
I received an elating call from Nwando Achebe, a professor of History and this is what she said:
" I am calling as the co-convener of African Studies Association, Women's Caucus on behalf of the panel of the Aidoo-Snyder Book Award 2014 to let you know that your book: Still Sings the Nightbird has won Honorable Mention 2014. Congratulations! This is a big accomplishment, I am so proud of you!"
Named in honor of Amat Ata Aidoo, the celebrated Ghanian novelist and short story writer and Margaret Snyder, the founding Director of UNIFEM. The prize seeks to acknowledge excellence of contemporary scholarship being produced by women About African women In alternate years the prize is awarded for best scholarly book or for the best creative work.
The author went on, "Of course I had to tell Achebe's daughter that Eneke the bird said that since men had learned to shoot without missing, she (we agreed on this gender) has learned to fly without perching. Igbo Proverb!
Nighbird sings: Writers, work on... even when nobody seems to notice. Be brave too. Someone is reading!
This pic was taken from Fb from my sister´s site.
Nightbird says that the world is still trying to do what Wangari wa Maathai did years ago. Kenya too. And she is still a beacon of hope! The world is full of complications right now, 2014. Beheadings! Actually the face of Harvey shook me today! Kidnapped girls #BringOurGirlsback!, Imprisoned writers...voices shackled and hidden from sight so long, what happened to Swedish Isaak Dawit of Eritrea? Rape by police. UN soldiers. War in South Sudan, CAR. Did I forget SYRIA up to now? And all that Middle East bombing and blasting recently? And all that, and all this Ukraine and Putin? And so much more! So much so that Nightbird was dizzy looking left, right and centre continuously for three months. Yes, three. Wangari still inspires me. Read through to below and hear her recorded!
What do you say at home when things are so tough? I will try. You might say something more or just be silent. You go to your room, you think as you read or speak now and again with wiser folk when you can find them. One consults and wonders. I want to see the world from another point. In Kenya, our wildlife is getting abused largely in the killing of elephants for ivory. Yet we have many lessons to learn from nature. When I saw a lioness bringing up oryxes several times, I wished, how I wished our political leaders could learn. I saw Wangari in this lion. I saw good leaders or at least those who try to do their little thing as we say. I wrote a poem. It was about Namunyak as the lion that did this was named. It means the lucky one.
The longings of a people captured in deeds is so impressive. The longings of a world captured in small actions too is amazing. Nightbird likes to remember Wangari Maathai of Kenya. Tomorrow is the third anniversary of her death on 25 Sept 2011. Many know her and of her already so let Nightbird speak with heart. And briefly. Nightbird met her in life.
Kwa Mama Mpendwa, Wangari To Beloved Mother
When I look back I can say you gave us a dream and for that I thank you. Let those who try to say they did not see what you gave begin to marvel. You made us dream and hope for a better country, Kenya. For a better world. You did. Have you seen how politics has divided people into hating ethnic enclaves in Kenya? Why is there so much insecurity there? Whey are people not equal before the law? Of course humans are and can be insecure anywhere but Kenya your nation could be much, much better. We fall into serious killer divisions so easily. In politics people often take sides, and that is fine. I do not know if you would at this point in time have taken sides, Kenya needs unity so much. So does much of the world. Look how some are merchandising death in terror! What I know is that you did not let the temporal matters of choice and voice make you disregard anyone, not a people certainly. You knew these were temporal matters. Not that you often spoke of eternal ones as divorced from a tree but you had enough wisdom to know that we cannot because of a current system dismiss and hate people. You saw people as central to life even if forests mattered so much to you. You addressed issues a practical way. You were candid. A system, a political office, power is often misused. A system or support may be bought, but not people. You influenced us to remember that as part of dignity. You gave us a dream as a people. I can still see this dream in the form of a tree. You gave us a dream in the form of a tree like all mothers do when they birth us, our roots is what concerned you. These days we are lost in tribal hate and the world is no better. Racism is rampant. Wangari you so often shoed us how branches relate with the trunk and when speaking about leaves that fall you told me never to forget how important each one of them is, as important as the palm of our hands, all the veins there, and nerves! They are many! So that Mother, it mattered how one looked at a person. That is how one natured a tree. How you hated betrayal! You told Kibaki he could not betray an MOU, that he could not say, you went into your Mother Tongue for that with me, "Thiga (A man) ni arua ( Is already circumcised) gutiri marara nja! (there are no celebrations)" You used this proverb as is commonly used in the Kikuyu language to mean that fair is fair. That I cannot ask you for help and promise something and then turn around after it is done and say no to our deal. You were disappointed that the MOU with Raila Odinga was not honored. How sad you would be now. The split caused by this in Kenya has perpetuated itself to this day. You coming from a totally different region did not think that people should be abused due to their customs or origin. You loved them as they were. You were not threatened by diversity. You may have had other weaknesses but NOT this one that is now strangling us! It is terrible to hear how ethnic groups express their differences by showing dislike for the persons and not the issues involved. That is what the people inherited from others. I do hope that they will remember your dream and remove manifestations of hate for one another because politicians used them temporarily to achieve a selfish goal. No. I wish that politicians will stop this irresponsible behavior. That they honor your land with your ways. That the people learn , we learn from you. Look how stunted we are getting as a nation. This is not like your dream. No. It was bigger than that! You wanted more! And you said, we only had to do very little without fear of the big animals. Take our little drop of water to put off the fire. Like this you put it... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IGMW6YWjMxw