Tuesday, August 25, 2009



Somewhere a bullet pierces a woman,
Beyond the reaped edges of her clan’s farmland.
She gets caught in a thicket whose thorns she does not feel,
Limp feet drag onto a tree whose name the woman does not know
With the sun at her back,
Here breaks the charm for luck.
Off her neck are the fetishes
From the sacrificial white hen, herb and hallowed water
To the bosom of the waiting earth.

The woman slumps, face down-
Watching her life drain away
Now the stained soil seeps from her lips;
Heavily the grain is still in the sack-
drawn to the feast a fly lands on her lips.
The light dips lower as the last sounds
Mute in the darkness, still she droops lower
into a night without mourning.

About her who fell unceremoniously
One day someday shall write;
No rock or wood marks the grave
Of these bleached broad bones
Save for a clump of wild sorghum
Hailing her lost name
By Sophie Brenda Alal
This poem won third prize in the first ever Beverley Nambozo Poetry Award in 2009, the first poetry award of its kind for Ugandan women. Sophia Brenda Alal won a cash prize of 100 USD. This award was proudly sponsored by Uganda Women Writers’ Association (FEMRITE), WordAlive Publishers and Uganda Health Marketing Group (UHMG).
Contact: ugpoetryaward@aol.com


Sembatya said...

Nambozo this is a truly great achievement. I congratulate you highly upon this.

Solomon said...

I have never heard of these awards before. Is this the first? Well done. Next time can you include men?

Nambozo Nsengiyunva said...

thanks, this is the second time round actually. the first call was last year in 2008 and the first award giving ceremony was in 2009. I would like to collaborate with someone to include men but for now it's women.

Boggart said...

Bev, I am not even going to call this a small beginning. I read through your speech at the award giving ceremony, I can't call the effort small.
May it rise to higher levels. b