Trees. Trees. More trees… Cotton fields… Sunflower fields…
Trees interspersed with cotton fields and sunflower fields
Carousel past my train window at the speed of tumbleweeds
Before a hurricane.
My eyes play tag with the giant red anthills in the horizon that
Tower over the fields like vacant lighthouses on dead beaches.
Billows of black smoke cartwheeling through the skies canvas what is left of
Vultures are stripping what is left of an elephant carcass while wrestling off
Hyena cubs in fields of rotting, unripened watermelons.
We stop on the edge of the dry savanna and are greeted in the distance by
Gigantically monstrous, cumulonimbus clouds that threaten to crack open like
Hatching eggs above the scorching dryness that is thirsting for a quench.
Slowly, the train begins to pull away from the arid stop and rhythmic melodies
Of the globules of cool rain begin a wet symphony on the tin roof of the tired train
As it Tshongololos its way past the kopjes that are steaming up from the raindrops.
I am home. This scent of cooling, half-baked mud and the glistening skirts of the acacia trees
Hypnotise me back into the reality of the meaning of ‘home’.
My grandmother’s clay painted hut is in the distance and I can hear the bellowing cows and
Why do I ever leave, only to be reminded of the priceless value of the constants that connect me to this soil that seeps me back in every time I return…
Frank Malaba © 2016
photo credit: Camp Amalinda Website