Mombasa Raha, Raha Mombasa: Binti Mombasa

We cradle the bones of the dead time, writing songs and singing to no one.
About this town where each citizen is a poet. A torment, a self-mutilation,
crucified by poetry, by the old wisdom, the manners, the traditions,
the kindness and the generosity of those who have so little.
This city of wedding singers, of course we are dying as we are.
From a mutilating tenderness,
a bruisedness. For hearts we have placed where they can be struck out.
The violence done us by the leaders who kills us,
by starvation, by rhetoric, by any means necessary—
We fling ourselves back, beset, choose heartsickness instead of rage.
These are only the expected cruelties of the beloved that spurns our courting.
We cannot begrudge them, this is the coast, we die as if by chivalry.


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