Naturally by Austin Bukenya.

NATURALLY

I fear the workers: they writhe in bristling grass
And wormy mud: out with dawn, back with dusk
Depart with seed and return with fat-bursting fruit
And I eat the fruit

And still they toil: at boiling point
In head-splitting noise and threatening saws
They suck their energy from slimy cassava
And age-rusty taps: till they make a Benz

And I ride in the Benz: festooned
With striped rags and python copper coiling monsters
While the workers clap their blistered hands
And I overrun their brats

They build their hives: often out
Of the broken bones of their mates:
And I drone in them – ‘state-house’
Them, ‘collegize them, officialize them

And I… I whore their daughters
Raised in litter-rotting hovels
And desiring a quickquick high-high lifelife
To break the bond

And I tell the workers to unite
Knowing well they can’t see hear or understand:
What with sweat and grime sealing their ears
And eyes already blasted with wielding sparks
And me speaking a colourless tongue

But one day a rainstorm shall flood
The litter-rotten hovels
And wash the workers’ eyes clean
Refresh the tattered muscles for a long-delayed
Blow

Published by Cynthia K Abdallah

Cynthia Abdallah is a Kenyan author, poet and filmmaker. Her work has appeared in numerous online magazines and in print. Poems: in The Tokyo Poetry Journal-Japan, Kwani Uchaguzi edition 8-Kenya, Ake review, Quailbell Magazine-USA, Bodies, and Scars anthology by Ghana Literary Journal. Short stories: Kalahari Review-Kenya, Nalubaale Review -Uganda, Active Muse-India, IHRAF, Women narratives on power USA, 2021. Cynthia also contributes to the Life and Style section of the Nation newspaper. and is also a filmmaker. Her films are streamed on shaharavideos.com Recent recognitions and awards Recipient of Jahazi Press inaugural Masterclass 2022 May-Aug . Film, Inyumba Yu Mulogooli, was selected in the recent Kalasha International film and TV Market festival with screenings in Nairobi, Nakuru, Kisumu and Mombasa from June 10-26, 2022. Recipient of Filamu dada women empowerment opportunity by docubox.org., highlighting female leaders. Inyumba Yu Mulogooli selected for Abuja International Film festival 2022 EDUCATION Bachelor of Education degree ( Linguistics and Literature), Kenyatta University class of 2010 Fulbright scholar, Foreign Language Teaching Assistant, Brown University: 2012-2013 Currently: Teacher of Language and Literature and IB coordinator in Caracas, Venezuela.

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