Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Standing on the Mountain

Stood still in a stature
At one, in harmony with nature
My mind the statute
Life the statue
Limitations stifling a never ending season of hope
Cogitations whistling a clever reason to hold onto life's rope

I state, that in this state in my hands is my fate
My thoughts stipulating the pace
Progress is a sign of progression dependent on faith
Decisions you make, less haste
The air we breathe (Appreciate)

Behold, beauty lies beyond your face
His omnipresence is evident beyond your face
His magnificence is evident beyond your face

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Remembering the Elderly

© Ernest Mackina Photography 2013
 The legitimation of any society is confirmed by the presence of the elderly. It is said that “indlela ibuzwa kwabaphambili” which loosely means, the path is asked by those ahead. 
© Ernest Mackina Photography 2013
In this journey of life, the elderly are important as they inform a society of known and unknown norms and values. 

© Ernest Mackina Photography 2013
© Ernest Mackina Photography 2013
They are mobile libraries and in an African setting, they carry repositories of knowledge, as their lives are decorated with a massive wealth of experiences.

It is saddening however that, with all this at hand, the elderly have been forgotten and placed in old people’s homes, with their memories receding into oblivion. 

Despite this somber reality, the Rotaract Club of Matopos witnessed first hand, the joy possessed by the smiles of the octogenarian and nonagenarians at the Ekuphumuleni Geriatric Nursing Home in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.

During the clubs visit to the humbling home, they were introduced to a centurion  whose sharp mind recalled her exact date of birth. 

She exclaimed in a clever tone “ I was born in 1907”. 

The club arrived at the home on a sunny bright morning, armed with blankets, detergents and foodstuffs they had sourced from their own coffers and assistance from well-wishers, a short proceeding took place as there was an a Capella group that performed their piece of beautiful music that ministered to the grandparents.

Immediate Past President Thandi Bhanda took to the floor and vibrantly kept the elderly entertained through a series of jokes and comical acts. 

She then gave out goodies, much to the delight of the geriatrics whose faces lit up in pleasure. 

She then opened the floor for the club to engage in dialogue with the wise residents. It was a bittersweet experience for some, as tears of happiness and touched hearts rued the atmosphere. 

Amongst the participants was a certain Tapiwa Kupfuwa, who disclosed discontent at how the world had become disconnected with their own grand folk. Everyone scrounged to have an image taken with the centurian. The official handover of the donations was done and a vote of thanks was given.

Visiting the elderly is very essential and helps them overcome loneliness. It also helps them remember that they are not alone, and brings joy to their hearts. 

A mere half an hour of your time, is enough to show a gesture of love, whether you have a relative or not in an old peoples home.

They should not be ignored, but rather attended to, loved and given adequate attention. 

The older generation holds significant value to the generation as they can share through conversation and fellowship a wealth of tacit knowledge.

© Ernest Mackina Photography 2013

© Ernest Mackina Photography 2013

© Ernest Mackina Photography 2013

© Ernest Mackina Photography 2013

© Ernest Mackina Photography 2013

© Ernest Mackina Photography 2013

© Ernest Mackina Photography 2013
Rotaract is a service club dedicated towards assisting those less privileged in society. They can be contacted on their site "Rotaract Club of Matopos" and on their Facebook Page “Rotaract Club of Matopos”. Find them on Twitter @MatoposOfRotaract: and join them in their pledge of “Service above Self”

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Preservation of Local Languages in English Speaking Nations

What are local languages?
Crafts stand at Intwasa 2013 © Ernest Mackina

    The 21st century has been characterized by the convergence of nations into a league of economies. Subsequently, cultures and traditions have been amalgamated, making it a mammoth task to zero-in on what identifies the different groups making up this gigantic movement called globalization. Any ethnic group, tribe or clan transmits it’s indegeneology (local knowledge systems) through codes agreed upon by generations that have existed long before them.  

  Language is a systematic means of communicating through the use of sounds. This communication by word of mouth has ensured the transmission of ideas, information, knowledge and wisdom from one generation to another, yet today there are threats of African languages going extinct. The English Language is mastered in order to understand things in the systems of education. According to the African Holocaust Notes, home usage of local languages is not intellectual or academic usage and does not refine and develop the language as a tool of instruction. Local languages are those languages spoken in an area of a nation state, and may exist in a small area, or wider region. The use of ‘official’ languages which are predominantly former colonial languages, threatens local languages and as such, strategies need to be formulated and put in place to ensure their continued survival. Minority languages are those languages spoken by a minority of the population within a geographical area and these tend to be marginalized for a myriad of reasons such as language preference, the dominance of the language if instruction and perceived status associated with local and minority languages.

What is preservation of local languages?
    Preservation is an action of protecting any idea, information or tacit knowledge from the loss or danger of eradication. Measures that prevent the loss of local and minority languages are in line with those languages’ preservation.

Crafts stand at Intwasa 2013 © Ernest Mackina

Why preserve local languages?
    It is very essential that we ensure that local languages do not disappear as it would lead to the loss of human diversity as well as all knowledge contained therein.

When should we preserve local languages?
    NOW!!! The time to act is now. If the current scenario continues to prevail, over time, there will be a cultural monopoly transmitted through various media such as the television.

Languages…  What’s the fuss?
   To begin with, a number of African countries’ indigenous languages are legally recognized as national languages; spoken by the different groups making up those nations, whilst former colonial powers’ languages are predominantly used as languages of instruction and as official languages. In Zimbabwe, the official language is the British English whilst in South Africa there are 11 official languages.

How do we preserve local languages?
    Active participation amongst concerned stakeholders such as local government, chiefs, governments, churches and parents holds the key to the preservation of local languages.  According to UNESCO, the value of indigenous languages can be raised, to their being offered at mainstream universities as well as their elevation to being recognized as official and national languages.

  Structural shifts in pedagogical approaches could very well save these languages from extinction. In Zimbabwe, information technology applications and tools such as voice recorders and camcorders can be used to harvest the languages found amongst elders and historians. Such a move would lead to local language’s recognition on the global scene as it may be transformed into publications, shared online as audio books and podcasts.

  Kirkness (1998) advises that local languages may be preserved by establishing banks of knowledge supported by stories of the elders and these may be stored over servers and shared beyond a nations’ physical borders. The singing of hymns in churches is one way of promoting and maintaining the use of local languages as well as the formalization of plays in vernacular language, recording of traditional folklore and songs rich in idioms, proverbs and metaphoric expression.
Crafts stand at Intwasa 2013 © Ernest Mackina
Schools, in collaboration with ministries of arts, culture and education may also advocate for the teaching of certain subjects in local languages. Parents can also set aside time to read stories to their toddlers written in vernacular languages and also ensure that they keep in touch with their roots by having them visit their rural folk who are still in touch with these languages. Publishers have a role to play in providing translations to best seller novels and textbooks as well as the creation of new local publications which are unique to African myths, legends, fable, song and dance.     
We all have a role to play in ensuring that our local languages continue to live on after us, let us as “MaAfrica” safeguard them as they are our heritage.        

This article was originally published on ZimLink on the 8th of October 2013   .
Images are a copyright of © Ernest Mackina ( Ernie-MacPics)                                                                         

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Junkie Life (reprise) Ft Jason Ross-Lee

My life is filled with clouds of white, 
Visions of twisted tales fill my sights,
The drop of the clutch, the beginning of my fate.

Fossils burn at my feet,
The world goes round, like an angry lion, my straight six thunders,

I am at peace.
I am speed racer:

Bulawayo Motoring Club Burn Out Event © Ernest Mackina (2013)

Image © Ernest Mackina

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Junkie Life

To life, I'm this junkie
Adrenalin rush
Cutting edge stresses on a duct
Smooth, screeching to make the cut
Don't mistake my trail for an ordinary huff
Tis raw energy, released from limits cuff

Bulawayo Motoring Club Burn Out Event © Ernest Mackina (2013)

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Sinner's Guilt By Nomthandazo Moyo

The steaming water burns my body in my attempt to bathe my conscience clean. The soap doesn't foam as much as it should, nor do my hands rub vigorously enough to wash my guilt away.
Artificial Water Spring © Ernest Mackina (2013)

More soap, just enough to musk the smell of last nights' transgressions.
Every splash, drop and bubble erases the odour of delinquency

The towel is far too soft to scour the blame off.
Maybe, just maybe I will feel a little less remorse.

Who am i trying to fool? This is just a futile attempt to undo a mistake yet I know I can not. The guilt is one i will carry with me forever.

P.S I hate this part right here.

Poem by Nomthandazo Moyo
Images © Ernest Mackina

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Colour of my voice By Nomthandazo Moyo

Ronald Mackina © Ernest Mackina (2013)

The colour of my voice

The distinct colour of my words.
A shade depicting my moods and thoughts;
Or maybe its a entire spectrum 
Artistically painted into a masterpiece of my character.

The pitch, the sound
The harmony I reflect.
My joy translated into a dyed canvas

But wait, 
My anger paints my bliss.
Shouting, screaming; my volume raised.
Echoes trembling, my texture roughened.
Sulky responses and muted thoughts,
Elation thoroughly masked

Bursts of pigments escape my lips.
Tainted from deep within.

Question is 
Is my colour constantly changing?
or is it different shades of one?

Poem:  © Nomthandazo Moyo

Sunday, 18 August 2013

Chain Of Office

Rotaracts "Chain of Office" © Ernest Mackina (2013)
Event: Hellen Masango's Presidential Induction
Object: ‪#‎Chain_Of_Office‬
Poem: by Ernest Mackina

"In everything we think say or do...
Is it the truth?
Is it fair to all concerned?
Is it beneficial to all concerned?
Will it build good will and better friendship?"

These tests went four way
and kept banging in my head
Each corner from day one (My first day)
So today I say
As a Rotaractor, it's my path -
My destiny which I shan't stray
Keep steadfast never falter or sway
Service above self and never dismay

Image shot byErnest Mackina of ‪#‎ErnieMacPics‬

Like the page: UntitledChronicles

Follow on twitter: @ErnestMac54

Visit the ‪#‎UntitledChronicles‬ Site: #UntitledChronicles

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Classic Calendar

Calendar at Bulawayo Club © Ernest Mackina (2013)

On a cold Thursday, comforted by the sharp rays of the midday sun, I walked on the gloomy streets and breathed the dry air which was decorated by dusty particles, the kind that would easily choke any sense of hope. 

I was kept company by my companion pessimism whose character was strengthened by previous seasons of sombre tragedies and memories of melancholic moments.

Maybe, just maybe - hope lies in the mind, maybe, the right thought would saturate surroundings into an atmosphere of optimism, which one day would in condenses into pregnant clouds of appreciations, and precipitate torrents of trust, maybe... just maybe, it may start with this thought:

"These are the good times in our lives

So throw on a smile, it will be alright"

I would like to know how this classic calendar has stood through time, I asked how it braved generational cases of sadness, and as I looked at it's vintage wisdom, it replied:

"Time heals all wounds"

Thursday, 1 August 2013

Crescent Of Dreams

Crescent Of Dreams

Meandering streets of dreams
Crescents that give essence

To residents resident in these areas of residence
A road sign whose name is so eloquent

Residual of the ambition once upon a time resident
Now broken dreams evident

Solutions can only be heaven sent
Two minds better than idle thoughts

Misguided and starved of the fragrance carried by focus scent
Declare a bright future - one to be a participant


Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Kind Sir Mr Moon

Dangling in the air
Without a care
Leaving its graffiti inscribing mark : Find me anywhere

Tell me, Oh kind Sir Mr Moon
What it's like to watch over the whole galaxy
it's inhabitants
And still be alone?

Tell Me, Oh Kind Sir Mr Moon,
What its like to be in orbit of Earth,
To be in synchronous rotation of Planet Earth
To show only one face (many others you choose to unearth)
The Moon © Ernest Mackina (2013)

Tell Me, Oh kind Sir Mr Moon
What its like to be second fiddle
In brightness after the sun;
Yet you are always there?

Tell me, Oh kind sir Mr Moon
How your mere presence inspired many a technological innovation 
and sparked even more mythology

Maybe, Kind sir Mr Moon
I should not ask you,
Maybe as I dig into this fish-tuna
The answers to the questions I ask
May not lie with you
But with madame Luna

Please like the page: Facebook - UntitledChronicles
Follow on twitter: @Ernestmac54

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Self Renewal by Ernest Mackina

Note to self:
Dear self: Get into the habit of ‘Sharpening the Saw’

       Reading is a culture that has since receded into oblivion, yet it has the potential to open new dimensions and evoke vivid images during the transfer of text from the author to the reader. The culture of reading enables the reader to undergo the cognitive process of understanding of written linguistic messages. An author can trap a frame, a thought, a conversation, an ideology or a paradigm in a paragraph. Upon reading these sentences and clever grouping of words one can transform their knowledge and unlock new possibilities.  Recently during this practice of reading, I came upon a discovery of Stephen Covey’s 7th habit of being a highly effective person. This self development expert coined the term ‘Sharpening the Saw’ as a means of ‘preserving and enhancing the greatest asset we have’: Ourselves. Many a time, we have experienced a block, or a stage where fatigue stifles our progress and we are so convinced that we cannot move forward from that point.

Turning Point: Remember that time when you stopped and asked yourself: ‘what’s the point?’

Well the solution is simple:

Self renewal.

      Covey rightfully postulates that having a balanced program for self renewal in the four areas of your life that is; your physical, social/emotional mental and spiritual well being are the key towards re-invigorating yourself and ultimately ‘Sharpening the Saw’. Let’s take a look at these areas and try to come up with examples of activities that can execute Covey 7th habit.

Physical Renewal

    In the physical being, an individual can undergo self renewal by eating healthier. Paying attention to a balanced diet, taking four meals a day and drinking at least six glasses of water as well as avoiding saturated fats and junk food, food with artificial coloring are steps towards healthier eating habits that aid self renewal. It is also important to consume food in its right proportions, too much of one thing can be unhealthy. It is also important to take the time out to exercise. According to Wikipedia, physical exercise maintains physical fitness and overall health and can boost the immune system. Exercise can also be done recreatively for personal enjoyment and fulfillment. At the end of the day, after the hustle and bustle of life it is very beneficial to give the body that works and the mind that thinks time to rest.

 Ok, Rest and Exercise. What else?

Image by © Ernie-MacPics: "The skies are independent, why can't we be too?"

          The human body maintains a stable equilibrium through homeostasis comprising of physiological processes that regulate a bodies organ functions. Continuous work for prolonged periods such as staring at a screen all day for instance working with spreadsheets and the Internet can strain the body and result in Carpel Tunnel Syndrome (CRT), Repetetive Strain Injury (RSI) as well as migraines and dehydration. Regular breaks permit the body to renew and re-focus its energies and enables increased productivity in both studying and in the work environment. Simple exercise and stretching can make a difference between a tiresome day to an extremely fatigued day. Get adequate amounts of sleep, resting at odd hours deposits fatigue into the following day and at the end of the week one’s body can crash from this collective fatigue. Do remember, sleep is not for children alone, you too need to recharge your batteries.

Talking matters…

         Covey also claims in his 7th habit that by ‘making social and meaningful connections with others, one is able to renew themselves socially and emotionally. It goes without saying that humans thrive on attention and on social relations. Our social lives have a bearing on how we operate and can be the same factor that boosts our productivity or outright demotivate us. Creating, maintaining and mending our social relations with friends, relatives and colleagues can rekindle our passion for life and light up a flame that can help us look forward performing tasks and getting things done. So go ahead, strike a conversation with that long lost cousin, call an old friend, visit a colleague out in hospital surprise your parent with a gift. Not only will you make them smile, you will realize a happiness which has the potential to renew you.

Learning for self renewal
           You can renew your mental being by learning new things, reading literature, writing down your experiences and feelings. Taking time out to share what you know by conducting demonstrations, teachings and lectures can give you a sense of self fulfillment and empower those around you. You can even mould protégés through mentorship. Putting aside time to teach is like giving out pearls of wisdom and these are gems which can last a lifetime.

Connecting with your spirituality

            Man has a connection with his spirituality and this section could start a whole new article. However, Covey claims in his 7th habit of ‘sharpening the saw’ that man can renew his spiritual being by ‘spending time in nature, expanding spiritual self through meditation and music’.

At the end of the day, all I’m trying to say is…

            You are the engineer of your own happiness. It is a script that only you are responsible to write down. Your happiness is not someone else’ responsibility, but your very own. So next time you feel all worn out and all your emotions are spent, why don’t you try ‘sharpening the saw’? Renewing yourself could prove to be revitalizing and make you highly effective as a person.

Let’s get to renewing self!!!