Star Signs

In the end, our souls will become astronauts.

Masses of weightless suits, floating through oceans of night sky

…..and even then, when gravity is lost to us,

It is only by constellation that I will collide into you.

Somewhere between the rings of Saturn and the baby boom galaxies,

I will amass a force so meteoric…..that I will launch the remains of myself-

Into streaks of crusading lights;

…… and those who spectate through telescopes, or those who lay in open fields….Will even for a glimpse of a second, bear witness to the most impeccable timing that is the act of God.

A marriage after death- a reunion with the soul destined to be my mate

©Sabrina Najib


Celebrating Women in My Circle: Flora Njau

“A seed grows with no sound but a tree falls with huge noise”…… Dantan Wasobokha

Fresh from college, I had just landed my first “real” job at the Aga Khan University in Tanzania as a graduate Trainee. Overly eager and driven to make impact- my energy levels were on a high. Hindsight 20/20 I know that I needed to curb my enthusiasm and listen more than I spoke; assuming I knew how things needed to work was me being more naïve than being overconfident. Other than my mentor who was my boss at the time, I needed Flora to act as a medium to offer perspective and guidance to recognize the areas that I needed to work on.

When meeting Flora, you might assume that she likes to sit in the sidelines, to simply put her head down and deliver the expectations of her job description. After getting to know her, you recognize her ambition and drive when she breaks down her vision and talks to you about her passion for agriculture and her ideas for new business ventures. A young mum and hands down one of the busiest foot soldiers in the office, she reminds me of Roald Dahl’s classic: “The B.F.G”.

She represents a different type of strength that I did not see in the movies or in the books I read; growing up I always envisaged successful women as tough, aggressive and competitive women who either needed to bang down doors or stare down their competition. Flora is different, her strength is quiet and gracious. I believe that the foundation of her success will be her kindness and her gentle ambition. She is a listener who absorbs the lessons of her peers and elders, and when you least expect it delivers an outlook that is shaped by ethics, kindness and truth.

My first  IWD woman of the year is my snarky life hustler- Flora Estella Njau.


The history of measurement has been calculated so that one is always more and the other is always less.

Both quanitites may have gained in weight, but still…. the scale has remained that one tips to carry the other because one has been better fed.

The shop keeper has developed a habit of favouratism for certain clients; where he has consistently sold a bag of rice just under a kilo of what mama rehema has paid for. But for Mr Yusuphu, he has opened his shop at closed working hours to sell him a few hundred grams over the kilo.

Perhaps it is just a “coinsidence” of sequential errors in measurements; but surely if the scales are “broken” one should surely fix them.

The habitual shortage has made meals smaller for one and has cooked plenty for the other.

Mama Rehema has not qualified as a “special client” but if her meals were the same as Mr Yusuph’s- nothing less and nothing more…..she may gain the weight she lacked to finish a kilo of rice.

Ribbon Dance

Pink silk stained herself in champagne and growing pains.
The clock struck half past sixteen a decade ago,
But her watch lost track of time….
And her compass lost sight of north.
She is still dancing on the dancefloor,
In her comfort zone….
at the centre of chaos.


You are not kind just because you are polite…. if anything you are a stomach with a monstrous appetite.
That is what you are… appetite that feeds to create more empty spaces.
Every word you speak is a calorie overspoken.
Every midnight booty call you make, that bakes and fries her thoughts with a back and forth of whether tonight should or should not be her cheat day is your sustenance to create hunger.
Will you die if you stop being greedy?…..
Say a prayer before your meals, perhaps you will be greatful for your daily bread.
Ration your portions of wasting her time, you might find that a diet can keep you well fed.
Must you cook all your meals with butter?
Is there another option to cook her a meal that won’t clog her arteries……
or one that doesn’t make it harder for her to breathe when you walk her up a staircase that leads to nowhere ?
You feed her as you feed your others- just enough to keep her starving,
You are meal serving entrees with no desert- you are a stomach that eclipses the heart.

©Sabrina Najib

Chronic Pain

The night only reminds me of his silhouette,
a stencil of a silent listener under a Kenyan lit sky…..smoking silently on the balcony.
Dark skinned, blue-black melanin…… a pigment for dreamers like the night itself.

Now I sleep with the lights on, so painfully aware of the absence of his breathing. All I want to talk about is the boy I lost in fear……

As if I can still taste the last drop of whiskey from his lips…… his name alone gives me a hangover.

All I ever do these days is wonder if there was any nobility in losing him, what reward has there ever been for being selfless?

Perhaps I loathe myself too much, thinking I don’t deserve to be happy because of the changes in myself I no longer recognise. The monthly pains that rip my insides, rinsing my bones and shredding each layer of my womanhood- making sex an endurance of suffering. It was when he saw me cry, wishing my body would stop being so alien to me….. praying that one week of every month would show mercy on me. I was ashamed, feeling sorry for him, as he watched me being helpless- begging him not to touch me when all he wanted was to hold me. Still he never complained, instead he listened when I said nothing at all….. understanding every particle of silence, knowing that I needed anybody to be present between my struggling gasps for air.

” it makes no differenece to me” he said “I just want to be here”.

I knew then I had to let him go, he deserved more than me. He was too good, he was the sun in any sunday morning…… and I couldn’t be anything to him without being tainted.

I told Sheila: “I really like that boy, I swear he puts the colour into my world. It hurts me just to think of something hurting him, if the way he watches me sleep means anything, he must be hurting when I hurt too. That means his heart breaks every month when I am curled up in the corner trying to rock myself to sleep, trying to escape from the monster that has taken refuge in my womb. I am worried it might scare him away one day, and then I will be completely shattered, handicapped and broken. It is better that he finds another girl who can be everything to him, I only hope she looks at him the way that I do.”

Women Weavers

Strings woven into carpets,
sequencing patterns of silence….
embroidery framed in galleries,
displaying wheels of patience.

Canvases of split edges,
Resting on generations of resilience…..
Washing out patchwork of labour,
Ingraining structures of imbalance.

Movements engraved in tapestries,
Manifesting systems of endurance…..
Multiplying prints on fabric,
hand sewing cycles of hinderance

©Sabrina Najib