Written By: Banyana Baxie KebalefetseFor: Yvonne Tsona Mpofu
Days come and days go, but some days don’t just come
And blessèd ones like these don’t just go. They leave
Marks, and live forever, like Hallmarks!
Today, time was punctuated and the pages of its story
Caught a fire, ignited with flames that don’t burn to
Destroy but to illuminate. Today, is the spring of a
Season in the family, the unveiling of a bright, fun,
And colourful flower. Today is your birthday, Gola o
Gole, o segohale o tsohale!
Yvonne ‘Tsona’ Mpofu
Today I ran after the sunset, literally! I had gone out to get my camera from the car to take it into the house and the sun was setting. And as usual my eyes looked about into the wide skies and were met with a beautiful bright amber hiding behind the community junior school. I thought to grab my camera and snap a picture of her quick and I did. But I wanted to see all of her, not hidden behind anything. And so I thought why not find a spot at which she would be all out and exposed. So I went into the car started the engine and hit the dirt road without looking back. With my eyes set on the big and round orange phenomenon in the west, I drove down the Tsatsu seeking the perfect spot for my ‘perfect shot’…whatever that means!
Now a couple of huge dust clouds behind me, I thought I’d found it when I suddenly hit the brakes and did a swift three point turn to veer off the road and finally take my ‘perfect shot’. But as I opened the door, camera ready in hand, I lifted my eyes to the western horizon and encountered a disappearing beauty. I watched as the amber melted away into the bluish grey ngwaketsi sky. And that was it! The sun had set on me and my hope to capture her beautiful flaunt before departure. I have always said I’d sit and watch the sun rise or set but never got around to it, and would always watch it move down or up the horizon. But it never occurred to me that what that meant was that I’d always seen the sun before and after the disappeared or appeared. But this time, I watched it really set. I saw it as its amber receded and literally melt away before my eyes, a beauty I don’t believe I could ever capture in a still picture even it were from a perfect spot, it could never be the ‘perfect shot’.
When I saw the sign I had to STOP! Because it bore boldly the name ‘home’. Lokgwabe is the home and birthplace of my dearest father. I was born in Gaborone, the busy capital of Botswana. It is the place I know more than any other that I have ever been to. But one day, very soon in fact, I will start to document the story of my people, the Bangologa or ‘Bangalogi’ as my eldest uncle likes to say; or simply Bakgalagadi as many like to call us.
I have a fondness for history and since a young age, stories from our past have always just intrigued me. They have a way with my emotions that I love. Learning the history of the world has always been so much fun, but learning the history of Botswana in the past year has been more than I can even express in words, it’s a word beyond fascination, a word my tongue and lips have not learnt to dance to yet.
When @Vee Mampeezy sang “Zwakala macheng…” in Hukuntsi from the Taku Taku album, Lokhwabe is amongst the four villages in Kgalagadi north that he was referring to, together with Hukuntsi, Lehututu and Tshane. What a beautiful song that is.
I believe the future is very important and that for it to be as bright as we often hope for it to be, it has to be inspired by the past.
If it’s writer’s block…
What if I wrote about writer’s block?
Is it still writer’s block then?
If the words are always there
And it’s the thoughts that shy away
Then why should I say…
“Writer’s block has me in chains”.
What if I jot down the random words
That fly around in my coy thoughts
Then maybe a story I can compose,
I mean look what has come of a simple ‘IF‘!
Utter the words and let me feel them.
Kiss my cheek and let me hear you.
I want the love you speak with your
Gestures, to venture into my heart with
Profound warmth. Your stillness to move
Me, to brood over a love so enormous
I will not be able to contain it within me.
What have you done to me? You confuse
My feels so much they refuse to get used
To the love you serve me daily. What a
Manner of love you have shown me. It
Hurts but it sooths my hurts, and cuts
Me deep to infuse itself into my bones.
So what have I done to deserve this? I
Have knelt on knees and screamed
Silent prayers I thought only my soul
Would hear. But the bearer of souls
Had heard ’cause He was there. So he
Heeded the shouts, and sounds of
Blessings bred in answered prayers,
And were then delivered my way.
But was I ever ready? Oh no, I was not!
Showers poured down and there came
The floods, in love drowned. But still,
Here I am gasping and needing for air
To breathe, enduring waves and tides
Of love so strong, they have since sunk
My ship of no hope and despair.
So why do I need this love? Why do I
Still cling onto it so much? ‘Cause it
Has delivered me from that much.
Through it, I have seen things only
Ever heard of, and have heard things
Only ever seen. I’ve felt it my bones
And in my core. I have learnt to swim
This ocean of life, and have mastered
Its waves and tides. And most of all,
I’ve learnt to weather the storm, never
To be afraid to break the norm, ’cause
Love, yes God; has blessed with love,
With you. My moon.
This is it, I’m done. I’m done trying to figure you out.
I had thought even amidst the mystery I had at least
Found a track upon which I would tread without traps
Planted at every curve along my way with you.
I’m done telling myself I know what no man knows not.
Your elusive slippery moves elude the grips of me on
You, so excuse the news that I have let loose the love
That used to hold me dear in His arms for the soothing
Sweet taste of sin.
I know it has not been long enough to claim, that my
Sudden disdain of Him, was as a result of an unholy swim
In a pool of unvirtuous gin. But I have since learnt yet
Again, that knowing what I may; Life my friend,
You will always have your uncertain ways that lead to
That one place where grace always has to find more space
To abound more grace.
So I’m done! I’m done trying to learn the moves to your