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143 Mgeni Tiel Aisha Ansari "Majimaji!" was the battle-spell that promised to reduce hot German lead to water. But Matumbi warriors fell: it's blood, red damu, that the bullets shed. It's been a long time since my ears have heard Swahili spoken in miembe shade, the coolness of a mango grove. The word I went by then was zungu, insult made to fit my paler skin. I had no name. They still remembered hippo-hide viboko, whips and shackles. For years, I bore the blame of upe: "whiteness", by a purely local standard. Of the names they gave me, best was this: mgeni. "Stranger" equals "guest." *Swahili words used in this poem maji: water damu: blood miembe: mango trees viboko: hippos, hippo-hide whips, heavy blows zungu: white person, European or American upe: whiteness mgeni: stranger, visitor, guest ...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9780797496989
Related ISBN
9780797486164
MARC Record
OCLC
1056749179
Pages
300
Launched on MUSE
2018-10-14
Language
English
Open Access
No
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