The Kenyan

21 Sep

If I could find justice, then I would scream at the top of my voice. Speak I can, converse I do, give speeches, I have…yet still I am unable to scream for help. I long for a helping hand, I crave justice, my heart pleads for mercy… but scream? I cannot. If I could, I would, but since I can’t, then I won’t. Pen in hand, paper underneath, let these words scream for me.

    The Kenyan

I am every man walking on the streets, each named after a great man; I am every woman rising up early and staying up late, fending for the needs of her children; I am every young man working my way to prosperity, a comfortable life; I am every young woman laying out my dreams, setting out after each one in turn; I am every boy, every girl in class, learning vocabulary, solving arithmetic, interpreting maps- getting to know my world. I am tall, short, dark and light, young and old: I am Kenyan.
I have read about the pains of slavery and the cost of freedom; I have heard tales of bravery, selflessness and patriotism to the point of death, I have seen pictures of dreaded men and women who stood up for everything I enjoy freely in the present; I have spent holidays enjoying myself in their honor and sometimes, I think about what it takes to be one such person of valor. Only, it isn’t so hard to imagine their turmoil anymore…
I live in a country whose peace hangs on the edge, where every dawning moment is a balancing act, a dangerous game where nothing is certain, only hope and strong will prevent me from toppling over. I know cannibals that love to feed on the fat of little lambs, lions that kill for prestige, vultures that are quick to clean up carcasses. All in the name of power.
I have watched trusted leaders lead a nation to war, only they stayed in their safe havens and watched through glass windows as blood fed the ground, Kenyan blood. I have known commission-oriented systems, sittings that serve to mask truth and delay justice, gatherings that eat up on tax-payers’ money as they ponder on ‘the next step’- steps that almost always never see the process of implementation. I have seen the law shake hands with crime; I have watched power embrace despondency. Why? Yes we can!
I am the Kenyan that has lived in shelters for three straight years, wondering whether elections have to happen again before anyone can have mercy and help me rebuild my life; I am every Kenyan that has had their land grabbed, their amenities stolen, their right to life and good tidings abused. I am every Kenyan that has been framed for something they did not do, that was tortured to confess truths I knew not of. I am every Kenyan that once bought twenty-two slices of bread for eighteen shillings, the same one that buys fourteen slices for thirty five shillings. I am every Kenyan that has seen the prices go up, the taxes sky-rocket and salaries take a nose dive. I am every Kenyan that knows it takes voluntary work to gain experience and that the only reward for doing things for free is to be given loads more to do and muttered appreciation- if any.
I am every Kenyan that is growing so tired of mysterious disappearances of people and money, every Kenyan that is growing weary of cobwebs in corridors of justice and hot coals in the path of growth and development. I am every Kenyan that dreams of the day things will change, whose heart grows frail at the weight of reality. I am every Kenyan working day in and out, around the clock with nothing to look forward to because it is a hard world, you have forced me to believe as you give me a coin and steal from me a note, the note that I need. I am every Kenyan that is tired, writing an open mail to you, who is responsible. Please grow up and out of your malice!


Posted by on September 21, 2010 in Outcry


16 responses to “The Kenyan

  1. Dave

    September 22, 2010 at 13:00

    I am every Kenyan…

    You are an alien…

    You understand humans…

    …nice piece.

  2. Njambi

    September 22, 2010 at 13:11

    new breed of aliens…the Kenyan kind. thanks Dave 🙂 it takes one to know one, you know?

  3. Wawesh

    September 22, 2010 at 14:45

    We’ve been living the Kenyan nightmare, still hope gets us through to another day.. Who needs to shout when you can write like this, kudos!

    • Njambi

      September 23, 2010 at 05:54

      thanks Wawesh. I live for the day when all (not some) leaders will be leaders.

  4. Sketch

    September 23, 2010 at 04:22

    Great writing Serah. The wise say, “A lion shorn of his strength, a dove bereft of its mate and an eagle shorn of its spirit all die of a broken heart”. When we lose hope or what makes us human, we start dying. Just hoping people will eventually realize that God holds our destiny, but we must give Him a chance to work and not lean on our understanding. Kudos for serious works!

  5. Njambi

    September 23, 2010 at 05:59

    Such depth in what you just said Sketch. Thanks. I would love for every Kenyan to read this.

  6. mwangi

    September 23, 2010 at 06:37

    confused as to whether i should be proud,ashamed,disgusted or merely sad to be kenyan…

  7. Njambi

    September 23, 2010 at 07:15

    Be that proud Kenyan that chooses to make a difference 🙂 one that will count way after you are gone 🙂

  8. njeri

    September 27, 2010 at 10:41

    i choose to make a difference to have the kenya i need

  9. Njambi

    September 27, 2010 at 12:53

    its starts with us Njeri. knowing that fact is a great place to start. i will check on you time and again to find out how you are doing 🙂 how far your resolve has taken you.

  10. Abraham

    September 28, 2010 at 04:23

    Nice piece Serah. This is so true. I pray and can’t wait to see when, as you say, all ‘leaders’ will be leaders.

  11. Njambi

    September 28, 2010 at 07:30

    Starts with us 🙂 much as you and i may never run for presidency, it should be enough for us to know that we are old enough to lead this country. We do not need convoys or body guards to start, we need love, a sound mind and a strong will to serve our country and its people. 🙂

  12. ruby

    March 17, 2011 at 06:32

    I am born again and Kenyan!!!
    Kenya, love you maeenn!!
    I am making a difference, i believe:)

  13. Jere

    March 17, 2011 at 06:37

    Hope it doesnt end here… Nyc piece lakini

  14. wahu

    March 17, 2011 at 07:36

    lovely piece..its really sad when you think about but we got to face the truth as painful as it is.God deliver us

  15. tjilani

    September 9, 2011 at 05:51

    This is a true, down to earth definition of a Kenyan life. Lovely depiction.


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