I had a weekend to remember. There are moments you go through and when they are gone you are left with clear images of how you want the rest of your life to be. When Linda approached me to provide her with poets for Poetry Under The Stars, I just ran to my best of the best list and chose names. I had no idea what was coming. Of course we’ve been to many poetry events with these amazing people but we have never travelled in one bus together nor spent a night sharing what each of us has from their cup of wisdom.
I did imagine that my life was coming to an end, especially after the deep talk Raya Wambui gave on the morning after. It felt like death was calling. The ambiance was breathtaking. Much as we faced a few challenges concerning certain logistics like lateness of sound setup and little food, I really learnt a lot in one night. Nature’s Camp, Naivasha was cold. But we were huddled together by what we got from the stage. The bonding and energy kept the cold away. It was very hard to notice what the clock read.
I honestly did not know Chris, Tear Drops, Kwamboka and I were gonna end up doing the program, but it made me notice that this poetry isn’t just work. It is a calling. We were meant for this, and I remember sharing the same with Chris Mukasa on Sunday morning. Phy And The Band, and H_art The Band are people you want to keep staring at because they make music sound different, like it’s playing from within to the outside and not the other way round. On our way back home I realized I don’t really know myself. All those people came just because I asked them to. If my mother knew that, she would probably buy me an aeroplane so that we could ferry more people next time.
Perhaps the biggest lesson I learnt was that things get you unawares and you need always to be prepared for anything. When we arrived in Naivasha, the first thing Linda told Chris and I was that she was counting on us to run the show. It left us baffled for a few minutes but we still rolled up our sleeves and got to work. Tear Drops and Kwamboka did an awesome job EMCeeing. That was no joke. We begun without sound and still managed to capture everyone’s attention.
The Dj of the night blew us off with the retro and urban music he played. I didn’t know poets could dance. I won’t say everything about that here 🙂 but after the poetry was done at about 3:45am, people transformed, but I must mention one Nuru Bahati for surprising all of us. hehe
The bus was so quiet on our way back. I blacked out myself. The journey to Nairobi was short. It was hard parting ways. There after, Nuru, Kwamboka, Raya and I had lunch in town together as we talked. And speaking of Kwamboka…