“Hi, I am Peace. I am also a poet just like you.” spoke a young African man as he extended his hand to shake mine. He then went on to open his book and recite poetry to me. “You see, your poetry is amateurish, to say the least, it lacks rhythm and rhyme. Something that is important for a good poem. No doubt there is substance in your words, but there is no song, no tune, no melody.” I did a quick critique of his work. Peace was a friend of David. They were creative men that I met during my visit to Nyanga. “You should study the work of Michelangelo and his sculpture of David. He was a great sculptor who used stones and marble to chisel his creations.”
The name ‘Nyanga’ in Xhosa, which is a South African language, means moon. It is also one of the most dangerous parts of the region. We meandered through the hills chatting about life, religion, acting and poetry. Then we stopped over at a local African drinking hole for a beer. I observed the sunset from the hills and then bid ‘bye bye’ to my two African friends. Ah, what of Olivia, she had invited me for a walk to the hills and I had lost time in the company of David and Peace. Never mind, at least I have some sweet memories of her.
David had big dreams. He wanted to develop the trout back area as a major tourist spot where foreigners could come, relax and also spend some of their money. Peace, on the other hand, was engrossed in his poetry. He just wouldn’t stop reciting them as I would start picking holes in them. We moved onto the nearby watering hole for a beer. I started chatting with the gout of men outside the bar. “You know, I am an Indian Actor. I do films and also TV.” Then with a quick demonstration of my arms and body, I gave them a short performance of mine.
The sunset was upon us and caught my attention as I took a chance to shoot the beautiful scene. “You know I just want to earn enough money to buy a new phone so that I can remain in touch with you through Facebook.” I looked at him and smiled. “Well, then you will have to sell hundreds of these damn stone sculptures. I can just buy one piece, that too, of no more than 20 dollars.”
By thesis time, the sun had set and Peace also joined us. All three of us walked towards my Land Rover. There was a bit of a nip in the air and it felt like I was at home. I was so much at ease with myself and life in general. Relaxed and free…