Three Poems By S. Haya

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She woke up Different

One day she woke up different,
Unencumbered, untethered and free.
She didn’t plan it,
It just happened.
Maybe her back was finally on the wall,
Maybe the rope had reached it’s end,
Maybe she had reached her limit.
All she remembers the previous night;
The tears could not come out
After years of crying.
There was nothing more left to squeeze out.
Sleep from all the years had hit her
And devoured all her wahallas away,
That is how she woke up new.
She knew she will never cry again,
She was done with it.
Done with anything that didn’t bring her happiness,
Done with trying to figure out who was with her,
Or against her,
Or indifferent because they didn’t have the guts to pick a side.
She realized that opinions are a-dime-a-dozen,
Validation was for parking,
And love, love? Love is not a word.
That life is too short to leave the key
To your happiness in someone else’s pocket.

The new normal

There was a time we moved everywhere without rigidity,
Without roadblocks by doctors after every other bend,
Now we are locked up and stuck in this city.

We used to whinge all day about frivolity,
Now we have to watch how we spend.
Gone are days of shopping without rigidity.

The flu has written new rules of commit,
We cannot travel to the village over the weekend
To see our grandparents, we are stuck in this city.

Humanity is struggling to fight the natural proclivity
For hugs and handshakes. A new milieu we can’t comprehend.
We miss the socialization that had no rigidity.

The eyes that smiled and mouths that were witty
Are now forlorn, though mostly they pretend.
It’s all because we are stuck in this city.

My heart weeps for the annihilated sense of community.
That, I feel, is one thing we must all defend.
There was a time we moved everywhere without rigidity,
Now we are locked up and stuck in this city.


Is it your black allure that chides the world?
Today your sons and daughters bawl on streets
For justice, bullets aim at them like veld
Impalas, cops are called on them in fleets.
So tell me mother, what is it you did
To make the world irascible? Anger flows
On streets, in playing fields, in news we read
And watch in shock, and yet the killing grows.
It’s not your fault the world has picked the shade
Of skin you passed to them (as genes) to judge
Their traits. The fault is world’s. It sorts instead
Of getting people’s cultures mix and merge.
The time to end the bias that’s based on race
Is now, right now, we need to live in peace.

S. Haya

Author Bio:
S. Haya is a Kenyan and his writing is influenced by the interesting complexities of human lives, Africa and nature. He is the author of Threads of Tenderness – African poetry (2018) on Amazon.

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