Three Poems

By Razack Buwaso

Sinful World 

Orchestrated or just a coincidence?
I love the way the oppressed are resilient.
The Bible says that the government should preserve order in a sinful world
So that people may live, in Paul’s words, “peaceful and quiet lives.”
That is not the fate that befell my fallen nation.
In our burning house, order has not been preserved,
And people cannot live,
For the lawmakers break the law
As unthinkingly as a man who breaks his word.
Abductions, torture, murders, dungeons are stories told over tea along silent streets.
They make the laws
And decide to whom, and when, and where the law applies.
I come from the sinful world beyond these thick walls.


What If

We could just go into the streets
To correct their mistakes,
To undo the past.
My country would have had it easier
If better decisions were made.

If only we could go back in time
Our leaders would have been better,
Corruption and guilt
Would have been spared us,
Our minds would be less haunted now
By unwanted memories of the past.

If only we could go back in time
With the knowledge we have now,
To unspeak the words that were spoken,
To undo bitter actions,
Uganda would have turned out fine.

And yet, if we could go back in time,
Would I?
Would we?
What are we if not our pasts and actions?
They have made us the broken generation we are today.


My Marks

These innumerable dermatological ulcerations are not just marks
But the cost of my freedom, my right to speak,
The cost of me fuming, exuding a stench, spreading poison,
The things a dictator never wants to hear,
While the cost to him was some sweat and pain in his nerve endings.
These marks are my blubbering sweet nonsense.
I just want ma freedom to call!!
You cannibals, zombies, idiots, dimwits, boors, curmudgeons, microcephalics, hyenas,
I will not be deprived.
I will not take their impunity with equanimity.
I have a right to describe their foolishness,
They’ve no right to dehumanise me.
My tormentors are dying a slow death,
Those chamchas.

27 October, 2023