Singing Vision

Philo Ikonya

Power packed,
energy and determination ring,
in a singing vision.
Songs injustice cannot break,
fight, or stop.

They hunt you for
singing justice on the street,
but when you go in,
prison cells are singing
Soprano, alto, tenor and base;
in drums.

clear and focused,
has power thrice over.
Our voices are our drums now,
injustice recoils in fear.
Its feet dance no more.
Take our lives,
we are unceasing.
We live in our history,
the past is always here.

We add our own words:

*Uhuru wetu!
We sing and we dance,
Call Jos in Nigeria,
The Ogoni, Ken Saro Wiwa,
our freedom is theirs.
We stand for every pain also in Somalia.
And we are not tossing coins about Mauritania.
We remember slave masters from the east before the west.
We do try to be just.

Song sang South Africa to liberty,
long bleeding shadows touching
the equator to help our fourth liberation,
evening and morning and midday;
in and below the Kalahari.
The struggle is long.
Sahara, we all are.

Let justice and truth flower, flower.
We know to be free,
We know who we are.
We sing our vision.

Don’t look for our echo in the World Bank latest hits.
International Monetary Fund, IMF,
Or other organizations don’t’ sing tunes.
They are here for cool banking services.

Our sunrise is,
us breaking trade barriers.
Front lights shining on misty daybreaks,
on our mothers, sons and daughters selling
maize and beans so fast,
with their own hands,
in the international market.

Yes we can,
we can with
our sweet potato feet.
Yam head and twin intelligence,
own study and prophecy,
Philosophy made in Afrika.

Out of Prison- Love Songs

philo Ikonya's picture

Philo Ikonya is a prolific poet and novelist. She has been described as poet who claims history and creates futures passionately. Philo was first a school teacher and later taught Semiotics in Tangaza College and Spanish at the United States International University, (USIU) in Nairobi Kenya., Between 2007 and 2009, Philo Ikonya, PEN Kenya president, was arrested brutally several times for speaking out against corruption and the foiling of freedom of expression in her country. Born in Kenya, Philo lives in Oslo in exile from 2009. She is respected by the people for being vocal and loved, but resisted by those for whom the bitterness of truth is too personal. Within the context of power, human rights and freedom of expression, Philo is in her element. She has been described by poet Shailja Patel as “Rejecting silence and refusing simplification as she battles corruption”. “This author describes what she is heavily involved in, and she manages to portray it so that it concerns us all.” Per Ole Kallestad, Norwegian poet., Philo Ikonya is the author of two novels: Kenya, will you marry me? Langaa, Cameroon, 2011, and Leading the Night, Twaweza Publications, Kenya, 2010. She authored poems translated into German and published in a bilingual edition titled Out of Prison: Love Songs (Aus dem Gefangnis Liebesgesange) published by Loecker Austria, 2010 and This Bread of Peace (Lapwing, Belfast) 2010. She has written three young readers books: We met a Grasshopper and Other Poems, The Lost Gazelle (By East African Educational Publishers) and The Kenyan boy who became President of America translated into Norwegian, Med røtter fra Kenya I det hvite hus published by Libretto, Oslo.

Last updated July 14, 2015