Today began like any other day for me, with a trip to Paradise Cemetery. The dew was still heavy on the grass as I walked down First Street. Along the way, children headed to school called out my name. “Good morning, Wiki,” they said. “Where did you sleep last night?” They scattered when I glared at them. Not only did they have audacity to call a grown man of thirty-eight by his first name, but they also shortened my name despite my insistence that I go by Wickington. I huffed my way through Marondera, shoulders hunched, and fists clenched with a look daring anyone to try me.
I strode through the rusted black gate of the cemetery and past the empty car park until I was standing where the rows of graves began. Today, I was in search of the sanctuary that only Paradise could provide. To my right were the oldest graves enclosed by an iron fence. To my left was the children’s section, a sorry sight of half-sized graves spaced closely together. And in front of me were rows and rows of graves. As always, my eyes wandered down the gentle slope to the thicket of smoking gum… Read more »