DIRTYL AUNDRY PART 2 by Daisy Waitherero Wambua

The floor was cold, the stench from the ‘restroom (read bucket)’ became stronger, the one blanket to be shared reeked of urine worth of centuries, the blood on her chin had then clotted, and her kinky hair had gone afro from all the sweat. It is nearly dawn. Her fellow jailbirds would take turns in throwing up, with the bucket full, it would slowly flow towards where they cramped up. The guards pretended not to take notice.

Kantana reached out for the blanket, she covered her back and face just to forget for a second the situation she was in. She could feel the bedbugs making their way down her back but no pest could compare to the one she was facing. She gently began to scrape off the blood from her face. She spit in her hand and rubbed off the stubborn ones. Her stomach felt uneasy; she hadn’t eaten for three days. The bile tortured her insides occasionally trying to find an outlet. She was weak but she pressed on.

‘The jury finds Ms. Kantana Ferusi guilty as charged, sentenced to thirty years in jail!’ Her eyes were blank, no emotion as she faced her verdict even her lawyer was taken aback by her reaction. She showed no dispute, no sigh of relief either. One would say she took it like a man but even a man would be broken if they were to spend the prime time of their life behind bars. She would get out when she was fifty, her one and only son would be thirty three by then, and probably Peter Kenneth’s son would have taken presidency. She thought randomly.

Prayers were her cocaine, her grandma taught her that God listens to those of broken spirits and of damaged souls. She prayed for her son, not once did she remember herself. She would think of him when she wanted to give up and end her misery; she might have given life to him but without him, she wouldn’t have kept hers for that long. He motivated her, he was her little Messiah in her apocalypse.

Day 1478. It’s March 5th 2007. Her son’s 8th birthday. She calls home to speak to him as tradition, she was always the first to wish him a happy birthday and she made sure of this. Kunta was growing big, his naivety has shrunk down a couple notches. The neighbors were talking and the fallacy that his mother was in the army seemed less true by the day. However, he loved his mother, he would take her word for it to the grave. She would tell him the sun is black and not yellow and he would live by her word to the very last. Conversely, She was a stranger to him, barely remembered the curvature of her face, was her skin bronze, was her hair long, did she have a birthmark across her back, was she tall and lean or short and thick? He would ask his grandmother.

Despite all the mystery, she was his hero.


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