Ipikai Poetry Journal
The Story of Zimbabwe in Poetry
ISSUE 4 | JUNE 2023www.ipikai.org
The Ipikai Poetry Journal
is a project of the
Zimbabwe Poets Society.
BEHIND THE SCENES
A Note About Issue 4
As we were starting to put Issue 4 together, our editor, Tariro Ndoro, stepped down from her role to give herself space to take on a new opportunity that had come her way.
We would like to thank her warmly and send her off with applause and ululation for the amazing work she did to help bring the first issues of Ipikai to life.
Thank you to Togara Muzanenhamo (pictured) for taking the time to be the guest editor for this issue and for your insistence that we look for the best poetry we could find.
Thank you to our consulting editors, Tinashe Muchuri and Thabani H. Moyo for making it possible for us to publish great poetry in Shona and Ndebele.
Thank you to Stuart Moyo for uploading the poetry to the site. Thank you also to Gourd of Consciousness Poetry for helping us publicize our call for submissions for this issue (We had to reopen the call, after the first round of submissions did not give us enough poems of the right quality to make it to the issue).
Yours in poetry,
FROM THE EDITORIAL TEAM
Looking for Rebirth
The world is in a state of rebirth. As we move on from the threat of COVID-19 and as we refind old patterns of life– breathing on each other, crowds, togetherness– and embrace new ones– Zoom, hand sanitizer in handbags, surreptitious looks at anyone coughing– we find ourselves on both familiar and unfamiliar ground.
What is rebirth? The poets in this issue have many ways of exploring and defining it.
Rebirth is finding love as explored in Mthulisi Ndlovu’s “Bekumnandi Kunjeya.”
Rebirth is in not just rain, but in anticipating the joy of others when the rain falls as in “Yakazonayawo” by Ruvimbo Martha Jeche.
Rebirth is in remembering our birth as hinted at in Samantha Rumbidzai Vazhure’s poem. “Travelling by Thought.”
’til mhondoro show me woman enduring earthly realm— it is mother(!)
the sacredness of our bond makes me love her at once and that wills my destiny
the cords of which firmly entwine our souls’ pledge
Rebirth is hope.
Man takes his hoe and goes..
To plough and hope for more.
More crop, more life– more days
More of the sun’s rays.
for Team Ipikai
Zimbabwe has a savanna climate, our lawns tend toward a dry, brown hue without constant
watering and most lawns are driest in October, the hottest month of the year. Then in November, the heavens open and it rains. After two bouts of healthy thunderstorms, the landscape changes—lawns once brown are verdant, birds chirp and insects buzz, for those on farms and in rural areas, fruit trees burst with increase and maize plants flourish.
Thus, barring drought and famine, Zimbabwe always enters a new year with a feeling of physical and seasonal rebirth. Rebirth can also apply to life situations—a first love after heartbreak, a first job after years of searching, the shooting of a bamboo plant after five years of watering. The list goes on.
Click on a title to read the poem, or on a name to see all the poems by that poet…