by Michelle Angwenyi
dans la maladie
I came across it in my dreams and I woke up singing the French for it – dans la maladie, dans la maladie.
A meshwork of metal
Inside the disease
Becoming an illness.
I saw it the next day and it was
All over the place, in pieces.
It must have taken more than strength to pry my eyes open and
collect them, and once there, put it together again, paint it
tell it to relax, try not to kill me.
Michael Onsando is a jazz writer, and co-founder of Brainstorm Kenya. Some of his work is available on his site, Unlike Myself. Enkare Review has previously published Onsando’s A Movement on Loneliness. Alexis Teyie, Enkare Review’s poetry editor, met with Michael on a quiet Sunday in February to talk about his most recent work published with Enkare Review, The Making of a Canon, his creative philosophy, and quite a few things in between.
by Michael Onsando
What you are about to see is the creation of a canon. As with all creations, it begins with destruction. Your front row seats are free, they have been paid for, in full, by history. Time, again, is the title sponsor of this event. If you look under your seat you will find rose coloured glasses. They are there for those would not rather see what the act of creation entails. Every seat accommodates one and one only. In the theatre of dreamers every mind speaks for itself as every heart beats for itself. Please keep your cellphone on at all times during the performance. Be sure to take as many pictures as possible – the best of them may survive the journey. If you hear someone next to you talking, kindly join in the conversation – you never know how long you’ll have them near you.
A Kitui Infidelity
The chicken disappeared before midday – no cluck,
no fluttering of feathers – but the owner didn’t notice.
Over lunch, he ate his muthokoi, oblivious, anticipating dinner,
how the houseboy would dispatch it with a twisting of the neck
then pluck it downwards as the blood drip-dripped to earth,
and then the soaking it in brine, the roast, the tearing of the legs
the biting down…
Yet it already had departed. It was not an inside job, but maybe was,
and so the servants were interrogated. Someone got the blame,
was found and beaten, so severely that the cop’s arrival saved him
from a lynching – stones and tyres, and sticks and matches.
What went woefully unnoticed was the nail, the telltale fingernail
of her who stretched her digit to condemn him – how a downy feather
fluttered. What a wife.