Friday, 29 June 2012

An Avatar's Cry

Darkness. I was the first to arrive. Any blind, deaf and dumb archeologist will attest to that fact. In the middle of all the chaos and trials of my times, I have survived.

Due to the continental drift, however, my dear bright brother and I found ourselves separated. Fate would have him sent North, East and West, to the lands of greener white pastures. Evolution would take over, take its toll, and while mine allegedly stunted, he tells me his development took giant leaps.

For the most part, I am always proud of this darkness. Like the heavy black clouds in the sky suggesting enriching rains to the highlander, I promise the grandeur of generations. At least I believe so, yet find myself questioning this ideal ever so oft. He has compared me to the ape, my complexion to all that is sinister...the black hole of Calcutta, black magic, the black plague, Black Maria...everything that is impure.

To further his conquistador's interests in the Industrial revolution, he came back for me. Captured me. Required, nay, forced me to work to death. A slave, my race exterminated, borne down to the very bone. Black history, thus, is littered with dark histories of bloody murder.

His superior weaponry condemned me to No Man's Land; still I bore it bravely. Despite the tribulations. Truth be told it was less a question of courage, and more one of a resistance thence proven futile.

My little infant, my homeland, was thus plunged into a cycle of irrevocable disorder, her naivety lost in the brothel whose twilight girls still linger distinctly to this day.

At the risk of losing all our camaraderie - or lack thereof - I fight his abuse by means necessary to restore my dignity. Despite my having been traumatized by past experience, he and brothers red and yellow - an old order despite the new black president - seem determined to sit back and watch me writhe in painful oblivion. Matter-of-factly, they aid and abet that vicious circle.

His discrimination, his oppressions, have proven augmentative, rising from strength to strength as he pursues the 'greater good'. He continues to defile my land, the virgin lands of mother Africa, little exposed to the evils of his world. Violated! Corrupted! Abused! Leaving me estranged, delicate to a fault, my heart full of avid malice; no wonder the shame abides, the scandals, the burning rubber and roast smell of death...will I ever rid myself of this pungency?

Master of my own destiny, he teases me. Really? Living in cardboard houses? A tattered existence, barely managing a dollar a day? Really? Am the jack of all trades, the gross drawn you can barely stand, a slave to the poor control of my Master destiny.

The fact however remains that I am the thumb, the human race the hand. Sure am farther away from him, them. But without me that hand can never be truly self-sufficient. At least, he claims, I am free. Free to forever be indebted to him to the nape of my neck. Released from the franchise and into a world that barely makes third best in a crowd of three.

Let's see what tomorrow reserves for me, me and my resources both natural and unexpected. Untested. Who am I? Haven't you seen me before? Killed me dare I add? Of course you know you have, dear brother. My noble face is hardly peculiar to you. For I am the departed man, the prodigal son, the infamous man...the black man.

By  Fred Wambugu Maina  ( Kenya )

photo credits; artwork  "Love Cocoon"  by Wiz Kudowor.

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