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Showing posts sorted by relevance for query kayole. Sort by date Show all posts


Kenya Haiku Clubs

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The Haiku Clubs of Nairobi

At the beginning of 2006, Nairobi saw the creation of a number of haiku clubs in secondary schools, starting in Kayole housing estate.

The very first meeting, which started it all off, can be read up here :

Bahati Club


And later, in 2012

. When did Kenya Saijiki start? .


Please enjoy the introductory pages of each club and browse the Kenya Saijiki Database to find the students’ haiku under a growing range of kigo.

Bahati Haiku Poetry Club, Kayole -- BAMBOOCHAS

Lorna Waddington Haiku Poetry Club, Kayole -- FALCONS

Embakasi Haiku Poetry Club, Kayole -- OAKS

St Mathew Haiku Poetry Club, Kayole -- PEACOCKS

Brookfield Haiku Poetry Club, Kayole -- SPIDERS

As the students’ activities made an impact on teachers, past pupils and other adults, the end of 2006 saw the founding of the first adult haiku club in Nairobi :

Butterflies Haiku Club, Nairobi -- BUTTERFLIES

Cocks Haiku Club

Adults are also involved in the school clubs as teachers and Patrons, and have become individual members of the Kenya Saijiki discussion forum.

New members are welcome!

ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo ooo

Club Activities

The Clubs have already organised a number of joint activities, which have been lively and inspired. There were two main events in 2006, involving all the haiku clubs together :

Bahati Ginkoo, 27 May 2006

Meeting of the Haiku Clubs in Tujisaidie, 4 November 2006

Stars and the Night Sky in Kenya, 2007 A Challenge !

Alan Summers, the originator of the Stars and Night Sky Challenge, also published our results in his own Blog, Area 17, thus opening them to a new readership :

St Patrick’s Outing, April 2007

Kigo and haiku topics in Kenya --
a discussion in the Haiku Clubs of Nairob

One of the principal and regular activities is to contribute haiku and kigo information to the Kenya Saijiki Database and to discuss Kenya kigo in the Kenya Saijiki Discussion Forum.

Japanese Culture Week, 2008

Arboretum Kukai, 29 March 2008

Long Rains Kukai 2009

All Saints Kukai, November 2009

Tumaini Kukai April 2010


Kenya Railway Museum Kukai August 2010

Traffic Park Kukai October 30, 2010

Carlile Kukai, June 11, 2011

Eleventh Kukai, St Mathew’s Secondary School
November 5, 2011

City Park, Nairobi, January 2012

. Nairobi Digest News .
Africa’s best haiku writers meet in Nairobi
about the Haiku Meeting in October 2012

Kukai at Kenya National Archives
14th Kukai - May 18, 2013


Sucessful graduates will receive a certificate.

certificat for the students who had finished their course and passed their final examinations in both theory and practice.

source : kenyasaijiki/message - May 2012


Home Page of Kenya Saijiki Database

Discussion Forum for Haiku from Kenya and East Africa



Apart from the Kenya Saijiki Database, the Kenya Haiku Clubs have contributed to the following publications :

Short Rains
Isabelle Prondzynski and Students of the Kenya Haiku Clubs
Haigaonline, December 2006

This is fascinating and remarkable. I enjoyed everyone and every one. This is such a worthy project and I had no idea. Congratulations and kudos to all involved and you for publicising it... I would love to see more of it.
.. Kirsty Karkow

Shiki Monthly Kukai
Several of the Club members have been participating in the Shiki Monthly Kukai from mid-2006 onwards :





Bahati 060527

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Ginkoo in Kayole, Nairobi (Kenya)
Bahati Community Secondary School, 27 May 2006

Education is Treasure

On 9 January 2006, when the Bahati Haiku Poetry Club (nickname : The Bamboochas) was born, the members were immediately eager to advance and progress in haiku themselves, and to do this together with their colleagues in neighbouring schools. That very first day, the idea was born to host a Ginkoo (吟行) in May 2006 and to invite other schools to participate.

During the following weeks, the Bamboochas studied and practised haiku under their teacher, Patrick Wafula (Patrick Sensei) and enjoyed themselves thoroughly -- as their name implies. Once they reached the mid-term break, they set out to present the art of haiku to the neighbouring schools, all of which liked the idea and decided to set up their own haiku clubs :

Embakazi Secondary School - The Oaks
Brookfield Secondary School - The Spiders
St Matthew’s Secondary School - The Peacocks
Lorna Waddington High School - The Falcons

Each of these clubs chose a patron among the teachers and started writing haiku. During April and May 2006, they organised a series of mini-ginkoo, one by one, and invited representatives of the other haiku clubs to join them.

Photo 1 : Welcome sign at the Bahati tent.

They also made contact with the Japan Information & Culture Centre of the Embassy of Japan in Kenya and invited the Director, Mr Shinya Machida, to be Guest of Honour at the forthcoming Ginkoo. Mr Kiruri Gachie of the Japanese Department, Kenyatta University, was also invited, as were the Japanese community members resident in Kenya.

Photo 2 : Mr Shinyo Machida (Director of the Japan Information and Culture Centre), Mr Kiruri Gachie (Japanese Department of Kenyatta University), Ms Yooko Enomoto (Co-ordinator of the Japanese Association of Kenya).

A committee was formed in the local community, to take charge of the organisation and planning for the ginkoo, and the scouts were mobilised to contribute to the occasion. Almost 250 participants and guests were invited, including the local Chief and Sub District Officer as well as the Officer in Charge of the Police Post.

Finally, the day dawned to warm sunshine and great activity at Bahati School, as the tent was erected in front of the building and the haiku club members arrived in very good time, paper and pen in hand. Soon, many of the students were going through final rehearsals for their presentations, planned for the afternoon. I too was there early, enjoying the festive mood and the anticipation keenly felt by all.


The gathering started soon after 11.00 hrs, with the Kenyan and Japanese flags raised together by the Kenya Scouts, and the Kenyan National Anthem sung.

Photo 3 : Kenya and Japanese flags being raised by the Kenya Scouts

(Unfortunately we can not add all the photos here. Please click on the LINK to see the photos in the Bahati Club Photo Album. )

The Patrons introduced their respective haiku clubs -- and we finally heard why they had chosen their meaningful nicknames :

the Peacocks for the instant readiness of the bird, as well as its beauty,
the Oaks for the strength and durability of the tree,
the Falcons for the keen vision of the bird,
and the Bamboochas for the refreshment which their haiku would bring.

Photo 4 : The haiku clubs ready for action

There was a lot of cheering. Everyone was happy to be there, and to join with the members of the other clubs -- they had already become friends through sharing in the mini-ginkoo. This was the first time that the four schools had come together for an event, the first time that Bahati had hosted an event for the wider community, the first haiku ginkoo ever in Kenya (as far as we know!) -- and we even believe it may have been the biggest haiku event in the world on 27 May 2006. There was great joy in Bahati!

Photo 5 : Eager Falcons listening to the opening speeches


Mr Machida spoke to the gathering about the tradition of haiku in Japan, the history underlying it, and how it had continued into the present day, since it was grounded in the seasons and in nature. Even as it moved beyond Japan and into new territories, it was this link with nature and the seasons which made it adaptable to any culture and any country. Mr Machida was happy to see this first blossoming of haiku in Kenya, and wished the haiku clubs every success as they continued to learn and to practise.

As the Moderator of Kenya Saijiki, I then sent the students out to start their ginkoo. Observe keenly, and write no more than three haiku. The kigo (if used) could be from either the long rains, or from the cool dry season, as we were right between the two. The students then set out and, very soon, they had scattered in a 500 m radius around the school, heading off in different directions, often in small groups.

Bahati School is situated right next to Kayole River, which at this time was showing the effects of the long rains, with a lot of rubbish (including signs of sewage) washed up on the banks around the school. Several students devoted their attention to the river and its banks, all observing different aspects and drawing different conclusions. Thus, some of the poets observed the dirt and the smell, while others noticed how the deposits were helping nearby maize and bananas to grow!

Photo 6 : Falcon deeply focused on Kayole River


After an hour, the students returned, and there was great excitement and a feeling of achievement. Everyone then selected their very best haiku of the day, writing it on a piece of colourful origami paper, and handing it over to the jury. Names were not included, only the haiku clubs were identified.

Photo 7 : Haiku submissions

While the jury retired to the cool courtyard of the school, the haiku clubs entertained the guests with lively presentations of poetry and drama, which they had rehearsed for the event. Sodas were enjoyed, bread and biscuits consumed, and much fun was had by all, while anticipation mounted.

Photo 8 : The jury in action

The jury needed quite some time to reach its conclusions on the winners -- luckily, we had a cool space within the school, where we deliberated and grouped the individual haiku entries with weights of water bottles, stones, spectacles and anything else that came to hand!


Before starting on the prize giving as such, Kiruri Gachie congratulated all the young poets on their work and the beautiful haiku they had written, and encouraged them to keep learning and practising. Being in touch with Kenya Saijiki and Worldkigo by internet would help them to exchange with poets in other countries, as well as learning from today’s masters.

The prize giving started with places 11 to 18 (in no particular order), followed by places 4 to 10 (again, in no particular order, with each poet receiving a Japanese cup). Then, the winners so far posed for a photograph :

Photo 9 : The winners of places 4 to 18

Finally, special prizes to the winners of places 3, 2 and 1 : a haiku notebook from Japan sent by Dr Gabi Greve, the Director of the World Haiku Club’s Worldkigo. A book or a painting went to each of the top three, as well as a Japanese cup and a book on Japan from Mr Machida. The winner of the first prize received a beautiful Ikebana calendar from the "Japanese Cultural Centre".

Photo 10 : The first three prizewinners, Grace Wanjau, Oseme Jeremiah and Miriam Nyambura

The atmosphere was wonderful -- more words of thanks were conveyed and received, and no one wanted to leave. Conversations continued, more photos were taken, but finally, the tent was dismantled and the students went home. There will certainly be more events -- the next one will most likely be a learning event, hosted by the Japanese Cultural Centre.

It was a beautiful day, and an unforgettable memory for most of us. The good wishes of Kenya Saijiki and Worldkigo were passed on and savoured, and we enjoyed being part of a world wide movement and being upheld by world wide good wishes.

Congratulations to everyone -- Bamboochas, Falcons, Oaks and Peacocks, as well as the organising committee -- and we look forward to welcoming the Spiders with us next time!

Isabelle Prondzynski

!!! Please click here to read the greetings from Gabi Greve and Sakuo Nakamura !!!

. Read short biographies of the winners of this contest .


The prize winning haiku were as follows :

(Japanese by Nakamura Sakuo)

strong and healthy maize
due to sewage nutrients --
very green colour

-- Grace Wanjau (Falcons)

tookibi ya osui de sodatsu aoao to

Photo 11 : Haiku student observing Kayole River

a green insect
crawling in green grasses
sucking green sap

-- Oseme Jeremiah (Bamboochas)

青虫や 青葉を這って 青汁チュウ
aomushi ya aoba o hatte aojiru chu~

goats and cows
scattered all over the place
grazing up and down

-- Miriam Nyambura (Bamboochas)

山羊羊 散りて草食み 上下へ
yagi to ushi chirite kusa hami ue shita e

4. - 10. (in alphabetical order of author name)

happy looking child
eats fleshy avocado --
no hunger at last

-- Cyprian Awino (Bamboochas)

幸せな 子 アボガド食べる 飢えは無し
shiawase na ko abocado taberu ue wa nashi

along the river bank
always green butterflies pounce
happily on cool grass

-- Gideon Gichamba (Peacocks)

cool, calm afternoon --
group of students crouch over
the grass for a bed

-- Kennedy Odhiambo (Bamboochas)

steps up and down
up the hills down the valleys
trying to observe

-- Olande E. Nancy (Oaks)

Photo 12 : Haiku students observing and writing

young African girl
looking confused
cutting kales

-- Ouko Hellen (Falcons)

rain has ended
footprints remain dry on the paths
kids stumble and fall

-- Raymond Otieno (Bamboochas)

Photo 13 : Children stuck in a dried rut (picture taken same day)

Kayole river
flooded with sewage
ugh! bad odour

-- Samuel Mwangi (Falcons)

11. - 18. (in alphabetical order of author name)

coloured petals
sprung like mushrooms
Njeri get decoration

-- Bonface Mutua (Falcons)

green turns to grey
crops mature as plants shed
as sun shines

-- David Wandera (Bamboochas)

dried up lips
thirsty throats in hotels
babies barefooted

-- Deborah Mocheche (Bamboochas)

bidens pilosa
growing taller and taller
shining everywhere

-- Felix Muyao (Bamboochas)

under the shade
people are squeezed
loosening their clothes

-- Lameck Odhiambo (Bamboochas)

"ten, ten, jeans!"
a man selling pants
they are so big

-- Mercy Keago (Falcons)

dust on shoes
as people walk down and up
along Soweto slum

-- Sammy Opagala (Bamboochas)

healthy bananas
using sewage manure --
very attractive

-- Samson Munga (Falcons)

Photo 14 : Closing the Ginkoo

Related Entries

***** Bahati Haiku Poetry Club

BAHATI HAIKU POETRY CLUB, Records of all Haiku Collections

Look at the Bahati Haiku Poetry Club Photo Album


Please send your contributions to
Gabi Greve / Isabelle Prondzynski
worldkigo .....

Back to the WHC Worldkigo Index


Pig, pigs

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Pig, pigs

***** Location: Kenya
***** Season: Topic
***** Category: Animal


Regarding the pig as a kigo, we cannot say for sure that it can be a kigo in Nairobi, since pigs roam freely on the streets and in the village of Soweto.
However, during the rain season, they are out there in plenty since there is plenty of stagnant water and mud for them to allow in.
In the dry season, pigs wallow in the open sewerage rivulets that flow freely from the pit latrines in the Soweto village.

Pigs are also present at the dump sites furrowing for food left-overs and worms.

My most horrifying experience with pigs in Soweto was last year 2009 one February morning when I came across a group of dumbfounded women looking wordlessly at a pig devouring a dead baby, which it had picked from a nearby dump site.

I am not going to eat pork in a long while!

More about the pigs in Soweto/Kayole Villages.

The roaming pigs are owned by some residents, and given that rearing them is an expensive affair, the pig farmers opt for the easier option: allowing the animals freedom to scavenger for food around the village. The pig food is plenty and freely available. At market stalls, vegetable remains and fruit peelings are readily available; in the leaking pit latrine trenches, maggots and earthworms are freely available.

Pigs are a lucrative business. One adult pig costs between 16,000/- to 20,000/- Kshs. almost the same price as a fully grown cow. Now the many pork kiosks in Kayole/Soweto get their pork supplies from these roaming pigs.

A word of caution to the fans of pork, though: roaming pigs act as pathogens to certain worms and we should ensure the meet is thoroughly boiled or fried. The best pork is one from confined pigs which are fed and cared for by a farmer himself.

And have you ever come across roaming goats that feed on mandazi?
It would be very interesting to pay a visit to our Soweto/Kayole Village. Our goats and pigs are so domesticated and pet that they feed not only on mandazi, but also cakes! That is not all: there are plenty of roaming dogs too who mingle freely with the above animals to form a very unique family. The only irony is that when pigs or goats are slaughtered, the dogs sit patiently outside the pork and bacon shops waiting for their share of their colleagues' left overs!

muddy road--
a black goat grabs mandazi
from a deserted stall

pork butchery--
a dog waits patiently
for the bones

Patrick Wafula
Kenya Saijiki Forum

A traditional donut-like breakfast food also sold all over East Africa as a warm snack.


A couple of pigs
Photo Isabelle Prondzynski


a story from Malaba - Teso District, Kenya

James is thirty eight years old and is married to a business lady. Together they have three children: two are boys and one is a girl. The boys are big and in high school while the last born is in baby class. The wife’s business is a grocery with a specialty in selling ground nuts from Uganda.
James started his pig business three years ago . . .
Read the full story here:
source :

Worldwide use


Pig and Pork (buta, ton 豚 ぶた)

Things found on the way


children shout at a pig
creeping in stagnant muddy water-
sunny morning

Feb 2010


hot afternoon --
a pig eating crunched biscuits
on the road

Antony Mwangi
March 2010


hot afternoon--
lively piglets frisk in the
muddy water

Caleb Mutua
Kenya Saijiki Forum, Feb. 2009


two pigs
lie in the mud . . .
become so dirty

Mourice Opondo
May 2007


two piglets eat
sweet potato peelings --
grey morning

Patrick Wafula
September 2010


CLICK for more photos

a pig
running down the sewage --

Margreta Nzilili
Kenya Saijiki Forum, Aug. 2007

Kibera is one of the most pronounced slums within Kenya.

Kibera, Kenya is the largest slum in Kenya and is home to an estimate 1.2 million people. It is an illegal settlement with no government services including electricity, water, sewage and garbage pickup. When it rains all the garbage, sewage and dirt wash down the hills into the trench.
source :


a piglet sheltering
under an old hand cart -
scorching sun

Andrew Otinga
January 2011


snorting pig
busy searching and searching--
garbage heap

Abraham Muuo


a pig's snout sinks
in a muddy dust bin--
evening snack

black mud
on a pig's snout--
stroll by the stream

Brian Etole

Related words

***** Nairobi City



Palm Sunday

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Palm Sunday and Lent

***** Location: Worldwide in Christian communities
***** Season: Spring (Northern Hemisphere),
. . . . . . . . . . . long rains (East Africa)
***** Category: Observance


Palm Sunday is the remembrance of Christ’s entry into Jerusalem, and is celebrated by Christians worldwide on the Sunday before Easter. It is thus the last Sunday in Lent.

Palm Sunday is the joyful start of Holy Week, the week leading up to Christ’s passion and death on Good Friday. The joy of Palm Sunday quickly turns into betrayal, suffering and death. So, the celebration of Palm Sunday has a bitter-sweet flavour -- the same crowds who received Jesus so joyfully in Jerusalem that day, turned against him in violence within only a few hours.

Palm Sunday celebrations include the reading of the Gospel story, which recounts the entry into Jerusalem of Jesus Christ, riding on a donkey, and of the jubilant population, spreading palm fronds at his feet. In many European countries, there is a distribution to the congregation of palm crosses to take home -- these same palm crosses are burnt the following Ash Wednesday, to produce the ashes for the ashen crosses.

In Ethiopia, palm leaves are used to braid elaborate palm crosses for the faithful. In Kenya, Palm Sundays include processions with palm fronds, led by the church choirs, singing Palm Sunday hymns.

Palm Sunday procession at All Saints’ Cathedral, Nairobi, 1 April 2007

Text and photo : © Isabelle Prondzynski


The difficulty of procuring palms for that day's ceremonies in unfavorable climates for palms led to the substitution of boughs of yew, willow or other native trees. The Sunday was often designated by the names of these trees, as Yew Sunday or by the general term Branch Sunday.

This, and much more information about Palm Sunday, here :


Jesus’ Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem
Matthew 21 : 1 - 11

When they had come near Jerusalem and had reached Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, ‘Go into the village ahead of you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, just say this, “The Lord needs them.” And he will send them immediately.’ This took place to fulfil what had been spoken through the prophet, saying,

‘Tell the daughter of Zion,
Look, your king is coming to you,
humble, and mounted on a donkey,
and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’

The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them; they brought the donkey and the colt, and put their cloaks on them, and he sat on them. A very large crowd* spread their cloaks on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds that went ahead of him and that followed were shouting,

‘Hosanna to the Son of David!
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!
Hosanna in the highest heaven!’

When he entered Jerusalem, the whole city was in turmoil, asking, ‘Who is this?’ The crowds were saying, ‘This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee.’


Palm Sunday hymn

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
Hark! all the tribes Hosanna cry;
O Saviour meek, pursue Thy road
With palms and scattered garments strowed.

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
In lowly pomp ride on to die!
O Christ! Thy triumph now begin
O’er captive death and conquered sin.

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
The wingèd squadrons of the sky
Look down with sad and wondering eyes
To see the approaching sacrifice.

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
Thy last and fiercest strife is nigh;
The Father, on His sapphire throne,
Expects His own anointed Son.

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
In lowly pomp ride on to die;
Bow Thy meek head to mortal pain,
Then take, O God, Thy power, and reign.

Words: Henry H. Milman, 1820


Palm Sunday procession at All Saints’ Cathedral, Nairobi, 1 April 2007
Photo © Isabelle Prondzynski


Worldwide use

Palm Sunday - Palmsonntag

Things found on the way


boarding the bus
with a palm cross --
Palm Sunday

Palm Sunday --
prayers and birdsong
mix and blend

© Isabelle Prondzynski (1 April 2007)


Patrick Wafula on Palm Sunday 2011

A very unusual phenomenon has come up in Kayole on this Palm Sunday morning. I happened to walk across Soweto/Kayole this morning and was amazed by a totally new phenomenon: hawkers upon hawkers pushing wheelbarrows, carrying sackfuls or armfuls of fresh palm fronds for sale in the viscinity of or around the Church gates; the culmination of all these activities was Saba Saba Street in Kayole. One handful of fresh, blessed palm leaves, they said, was Kshs 10/-

Palm Sunday--
hawkers pushing wheelbarrow
full of palm leaves

Saba Saba street--
fresh palm leaves in hand, youth
stroll to church

on both sides, hawkers
selling fresh palm leaves--
Kanisani Gate

a lady-hawker
shouts twenty bob per handfull--
PCEA Church gate

This will enable us to know and understand why people in Nairobi are buying Palm leaves, from the Biblical point of vew's importance of palm leaves:
source : Palm Sunday / Wikipeida


church gate--
he sorts out palm leaves
from grass

busy Sunday--
hawkers selling
high grade palms

Soweto road--
he adorns his car
with palms

road junction--
bodabodas decorated
with palms

Brian Mulando, 2011

Bodaboda are bicycles which are used to transport people from place to place.


Today, Palm Sunday.
Then Good Friday five days hence.
Easter but a dream.

~ Lionel E. Deimel


Palm Sunday
a scattering of hailstones
in the wheelbarrow

~ Paul Conneally (United Kingdom)


. Lent / Palm Sunday / Easter 2011  

two men lead
the crowd with a cross-
Kangundo road

~ yamame

Holy Thursday-
the priest wipes men's
dusty feet

~ Catherine Njeri Maina

flag post--
a picture of a shiny
Easter egg

~ Synaidah Kalahi

a priest walks
through the crowd--
Easter mass

~ Scholastica Mumbe

a dog dives for
the thrown goat skull--
Easter feast

~ Brian ETOLE

Easter feast--
delicious aroma of

roasted goat meat


on the road--
he struggles with a cross
on his back

~ Jacklyne Anyoso

Palm Sunday--
she covers her head with
a palm leaf

~ Violet Wangira

Easter rush--
her new shoes squeak
as she runs

~ Elijah Juma

hosanna hosanna-
a young boy shouts as
he follows a multitude

~ Boniface Bonnke


Palm Sunday / Easter 2012  

Palm Sunday -
an early sound of
the church bell

fresh palm fronds
hung at the entrance -
matatu ride

in the mirror-
a drunk man waves
a palm frond

Andrew Otinga

Related words

***** Ash Wednesday

***** Lent

***** Easter



Ramadan in Kenya


Ramadan in Kenya

***** Location: Kenya
***** Season: Varies from year to year (Muslim calendar)
***** Category: Observance


Kenya’s Muslim population is distributed unevenly throughout the country and is by far the most numerous in Mombasa and along the Indian Ocean coast. In Nairobi, Muslims constitute some 10 percent of the population, many of whom (particularly those with Somali roots) are concentrated in Eastleigh, while others (with roots in Pakistan) live in Pangani and others again are scattered throughout the city.

The introduction following below was drafted and compiled by the Peacocks Haiku Club of St Mathew Secondary School, Kayole (Nairobi), and was orally presented as a haibun on 3 November 2006. It has been only slightly edited by me for this kigo page.

A big THANK YOU to the Peacocks!

Isabelle Prondzynski

Photo by Patrick Wafula, 2006


What is Ramadhan?
It is the holy month in which Muslims worldwide fast for normally thirty days. The days of fasting start and end with the sighting of the crescent moon by the Imams.

The action of fasting is called saumu. Muslims wish each other saumu makbol, happy feasting, or successful fasting.

saumu makbol --
muslims in white robes
whisper to each other

Ann Nechesa

Expectations during the month of Ramadhan

Muslims are supposed to fast from dawn to dusk. They are not to take anything, not even by swallowing excess saliva :

men and women
with dry lips and full of silence --
scent of delicious meals

Husseini Haji

However, there is a group exempted from the fast and allowed to eat. This includes those seriously sick, women having their monthly periods, pregnant women, breastfeeding women and babies.

smell of garlic
pregnant sister throws up --
her face is wrinkled

Loise Wangechi

Muslims try not to engage in any sinful activities whatsoever.

They do much praying as they believe that Ramadhan is the month of seeking forgiveness.

allah akbar --
sound the horn speakers,
dawn and noon prayers

Jelidah Kerubo

The time they start fasting each morning is called Suhur and the time they stop fasting each evening is called Iftar. These times depend on sunrise and sunset in the relevant place and are given each day in the Press and on television following the news bulletins. Even within Kenya, each location has its own Ramadhan timetable.

wake up! wake up!
it is time for daku
mum calls at night

Khadija Rajab

(daku is a meal served at 4.00 am -- it is a heavy meal)

Married couples are not supposed to indulge in sexual activities during the day, as the act is considered sinful.

Ramadhan in Kayole and Soweto

During Ramadhan, the Peacocks observe the following things in their own environment :

(1) Markets are full
This is caused by the Muslims who go shopping for their foodstuffs to cook at night.

all day fasting --
shopping in the evening,
food aromas at night

Alex Murage

(2) Prices of foodstuffs increase
Sellers increase their prices due to the increase in customers (Muslims).

having meals together
and being kind to all people --
it is Ramadhan again

Husseini Haji

(3) Much spitting of saliva
As Muslims are not allowed to swallow the excess saliva, they have to spit it out.

(4) Shying away from work
Although during Ramadhan Muslims are expected to work, some shy away from work and remain passive through the day.

(5) Multitudes visit the Mosque
The number of Muslims visiting the Mosque tends to rise abruptly.

allah akbar --
sound the horn speakers,
dawn and noon prayers

Jelidah Kerubo

The Mosque programme changes as follows :

5.00 am Fajir (two rakaats)
1.00 pm Dhuhur (four rakaats)
4.00 pm Asir (four rakaats)
6.00 pm Magharib (three rakaats)
8.00 pm Isha (four rakaats)

Rakaats : These are the number of times that the worshipper bows down. The rakaats are compulsory and the above are the minimum times per visit.

Taraweh : This is the longest prayer, prayed at 8.00 pm during Ramadhan only and comprising of 21 rakaats. It is not compulsory.

Tahajud : This is a prayer consisting of 8 rakaats, of which one rakaat can take twenty minutes. Prayed only during Ramadhan.

bending in mosques
obeying rules of fasting --
it is Al-Ramadhan again

Beth Mwangi

(6) Men, women and children shine
During the holy month, men put on kanzus (white gowns), women put on buibuis (black wrappers) and diras, and children also are kept smart looking.

men in robes and turbans
whispering to each other --
evening shopping

Beth Mwangi

(7) Distribution of food to the less fortunate
Muslims visit rehabilitation centres and homes of destitute children and donate things like foodstuffs, clothes, stationery and many other things during the month of Ramadhan.

women in black wrappers
serving street kids with food --
Ramadhan karim

Peris Wanjiru

These are some of the observations, there are many other minor ones.

How does the holy month end?

Idd-ul-Fittr is the next day after the last day of fasting. Fasting ends when the new moon is sighted anywhere in the world. Once it has been seen, the Imams (Muslim leaders) communicate and announce the end of fasting.

Ramadhan is gone
it’s time for feast after fasting --
the new moon appears

Winnie Wairimu

First, Muslims go to the Mosque and sing Idd-ul-Takbir. Idd-ul-Takbir is sung to mark the end of fasting and the beginning of celebrations. Idd-ul-Fittr is celebrated in many ways, including cooking in the Mosques (pilau -- cooked rice with added ingredients and spices), going out to visit, and sharing with less fortunate families to make sure that everyone has celebrated.

Idd-ul-Fittr is a public holiday in Kenya and has its own kigo entry.
Pic by Jacob Otieno
Master Mohammed Yunus (right) and his brother look up as their father and other Muslim faithful pray to mark the end of Ramadhan at Sir Ali Muslim Grounds in Nairobi, yesterday.

Ramadhan may be followed by Sitah, which is the prolonged fasting for six days following Ramadhan. It is not compulsory, but one day of Sitah represents 100 days of fasting.

Why the Peacocks consider that Ramadhan is a season

Ramadhan is celebrated annually and is a holy month. Also, Ramadhan is an activity and takes a long time (30 days). Even though some of us are not Muslims, Ramadhan affects all of us in one way or another and we feel it should not be ignored.

David Caleb Mutua, Peacocks’ Chairman,
St Mathew Secondary School, Form 3.


Another view from Kayole

I feel a lot of respect for the Muslims in Ramadhan. In the first place, there is a mosque across from our residence and we hear more frequent Allah akbar Allah akbar than on normal days. The most notable aspect of it are the numerous pairs of shoes at the doorstep of the mosque at noon, and of course the very new humble and kind attitude of the Muslims...
To me the most notable thing about the Ramadhan is the 5am prayer alert which makes me wake with a start and remain sleepless till day break. This kind of Allah akbar is so shrill since dawn is very still and sound travels low at night...

numerous pairs of shoes
at the mosque door steps-
Ramadan prayers

Patrick Wafula (Patron Bamboochas)


More information here :

Worldwide use

Ramadan and Haiku Worldwide

Things found on the way



Ramadhan time --
very obedient and humble
muslims all over the country

Anges Adhiambo

muslims walk around
full of Oriental aromas --
noon prayers

Beth Mwangi

Allahu akbar
at crack of dawn in Mosques --
God is really great

Jacinta Minoo



in front of Rashid
is a cross-legged Salim-
Qurans in hand

the Muslim community
congregate in Mosques-
Ramadhan is here again

late evening,
outside Soweto Mosque-
delicious pilau

suhur and iftar-
Ramadhan timetable
is here again

busy helping
the poor and needy-
mission for all Muslims

~ Catherine Njeri

fatigued faces
ready to fill hungry stomachs

and thirsty throats

~ Depporah Mocheche

it's Ramadhan again-
Muslims clad in white robs,
fasting all day long

no food all day long-
the ninth month of their year,
fasting and praying

Nairobi streets,
flowing with Muslims
going to Mosque to pray

~ Cyprian Awino


August moon-
the first fajr adhan
in to Ramadhan

FAJR- one of the prayers of Muslims which is done early in the morning
ADHAN- a call for Muslims to pray

Hussein Haji

. . . . .

endless yawning
with strong saum-

SAUM- the act of fasting during the month of Ramadhan

Muslims rushing to the mosque
swallah time

SWALLAH- Muslims prayer (another word to mean prayer)

Khadijah Rajab

MORE : Ramadan Haiku 2010


From the Shiki Monthly Kukai August 2010

Ramadan -
she washes her feet under
August moonlight

~ Bamboocha

young August moon -
the Ramadan timetable
in the dailies

~ Patrick Wafula

. Kenya Saijiki Forum

Related words

***** Ramadan
..... Ramazan, Berat Kandil Turkey   Leylatul Berat, Laylatul Barat
..... Ramadan ends (Idd ul Fitr) Kenya


Ramadan and religious kigo
Discussion about this subject

Back to the Worldkigo Index



Valentine's Day Kenya


St Valentine’s Day (Valentine’s Day, Valentine)

***** Location: Kenya
***** Season: Hot dry season
***** Category: Observance


Despite the little knowledge about its origin, the majority of Kenyans, especially the urban folks, believe Valentine to be the celebration of love. The colour red is the predominant mark for this day, and it is exhibited in flowers and clothes.

In Nairobi, St. Valentine's Day is highly commercialised. Flower, clothes, shoe and other accessory vendors and supermarkets, as well as hawkers, capitalise on this occasion and stock red coloured Valentine's items at strategic points to attract customer attention. Since red roses are expensive and in short supply, traders substitute them with plastic ones. Husbands and wives buy each other gifts and flowers and they dress in red; so do lovers. Couples go out to exclusive joints to spend a romantic moment together. Restaurants, hotels, pubs and resorts are decorated in red and special entertainments and menus are prepared to match their clients' needs.

The best climax about St Valentine's Day however is the renewal of love vows and re-affirming love and faithfulness to each other in our relationships.

A whirl of red synthetic roses with a bottle of grape drink

Text and photo © Patrick Wafula


This year, 2012, I was amazed by the ingenuity of Nairobi business people with regard to St. Valentine’s Day. This time round they went a notch higher with the Valentine affair. To start with, a couple of days prior to St. Valentine’s Day, they put up flower tents on almost every major street in the city centre. The flower tents were complete with smartly dressed sales people; the red flowers, which are usually synthetic (plastic), were this time round mingled with real fresh red roses. Secondly, to make it even more fabulous, the flowers were wrapped along with other beautiful gifts such as red teddy bears, chocolate, ribbons, or small, cute traditional reed baskets. The prices varied depending on the package. A whirl of real red roses cost as much as Kshs. 1,200. A teddy bear could even cost Kshs 2,000.

The supermarkets too were more creative. They set up Valentine stands right in the entrances, all shrouded in red. They offered very attractive Valentine packages with alluring gifts. All packages
included at least a red flower and ribbons. But some packages contained not just flowers and beautiful wrappings, but red wine, hot chocolate and huge teddy bears with fantastic love messages, such as “I am Thinking of You, My Thoughts Are Inside,” scribbled across them. A gift wrap with a bottle of wine, sweets and a chocolate bar cost around Kshs. 1,300.

Valentine’s Day stand at Tuskey’s, Moi Avenue

Nairobi city centre last evening was engulfed in romantic shopping sprees with supermarkets remaining open up to 9.00pm to serve their ravenous Valentine clientele. Hawkers too, strategically positioned all around the city, were making a kill; they sold the flowers and gifts at a more reduced price than the supermarkets.

Kenyans may not be as romantic as Nigerians, but I can assure you, they are pretentiously romantic: during day time, they harbour severe faces and religious behaviours, but at night, as darkness descends over the land, they turn vivacious, lascivious and openly romantic.

Valentine —
a red ribbon fluttering
on a matatu mirror

Moi Avenue —
an abandoned
red plastic flower

Text, haiku and photo © Patrick Wafula


Unusually for a saint, St Valentine’s Day is not usually celebrated in church. The reason is that he lived so long ago, that no one is quite sure whether the stories about his life are true, or whether they have grown over the centuries without there being a firm basis of truth. On the other hand, when St Valentine's Day falls on a Sunday, the churches usually take the opportunity to talk about love, loyalty and faithfulness to one's partner.

It is to find red roses in Nairobi on St Valentine’s Day. Kenya produces the greatest number of roses exported in the world, many of which are red, and almost all of which come from around Lake Naivasha. But as the export trade is so strong for red roses around St Valentine's Day, there are usually insufficient of them left for Kenya itself! Every night, there are several Jumbo Jets flying out of Nairobi, loaded with nothing but flowers (mostly roses, as it happens)...

loading the plane --
surrounded by the scent
of St Valentine's

With its huge variety of other offerings in red, Kenya has truly made St Valentine's Day its very own festival.

Preparing an arrangement of red roses at City Market, Nairobi

Text, haiku and photo © Isabelle Prondzynski

Worldwide use

WKD : Valentine's Day 2012

Things found on the way


In Nairobi ’s Kayole / Soweto slums where I live and work, February is usually a dry dusty month full of dusty breezes. But the sunrises are gloriously splendid. You wake up guaranteed a golden orange sun and an azure-blue sky. But on 14 February 2009, I celebrated a unique Valentine like none other I had ever had. I dated a person living with HIV/AIDS.

Valentine’s day--
red roses displayed
on dusty roadsides

17: 05 hours: I did not know what could be the best gift for my date as I closed and locked my office. I started off to our rendezvous — her flat. It was a lovely evening with a cool breeze sweeping across Soweto slum, mildly stirring up a little dust here and there, and sometimes a whole litter of polythene bags floated in the dark blue evening sky. Most of the young cute-looking people I met on the streets were either fully or half dressed in something red or at least had something red tagged somewhere on their cloth.

students crowding
a lush red coloured stall —
Valentine’s cards

Romanticism was slowly enveloping Kayole and Soweto slums in the twilight; the boldness of the uniformed students in pairs bargaining for Valentine Cards and gifts that were variously and creatively designed to offer variety totally mesmerized me; this scenario pushed me a notch higher on the Valentine Richter Scale. I was pressed for time. Not only was I required to accomplish my date with Miss L. (not her real name -- names are not mentioned here for confidentiality reasons), but I was also required to take my wife out on a date to Nyama Villa and later throw a late night family party with for our three daughters Faith, Esther and Liz.

Valentine ballads —
nostalgia for memories past
burns me up

Let me tell you more about my work. I work in a community secondary school based in Nairobi ’s Kayole Soweto slum. The school has a mixed population of both boys and girls of about 600 students aged between 13 and 18. But sometimes we receive extraordinary and unusual students not only in age, but also in background and experience. Some are aged over twenty and some are just below twenty but their experiences are flabbergasting. The oldest student we have ever received was Master R who was aged twenty-six in 2005. Master R completed his KCSE examination in 2008 and is now a teacher.

In fact, our school is a very special centre that mends broken dreams, lives, brains, hopes and hearts. For the seven years I have worked here, though, the year 2009 was an exceptional year for me. For the first time, we had two students, Miss M and Miss D sitting their KCSE exams with distended blessings in their wombs. And for the first time, we also had two students living with HIV/AIDS in our midst. They were Miss B and W. Of course I do not imply that we have never had teenage pregnancies in our school before; far from it. In fact, we do have them every year, even though our statistics for the last five years—2005-2009—show a sharp decline. The fact is that in 2009 we did not treat these cases in the usual tradition of expelling and stigmatizing. Instead, we showed sensitivity, understanding and moral as well as psychological support. We advised them to sit their exams and sternly cautioned all the other students against any form of discrimination and stigmatization. The question that triggered this was:

“Why haven’t we, as a society, ever expelled or stigmatized the boys or men who usually impregnate these girls? Why should the girls carry the burden of pregnancy alone, while the boy or man with whom they shared the pleasure of pro-creating is allowed to go on with his life totally uninterrupted?”

she is too large
to fit in between the desk —
her distended tummy

Thank God for our Government for endorsing this new policy. The girls can now sit their exams even if they are pregnant!

she tells a female teacher
that she’s older than her —
student mother

Our school also broke the record among community schools in 2009 for allowing two student mothers to study and sit their KCSE exams. The most outstanding was Miss E, who had been forcibly married off at the age of 16, due to poverty in their family. She had with much difficulty given birth to two children by the time we caught up with her in her matrimony. With the help of the authorities, we managed to extricate her from the abusive marriage. She joined our centre in 2007 and successfully sat for her KCSE exams in 2009. She had dropped out in Form 2. She had come to the centre with a broken heart, body and brain, as well as spirit, but she left the centre a healed, pretty girl in specs. She was very close to my wife.

sharing SMSes
from her ex-husband—
student mother

Generally, our students are the most beautiful-looking in the whole slum. With their resplendent uniforms and proud looks and posture, they usually attract so many others to the school. But underneath these beautiful faces and uniforms, are resilient spirits who have fought all forms of social and economic evils: drug abuse, teenage pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, abject poverty, sex abuse and molestation, domestic violence and child labour. The year 2009 was also extraordinary because we had admitted the two students living with HIV/AIDS.

18:10 hours: At the market stall, I struggled undecidedly with Valentine’s cards and gifts to buy for my date. The cards and gifts, although all in red, differed in size, decorations and material and hence the variation in prices. In the background, ballads, vehicle honks and the usual market din and the hawkers’ monotonous sales slogans and stories blared on. I finally settled for a small but cute Valentine’s gift for Miss L. It was a nicely woven traditional basket made from wild date palm reeds. It had a huge fully bloomed red plastic rose at the centre with red ribbons fluttering all around the red rose and the basket. There was a simple love message scribbled on a rectangular paper glued to the side of the basket:

To Someone very SPECIAL,
On this Valentine :

Thinking of you : Valentine’s chocolates

18:30 Hours: It was getting dark and twilight was fading into night, but colourful lights kept shooting into life from all buildings around, thus brightening the night. Night clubs, pubs and all entertainment joints were Valentine red in lighting and decoration.

I arrived at Miss L’s flat and knocked on the door. It was a high-rise building with several other tenants in it. As I stood outside her door waiting for it to be opened, I noticed that it was smeared with several stickers, all carrying HIV/AIDS messages. But the most outstanding sticker was the one with the President holding hands in a tight circle with people of all ages, classes and religions. And the poignant message on it was:


“Let us unite

to eradicate

I read this message over and over again as I waited for the door to be opened. Soon there was a click and the door opened. And before me, a beautifully dressed lady in jeans trousers, open shoes and red T-shirt, stood before me in the light-flooded sitting room, smiling sweetly, but her eyes were sad and lonely. That was Miss L. She had done a lot for the community — rescuing girls and women who suffered from HIV/AIDS stigmatization and discrimination. Our school had formed a network with her organization for the same reason; she had been the first girl in this part of Nairobi to publicly declare her HIV status.

I held the gift out to her and watched as pleasant shock and surprise engulfed her; she pouted the surprise. I silenced her with a hearty embrace and two pecks on both cheeks. The light that sparkled in her dark lonely eyes as she whispered:

“Do you mean you love me this much?” made my Valentine.
“Yes,” I said, “You deserve much much more. You have made a difference in so many lives here.” We released each other. “But I’m afraid I won’t stay. I’m taking my wife out to Nyama Villa and we have a family party later to-night.”
“I’m so grateful you thought of me, Pat. You’ve made my Valentine.”
“Don’t mention it”, I said and kissed her Happy Valentine.

Valentine’s date
with a HIV/AIDS person--
the radiance in her eyes

a red night

of eating chicken and dancing jazz —
dating my wife

church flower garden --

two little girls exchanging
red hibiscus flowers

~ Haibun and photo © Patrick Wafula


St Valentine’s Day --
today the computer
is my only love

St Valentine’s Day --
all the church finery
for a wedding

St Valentine’s Day --
the church warden mourns
his late wife

Valentine’s Day --
a lovers’ quarrel going
round and round my head

Valentine's Day --
who may be thinking of me
right now?

~ Isabelle Prondzynski

from Japan, with KitKat chocolate

Valentine's Day -
I send you a sweet

~ Gabi Greve


Valentine's day --
a girl's red tongue licks
a red ice cream

~ Dennis Wright

red flowers --
the leftovers colour
the market

~ Peninah Wanjiru

Valentine's day --
she covers her neck
with a red scarf

~ Ezekiel Mbira

sudden odour --
I stare at the roses
in the market

~ Meg Ndinda


A traditional reed basket full of Valentine’s Day gifts
Photo © Patrick Wafula


Valentine --
a little girl undusts
her fallen flowers

red decorations
on the pear vendor’s wheelbarrow --
Valentine’ Day

youthless church
for the morning service --
Valentine’s Day

~ Hussein Haji

a couple kiss
across the bus station--
Valentine’s day

~ Kelvin Mukoselo

Soweto market --
loudspeakers advertise
Valentine products

Valentine’s morning --
vendors arrange flowers
in the wheelbarrow

Valentine’s day --
a flower hawker whistles
from door to door

~ Caleb Mutua

Valentine’s card --
some sweet melody plays
in the pub

a chocolate pack
in heart-printed wrappers --
Valentine’s gift

Valentine’s Day --
bouquets of red roses
displayed in the shops

~ Gladys Kathini

Valentine's Day --
people in red clothes on their way
carrying flowers

~ Samuel Ndung'u

in a red suit
a man carrying flowers --
language of love

~ Raymond Otieno

stout lady
clutching red roses
clad in red

twenty bob each!
shouts a jovial hawker --
red bouquets

~ Catherine Njeri Maina

people in red
laughing and cheering in the pub --
Valentine’s night

~Walter Otieno


Teddy bears for a Valentine!
Photo © Patrick Wafula

waiters in red
serving red wine --
Valentine's Day

couples in red
cluster around flower stalls --
red twilight

a couple quarrelling
over Valentine SMSes --
sulky faces

form one students
asking the English teacher --
what is Valentine

Muthurwa --
hawkers of Valentine’s gifts
block the pathways

Luthuli Avenue --
broken roses scattered
at zebra crossings

Valentine’s Eve --
the shoe vendor's stall
gradually turns red

~ Patrick Wafula

Related words

***** WKD : Valentine's Day 2012



Patrons Kukai August 2017


Patrons' Kukai August 2017

***** Location: Greenspan Mall, Kayole, Kenya
***** Season: Cold dry season

On 19 August 2017, the Patrons (Patrick Wafula, Andrew Otinga, Paul Kanga and Jackson Siva) of the four schools participating in Kenya Saijiki met together with the Moderator (Isabelle Prondzynski) in the Java House Café in Greenspan Mall, Kayole, Nairobi. The objective was to discuss the progress of haiku in their respective schools and to exchange ideas. The just concluded General Election was also raised.

An inter club meeting is planned for September, and will take place at the invitation of the Beavers in their school. It is expected that 123 haijin will travel from the other schools to participate in the meeting. Computer certificates will be presented on this occasion. Patrons to co-ordinate with Mr Kimani so that this can be done at the agreed date.

Dates for the 2018 kukai were decided upon as follows :

24 February 2018. Patrick Wafula will report on possible venues at the next Patrons' meeting in November or December.

29 September 2018. Kenkyo na Kokoro will host this kukai.

Ideas for Kenya Saijiki :

~ Isabelle regularly to send the haiku clubs one haiku for their comments and appreciation, and one haiku to be revised and improved.

~ Isabelle to set themes on which the haiku clubs should research and report in time for the February kukai, the result of their research and the accompanying haiku written by themselves to be presented at the kukai. Each haiku club and the Patrons received a topic for research :

Patrons to focus on the jacaranda tree and blossom
Bamboochas to focus on Advent and Christmas Eve
Parrots to focus on Christmas Day
Beavers to focus on New Year's Day
Kenkyo na kokoro to focus on the First Things of the new year

~ Haiku clubs to make use of haiga (pictures combined with haiku) or haibun (narrative combined with haiku) -- each haiku club to prepare its report in the form of a haiga or haibun for the February kukai.

~ Rewards for haiku consistency and quality to be presented by Isabelle at kukai meetings.

We enjoyed a ginkoo in the Greenspan Mall compound and shared the haiku we had written. These follow below.

. . . CLICK here for the Photo by Isabelle Prondzynski !


- - - - - HAIKU - - - - -

my dusty shoes
on the clean pavement --
Greenspan Mall

Java House window --
a human face in the sun
stares at me

. . . CLICK here for the Photo by Isabelle Prondzynski !

Java House lounge --
a palm tree trembling
in the morning breeze

sparkling dew
in a canna lily's bud --
bright sun

ferns peeping
from a bamboo hedge --
Java House

the soft rustle
of a bamboo hedge --
gentle breeze

scorching sun --
star grass in Greenspan
has turned brown

green algae grown
on stagnant water --
metal tap

a bud, an onion
or a bean in the froth --

~ Patrick Wafula


. . . CLICK here for the Photo by Isabelle Prondzynski !

afternoon breeze --
red canna lily blossoms
tremble and tremble

a can top hanging
in the bamboo hedge --
Greenspan Mall

a black ant emerges
out of a red soil heap -
children's fun park

a bee lands
on red canna lily blossoms --
fun park terrace

oxalis leaves
sway in the afternoon wind --
Java Garden

fun park entrance --
green algae covering
an artificial swamp

~ Andrew Otinga


canna lilies
shake in the afternoon breeze --
Greenspan Mall

canna lilies --
I count seven budding stalks
at Greenspan Mall

grown under a palm tree --
Greenspan Mall

Greenspan garden --
three patrons staring
at macdonald's eye

green algae
cover an artificial swamp --
Greenspan Mall entrance

~ Paul Kanga


at Greenspan Mall --
three young girls jumping
on a bouncing castle

at Java House Café --
a kitten hiding
in a flower bed

at Java field --
a black wasp
flying in couch grass

at java field --
a mother on the pavement
scrolling her phone

at Greenspan Mall --
four white cars parked
on the playground

strolling on the pavement --
a mother with a baby
strapped to her back

~ Jackson Siva


Greenspan Mall --
a slight breeze ripples
the little pond

Greenspan Mall --
water toys drifting
in the little pond

lazy Saturday --
a tall merry-go-round
stays idle

. . . CLICK here for the Photo by Isabelle Prondzynski !

Greenspan Mall --
a toy car is parked
in the last fee space

Greenspan Mall --
coloured traffic cones mark out
a parking space

. . . CLICK here for the Photo by Isabelle Prondzynski !

days of drought --
tall water tanks guard
precious supplies

seeking the shade --
a shopping mall entrance
provides some cool

~ Isabelle Prondzynski






[ . BACK to worldkigo TOP . ]

Glossary of Kenyan Terms and Topics

bob -- shillings, money

githeri -- a staple food made from maize and beans

jiko -- a brazier used for cooking or heating and fuelled with charcoal, firewood or kerosene

lesso -- same as kanga
-- a rectangular cotton cloth with colourful prints and Swahili proverbs, worn as a skirt, as a turban,

Kayole -- an Eastern suburb of Nairobi

kiondo -- a sisal basket woven by women -- plural : vyondo

mabati -- corrugated iron sheets for building houses or roofing them

mandazi, mandazis -- a kind of doughnut

matatu -- a public transport minibus

mkokoteni, a hand cart pl. mikokoteni

muthokoi -- the delicious Kamba staple food

mzungu -- a white person

Nairobi -- the capital of Kenya

ndizi -- banana

ndubia -- tea with milk but no sugar

posho mill, poshomill -- for wheat and maize

shamba -- vegetable garden

Soweto -- a slum area within Kayole

Sufuria -- cooking pot or sauce

sukuma wiki, sukumawiki -- "stretching out the week"
leafy cabbage-like vegetable

tilapia -- a fish from lake Victoria
turungi -- "tru tea" : tea with neither milk nor sugar

ugali -- a staple food, solid porridge made from maize flour

uji -- a liquid porridge made from maize or millet flour


***** KIGO : Season Words of Kenya