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MISS FIRE 2011


By Muruli Muhande


Sunday, May 15, 2011.


“She is the girl who was denied the fire! Yes. The girl who was denied the arts. But that woman stole it!” screamed the attention seeking lady clad in indigo.

“What? How can one be human without the two?”

The ‘woman’  was Mary Jane. She was receiving one of the most revered crowns on earth. The whole stadium directed millions of eyes to her. She gave a white-tooth smile to everyone. They all went red.

Long ago, before Obama’s grandfather came out of Bush, Africa depended on blacksmiths. The apprenticeship went on well until December 1980 when Mary Jane peeped into this world. They did not send her to the field; they took her to the house-girl bureau. A passport to acquire fees for her brother.

However, the denial was more glorious than the iron ground. Luck did crack every brick in her sack. The house she mouse-guarded belonged to a female activist who saw her into reading, writing and arithmetic. Women warring up warped women. Mary Jane is now a Master’s graduate! Of course, her father then wanted her back.

Have you ever seen a woman who fought her brothers, shut down her father, resurrected her mother, accused her submissive sister, and blamed the masculine gods? There she is! Bright for a blue occasion. Media house blinking rare burning cameras. She never fought ugly people who have nothing to lose; she made a mark.

Her courage even in sleep, her ambition even in eating, her honesty even in lovemaking, her intellect even in the traditional choir, her morality even in comedy and her opposition even to some church doctrines saw her into student president-ship. The very first in history; so far the last.

She had a voice that could curse you in such a way that you would look forward to a pilgrimage trip to hell. Her Heracles strength and beauty kissed our President into resignation via Facebook.

There she stood in a blushing but dangerous red cotton dress. A white-red striped headgear, white African earrings matched with an over-domineering belt and self-composed shoes, black stockings and sore-yellow lipsticks. Her majesty swayed her natural hair artificially and everyone swallowed the heat. Yes, she has an empire. She was Miss University before becoming Miss Commonwealth.

That is when the examiner started awarding marks. Her community service struck the poor. Her soft, swift, feet fleeted millions of poor bellies. Nobody asks for poverty appointment; it is right on the doorbell waiting for a cough. Poverty with jiggers. Poverty with refugees. Poverty with slum-dwellers. Poverty in courts. Poverty in drugs. HIV Poverty. Poverty in maternity wards. Poverty in ‘weaker’ gender. Poverty in schooling. Poverty in war and poverty in riches! She won the war without winning the war! Look here. She did a minor mania in a great way, touched a warrior, triggered the bombs, and slowly burned the enemy Poverty. It is still burning en-route to 2030!

If you miss her name on TV, look around, her face might be the lasting screen saver of your computer. She is just a woman. Ha?

Wait. Watch what is happening? She is making a thanksgiving speech. Her English! The media, ready for controversy, rolls and ‘action!’

Too much noise but all that was recorded is that she gave all the cash accompanying the award to charity! Charity! Charity, whoever she was, must be very lucky!

“Give a woman food; feed the society. Unless she becomes her own enemy.” It was the Indigo-clothed lady speaking loudly again.

Muruli Muhande is a Kenyan writer.  He has written six plays, a novel, short stories and countless poems yet to be published. A graduate of Language, linguistics and Linguistics from Egerton University, Kenya, Muruli currently teaches part-time at a high school.


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