Kinyarwandaby | Nov 15, 2017
Kinyarwanda: a language that sets me free and reminds me
that I come first while their languages tell me
that I come second, third—last? A language that grounds me
and speaks of home. In fact it is home itself. I always come back
to it when English has failed me and English always does.
It carries with it stories and histories. Stories that remind me how to
live and to love and some which when translated totally lose their meaning.
A language that allows me to be in sync with my ancestors.
A language that reminds me that I belong somewhere, that we
communicate in heartbeats and expressions, funny ones and sad ones.
It talks of people like me, who look like me, speak like me,
and live lives like mine. It allows me to exist both apart from
and in the world. It is sisterhood and the secret words in
dining halls full of whites. Speaking a single word in Kinyarwanda
after a sentence in English feels like walking barefoot on a soft
carpet after a long day in heels.
You feel me?