I wish I could say I am humbled to be this and that, humbled that you're still my friend. I won't. That will be for my acceptance speech at the huge International Women Achievers of this Generation Life-time Award.
I've tried the fake modesty. Ugandans saw through it. I tried being so full of integrity, kindness, meekness that my goodness filled like an entire helium balloon. And then it burst because people took so much advantage of it, I was too worn down from holding everyone up and being let down.
When I turned the other cheek. That didn’t work either. I even tried lending money to people who still owed me. I had even started attending meetings of people and organisations that had tried every effort to obliterate, defame, extinguish and deface all my work in the arts. I sat with them, cheered them on, marketed their work, lauded their efforts and turned the other cheek.
And then it finally worked. I came out like a diamond. All that pressure gave me an eternal glow and wealth.
And then I also found Jesus. Not the Jesus that has been fashioned out on posters like a rock star, whose healing and love must be paid for but the one who said,
"For God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power and of love and of a sound mind." 2 Timothy 1:7 NKJV
I folded my bloodied clothes, together with my bloodied soul, my bloodied hope and exchanged it for whom I was and am supposed to be, a diva and a sweetheart.
Now, I can thank you. Thank you for stepping into my strength, my future and present and my daring dreams. I have stopped apologising for BN Poetry's success, for being able to do what I do, for the BN Leadership Academy. I've stopped apologising for being a great mum, sex-goddess and amazing wife. Deal with it.
I will always applaud your shine but if some can't realise the sun is enough for everyone, you will always burn, inside and out. Oh and by the way, we’re launching an adventure toolkit for children who read and write poetry. It’s called Poetricks and it will be an Africa-wide launch. You’re welcome to join us. I
One of my favourite poems by Rudyard Kipling. (Replace the word man with diva and the word son with daughter
If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too:
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or being hated don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise;
If you can dream---and not make dreams your master;
If you can think---and not make thoughts your aim,
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same:.
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build'em up with worn-out tools;
If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings,
And never breathe a word about your loss:
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on!"
If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings---nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much:
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And---which is more---you'll be a Man, my son!