Keys in the river

Is It

is it your warmth
is it your beauty
is it your courage
is it your sweetness
what is it?

it must be your breath
it must be your voice
it must be your laughter
it must be your smile
what is it?

is it when you breathe
is it when you talk
is it when you laugh
is it when you smile
what is it?

is it husky
is it sassy
is it soft
is it sweet
what is it?

is it because
i am in love with you
what is it?



First Touch

 I had assumed this

would stay our first touch.

I had hoped that,

we would hold through.

The blue and yellow butterflies dancing,

in September’s sunlight.

Like the susurrus breaking up of the bubbles,

a short-lived awareness?

And like the winter’s pool on the dry,

we keep loosing our waters.

Always flying in the paths of our angers-

the eagle’s talons!



The Woman In Me

On a sunny lovely may-morning.

I found a rose red brightly blooming.

Besides the road, under a shade Baobab tree.

Oval features implanted so craftily!


Upon such a lovely shape and face.

Soft red-lips, spring of such a voice!

Doubtlessly sweet, fresh and promising.

I will suckle her lips like a bee on honeysuckle.


“O, you are so sweet like honey!”

Can I posses you, can I be possessed?

Fix you, fire you, cradle you, and case you.

Come on, come nearer and I will reach you.


Breathe the same air that I am breathing.

I will circle you in my arms like ivy on tree.

My lips on your lips, your heart on my heart too!

Sating this awesome yearning, this thirst too!


Think of her as the Woman in me.

Let me mould my Eve, Sculpture her for you.

Let her candid doleful eyes seek yours,

And her sweet-song voice calls for you.


Let her footsteps as she comes and goes

Be like bird-markings appearing faintly-still,

After a full day’s disturbances and winds.

She will dwell in you like the Woman in me.


I find in her eyes, an innocent heart-truthful.

No pencil can sketch her picture truthfully.

Neither the poet, not a song can sing a true song.

No words, not even thoughts can express her so.


She touches sympathies that are too deeper for words,

Too deeper for my thoughts and feelings.

To my visions, dreams, hopes and heart,

She bestows life, strength, beauty and light.


She is as fresh as the sun awakening.

She makes us aware of our hearts.

That we have them, they are now timbering.

Awakened to the love they see lustring.


Welcoming this joyousness into our lives.

She fills a void in our spiritual being.

We are ourselves and we are over-brimming-

In happiness, life and laughter.


She is nurse to wounds still painful,

A prescription the doctor ordered.

She is stem to sprouting green leaves.

Against the Sun, winds, colds, and rains-


She nourishes and shoulders my heart tender!

And let her love like the sunset surround me

Stirs feelings no other woman has ever.

Deeper sources no other woman ever sounded,


“O”, the sensations, I can sigh over them.

Pity me, despise me, laugh at me!

I will confess it with outmost humility.

I love her, “O”, how I love her!


I will be her wall against the sun, winds, colds, rains

Her faithful shield against all wrongs, trusting!

I will guide her through life’s shoals, rocks and thorns.

Living and loving, “O”, being loved too!

[box type=”bio”]

Mwanaka-TendaiTENDAI RINOS MWANAKA was born in 1973, in Nyanga, Nyatate, Mapfurira village, in the remote eastern highlands of Zimbabwe. He is the author of Voices from Exile, a collection of poetry on Zimbabwe’s political situation and his exile in South Africa, and Keys in the River: Notes from a Modern Chimurenga, a novel of interlinked stories that deals with life in modern Zimbabwe. He has written numerous articles and won several awards. “Revolution”, “Logbook Written by a Drifter,” and “Voices from Exile” were both short-listed for the Erbecce Press Poetry Prize. He was nominated for a Pushcart Award twice, once in 2008, and again in 2010, as well as commended for the Dalro Prize in 2008. He has published over 200 short stories, essays, memoirs, poems and visual art productions in over 100 magazines, journals, and anthologies in over 50 countries. He lives in Chitungwiza, Zimbabwe.