“Amani and Upendo” by Mwas Mahugu

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Amani and Upendo

A long time ago in Africa there lived a happy people from a happy village on the hill, where everything was perfect. Villagers lived in utopian harmony, Love reigned supreme, and Peace was the core pillar of Nyambo society. Everything formed one energy, from nature to the galaxies.

Myths and stories from grand elders spoke of medicine men and priests who had explored the galaxies extensively. Planting, marriages, and many rituals were done in perfect alignment with the stars each yearly season.

Annually, a huge golden beam would be shone across the galaxy towards the desired planets to appease the gods, who would in turn respond with blessings and a bountiful harvest the following season.

One particular season, a drunken priest miscalculated, directing the golden beam ray towards the dreaded ringed planet Saturn. The people had explored all the galaxies, but Saturn was a taboo place.

Evil vibrations descended upon the village, bringing with them dark destructive energies. Vibrations of fear invaded the hearts of the villagers.

Confusion took over the people’s normal life, and greed, suspicion, turmoil, and mayhem became the order.

What amazed the villagers is with the change of people internally, there was an energy shift that affected their weather and planting seasons, resulting in angry thunderstorms, intense rains, forest fires, and extreme sun, leading to a devastating famine that lasted for many seasons.

A Priest born on the great day of the Golden Beam Ritual made a discovery — he had a powerful energy that could capture the demon. Later he recognized that all the children born on the same day also had extremely powerful energies that grew stronger when they formed a pair.

The priest from Nyambo and neighboring villages met and decided that all children born at the exact time and day of the Golden Beam Ritual be named Amani if a boy and Upendo if a girl. From birth their sole mission on Earth would be to fight evil and restore the equilibrium in people’s hearts and in nature too. Over many years, hundreds of children carried the name Amani and Upendo.

The priest ordered rituals all over the ridges to be performed to match the male and female energies. All the children were brought together, and lifetime pairs were formed. This was the weapon the demon virus could not face —

their light burned the darkness and chased it away. Each season, the warriors were given a secret mask by the priest of the area. Clans known for their leadership, priestly, and warrior-like traits were chosen for this noble cause. When the time came, each warrior would find their partner with a matching mask and continue combat together.

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Amani was fourteen years old when he saw warriors on the other side of the ridge. Clad in black lobes, an ostrich rider leading, they moved across the millet plantation chanting as they loped past where Amani had hidden himself.

He emerged from the reeds and jumped on their pathway, raising his two hands in surrender.

“My fellow brothers salaam? With all this chanting, where are you going? My name is Amani from Nyambo village. I humbly request you tell me why you have crossed the boundary ridge, have my people wronged your people?”
The leader of the warriors, a young woman, ignored him, passing by without saying a word. Amani saw the luck mask hanging from the young maiden’s heart. Not only did it have a warrior mark that matched his, but she was from a clan that could inter-marry his, she was the one.

Seasons passed and Amani became a strong young warrior.All of a sudden, a beautiful lady emerged from the cool shade of the forest edge, her attire gleaming like the wings of a parrot in the sun.

Amani paused for a moment, accustoming his eyes to the sight of the young woman walking towards him. Suddenly, the blade of a spear flew through the air, but instead of fear, Amani felt a warm sensation as if someone had stroked the inner chord melodies of his heart. Although she was a couple of meters away, he could see her eyes shining bright like a golden blade struck by sunset rays.

Amani saw the warriors behind the beautiful woman; lithe as a leopard, swift as savanna grassland antelopes and surging forward like a stray buffalo.

He stood still and signaled his group of warriors not to emerge. His battalion wore fresh, camouflage green reeds, and the approaching warriors were unaware that they had entered Amani’s trap.

“I command you to lay down your spear, young man,” the woman began. “My name is Upendo, daughter of the supreme chief of Gathundia Chiefdom. I am here on two missions: one, on an order to slay all the people that have sided with the demon from Saturn, and two, to find the other wing of my heart.”

Upendo marched forward towards Amani, followed by her warriors.

“My name is Amani, son of the supreme Chief of Nyambo village. I am on a mission to slay the demon virus that has scattered our people and hid the face of my beloved.
“I am not an enemy,” Amani pleaded, hoping Upendo would see his luck mask.
“Are my eyes deceiving me?” he asked. A teardrop fell to the ground when Upendo saw his matching mask.

The reign of Chief Amani and Upendo began. So great was their reign that they managed to connect all the peace and love soldiers from their village and from distant lands. When all their energies united, the power of the demon virus diminished. The soldiers fought together for many years and finally, the time came.

The Nyambo village dancers swung in unison with the beat of the drums as Chief Amani, accompanied by his wife, Upendo, and an entourage entered the village court. The afternoon sky was radiant.

They took the staircase to the podium. Only the weaver birds swirling above, and some perched on a nearby acacia tree, ignored the grand entry, continuing with their singing.

“My People. The secret of success is being calm and peaceful on the outside, while beneath, paddling fast like a cheetah,” Chief Amani declared to the crowd.

“Our People are scattered. This is not good for our village – we need to be together and connected. Our systems have broken down as a result of the virus that has infiltrated our society. As your Chief, let me say that language creates the world!” he continued.
“The golden ratio has ripple effects. Like the rain that falls on the high mountains, forming hundreds of streams that flow down, eventually connecting together to form a river which flows and replenishes the trees that become homes to the birds. That’s the power of Word my people.”

“The village is facing a turning point: people are fleeing from war and terror and they are being betrayed and pushed away. Where people should move together, they move apart. People no longer see solutions; they always see the problem, and only ever in the other, in the stranger, in the weak. How could it be that villages are led by stupidity, not love and respect? Today we will correct the Priest’s mistake”.

There was silence followed by murmurs and clapping, the sound of a surging sea. Fly whisks were raised in the air as Chief Amani left the podium. The master of ceremony, Miss Imani, took the dais while the sounds of flutes filled the air.

“I greet you in the name of the most high,” she began, “I have a few words before I welcome the one and only Upendo. My name is Imani, the lead faith bearer for our village and beyond, and I must say that the Chief is right. I feel it in my soul each time one of you fails to stand up to fight and whisper the words, all energy is interconnected,” she said. “I, Imani and all my fellow namesakes put all our faith on this material day of the Golden Beam Ritual towards the end of the evil demon”.

A lovely sensation, sweet as nectar, filled the entire meeting as warrior Upendo gracefully took the stage. There were hundreds of insect sized robots, each one equipped for tele presence, broadcasting the ceremony so that all warriors could see what the priests saw and heard.

“The scattering of our people affects the heart’s equilibrium,” said Upendo. “The way to find unity is to take a step towards love to speak the words whispered by our priest in secrecy that wove the fabric of our being. Unity is born when love and peace are our core, connecting all people. We will manifest oneness.”

“May our priest guide my beloved Upendo as we shine the Golden Beam. Today we not only beam the ray, but we fire golden robots into the galaxy,” chief Amani said. “These monitored Golden Beam capsule robots will modernize our galaxy exploration. We will restore the order that the drunk priest caused and we will develop more advanced technology so that the chaos of Saturn will never return,” he finished.

“I Upendo with the love shield, and Chief Amani with his peace shield, powered by all our namesakes and guided by Imani the faith bearer with the blessings of all our Priests and Priestesses present, fiiiiiree kaboom kaboom.”

All the priests and priestess spoke in unison as one being:

“Peace through unity. Unity through trust. Trust through honesty. Honesty through compassion. Compassion through understanding. Understanding through freedom. Freedom guided by Love and Peace.”


Mwas Mahugu is a writer and an Afro -hip hop artist who when not singing, writes, coordinates music events and manages artists.he has been published by kwani literal magazine,a founding member of jalada africa(pan africa writers collective)a pioneer sheng writer (slang language)and written for people daily newspaper. Twitter @gasfyatu Website: www.shengtown.blogspot.com/