One of the most common phrases you’ll often hear from us is

“ I miss Africa”

The first time I said it to one of my American classmates, he looked surprised

America like they say, the land of the free and home of the brave

Africa like they say, the land of wars and home of diseases


Let me explain:

We may not have Barbie dolls

But we make pretty cool figurines

With leftovers from tailors

We may not have Disney Channels

Yet every now and then we get to play princesses

In front of hundreds of adults

Where I come from we do not always have a TV

But most families have a couple of Kevin Harts

Performing every night after dinner

Our sisters have been singing in choirs for years

They can Celine Dion every hardship or heartbreak we may face

Our brothers are so quick to organize soccer tournaments

Gathering children from all around the city as we root for them

Our tables may not always be filled with delicious meals

But God bless our mothers for each time they step outside

Empty handed, growling stomachs, yet determined to feed us

Always come back arms full of sweets and candies

Justice is such a foreign concept and Police is almost inexistent

But we get to be each other’s keeper besides,

Our fathers have crossed too many borders,

Surmounted too many mountains,

Lost everything yet made it here

We are pretty much covered

Believe me when we say we miss it

We know you probably wonder how insane we must be

To long for war, hunger, poverty, poor education

We hear you

There is nothing pretty about the way

The foreign world divided our continent

Or how corrupt our leaders continue to be

Filling their pockets while emptying our hearts

Oh, we hear you

But the next time we are homesick,

Understand that what we long for is the African Magic

That won’t cross the Atlantic ocean to find us

-Marianne Murekatete

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