I place my hope on the water
In this little boat
Of the language, the way a body might put
Nuala Ni Dhomhnail (Translated by Paul Muldoon)
Still in the village
In between times I have found myself revisiting Jean Hanff Korelitz’s beautifully scripted book; The Sabbathday River. In that book, “Naomi Roth finds the body of a new born girl floating in the Sabbathday River.”
As Lord Byron would have it; ‘…t is strange- but true; for truth is always strange; stranger than fiction.” The village woke up to the selfsame scenario, yesterday; a newborn baby girl floating in the slow moving Getathuro River.
But downstream a woman was filling a used Tilly can with drinking water. “The baby has done no wrong,” she remarked. Maybe she meant that life had to go on. Even Jesus would have said: let the dead bury their dead…or is it come to me all yea that are thirsty?
In the village they live by faith.
At the kiosk as I got my two Supermatch on credit; “What was the mother thinking?” asked the Kisii man.
“Si ni shida, Mogaka, shida” I quipped
“… ahh, kwani nani hajalewa na shida?”
“enyewe…” I mused. Enyewe.
We will live if the gods will it, the Mundumugo said to me. We were tending the Muratina still in his banana grove. Tonight we pour libation. The rains are here and the Getathuro flows. The river meanders city wards nourishing the ndumas upon its banks.
And that nduma we will chew into pap and feed toto…
…tutawalea na shida!