STANZA FOR WATER AND WOMEN: In Zimbabwe and other African countries, people are experiencing acute water shortages and they suffer extremely from serious water borne diseases. Diarrhoea, typhoid, dysentery and cholera have become endemic in every almost every African country… Water conservation, water reticulation and treatment are critical areas that require genuine and sound governmental measures. Water is life and is everything .African dictatorships have failed us in the areas of water governance, distribution and infrastructural development. India and other Asian countries are not spared. The Community Water Alliance of Zimbabwe is making determined strides to promote the ease access of water, societal hygiene and water conservation. Water is a fundamental human right and is a national security matter. Thank you to brave and solidarity voices for taking time to pen water and women based poems here. Why women? The is just next door, women are mothers, daughters and sisters. They take care of most cooking, washing and other personal hygiene issues at home, hospitals and workplaces. Brave Voices Poetry Journal takes this opportunity to you all readers and advocates of water governance. Aluta Continua .CONTACT, the Brave Voices Curator MBIZO CHIRASHA at email@example.com.
DIMAKATSO SEDITE ,South African poet and writer born in Bloemfontein.
Her poetry has been published by The Kalahari Review, New Coin, Aerodrome,
Story Zetu, Poetry Potion, Poetry Cafe, and Hello Poetry. Her other poems
appear in two anthologies : ‘Best New African Poets 2018’ and ‘From Private
to Public Places : Botsotso 18’. She studied Poetry at SA Writers College
and holds an M.A. in Research Psychology from the University of theWitwatersrand.
LOVE LIKE WATER LIKE SILK
Water tip-toes into my room like a nervous nurse,
washes my mosaic heart, and mends her cracks.
Always quiet, except when dancing with beans ‘n bones
‘n broth in my hot pot, or hurtling waste down my gurgling loo.
When sliding down my man’s boulder breast, she glides
like a silk cloth, then hides behind his last tansy toe.
When dug in buckets she is heavy, spits on Thule’s tiny feet,
an ocean wobbling her head — breaking her nine-year old
little neck. Like love, she’s a wave of a mother’s milk when warm.
Like a mother, she seems immortal, eternal — until you lose her.
GOPICHAND PARUCHURI is an esteemed English Literature scholar. Internationally acclaimed English Poetry Publisher. Festival Director and Creative Writing Instructor in India.
A source of life
Springs joys and tears
Birth and dearth
Revolves round water
Smiles bloom with water
Farmers dream of harvests
Droughts swell tear drops
From the hearts of farmers
Water an immense potential
Contains the life of man
Adriatik Jaçe- High rising Poet, Writer and Social Justice Activist in Albania
Under your magnificent beauty, it is the universe.
On your fingers, there are maternal tune
in your smile, is the greatest love…
In your eyes, waterfalls flowing humans pain…
Your beautiful lullabies, lulling the sirens…
In your embrace, there is a constellation…
Your word, the best medicine, cures
One touch, prevent every curse and damnation
This world without you, is black is jet black
A endless nightfall, frost and iced.
Smiles, disappear deeply into abyss
And the sun lazy, does not rise.
If the woman missed on this world…
It will extinguish the joy and the empathy
in the heavens, the stars will lose light…
And on earth, everything will cover by greedy…
Woman, precious stone in the human chest
you are the humanity eyes light …
The most beautiful of God’s creation…
From you, life is born, endure…get provided…
SMEETHA BHOUMIK , Anthologized Poet, Literary Magazine Editor and Gender Rights Activist in India.
LET IT FLOW
let the winds of change make storm & rain
in a deluge of heavenly downpour,
Sweet succor to millions
awaiting droplets so golden and pure!
May you bless us dew, with life renewed,
O Dew – heart so tender, so sure,
please tell the mighty Gods, the people,
Water they must ensure.
When the earth dries, her flaky lines
Limit, nay, mar a woman’s routine,
how then will she make the broth,
Knead the flour, serve her nourishing cuisine?
Where once her little ones laughed & played
in health and happiness sweetly sprayed,
this parched day finds them forlorn –
Lying low in bouts of fever, just skin & bone
just skin & bone. Tears well up in my eyes
seeing her brush away her own, as they threaten
to spill into flaky, dry mix of leaves
she is serving up at home…
CAROLYNE AFROETRY MA, a Performance and Page Poet. Literary Events Organizer, Published Poet and Girl Child Rights Activist in Uganda.
SHE IS WOMAN
she is a warm blanket
when the world is cold.
She is the touch of reassurance
when everything is old.
She is as resilient as rubber band.
Like water, she takes up the
shape of anything just to
appeal to you.
She is Woman.
NKOSIYAZI KAN KANJIRI- High Rising Zimbabwean Poet, Writer, Critic and Advocate of Citizen Justice.
HELL, HEAVEN, HOME
In our home, there is a map to hell.
I followed the fury in father’s eyes
until I gathered hell resides where
Father’s palm meets mother’s cheek.
When hell breaks loose,
Mother becomes different shades of heaven.
Her face cracks into a thousand splendid stars,
her voice splits into the colors of the rainbow.
She sheds no tears, she was told
the sun is majestic in the storm.
She was taught the moon shines in the dark, where,
upon its gaze, children gather around a bonfire
to share beautiful stories.
CHRISPAH MUNYORO is seasoned journalist , publicist ,page poet , writer , sporting personnel and technical graphics scholar
Dark clouds ululating with windpipes and trumpets
The phenomenal pressure leaving the skies angry
Dust devils and thunderstorms poured from the sky
Stinging, destructing and devastating thunderstorms
Strong winds and ravishing tornadoes leaving grief
Atmospheric pressure flooded and seized people’s homes
Serenity of nature robbed by economic downpours
Crops, homes and humanity washed away leaving laying waste
Lives lost and destroyed forever
Violent winds rotating national disasters
Lives in disarray ,perils and bleak
Irreplaceable damage which stole violently and without remorse Governments awestruck and confused
Communities swept away
Fundraising efforts and projects rancid
Restoration and healing to the trauma cyclone idea a question mark Death tows leaving hunger and thirst
Stinging rainfall which left tears, loss and pain
Cyclone Ida your veracious wave always a heartache
May God intervene, have mercy to humanity as we cry for lost lives
SADIQULLAH KHAN , Veteran Poet , Accomplished Writer , Political critic and Advocate of Human Rights in Pakistan .
a mystery mightier than thyself would
invade. Enchant bigger and army stronger
to bear the thirst of desert leading
to your doors, – gates separated by miles –
Toynbee Arnold fought a war in Carthage
Dissecting the pages of history, – in
the briefest moment. This fort is
two millennium and five hundred years old
and I lived it between the noons –
The stones are intact. A military garrison
of the eastern stretch short by a night’s
Fast gallop to the mighty Indus. Cyrus
the great, – the silent history and Magnificence suggest. They left no remains
except the sad evenings and dark
Nights. Bright shine of after-noon.
Westward the spring of fairies –
The desolation is test of knights
Obsessed with fears of being taken over.
Only captives in wars could build it –
For it is beyond the construct of modernity.
- On visit to Racicot Fort, Jamshoro, Sindh Pakistan
AN AFRICAN WOMAN
Watch the shaved head bare
The big skull of the suckling infant
Dark leaden eyes with thick bushes of lashes
Dry tongue has sewn lips
Figure still can haunt you in nights
You make me very small
On the scale of equilibrium
-On International Women’s Day
NANCY NDEKE is an Internationally Published Poet. She is a Literary Arts Consultant, Writer in Residence, Creative Projects Instructor, Educationist and an Advocate of Good Governance in Kenya.
PERCENTAGE MOST CRUCIAL.
Man you are a watery shed floating in times of the vast oceans,
Dry up not the means of your beingness with your meanness,
Dumping and polluting masses enmass with your quick buck coin rush,
Stealing and dealing with your existence with poisoned fencing and bending of rules,
See the women of your harem and those of your kin lining up to bury a new born,
Hear the agony of the aged as they bend double to bow to yonder from baked intestines,
Water is no trifle matter dear man to politic with its distribution while muddied with refuse,
Casualty pile up in homes and cities with polluted fluids purging life with terrible aches and pains,
You enrich Your Own by denying all else because bottled water is your preferred sip,
Preach and teach the scriptures but this you must be told,
Adorn your ample frame with the riches of the land as weak tumble down the drain of negligence,
Water is life they say and none is more afflicted by its pollution than the mother who must bury her own because the council of hyenas has eaten into the treatment fund,
Having diverted effluence into the womb that nurtures life, a nation sits at mounds of fresh graves daily cursing your evil hand,
News is that eventually this evil will catch up with all in due course and woe shall know no boundaries when the harvest of water borne diseases land at your door,
You, wicked and wretched muggers of life calling your self’s city fathers.
NGOZI OLIVIA OSUOHA is an accomplished Nigeria Poet. Internationally anthologized, Advocate of Human Rights and Broadcaster.
SECOND ASH WEDNESDAY
This island of hardened indigenes
Floating on a lagoon of timid owners
A sand-fill of tribal oaths,
Bursting banks of bloody rivers.
Beams and columns on fetish lands
Pipes and steels on dusty air,
Blocks cementing shallow love.
Hate above the jagged edge
Deceit onboard the deep courage,
Anger beyond the chosen tribe.
Dirty cup, poisoned wine
Raw food, broken glass
Bounced cheque, foiled contract
Burnt, razed, complicated view.
Just after the ash Wednesday
Marking the beginning of lent
You came, crashing our tent.
Rulers without rulers
Leaders without leadership
Laws without laws.
Regulations with manipulations
Stipulations with exploitations
Ordinances without ordinations.
Misconduct, malpractice, quackery
Incompetence, negligence and forgery
Ignorance, illiteracy and fallacy
Ash, dust, ash upon dust.
Green blood, purple eyes
Brown legs, green womb
Fertile future, yellow lips
Blue field, rich voice
JAMBIYA KAI – Originator of Humanitarian and Arts Projects , Accomplished Writer , ,Literary Arts Catalyst , Life Coach and Citizen Justice Leader in Capetown , South Africa.
IAM A WOMAN –
not bound by chasms, racism, fascism
I am the stream trickling
from the peyote cactus
in the dry dead of the Sahara,
The sand storm that sanitizes
every stained spot in its wake.
I rise from the South, East,
North and West.
Under the camels hump I am shadowed from the sweltering sun at noon
and clothed for the damp night.
I shake off the dusty burdens dragged through the evening heat.
The hiss of the desert monitor
stills not my focus.
Like the hooves of a
rhim gaselle are my feet –
sure yet soft.
Caves and burrows shield
my dignity in drought.
and the waking croc smiles at my courage as the rains wash away
my dried tears.
I am a Woman
I stand tall and fall,
My exploits are as tornado”s and
when morning comes
I rise to meet the scorpion dead on.
I rise –
from the desert sun –
from the dry savanna scapes
I am the wisdom of the rock hyrax
that moves with my sisters while we
forage for the hungry world around us.
When the viper comes out to play
I become a ferocious cheetah who protects her cubs.
Like a twist in a tornado,
I rise from the South, East,
North and West.
This I do because
I am a Woman.
GENE BERRY , A well and published poet , arts interventionist. Performance and Page Poet from Ireland .
The Triumph of Paradise Found
Healing is a matter of time,
but it is sometimes also
a matter of opportunity.
Inner Peace, the clinker-built
she has admiringly created,
sanded, varnished and polished
lovingly boasts of pleasantries,
success its unmanned tiller.
Before her launch, she decks in layers
of approval and acknowledgment;
acceptance the rivets she has driven home.
The love anchored to her cheery heart,
delivering an abundance of approval.
Tide’s fortune speaks to her from
above her fading Cimmerian Shade,
as she puts sail on happy waters,
a tide of doldrum seeking torments
her overfed squad of jetsam.
Farewell my scapegoat,
a confusion of stooges bellows from
their angry-captained quay wall,
perpetual puppets whose sick noises
merely waken her jubilant emotions.
What does happiness look like, she retorts,
as her pathfinder, a keel of love
gulfs this pleasant awakening sea.
Happy sails filling boundaries and
pulling her further from suffering.
At dusk she orphans a protesting
jetsam of projections, prejudices
and screaming inadequacies,
loneliness and hurt their desserts;
equilibrium her welcomed ballast.
For acceptance lives this side of the grave.
The Cimmerians were an ancient nomadic people who overran Asia Minor in the 7th century BC. Mythical people living in perpetual mist and darkness near the land of the dead.
STANZA FOR WATER was curated by MBIZO CHIRASHA an International Poet and 2019 Fellow of ihraf.org .
BRAVE VOICES POETRY JOURNAL- A weekly platform of poetry for resistance, literary freedom of expression and protest Poetry in pursuit for a peaceful, just, non-dictatorial and nonviolent environment with a special focus on Zimbabwe , Africa and other nations around the globe through poetry , Flash fiction ,arts , brave voices and literary activism. Contact the Curator/EDITOR of the Brave Voices Poetry Journal MBIZO CHIRASHA at firstname.lastname@example.org , post on MIOMBOPUBLISHING Facebook Group or Inbox the Curator on Facebook Messenger.