Child Soldiers Are Not To Be Asked Secrets

It is careless to ask a child soldier
how the water in his village tastes.
If he does tell you, it is just as rude
to expect him to show you the tributaries of blood
that sing the red blues into the river.
Do not ask him the secret that lies buried behind those bushes.
Instead, drink your glass in silence
because it serves you no purpose
to thirst for stories
that even his gun’s dry throat
cannot swallow.




About the Author
Mbonisi Zikhali was born in Makokoba, in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. His spoken-word/storytelling name is Zomkhonto, which happens to be his bloodline’s totem. He is based in Canada. He is a spoken-word artist, story-teller, arts educator, youth mentor, qualified community services worker, grassroots community organizer and mental wellness advocate. He considers himself an afro-empath, and is driven to ensure that people find joy and healing in the power of words and story-telling.