I have lived in many houses. If you
divide the years of my life by the number
of spaces I have occupied, I have lived in
each house a number of apocalyptic
years. I have waited too long to write
down the thoughts of my mother, her
yarns on good housekeeping, her tips
on hauling furniture over the lengths and
breadths of our beloved continent.
My mother once whitewashed
the house on Julius Nyerere Avenue.
in her white period.
White, like the fishermen’s cottages
in her favourite tapestry of the Sardinian Sea.
Blinded by the glare, my father drove by
twice. He found us accidentally, when my
brother lit a Lucky Strike and set the garden
shed on fire. We were reunited by a smoke
column hanging over Julius Nyerere Avenue.
These days, a faded blue tapestry reflects
my mother’s warped mumblings.
What were you thinking, Mother?
I have tried to trace your stitches,
analyse the thread leading
to a diminishing monologue.
The thoughts of my mother
were swallowed by a silver fish.