Per Ardua Ad Astra

If truth be told:        Life is pain. When you break down, just to pick up odds that you’re set up against. Suffer vain, get struck again.  Bleeding out like a ruptured vein. The rapture of flames, preordained fractured leaves you badly scathed. There’s scars. Then there’s an emptiness deflowered by my chest… Continue reading Per Ardua Ad Astra

Survivor’s Remorse

I didn’t think I deserved love. Imagined myself a burden, the friend who was dealing with so much misfortunes. I had learnt how to tell, that I was hurting, needed a little help. It turns out, I was keeping catalogue of the times I stripped bare and vulnerable; reaching out. They were times, the universe… Continue reading Survivor’s Remorse

Proof of Life:

Sometimes, after confronting what many cancer survivors call: “The Why Question [Phase]”; I used to stretch my imagination to accommodate the idea that a timeline on death makes things very clear. It is what I later named one of my favourite paintings after: Lethal Clarity. It all didn’t sum up to that astronomical stretch all… Continue reading Proof of Life:

Stains of Time

Divide God into logic

You’ll find the true author of creation in the premise

How accurate is time
separated from itself?

Amending the cries
for when the ribs sink
with the scent of after-rain laughters
The weather blight

No hand to ink
a goodbye at dispersed

Shoes revived by a fallow till
Books vied high hollow skills

Like a wind story
But time cropped like
chance names but a pollen
among the fever of her marriage

An Elliptical Distance

For the moments relapse and metastases hijacked the traditional equal of producing an end-solution prognosis, it would only mean that I would probably have multiple treatment graft to the idea that only a disease known needed one treatment.

“Your body is rejecting treatment and we have to reevaluate your oncology plans, suggestively there could be a possible incompatibility of your immune response with the sessions you have successfully completed. Or perhaps there’s an aggressive spread countering what we had earlier thought would be your effective prognosis. I need you to understand this, that we are identifying the possibility of changing your therapies or going management until our team and you agree on what to do. We’re gonna take other more tests and review the medical files to advise us on a better plan. You may ask any question you have, I’ll prefer a comfortable lounge at the doctors plaza or wherever you feel okay with you I’ll commit. We shall commit to a deliberately less technical talk.”


Dr. Clay was a great molding. If she didn’t leave me a book over the chemo bag emptying into my veins for a few hours she’d hand me her journal to write anything I felt. At night shifts she’d round every bed in the ward having a hearty laugh with the patients. A young gift of sight, I compared her hazel eyes with a comfort I wouldn’t turn away from even at the greatest despair of my hospital admissions. She was bright and intelligent, if her laughter didn’t heal your unhealthy wounds it balanced you on some skipping rope of hope like a cheerleader of your childhood playground.


The god-gap minimized. That in a version of being where we have numerous universes parallel to the one you are in; probably with diverse, tiny, enormous and unabridged differences, it was possible that the omni-derivative nature of God wasn’t some traceable mileage seated on celestial gratification. No. Maybe infinitum was and is compensated rightfully where with one’s self conviction abd compassion would drive you to attain the events harnessing love. Whatever the degeneration, there was always a method of transferring “To Be (And Or Not)” into attunement and being.


But this was a trademarked version of a malady. It was cancer, the diagnosis had revealed a two-and-a half-year-old failure of my intrinsic system to inform my imagination of a possible entry and visit of such a maledication that had uttered itself a refuge in my life.


Much of the days themselves invited under a canopy of a multi-layered uncertainties. If you were sure about a thing, it was the distance – and ultimately the tipping swing between two ends that are so much likely similar. You had to collect your relics and debris and promise your grave that you’ll reach safe with the end of the roads a complete package possible.



Cancer made me feel agnostic about how temporary life is. How permanently we are destroyed in the face of brittle creation of keeping an ulterior motive of living. Of covert ‘withouts’, that sometimes you cross the floor into the afterlife. It wasn’t a process. It wasn’t an event migrating like the wonders of wild destinies searching for the other side of the river. And if there is a symbol, it’s how the voids such as seas and black holes are herders of streams and shallow poodles. It is a temporary forever.

When you stock encryptions away from the love around sympathy and whatnot offered to you in the eyes of utter helplessness. Family and friends felt like a hollow conduit of deepened wells running in your soft parts to keep them off on a tendril pedestal, if you succeeded it became an insanity – a waterboarding climbing on your consciousness that leaves you in monologue conversations with yourself over the monstrosity of afflictions left impressed on them by your damned situation.


And it turned out a bag of dew gravely infusing an intravenous wall over the scar gardens surrounding your life. Makes it not less vegetative, when you dot the connection between graceful sunsets and those little beginnings.


It’s somewhat helpful that the only age consenting in these writings I make is a prose foot-falling towards an unclear revelations of the furthest height a pendulum would swing.
And the best vision that can be found is an archaeological ugliness of a writer not willing to say how much of life he has had to live or a vain poet of aphorism introverted to melancholic burials and severe affinity for metaphors.


No one needed allegories when it comes to diseases, love or letters and music. In an age charitable to a caucus of maiming parallelism. You were either too much or too little, mainstream or underwear. Ecstatic or cold-steel. I killed the pleasure to be high with an immediate orgasm. Not to disregard the all neatly applauded breeds but to suggest my own ascension balancing the acts regardless the mind-reading and decryption attempts on my levels of death.


But for a comedian manual drawn by a half-mast curtain, the hero villain was an omni-benevolent author who designs a divine and haphazard plot with tragic theatrics either helpless to not intervene (confirm predestination) or bored by a creation that would rather plagiarize existence than forge a deification.


At some of my earliest childhood ward admissions, I remember. When my grandmother’s wrinkles were beginning to row on her beautiful face. Her glasses on. And it still makes me laugh the littlest nostalgia out of my hurting memory in the chest how her boyfriend – I miss you Frankie, my old man – used to come home singing some reminiscent songs he probably asked her out with during ‘their times’.
And she’d blush, I tell you how beautiful an old girl blushes… sometimes I’d run to where I kept Julie’s picture to fantasize of a twin moment like that. She who would bring me bougainvillea flowers red as love when I was sick, she was a part of me that withered but blooms with every purchased memory of us growing together with mama.


My grandfather was a quiet deep gravity and planned with remarkable gifts. On Sunday I’d struggle behind his typewriter bleeding his handwritten lecture notes or letters or if you mistook the punishment was a neatly typewritten one-paged essay on your efforts to be better than then. We’d watch the sun go down to invite Monday at home playing the guitar or piano. Other times family meetings over uji and honey and mangoes and pomegranate from ‘nyakrundu’ where his grave lies today.

Uko afterlife
lakini tuko interface
Nyabondo kwa plateau…”

– Soul Ascension (MTE)

“…Mpiga picha,
kwenye ukuta
roho zenu zinatutuliza hisia.”

– Kilio cha Darubini (PKAD)


My only regret is that if I survive the chasm, my brother we wouldn’t have to compete on who completely make mama blush, swept off-feet. That you wouldn’t rightly pick my PhD graduation picture off your house to wipe the dusts every fortnight with dewy eyes like mine. Or have you listen to me sampling your 1970’s gramophone recording and archives remaining after the library burnt down half the price and all the four family albums gone to the ashes. That my last photo shoot was two years earlier than the flowers we tended on the verandah, that withered as if they noticed your departure. And if there are still halos left, I permit God to crown you one my friend. You were the end that started with me. I miss you.

“Mama, why do they call me after his name? I want to watch the sunset with you when I feel better.”

I thought it’d be easier to say how much I loved her. Them. Turns out it took me twenty years and forty days in the HDU to make the closest attempt that didn’t even arrive at the mark. You know how intensely forevermore can engrave an esoteric hub on your throat and your heart would press on a sluggish hydraulic followed by watermarked heavens reigning duty in your eyes.

“The ECD screens. It’s beeping. Mama…”

I would say amidst my hands searching for the buttons to adjust the bed all stringed by tubes and electrocardiogram censors.

“It’s okay. Doki. You don’t have to say it. I know you do.”

It’s one of those times I have wanted to sample like a “Through the Wire” courtesies, except my accidents were eternal and the journeys were an eclipse of something I had pursued to not follow my destiny even to the point when one relinquishes an existential ideations to a bonding creator with their lease of faith. The grace of benevolence to reach consequential pain and wear on a breed of humanity that’s primarily innocent until original sins are introduced.
Sooner, after infinity what would be the logic of compensating the infections that life met when it was in the watch of an oversight remorse?


Brutal compatibility wasn’t a convenient conversation to point at a honest ratio of faith and reason. Certainly, the moon was simpler version of an ever existence of owl dreamt nights plagiarizing the sun to cast unto the orbiting darkness.


That if there was a reference cradle of immortality, why would it wait for fissioned particles to confirm an identity of evolutionary programmes such as genetic malware and diseases and war and deprivation and ignorance and… to save selective blueprints? And maybe faith was a narrative blatantly conserving the sacrosanct outlawing of an inquiry into all the uncomfortable questions that began with “Why’s” and ended up in pulsating ellipses dared not a confirmation.


That the premise for terminal decadence sometimes remained as the little craters I memorize from my girl’s eyes. The ones she disguises behind sheer digressions. Fond and helpless you’d fawn her hair and harvest the little temporaries that with causality, your guardian angel was tiny in those simple eruptions called tears and see your mother in hers.


Life was a broadcasting. We maintained contact with foreign sorrows as germs beneath an avalanche abandoned in a flowing path. And afterlife to me reshuffled in sight that sometimes the ultra-violence of knowing beforehand the branching leap of the roads stayed moments to walk me down the streets queued on soundtracks recorded mostly in the MRI images filed on my medical folder. And it’s blooming. It is withered. A foreign sorrow begotten where hearts fan the weather of joys withheld.


Maybe that after tolomeres surrender to a blitzed functions of being, or life, the whole time it was talks over conditional press on hypothesis buttons. We didn’t know as we don’t know.


We just. Fold smiles neatly, if they pocketed your shoes on their feet and died a tiny bit palm-reading your horoscopes they deserved an orbit around where your eyes well. And it was almost forbidden to lead one where the heart bleeds itself into an inflicted soul, it is utter surgery that might prevail a euthanized cuddle to spend even the latest of the infinities that numbers:

“River rise
Carry me back home
(I cannot remember the way)
River rise
Carry me back home
(I surrender today)”

– India Arie, Rivers Rise

And it killed me a while that I was the leaf of a lotus flower as a child growing up. I would never talk about her asthma, it was my only warm lifeguard. On cold nights her bedroom was written hazards and her health resurrected my push off a pedestal cliff edge. And if there be times I have genuinely prayed, are those I eavesdropped her name broken songs for a panel in eternal meadows.

“I pray everyday. Even if God don’t ever answer. And nights too.”


Was her talent to hold a family half orphaned of its members impressive? And I swore to look back at the lot of wounds so I would turn into salted pain and go hygienic with serenity on things I didn’t understand.


Having grown older a philosopher, I could sometimes dare the hands of God to lift the stone he self created. He created himself. And she’d know that her eyes were never haggard and withdrawn. There, was a tower I collected grey areas into brilliant possibility fonts. They whispered opening blossoms of my clover arms like a libation frankincense following the wings of North Star as Shepherds recited hadiths with the lambs. I don’t know if I would have made it without her. If I did, those night prayers were not fireflies warming a mutational moth at my heart; they were instruments of the quiet distances where our souls were peers and held hands. Where martyrdom of fate didn’t matter and God’s grace were wedding rings flocked on our marriage – forever I would remain indebted, Minwa.


It was Locksmith who made me see her kneeling every night through the keyhole if I refused to sleep in her bed and supplicant hers would coil me into a snail with the luggage of burdens suffocating the pillow with grief no garden called cemetery has ever grown.

“Little lamb in a lion’s grip
Tryin’ to read (what was) uttered from my mother’s dying lips.”


And I hurt that I released you beneath my heels to the questions of the ‘afterlife’ – all who have treaded slip before our traffic lead us a green hand.


Sitting at lonely edges maintaining a chemistry that solitude would fear, I could listen to the sky. Below was a harvesting fields. If the heavens poured outwards their wounds, the earth would sprinkle with seeds and shed it’s deciduous seasons into growing harvests. And it didn’t matter if the caste was a fallow ballot box, the silent majority entering forested states in dust and returns. The tongue separated birth and death with just a floodgate, and that was fine taste of sleeves buried deep into vain that it invokes a famine of ashes by a moistened hand dipped into absent eternities. Almost every smallest integer stroked a few staying memories.


If they fail. The memorized child of the matrix pod, ours was a wage of remaining with a fraction every time we ascended the rejection of the body. Every time we laboured with the symbols taping stickers on the ward walls, how reminded we are memoed that the hourglass eats its own stomach to turn the clock a handful of ashes.

That, “To dice, thrown a cast. And to Rubicon, sketched the claiming bridge over a river.”


My Gemini as a pair of tickets. One for my mother’s basket and the other a wedlock to my Cancer. To amber light and fragile laments:

“Baby don’t cry. You gotta keep your head up. Even though the road is hard never give up.” Names my mentor, the tailpiece.

Tupac Shakur.

Blooming Rains – A Memorised Therapy

I don’t know how else it was beautiful to return the cattles back home after a delayed afternoon of dripping heavens and flooding earth, when then it was duty of the eye to keenly watch at the notoriously thieving bull while the down-to-earth heifer stole a show on you from the wildest grandmother in the… Continue reading Blooming Rains – A Memorised Therapy

Decorative Scars, A Medal Won

The first impressions engraved behind the photograph was the soot advanced on the edge of the negative plastered front wisely. Such an archival material from the pondered darkness engulfed on a seemingly collected face. Collected like flower fellows scooped by a look that reminds the winds the last strew of cremation dusts leaving the spade.… Continue reading Decorative Scars, A Medal Won