i almost forgot how beautiful my home was, because they paint my home with colours of hatred, bloodshed and famine.
they show everyone the images they create and we all believe them. they forget to show us the plush purple carpets the jacarandas create with their blossoms in the spring for the royal feet of the land’s inhabitants.
they don’t even consider painting the beautiful and tranquille sunset over the Zambezi. they paint my home as if there is nothing beautiful about it, and even the stolen children begin to believe it, and the stolen ones renounce their land for the islands they were held in captivity.
they paint my home with the colour of AIDS and political strife, in the same way they deliberately chose not to paint my home with the colours of the rainbow cast over Victoria Falls, but with the colours of savage living, the slums of Soweto and the crimes of Jo’burg.
they refused to paint my home with the gold of our royal ancestry, but with the dirt colours of our political misfortunes.
why don’t they paint it with the purity of the white clouds hovering over Table Top Mountain, or the purity of the diamonds of our vast mines? why don’t they paint it with the lively green stretching over the Nyanga mountains, and blanketing the KwaZulu Natal province?
why are they so intent on ruining the beauty of my home, that they paint it with the tyranical dictatorships of Mugabe and Gaddafi, and the polygamy of Mswati III?
sometimes they just choose not to paint it with the colours of Maputo and the port of Beira, as if Mozambique is not even on the map. and they paint it with poverty, and with past natural disasters and civil unrest.
they colour my land with human rights violations and the of genocides of Rwanda, the red of the blood diamonds of Congo, and the black of the fight for oil amongst the Nigerians, but they don’t paint with the rich cocoa beauty of the children of Ghana.
they choose to paint my home that is full of life with the arid deserts of the Sahara, and the Kalahari, as if my home is nothing but a desolate desert of disease, death and disaster.
they paint my home with the colours of backward thinking and with the brushes of a dying cause, that i even i begin to buy into their pictures and forget my own memories.
with optimism and the beauty of our smiles, i will light up a canvas, and fill it with the colours of the splendor of our land and the majesty of our people. my canvas will be rich with the colours of gems unstained by war or blood; alive with the greens of the equator, and the golden browns of the summer serengeti; with the brightness of the blue ocean and seas embracing us, and the clear skies above us.
and my canvas will glitter like the crystal nights that protect us. my colours will paint what they choose to ignore, and with my brushes i will bring them into a land of velvet jacaranda carpets, and warm sunshine kisses; a land of singing birds, and dancing rainbow beaded people.
if they won’t do it, i will show others what my home is truly like, and remind the stolen ones that there was a reason they longed to come back.