My Choice – Cate Nyabuti
Mother, father, and the man I should marry
Like old friends sit by the fire
Taking in the warmth; sipping on their cups
Exchanging pearls of wisdom
They nod in mutual understanding
Bound by their pact, they periodically laugh
I’m seated at the corner; busy
Pretending not to listen.
I dare not interrupt the custodians of my future
Mother looks at me; assuringly smiles
They want the best for me, and my future
My daughter is Eve; you have to be the Adam
Father tells my future husband.
And my future husband has to be many things;
We must share ancestors, for a pure bloodline
A decent upbringing, for a cultured bloodline
Belief in God; for a pious bloodline
An agreeable conduct, for our reputation
Must not interrupt my schooling;
Our bloodline must remain learned
And has to match or exceed my intellect;
Our bloodline must be affluent.
Now satisfied with their choice of this acceptable man
The council turns to me with their verdict;
I must meet this now non-existent man
I must choose him; they’ll take no less;
Their choice is my choice; our choice-
The best choice.
This man I have to find
A man who is all these men
Am I the woman he wants to marry?