Wednesday, May 6, 2009


I got this email from my aunt, who lives with my mom's brother and their two beautiful daughters. she was forwarding the email that she got from a teacher of her daughter Amanda. in class they had an assignment that was based around " building a strong character, using descriptive phrases, similes and metaphors." they had to look at a picture and write about it. Here it is. quite amazing...she's TEN!

"I watched the white man with wild eyes. He aimed something at me. I flinched, expecting it to be one of those firesticks Mama told me about. He lowered it and looked at me like he was saying, ‘Sorry, I didn’t mean to scare you.’
For the first time I looked at him properly, without fear. He was chubby and his skin was pasty, like dough. But his clothes were rich. There were trinkets on his arms and legs. I longed to touch one of them.
I looked down at myself. My skin was brown like cocoa beans, and my feet were dusty and looked somewhat like the white man’s skin. My soft cotton clothes hung on my arms dejectedly, like our warriors when they lose a battle.
I could feel the wind ruffling my hair and smiled. It was short and sturdy, like Malaha, our tribe’s medicine woman. I glanced down again at my legs. They were long and lanky from running so much, unlike the white man’s legs, which were stubby, fat and sweating in the hot African sun, like a lost man in the desert. One of my legs bore a golden leglet, a present from my mother’s sister.
Mother. The word ran through my head like a cheetah stalking. Where was she? I wanted her. Her soft voice was a gentle breeze, her warm arms were home.
I looked at the ground and sniffed, but straightened up. I was an African. There would be no crying. There was a determined and fiery spark inside me, and I was going to keep it that way. No tears to extinguish the flame.
The man noticed me and smiled, his pearly white teeth flashing in the sun like a river running along. He said something in a tongue I didn’t understand, and I cocked my head like a dog in our camp begging for more food. One of the tribesmen, who had left with the white men last year, interpreted for me.
He had said, ‘The pupil in your eye flashes and dances like a wild flame.’
I had never heard anything so warm and thoughtful in my life. I grinned at him, and he picked up his ‘thing’ and aimed it at me. It gave a flash as it went off."

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