Powerful writer and essayist pen a rhythmic spirited hybrid mix of mind boggling verse and a soul touching story against unwarranted butchery, demise, pain, loneliness and a sudden -death caused grief in a world that is vastly wretched by bloody crimes, goriness, hate, carelessness, banditry, terrorism, greed and widespread disrespect of lives. I stand with this powerful message, this strong message must rattle the hate hardened marrow and bone of die-hard dictators, lords of war and terrorist groupings disguising to be architects of democracy and repentant peaceniks. We stand right now amidst xenophobia perpetuated cemeteries, racism marked graves and a whole lot of savagery and barbarism. This strong literary message by a Poet, Lyricist, Peace maker and story teller in Jambiya Kai requires leadership from America to Africa to do a cross check on how they have plundered lives, the hope and promise of a great united world. Let’s repent. Thank you great story teller Jambiya KAI for penning this bold and vigorous hybrid mix. We are proud this powerful and well writ message . We pay tribute to talent , truth and a diversity of ideas. ALUTA CONTINUA-( Blurb by Mbizo CHIRASHA).
“What a Pretty Boy” – The Story of Juneck Livi
We were caught in a civil war – the mob petrol bombed our home in a township in South Africa.
I was just five years old with no idea of the terror that raged outside my home.
The faction fighting and brandishing arms were displays of bitterness that ignited and flared into a towering inferno – I was the innocent victim and those who fought to rid their town of “traitors” were unaware that they had obliterated their aims when their flamed torches clung to my skin. To my home.
but then again, there are no victors in war.
And men give their lives for freedom.
The scars were deep and skin grafting my second home throughout high school.
When the students refused to listen my teacher would make his point , “Don’t you bunch listen – are your ears glued like Juneck’s”? In those few words I heard the hiss of the blue-gum slats that framed our home and hypnotically watched as the pomegranate flames hungrily devoured my young flesh. In my teacher’s taunt I melted into screams. I found solace in the songs of sirens as I fought the inevitable.
I was only 5 but trauma slept like an idolised mummy. Ferocious in worship.
Memories of my mother were vague. The Beautiful Angolan jazz singer Maria Livi was sharp-witted and humorous but there was no miracle at hand when a contaminated blood transfusion emptied her life. Hers was the only photograph that survived the fires of hell. My short life lay scattered among the debris. Perhaps she was keeping me sane from the earth below my twisted misshapen feet. Or was it from the heaven’s above my tell-tale scalp.
My father and stepbrother’s lived in another province –
I was a reminder of the sins of life and one they did not want around. My grandmother died that fateful night when the rioters set our town alight. I never told my counselor how I saw her skin shrivel and peel away as she wrapped her arms around me – her eyes loving me when I was 5 years old and quite handsome in her embrace. Until she could no longer hold onto me.
Her heart would be broken if she knew that despite her best efforts I no longer look like the “pretty boy” she loved. Maybe she knows. Aunty Aya was a good mother to me and I was blessed to have mothers who showed me the light of love.
My marred face and disabled hands became the butt of everyone’s joke and the mockery followed me around –
I was ostracised and beaten by the same ones who fought for my freedom;
who plundered the system for my liberty.
Who burnt my home, killed my guardian angel and massacred my dreams. Like sheep to the slaughter.
Despite my adversities, my faith sustained me; my grandmother’s sacrifice and dying words helped me to move past the pain of bullying, past the stigma of “ugly”.
“No matter what Juneck”, she screamed and coughed across, through and above the crashing timber, and the fiery serpent that sucked at her throat,
“don’t let the cruelty of this world steal the beauty of your dreams”. Her hands circled my face as if to ward off the blazing demon. Gold eyes and sizzling red mouth spitting all over my 5 year old face. The god that haunted my every waking moment.
The devil lived inside mirrors. I wished I had died in the lunacy. In the fight for freedom. Wishing the angry mob had killed me
If only the menacious bullies would know the horror of the scourged,
the savagery of skin dripping from one’s face – like the terrifying lick of a dragon’s searing tongue – while a ruthless grenade lay your life asunder.
I was just 5 then. 40 Years ago.
I have since embraced my own beauty, and my soul has been exorcised from purgatory.
I will not imitate the society that had dealt so treacherously with me –
I had determined that despair would not hold me ransom. That I would be free, for I knew where my help came from;
My grandmother’s hope was mine.
Beyond the mountains and the hills I lifted my voice and my prayers were answered.
In this shaky journey love carries me above my storms.
I smile into a mirror and see God there.
My eyes illuminated with love
There is no ugly in me –
My grandmother loved me at 5 when i was a pretty boy.
Now I am a handsome soul
A man who walked through fire,
reeking of victory
This world is not my home.
One day I too, like my grandmother,
shall be completely whole.
I no longer hear the hiss of the blue-gum slats through shameful words but the sound of the abundance of rain in my grandmother’s screams across, through and above the falling timber and fiery serpent that sucked at her throat,
“No matter what Juneck, don’t let the cruelty of this world steal the beauty of your dreams”.
I was loved at 5 when I was a pretty boy.
I’m richer than I was then.
For now I am loved by the man in the mirror
And the woman who holds my hand when the blue gum slats sometimes come crashing down around me.
(C) Jambiya Kai
A story shaped around real events and a real hero who touched my heart.
Burn Survivors are not on the socio-political radar and suffer tremendous prejudice, they are the people of the night; they hide in the shadows for fear of mockery and public jokes – fear of being ridiculed and beaten. There is a superstition that believes that those who suffer burns have been punished by God for being children of the devil. I trust “Juneck’s” story will touch your heart and inspire you to reach out when next you encounter a burn survivor – They have the same dreams you have – The same desires to be loved. It is not a cliche that our beauty goes beyond what the eyes can see. I know. I’ve seen beyond.
JAMBIYA KAI (officially Beulah Kleinveldt AKA Beulah Kay)
Is an emotive South African Short Story Songstress and Poet. Jambiya Kai’s formula is fairly consistent – driven by raconteurs who challenge unjust systems and find themselves drawn into a web of deceit and abuse – the reality of love and loss.
Kai authentically weaves the tragedy and victory of the human experience into a tapestry of memorable imagery and metaphor – vivid multi-ethnic stories; provocative verse and song.Her works have appeared in –Sir Ricky McGentleman’s, Live Life: The Daydreamers Journal (Barnes and Noble) “For the Love of a Queen – alongside the works of British Novelist Gwyneth Jones; American poet Judith Skillman and Stuart Dybek; Best New African Poets Anthology 2017 – (The Amstel Breeze – now, A Monarchs Migration);The 2008 Good News London Publishers Contest earned her The UK Overall Winner’s Award for her poem When Freedom Reigned (Ode to Africa).She is an avid writer and supporter for and of the Tuck Magazine (Canada); 100 Thousand Poets for Peace Campaign – (Zimbabwe); Miombo Publishing; Poetry in the Blood, and other online Journals. Her works are also read on The Dear John Show.Currently Jambiya Kai is working on “4 Seasons in a Day” – an artistic collection of short stories, prose and poetry.Jambiya can be contacted at email@example.com or her works may be reviewed online at https://-jambiya1.blogspot.com.
MEET TIME OF THE POET REPUBLIC PUBLISHER
Mbizo CHIRASHA, UNESCO-RILA Affiliate Artist. Freedom of Speech Fellow to PEN- Zentrum Deutschland,Germany. Alumni of the International Human Rights Arts Festival in New-York, USA.Literary Arts Activism Diplomatie. Globally Certified Arts Mediums Curator and Influencer. Internationally Published Page and Spoken Word Poet. Writer in Residence. Arts for Human Rights Catalyst. Core Team Member of the Bezine Arts and Humanities Project. His illustrious poetry , hybrid writings , political commentary ,short fiction , book reviews and Arts Features are published in more than 400 spaces notably the Monk Arts and Soul in Magazine in United Kingdom. Atunis Poetry.com in Belgium. Demer press poetry series in Netherlands. World Poetry Almanac in Mongolia.Poesia journal inSlovenia. Bezine Arts and Humanities Webzine in USA. The Poet a Day in Brooklyn ,USA. Litnet Writers Journal in South Africa. African Crayons in Nigeria. Poetry Bulawayo in Zimbabwe. Pulp-pit USA.the FictionalCafe international Journal , Texas USA. Best New African Poetry series in Zimbabwe, Zimbolicious Poetry Collections in Zimbabwe. Co-edited Street Voices International Publications with Andreas Weiland in Germany.Co-Edited Silent Voices Anthology, a Tribute to Chinua Achebe. Co-Edited the Corpses of Unity,solidarity collection to victimzed Cameroonians with Nsah Mala. Curated and Edited the Zimbabwe We Want Poetry ,Inside Digraceland speaking poetic truth to the Mugabe regime and other bad regimes. He owns the Time of the Poet blog zine ,MIOMBOPUBLISHING that published the #GlobalCallforPeaceProject titled the Second of EARTH is Peace.A LETTER to the PRESIDENT his experimental resistance poetry colection was released in August 2019 by Mwanaka and Media Publishing.. Co- Authored Whispering Woes of Ganges and Zambezi with Sweta Vikram in India. Good Morning President his first poetry collection was published in 2011 by Zimbabwean published based in United Kingdom, Diaspora Publishers.COVID 19 Satansdeadly fart is forthcoming. Chirasha is Founder and the Chief Editor of Brave Voices Poetry Journal, https://bravevoicespress.home.blog/ and WOMAWORDS LITERARY PRESS,https://womawordsliterarypress.home.blog/
MORE INFORMATION visit ,https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mbizo_Chirasha
TIME OF THE POET REPUBLIC-An Internet based Poetry Center. Archiving theme based anthologies and Profiling of Iconic Poets and Writers