An African Woman I Am... A Blessing Or A Curse

I wake up! at the crack of dawn,
Its still dark outside,
The sun still stretching and darkness insist to hold its ground.
Without complaining I pick my bucket,
down to the stream I go.
Harming my favorite song, swinging my hips from side to side.
An African woman I am,
My head held high like a Peacock,
My eyes glittering in the darkness,
Voluptuous body I have,
With skin dark and flare, a beauty worth to stare,
an African woman I am, A blessing or a curse.

To the stream I arrive, the crocodiles still asleep,
The frog making tune as they croak,
The snakes stare at a distance,
Afraid to reach for my heals,
For I will fight to the death,
An African woman I am,
With all my might I place the water on my head,
Set back to my home,
For the routine is evident,
Swipe the compound, make breakfast,
Before the first cock crows,
An African woman I am, A blessing or a curse

On the first cock crow,
I get the kids ready for school,
Prepare my husband bath water,
Get his clothes ready,
Do the dishes, then laundry
An African woman I am,
Finally the second cock crows,
Signifying that darkness complied,
And light has won, for the day is becoming bright.
My husband calls, "WOMAN"
My blood boil, and panic gets to my bone,
I run to tend to him, for I know his demand,
His water is ready, breakfast on the table,
An African woman I am, a Blessing or a course

I sit by his side watch him eat,
My stomach rumbling for I am hungry,
He glares and smile when he eats the last bit,
"You women eat in the kitchen, so you must be full, " He says.
I smile back as he stands to leave,
For I was raised not to argue with my husband,
An African woman I am,
I watch as he leave, Then go back to my daily routine,
Go to the farm, Pick up some vegetable,
Head for the market, and try to sell,
For I know there is nothing at home for super,
I need to be back home before the sun sets,
For I should be home before my husband,
or trouble will be witnessed in paradise,
An African woman I am, a blessing or a curse.

I sit and stare at the young women in the market,
Swinging there hips and laughing,
Always wondering do they know what awaits them,
With bracelet and colorful clothes,
with joy and carefree attitude,
Always gossiping about the men, they will marry,
An African woman I am,
Slowly discussing what there mother told them,
To always respect their husband,
Do house work, and be clean,
have as many children as the husband want,
To always apologize even when your right,
Never talk back to your husband, or share your opinion,
Not to share issues of your marriage with anyone,
Suffer in silence, I thought,
An African woman I am, a blessing or a Curse.

Thinking of me when I came of age,
Men preyed and with gift they visited my home,
My father was flourished with drinks at the village bar,
I walked with pride for my breast was full
and now I shall leave my family home,
To my husband's home,
An African woman I am,
The day comes to an end and my husband is home,
Then it starts all over again,
He is drunk, so I have to be prepared,
For the beating in case you are wondering,
Nothing I do is ever done right,
Nothing I say is right either,
I lay by his side and ask myself
When will it stop?
I am an African woman, but is it a blessing or a curse I wonder?

by Vivian Muciri

Comments (2)

I find this poem truly amazing. Such a swirling pot of emotive storytelling and insight into your day by day rampant life with all its colour and depth. So far removed from me, it is deep, descriptive and so well written in all sense. Thank you for such an eye opening read Vivian. Geoffrey.
very touching poem, and as an African man I feel ashamed that some places still have this old age belief that a woman is inferior than a man. if that's the case then we are not practising the democracy our forefathers fought and died for. I am an African man and am very proud that my wife is my equal... but the poem is well written and very detailed. excellent poem. Siya_! !