Women Writing Zimbabwe
Publication Year: 2008
Published by: African Books Collective
Table of Contents
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Thorn bush covered in a thick layer of dust. Grass and scrub emaciated by hungry cattle and goats. Flat-topped acacias with stunted branches stretching out like desperate hands. Their trunks stripped bare by man and beast alike for fodder or to light fires. Dry branches, snapped off like matches, awaiting burning....
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MASIBANDA’S JAW TIGHTENED as she glared at her granddaughter, ‘Siphiwe you haven’t yet done the floors.’ ‘I’ll do them, Gogo,’ the girl said not raising her eyes as she paged through a magazine. MaSibanda exhaled loudly through her nose, ‘When?’...
In the Heart of the Golden Triangle
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YOU HEAR YOUR MOTHER SAY TO Mai Mufundisi that her daughter has a big, big house in the golden triangle. ‘Right in the heart of the golden triangle,’ you hear her say. In the golden triangle, you live a stone’s throw from the Governor of the Reserve Bank. In the street behind the French...
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‘FINALLY!’ OBI FLUNG HIS ARMS WIDE over the dining table – photographs strewn everywhere – and then beat a tattoo with his fists on the tabletop for emphasis. That got our attention, mine and my mother’s....
Snowflakes in Winter
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‘NO, BABA! YOU’RE GOING IN the wrong direction. Southbound, take the southbound train to Stratfo … Hello! Babamukuru murikundinzwa here? Hello! Bloody …’
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THINK IKOYI, LAGOS, OR Upper Claremont, Cape Town, and if this proves difficult try London’s Hampstead or New York’s TriBeCa. Perhaps no longer the trendiest of locales, but places with a history of being trendy – places where people like to be seen. This is Avondale, Harare,...
Dream Over. Dream Again.
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MUNI BRIEFLY LOOKED BACK at her husband’s prostrate figure, then calmly walked out of the flat with Natsai on her back and a small suitcase in her left hand. The child’s soft snores rose and fell against her back. She walked to the bus stop, a shaky stick stuck in the dusty ground. There was already a queue waiting for the kombis or the occasional willing car....
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I AM LISTENING FOR THE sound of stealthy footsteps, but the house is silent. The bed is empty beside me as it has been for the past three years since Cornelius woke up one morning and with heaviness layering every word, told me he was leaving and wouldn’t be back....
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MBUYA SKIPA, HANNAH’S mother-in-law, lived in a small cottage separate from the main house, a living arrangement that did not go down well with family. The cottage, though it had been painted and curtained, was where the gardener had once lived....
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CHEMU SAT AT THE KITCHEN TABLE eating his lunch while Estelle did the ironing. A.k.a Esteli to Chemu, and all who knew her, she chattered away not minding that he didn’t respond. He liked hearing her voice. It was comforting. Even if he sometimes didn’t understand what she said, he still liked to hear her....
Everything is Nice, Zimbulele
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THE STENCH OF DEATH HUNG low in the air of Mbubi. The fumes overpowered cooking fires and fed life into the film of toxic black dust that blew over the ancient rubbish, permeating the air breathed in by snot-nosed children and skinny dogs, and awakening intoxicated men and nauseated, pregnant women....
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Bare bones. Hardly more than a girl, seeking assistance from health services that are no longer functioning and health workers who have lost all hope that they might be able to change anything. Sibo leaves the clinic, her feet dragging in the dust. She has lost so much blood, she is weak....
The Big Trip
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MARY PHIRI SLOWLY PULLED ON a pair of rubber gloves, squirted some washing-up liquid into the sink full of hot water, and prepared to wash up the breakfast dishes. She watched the bubbles froth before she picked up a cloth and swirled it round the first bowl. The remnants of cornflakes...
In Memory of the Nose Brigade
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THE OTHER DAY WE WERE STANDING by the bus stop waiting for a commuter omnibus that would take us to the city centre. We stood there for hours but the road remained as quiet and as empty as our stomachs. All we saw were the occasional posh 4 x 4s whose owners stared at us with...
Mainini Grace's Promise
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Since her disclosure, things had gradually changed. In time, the subtle had become obvious. The extended family seemed to have conveniently forgotten about their existence. Prior to that, their visits had been increasingly shrouded in an aura of something parallel to embarrassment...
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Page Count: 148
Publication Year: 2008