My land was green with the pregnant corn cobs bent under the weight of birth. Green with the tea bushes come together in a village baraza, the soft rustle in their leaves passing on a whispered message. We live off the land, we eat from the land, but we no longer treat her with the sanctity and respect she deserves. We take, take, and take some more. We want to own as much as we can. We want to conquer the land for ourselves. We keep taking. So much so that sometimes my land turned brown, with the merciless heat from the sun painting the hot ground brown for as far as the eyes could see. We always saw the brown creeping up onto the once lush fields, but we knew it would always come to pass, and when the rains finally came, the shy green of sprouting napier would eventually turn the hills a deep, deep green. Green, brown, green, brown, we came to accept this as the harsh circle of life. But when she turned bright red, awash with innocent blood as the self-proclaimed kings of the land turned us against each other, we knew. We knew the sacred cycle of greens and browns had been broken. A bungled election, an angry people, ashes to ashes, an eye for an eye, a limb, a head, a young man’s life cut off way too soon. And for the first time, because of our greed, the land bled.
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