July 24, 2011

Still Here, Holding Sway

"Once every few years, even now, I catch the scent of Africa. It makes me want to keen, sing, clap up thunder...I find it impossible to bear. 

Ripe fruits, acrid sweat, urine, flowers, dark spices, and other things I've never even seen -- I can't say what goes into the composition, or why it rises up to confront me as I round some corner hastily, unsuspecting. It has found me here on this island, in our little town, in a back alley...The sensation rises up from inside me and I know you're still here, holding sway. You've played some trick on the dividing of my cells so my body can never be free of the small parts of Africa it consumed."

from The Poisonwood Bible, Barbara Kingsolver

"If I know a song of Africa, of the giraffe and the African new moon lying on her back, of the plows in the fields and the sweaty faces of the coffee pickers, does Africa know a song of me? Will the air over the plain quiver with a color that I have had on, or the children invent a game in which my name is, or the full moon throw a shadow over the gravel of the drive that was like me, or will the eagles of the Ngong Hills look out for me?"

from Out of Africa

I am on a place across a distant sea
But I carry you in me
and the dust on, the dust on, the dust on my feet

from "Albertine," Brooke Fraser

Sometimes my life at college makes me compartmentalize the Ethiopia part of my life. 
It's so different, so far from what most people here can understand, so un-relatable to 
what's going on here that it is easy to just tuck it all away on a shelf in the back of my 
mind. And that makes me sad. So many thanks to Becky Long for posting these 
beautiful pictures on Facebook (and telling me I could share them with y'all) and 
reminding me of just how much I love and miss Ethiopia!

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