You asked me not to write about Africa
I got confused
So I wrote about Africa to respond to you
Apologies if I bruise
your ego with the words I choose
Sometimes we miss the cues
society looms over our beings and let loose
the fires and fiends harboured in our caboose
You,know, in the back of our trains of thought
My train is derailed and sorts
It carries heavy disgraced reports
Scores and scores and scores
of stories of ignorance wrapped in scorn
The story it seems so long so I’ll dive in and swim
or, cause I’m Kenyan, run this in and give instances
of when my patience ran thin.
Like that time she asked if Kenya is enjoying reprieve from the violent antics.
We haven’t seen a war since the country was founded
And she’s my international student advisor. Shouldn’t she know this?
Saying I’m straight from Africa then asking if I flew in
As though being African means I could somehow sprint over the Atlantic
I’m tired of explaining my origin, man. You first.
Yes, my name is still George when I’m in the sticks,
Looking at me weird like my name isn’t really mine unless it has clicks
No, I can’t tell you how “Africa” is there are 54 countries,
Yes, we learn English. No, not under trees.
“Wow, you speak English?!” like its a circus trick and we’re some kind of monkeys.
Look, this is the West in the 21st century,
so there is no excuse for some of the questions you’re asking.
The internet could teach you some things, help you boost your intellectual diversity,
if only you ever stopped jacking.
You always seem to know your facts when it comes to figures and stats of AIDS and Malaria
But where were these facts when you asked “In which part of Kenya is Nigeria?”
“In the Souther part,” I felt like answering.
Having to constantly hold my tongue was something new to me.
But I couldn’t hold it anymore when he asked if the tap water in our capital was sewage-y.
At the end of my tether, I had to answer accordingly
whether I preach it and say to be the bigger person we must always endeavour
As a human being one tires of constantly trying to be better.
So he had it coming when I looked up and said with as straight a face as ever:
We don’t even have tap water. We just drink the warm piss of our clan elders.
I told a new friend of mine a friend of mine died at 19.
She replied it’s probably because Kenya has such a low life expectancy.
Now I know ours is 63 and yours is in the 70s
but how freaking low does it have to be for it to be normal to die as a teen???
So who I am I talking to as I say these things?
This is a representation of what we all could be.
When it comes to ignorance nobody’s got the monopoly But it all boils down to framing your curiosity properly.
This isn’t a PC rant of how I got booboos on my feelings.
I’m a tough cookie to crack
You can’t break me between the teeth of your misguided readings
This is a piece full of questions that are only true
So when next you tell me not to write about Africa I’ll respond and say that when I last wrote about Africa I wrote to say