What place is this?



What place is this?
Where people refuse logic,
Where truth is forbidden

Where Justice is one of those fancy words
What place is this?
Where women sleep on the streets in the cold at night, with their toddlers
Where children beg for something to eat everyday, day in day, day out.
And we walk past them like it’s normal, like society is not lost
Where leaders, better call them misleaders, loot and loot and loot the country
It’s just how the government works
Following in the footsteps of colonialists who they are still loyal to

What place is this?
Where loyalty is to self and greed
Where people have forgotten who they are
Police killing ghetto youths, saying they are maintaining law, peace and order.
My foot! It’s the ruling and rich classes that are threatened
Lest the lumpens cause a revolution

Kianjokoma brothers
Baby Pendo
Yassin Moyo
Carlinton Maina
Youths who’s lives did not matter

What place is this?
A place of lunacy. Hate. Greed. Ignorance. Pride.
Where people have forgotten about themselves
Of their past glories
Their glorious history
Groping in neo – colonial darkness
Drowning in oceans of imperialism

The future is bleak, if we don’t act. Now. Tomorrow is too late.
But wait. You might want to ponder
Why struggle anyway?
Didn’t they dishonour Mau Mau with the betrayal by homeguards?

Oh Kimathi
Oh Kaggia
Oh Pinto
Oh Mekatilili
Oh Moraa wa Ngiti
Oh Wangari Maathai
Many more; festering wounds of patriotic memories
Fires of our inspiration
The struggle must continue!

Poverty still rules
The country is sick in hospitals of the IMF and the World Bank
Chaining the people to debts, enslaving us
Reduce the price of Unga!
Reduce fees!
Reduce the cost of living!
People demand
Prepare for higher taxes, tough times ahead, the neo – colonial government responds.
Tax them higher!
Keep them poor!
It’s what the market wants
Says IMF and world Bank , drivers of neo – liberalism

What place is this?
Where children of the freedom fighters are still hungry and poor?
Where homeguards are still reaping the fruits from the blood of our heroes?
What exactly is going on in patriotic minds?
Is social justice another fallacy, just a distant dream?

What place is this?
My heart aches for truth.
No, this isn’t our place
Like the phoenix,  we shall rise from the ashes of betrayal
We shall overhaul and rebuild this system
With fire of patriotism, we shall burn down collaborators of neo-colonialism and imperialism.
This is our country
Clothed in dignity and love for each other, we shall remake our world.
We shall sing new songs
Songs of beauty, grace, and love
Because this place, could be heaven for all of us
It shall be. One day. Soon!

For those afraid of this struggle
Remember: When we lose our fear, they lose their power.
Freedom awaits us
Speak up!
This place is our home.
Let’s make it feel like so
Together. Forever!

*Wanjira Wanjiru is a social justice activist based at Mathare Social Justice Centre and co – host of Liberating Minds podcast

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