TRIBUTE TO MY BELOVED…

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Rwanda, one heart, one body, one future

One mind, later divided,

Two minds, later fallen,

Back to one and whole again!

We are searching through for beauty in ashes,

Reaching for light from darkness

Hoping for love in hate,

Recovering our country from a colony

Destroying the very definitions that once constrained us

We… from Rwanda to none else but Rwanda!

This is a new age, we turn a new page

It is a new war waged against our own enemy

The sage in us salvages our humanity

This raging foe, this cage;

Division, difference, distaste

The ruin of our land, oh! Our pride

See, this is a new age; indeed we turn a new page

A new chapter for a renewed nation

New paths for yes, a new kind of motion

New governance for a new direction

This… is a new age!

Do I hope to look back over my shoulder?

And see a part of me torn to pieces

Do I dare to think of the pain? Alas!

To see those million children, women and men

Do I want to ask if I could have saved them?

Thinking ‘what was did not have to be’?

Yet ill-fate had to have its way, and I could only pray…

Do I want to face that there—down over there, lies piles of gold?

In the form of mortal souls, dried bones and torn clothes

Do I think it right to look back over my shoulder?

Is it right that I remember?

If nothing else, give in my heart what my hands could not offer?

If nothing else, should I not raise them to that dignified place?

Call me skeptical but is it not necessary, if not obligatory?

That I light this candle, turn my mind’s eye,

Grieve with those who grieve; hope with those who hope?

Commemoration… is it not my responsibility?

This is a new day, you and I, empowered.

Youth, adult, toddler alike

We all ought to know our worth.

This is the time to reach out

Knowing we can, now more than ever;

Knowing what was hidden has yet been uncovered,

Knowing we still have way to go;

But too, knowing that the past is not where we want to be

It only is where we will never be, no, not again!

 Empowerment is like an engine;

Start it, and it converts fuel to motion

Let the fuel be us, Rwanda.

Let us ignite an undying fire!

For our own, yes I say our own self-reliant tomorrow;

The embodiment of our Hope…faith!

Rwandan Youth,

Ours is the energy, promise, and power

To steer the wheel and turn the tables

Not to the attractive west nor to the Far East,

But rather, steady back here within

Back home where we can sit and dine

At peace as brother, sister, father, mother

One people, reconciled; one vision

Rwandan youth, ours is the calling…

Twenty years are but a passing wind

Days and nights of probing, pushing; penetrating stone walls

Busiest of all yet most meaningful and indeed, most prosperous of all

Yet April (Mata) is here again for our treasured milk this time and not each other’s blood

Let us commemorate the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi.

Reka Twibuke!

Author: Natasha Daphine Muhoza, current student at Eastern University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; attended school both in Uganda and Rwanda, graduating from Riviera High School, class of 2011. She is currently pursuing a bachelor of arts in Economic Development.

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