Beads of Hope

BEADS OF HOPE

Pendants, chains, accessories
Atop her pedestal
Scissors, wraps, bracelets
Glitter in the night
A ghastly thought crosses her mind
She falters in her stride
Her finger is bare
A gold ring is missing!

“For better, for worse…”
She echoes the friendly words
As she works through the basket of beads
To find a match for her apparel
Silver, polished, African
Coffee brown, lilac, hot pink
Bead by bead she embroiders
Her dream wedding gown

Round, hexagonal, cone shaped beads
Solid, transparent, big and small
Sequins, patterned, assorted
Red and gold, like cherry blossoms
Beads of hope, beads of love
Colour her reverie
Songs of enchantment
Woo her destiny

Like a crown on a tattered mannequin
Similar mental pictures fade away
Quietude, a dazzling light in her dream path
Happiness, the amazing result
She conquers her space once again
Like daffodils, the harbinger of spring
Sees new sprouts in every deadheaded rose
And revivifies immaculate hope beyond seasons

Counting bead after bead
A perpetual smile lights up her face
Holding on to a hope she cannot count
Whispers of ‘congrats’, ‘congrats’
Come through the clouded confusion
She will prevail
Ornamented
With beads of hope!

This poem by Flavia Kabuye won third prize in the 3rd BN annual Poetry award, 2011. She won 200 USD and autographed copies of The African Saga by Dr. Susan Kiguli and Unjumping by Beverley Nambozo Nsengiyunva

Battling Darkness

Battling darkness

Standing there watching;
Watching the skies darken
With soot and smoke,
Staining Blacker than the crows cawing
In the night surround.
Watching dreams die
In the heat that could be felt
In the mindless screams of men.
Of women. Of despair all around.
Standing there numb,
Numb with disbelief.
As the stall she had:
Had set her heart on,
In the fire burning hot,
Became one with the ground.
Morning dawned:
With lightning streaking the skies,
Thundering with the wailing of sirens
Bringing puny hoses. Expecting
To quench the heat
-The fury- of dying dreams.

Morning dawned:
With the breaking skies Pouring
Forth in torrents of fresh floods. Drenching
The flames. Quenching them. With the clean scents of heaven
Forming splintering rivers kissing her feet,
Bringing her all that she had
In the tin box that remained. It’s charred exterior protecting
Her solid memory of why;
She dreamed, she hoped, she strove.
Sewn on the table cloth passed down two generations
Her mother’s mantra, her heart’s song;
‘From ashes, we shall rise’.
And the sun broke from behind the clouds.

This poem by Rachel Kunihira won second prize in the 3rd BN annual Poetry award, 2011. She won 300 USD and autographed copies of The African Saga by Dr. Susan Kiguli and Unjumping by Beverley Nambozo Nsengiyunva