Posted in book review, inspiration, my library, personalgrowth, reading

What I Know For Sure

In just a day I concluded this awesome book by the one and only Oprah. She lets a reader through her life but take note this is no memoir but aligning her life to some things she knows in a most captivating eye opener mode. She fuses in joy, power, connection, possibility, gratitude, awe, clarity and resilience to compile one short motivational book.  And from that, this is

oprah.com
What Eva knows for sure
  • Every day brings a chance for you to draw in a breath, kick off your shoes, and step out and dance-to live free of regret and filled as much joy, fun and laughter as you can stand.
  • Pleasure is energy reciprocated. What you put out comes back. Your base level of pleasure is determined by how you view your whole life.
  • Life is full of delightful treasures. If we take a moment to appreciate them, these moments are powerful. They can be your recharge, your breathing space, your chance to reconnect with you.
  • A meal that brings you real joy will do you more good in the long and short term than a lot of filler food.
  • I don’t want to live a shutdown life-desensitized to feeling and seeing. I want every day to be a fresh start on expanding what is possible.
  • Reading opens you up. It exposes you and gives you access to anything your mind can hold.
  • Healing the wounds of the past is one of the biggest and most worthwhile challenges of life. It’s important to know when and how you are programmed, so you can change the program. And doing so is your responsible, no one’s else.
  • When you have nothing to be ashamed of, when you know who you are and what you stand for, you stand in wisdom.
  • Lack of intimacy is not distance from someone else; it is disregard for yourself.
  • Life is better when you share it. It even gets sweeter when you expand the circle.
  • Pets represent our lives: a connection to caring that’s unconditional. And reciprocal.
  • Appreciating whatever comes up for you in life changes your whole world. You radiate and generate more goodness for yourself when you’re aware of all you have and not focusing on your have-nots. If you make time for a little gratitude every day, you’ll be amazed by the results.
  • Whatever you fear most has no power-its fear that has the power. The thing itself cannot touch you but your fear can rob you of your life. Each time you give in to it, you lose strength, while your fear gains it. That’s why you must decide that no matter how difficult the path ahead seems, you will push past your anxiety and keep on stepping.
  • If you can get paid for doing what you love, every paycheck is a bonus. Give yourself the bonus of a lifetime: pursue your passion. Discover what you love. Then do it.
  • The big miracles we’re waiting on are happening right in front of us, at every moment, with every breath. Open your eyes and hear and you will begin to see them.
  • Having the best things is no substitute for having the best life. When you can let go of the desire to acquire, you know you are really on your way.
  • Always do your best. That is the most fulfilling path to personal freedom
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Posted in African literature, book review, humour, my library, personalgrowth, reading

We need New Names

“Look at them leaving in droves, the children of the land, just look at them leaving in droves. Those with nothing are crossing borders. Those with strength are crossing borders. Those with ambitions are crossing borders. Those with hopes are crossing borders. Those with loss are crossing borders.  Those in pain are crossing borders…”

The characters, the names oooh my . Who comes up with such names? Bastard (naughtiest of all), Sbho, Stina, Godknows (always asking ques), Chipo (if you in my country this is fries/ female got laid and in the book she got laid by her grandfather?!), Mother of Love, Mother of Bones, Prophet Revelations Bitchington Mborro, Bonfree…man i could go on with the names but someone take me back. Take me back yas-yass-yaaasss. I think i need to see more creativity of names in the books i read next. Any who, Darling the main chic used to live a normal life where food, clothes, luxuries were not an issue until all that went away and her family relocated to the shacks. Her father ran to South Africa since tough economic times in Zimbabwe needed one to man up only for him to come back with AIDS! Life at the tins was not bad at all as tree climbing and stealing of guavas survived her and her pals. The gifts they got from the NGO peeps made them even more happier. And then all that changed for cabbage ears as her aunt took her in, in America and adjusting was not easy but she managed although missed her home terribly.
What happened on the last chapter of the book is that i lost concentration dance. I got bored by the ending (a jealous Chipo blaming D from running away from home, D reminiscing or did i miss something in between?) and just winded it for the sake of winding it. However, what captivated me the most is that Bulawayo deviated from the norm. The norm where authors come up with sweet names, the ideology where one leaves for the States and all this racism occurs;didn’t dwell on that just a sneak peak. The belief that living in shacks is hell nope-gif but the life these buddies had i would die for-Paradise is where the fun is. The humor, way of expression i mean you have to read it to know what am talking about. But all this misery boiled down to: poor governance, inflation, dictatorship, corruption, colonialism and a cry for change.

“……they flee their own wretched land so their hunger may be pacified in foreign lands, their tears wiped away in strange lands, the wounds of their despair bandaged in faraway lands, their blistered prayers muttered in the darkness of queer lands…”

Posted in book review, conservation, development, environment, inspiration, Kenyan Literature, my library, personalgrowth, politics, reading

UNBOWED

“Democracy does not solve problems. It does not automatically combat poverty or stop deforestation. However, without it, the ability for people to solve problems or become less poor or respect their environment is, I believe, impossible.”

 Corruption, public land grabbing, deforestation, environmental degradation, gender inequality, human rights abuse, divorce, mass protests, religion influence into politics, dictatorship, ethnic clashes I could go on and on but all this did not start yesterday. A woman faced it all, stood rooted to the ground and never gave up. Maybe this was the reason she continued to appear before courts and making jail her second home: No matter how dark the cloud, there is always a thin, silver lining, and that is what we must look for. The silver lining will come, if not to us then to next generation or the generation after that. And maybe with that generation the lining will no longer be thin. She knew that her effortless works in ensuring that Karura forest was not grabbed by greedy individuals the government had given parcels of land to would not build mansions into it. Uhuru gardens a park was not left out as a skyscraper building would replace it but not when she was still alive. Deforestation at the Mau forest was slowly wiping it away and Wangari was not pleased. A cry of the people made her run for the parliamentarian seat where the government made sure to see her fall by spreading malice. However, she won. The government considered her mad, disrespectful towards the president but they could yap day and night, throw all kinds of shade to her and she would not give a damn about it.

Looking at today’s society logging still deforests forests, women have become empowered so inequality now becomes an issue to the male child, corruption is the air we breathe, public land grabbing happens under our watch, violence due to politics burns like hell, cancer is now deadly than ever, we rarely plant trees thus people confuse hailstorms for snow-climate change and we so done with dictatorship. It is during her time that she joined hands with famous politicians to outdo the retired President’s Moi regime. That was the first uniting of a kind where tribe did not matter and together change happened (why can’t we be this united?) Change where one’s voice mattered. Her memoir is one to be borrowed into society and we can learn a thing or two. No a lot! She shall forever be remembered and more so for been the first African woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize.

In her words I will conclude her summary in this intriguing words of wisdom that I captured in between pages:

“Trees are living symbols of peace and hope. A tree has roots in the soil yet reaches to the sky. It tells us that in order to aspire we need to be grounded, and that no matter how high we go it is from our roots that we draw sustenance. It is a reminder to all of us who have had success that we cannot forget where we came from. It signifies that no matter how powerful we become in government or how many awards we receive, our power and strength and our ability to reach our goals depend on the people, those whose work remains unseen, who are the soil out of which we grow, the shoulders on which we stand.”

 

 

Posted in inspiration, personalgrowth, writing

Flower Speaketh

via Daily Prompt: Pluck

A flower, flourishing in the middle of a desert thanks to the short rains that remembered to rain in this part of the Sahara. I have been sprouting for ages now but each month they come and pluck me out. Last time a camel almost swallowed me whole but i think i wasn’t sweet enough as it proceeded to the horizon. I do not know if am the first of my kind, if i had parents from which i came from or even siblings that surrounded me. All i know is that am sick of this sand that keeps on sneezing its dirt towards me. Hachuuu i think i got a cold.

My energy has been sucked up by bzzzzing creatures that keep on bzzzzing, flapping, bzzziiing, flapping till its belly is full. Then there is another so beautiful with so many colors that make me think I’ve met my creator. It almost resembles those colors up high when it rains. However, my reason for plucking is the reason as to why humans crossing over here continue to pluck me.

They always seem to be in worry. Their saddened faces always have two formation of a flowing river that seems to be overflowing. They pick me up from the ground that really hurts like someone who decided to defecate after constipation. Give me a long stare as if they found their solutions to their problems. One by one they pluck my petals and with each pluck they have a tale attached to it.

Why do i have to be poor? Why can’t i settle down? Why can’t i rescue myself from this slavery? Why did he hurt me? Why can’t i be happy? Why can’t i provide for my family? All the whys have made me wonder if why is a person. To some they pluck my blinding petals with vengeance? She will know me! They will pay for it. They will rot in hell. With the thunder in their voice, they make me shake literally and scream at the rate they throw me away as if am that ugly! Oooh and how they tear me apart bleeds to my sepals.

But there are the chosen few who pluck me with a bright smile as if i got pollinated. They are always tossing me like a baby celebrating. With a pluck they shout to love, to happiness, to wealth, to health, to life as if they won all the endless lottery challenges and always stops with a yuhuuuu.

I have been contemplating that there exists positive and negative forces that lead to my plucking. For a reason i know i cause relief to humans but wish i could speak back when they talk and shout at me.

Whatever the hurdles, there is always a booming season waiting for us to be quenched and satisfied. We only need to pluck the unwanted to see ahead.

Why do you pluck me?

 

Posted in community, culture, development, national holidays, politics

Stool Society

News across the world have been making me worried of what is happening in nations. For instances: Mosul has been under attack as ISIL has replaced hundred thousands of its residents mercilessly killing thousands. The thing about watching CNN,BBC and Al-Jazeera (i rarely watch local news) is that they bring the action close to you and hearing children narrate ordeals and loved ones cry for their dead family members makes you want to join the Holy order. Marawi in the Philippines under the ISIS attack has seen people stay indoors as rescuers take their risk and go around homes to rescue survivors; then martial law is taking over! Syria has been on the forefront of war since I can remember, 6 years, yes you heard me and still ongoing (take a break!) Iran and Afghanistan are other nations that bombs are not a vocabulary and peace is the jargon. London has also had its fair share of terror attacks especially the van attacks and after Ariana’s concert. North Korea and its missiles, dammit! What are they launching that never ceases? 100+ days under the Trump administration in the USA where deals and agreements make me go like “who voted you in?” It is so covfefe in there but hey Happy Independence Day.

usa
quintdaily.com

Back to Mama Africa and we are greeted by the despair in Mali. What happened to it having been the first African Nation to have the best university in Timbuktu? Did you know people from all the world used to come to Mali to study? What then happened to it been like a desert where war never fades? Libya; you caught my eyes during Gaddafi’s tenure but after his death I thought you could cool off but to the surprise of many war mode is still on. So many migrants are crossing over to Europe states and soon the Westerners shall not accommodate you all. Boko Haram in Nigeria showcased they can make over 200 girls disappear but seems they are surrendering to the Nigerian Army and I smell a win.  In South Sudan it seems the peace agreement was used to light someone’s stove even before it could be digested in as the 2 horses can never put their grudges behind. Now I hear there is a humanitarian catastrophe. Al-shabab in Somalia and also partly in my country continue to terrorize nations that have known conciliation since time in memorial. Civil wars in DRC Congo and Central African Republic; border wars between Eritrea and Djibouti yet so small states but with the ongoing African Union Summit let me wait and see how they address conflict. The recent disturbance is how Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt, Bahrain could cut ties with Qatar. Those 13 demands are hysterical to say the least but come on, do not shut down Al-Jazeera and end this Gulf crisis! We (Kenya) head for the polls on August 8th and we pray amity shall prevail and no past shall haunt us. In fact on August 4th Rwanda votes and anticipate we shall emulate them.

All this and much more reminds me of a comparison of society to a traditional stool in the UNBOWED book

unbowed
amazon.com

. It has 3 legs that represent three critical pillars of just and stable societies. The 1st leg stands for democratic space, where rights are respected, whether they are human rights, women rights, children rights or environmental rights. The 2nd represent sustainable and equitable management of resources. And the 3rd stands for cultures of peace that are deliberately cultivated with communities and nations. The seat represents society and its prospects for development. Unless all three legs are in place, supporting the seat, no society can thrive. Neither can its citizens develop their skills and creativity. When one leg is missing, the seat is unstable; when two are missing it is impossible to keep any state alive; and when no legs are available, the state is as good as a failed state. No development can take place in such a state either. Instead, conflict ensues.

You can clearly see that in some nations they are either missing one leg, two or three legs. How well we thrive and bring back the stool to its stability depends on all our efforts but how far can we go for firmness?