Songs That Won the Liberation War 0869253433, 9780869253434

This book consists of liberation songs sung by the people of Zimbabwe, both inside and outside the country during the wa

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English; chiShona (Shona); isiNdebele (Northern Ndebele) Pages 167 [196] Year 1982

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we

Jbwemtion

Compiled by Alec

J.C.

Wai

Pongweni

Songs

matWwv

Hke Jbweration

War

By

ALEC

J.C.

PONGWENI

With a foreword by the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe His Excellency the Rev. C.S. Banana.

Cover photograph:

E.

Gararirimo

The College Press

To all the martyrs who laid down their lives heroically for the people and the just struggle for freedom.

FOREWORD It

gives

me

on a

vital

tion

great pleasure to write a foreword to this important publicaaspect of our protracted struggle against colonialism and

imperial domination. The History of our struggle would have been incomplete without discussing and highlighting the central role played by the revolutionary songs. These songs were a necessary component of our revolutionary struggle. They were the raison dètat of our revolution, pro-

viding that necessary anchorsheet for the successful prosecution of our just struggle for freedom and independence. instil grim determination among all the the revolutionary process. The gallant fighters themselves drew tremendous inspiration from these songs. Whenever they lost hope, were starving, wounded or subjected to surprise attacks by the enemy, they did not give in. Instead they turned to the revolutionary songs to refurbish their spirits and morale and were impelled to fight on until final victory. The songs also provided the means by which political conscientisation was achieved and moral support generated among the masses. Through the songs, a revolutionary message was transmitted to the masses. The masses were educated about the reasons why the war was being fought, who the enemy was, and the importance of unity and co-operation in the prosecution of our just struggle for national independence.

The Chimurenga songs helped to

actors

in

the songs emphasised the necessity of living together, suffering together and struggling together for the good of all. Not surprising, our gallant freedom fighters and the povho (people) became as inseparable as fish and water, and thus ensuring the certainty of victory. Another important aspect that emerges from these songs, is the remarkable creativity of our people. The songs represent an interesting synthesis of our rich cultural heritage and modern melodies In other words, the composers used an established cultural pattern which they successfully adapted to suit changed circumstances and needs. Traditional and Christian tunes were given a revolutionary dimension, and became important means of teaching people about the struggle as well as restoring In short,

pride

in

our past.

Now that the war is over, hope that the artists who composed "The songs that won the Liberation War" will not go to waste There is need for new songs that will help to reinforce our socialist thrust Such songs should be instrumental in the continuous struggle for economic independence and the transformation of our society Our new social order demands that we should mobilise all our existing resources and talents. Our artists should also join the bandwagon of concerted action to build a truly independent, united, equal and prosperous society would like to conclude by recommending all our people to read and study the songs contained in this book. am sure you will find them to be a I

I

I

great source of inspiration, a store of treasure, and a rockbed that will susour present and future generations and serve as a genuine media of communicating and preserving our rich cultural and historical heritage for

tain

posterity.

C.S.

Banana

President of the Republic of

Zimbabwe

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS am grateful to my wife, Martha, for all her support and patience throughout the years when was preparing this manuscript. Thanks to Patience, our house-keeper, who kept the children innocently occupied. An avid listener to Zimbabwean music herself, she helped me transcribe some of the songs. And to my children, Takunda, Jennifer and Tafadzwa, can only say, with Wordsworth's Michael: I

I

I

"A

child,

more than

all

other

gifts,

man, and forward-looking

that earth can offer to declining

brings

hope with

thoughts,

Finally,

I

manuscript A.J.

am most in

"

PONCWENI

Mrs Margaret Darrell, who typed the and in rather difficult circumstances

grateful to

a very short time,

15th March 1982

Harare

it,

THE COLLEGE PRESS

(PVT)

LTD

P.O. Box 3041 Harare

Zimbabwe ©A.J.C. Pongweni Printed by

ZIMBABWE PACKAGING

(PVT) LTD

Harare

ISBN

86925 343 3

CONTENTS Page

Acknowledgements Preface

Forward Introduction

I

The Role of Music in a People's Culture The Structure of Traditional Songs The Themes of Traditional Political Songs

I

VI VII

The Songs

1

PART

9

1

LIBERATION CHOIRS

CHAPTER ONE

9

Conscientisation Songs Nzira Dzemasoja Dzekuzvibata

Hapana Chavo Maruza Imi

neZANU Tochema kuZANU PF Hondo Yakura MuZimbabwe Tora Gidi Uzvitonge

Zvikomborero Muka! Muka! Nxa izulu Lidhuma Siyabatshiya Abazali

TWO

Takanyi

Zakhali .izibhamu Phetsheya kweZimbabwe

CHAPTER THREE Appeal to Ancestral

16 20 21

24 26 29 32 34 35 37

Argument by Proxy Kugarira Nyika Yavo Chimoto

Mukoma

9 11

Zvinozibwa

CHAPTER

Nadzo

37 41

44 49 50 51

Spirits

Titarireyi

51

Mbuya NeHanda

54

CHAPTER FOUR Appeal

for Assistance

Ruzhinji

Rwe

59

and Expression of Gratitude

Africa

59 62 66

Vanhu Vose VemuAfrica Ndiro Gidi

CHAPTER

FIVE

69

The Past, Present and Future Yakanga Yaoma

PART

HOME

THE

II

CHAPTER

69

ARTISTS

72

SIX

73

Harambee Songs Batanai

Chengetai Vabereki

73 75 76 79

Vashe Vangu

81

Zivai

Nemwoyo

Shingai

Mazuva Ano

Igazi Lachiteka

82 83 86 88

CHAPTER SEVEN

90

v

Asilali thina

Donsa Mfana

And Now The

Children Of Tribulation Sing

Kuyaura Chirizevha Chapera Zai Ona Zai Matiregerera Mambo Tozvireva kupiko

Ndipeiwo Zano Ndiri Bofu

.

Gunguwo Ishe Wangu

111

Ishe

Togure Masango Ndopatigere Pano Hama Dzapera

Vawanda Zimbabwe Ithemba Lethu Vaparidzi

94 96 100 103 106 107 109

,

114 116 119 122 124 126 128

CHAPTER EIGHT

13°

Songs of Defiance and Derision

Muchandiuraya Tumira Vana Kuhondo

Mhandu Musango Musango Mune Hangaiwa Zimba Rakanaka Nyoka Yendara Africa

PART

III

CONCLUSION

^\

1

40 143 147 148 ^

151

CHAPTER NINE

152

Songs of Celebration Zuva Ranhasi Sasuka emakhaya

152

Cukurahundi VaMugabe Votonga Nyaya Huru (Part I) Nyaya Huru (Part II)

Thando Be Zimbabwe masithandane Bibliography

54 '

iDD 1

58

158 160 1

2

£ 163

166

PREFACE Songs that won the Liberation War: an assessment of the role of music in the history of a people, is the culmination of several years of research. left this country in September 1972 for further studies in the United Kingdom. At the School of Oriental and African Studies, made friends with a Kenyan scholar who was completing a doctoral dissertation on Kenyan African Music. Having graduated from what was basically an arm of was made curious. Discussions the University of London in Rhodesia, with him left me in no doubt that my friend was a sincere scholar and left I

I

I

I

it

at that.

came back home in January 1978 to be confronted with an earthshaking revival of ethnic music. Where local artists had made their names by emulating The Beatles, Elvis Presley, etc., found Thomas Mapfumo, Oliver Mutukudzi and others holding sway and quite confidently and resignedly hugging the ground of African culture in their music. This amounted to a re-entry shock for me. That shock became a pleasant one when had the opportunity to meet Thomas Mapfumo and see him perform at the opening ceremony of a hotel just outside Gweru, on the Bulawayo Road, in April, 1978. decided there and then that would collect his songs and those of other artists operating in a similar vein and study them. It soon dawned on me that these songs were the songs of the children of tribulation; that they exuded political sentiment and that they were an artistic form of guerilla warfare, complementing the military and ideological efforts of our I

I

I

I

I

freedom fighters in the bush. As a linguist and a graduate of English

Literature,

it

message of

was easy

for

me

to

music; impressionistically, because had not got down to the business of systematically analysing the song texts. With the help of Mr Aaron Hodza of the African transcribed the songs and Languages Department at the University, impressionistically grasp the fabric of the

this

I

I

began to translate them into English. Then hit a snag. It was not possible under the prevailing circumstances to publish my findings without giving the game away. The idiomatic Shona of the song — texts, deliberate ambiguities, proverbs, the convoluted syntax and pithy expressions — were veritable political landmines on which the white regime of the day sat with ignorant equanimity. And so suppressed my desire to rush into print. The University world's publish-or-perish syndrome forced me to gravitate to more innocent and innocuous pursuits. My collection of this Chimurenga music was dramatically and decisively augmented when, on a brief trip to the United Kingdom to attend a conference at Leeds University, in August 1979, was given a cassette recormanaged to smuggle ding of ZANLA choir songs. This, fortunately, through customs at Harare airport. My gratitude to the family of the then ZANU PF representative in Europe for providing that seminal ZANLA conscientisation music collection is a lasting one. That acquistion added a crucial dimension to my up to then tentative I

I

I

I

interpretation of the music emanating from, and fuelling, the revolutionary armed struggle. Whereas the music of our "Home" artists was characterised by innuendo, deliberate ambiguity and other linguistic camouflages, ZANLA choir music called a spade a spade a reflection of the different political contexts in which the two groups operated.



The message from the liberation choir was clear: the oppressive colonial system was anachronistic and the cadres were fighting and dying in the worthy cause of replacing it with a new, egalitarian and popular order. The opposition had no chance of winning the war. The jaw-jaw approach to solving the political problems of our country had been dismissed with the scorn it did not deserve; the new phase was, had to be, the war-war one: "Smith, usaona vana vamai vedu kugara musango vanogarira nyika yavo,"i.e.

"Smith do not jump to the conclusion that the sons and daughters of Zimbabwe are in the bush because they love it; they are out there because they love

freedom more," and they their

own

will

come back on

terms.

difference between the liberation choirs and the "Home" arappeal to the supernatural. The former, in moments of desperation and lack of any logical explanation to the course of events, appeal almost exclusively to the guardian spirits of the nation for guidance: to Mbuya NeHanda, Kaguvi and Chaminuka. The latter, on the other hand, pray in one moment to the Christian God (Baba tumirai Razaro azotinunura— Lord, please send Lazarus to our rescue), and in another to ancestral spirits (Midzimu yaani irikuti gurisa masango? Togarika riniko mambo? Could it be our very own guardian spirits subjecting us to all this suffering— traversing the forests like lost sheep? When, Oh when shall we have peace and nlentvi In my study of Chimurenga music, was constrained, by the themes of the songs, to divide them into several categories. In Part of the book, devoted exclusively to choirs by liberation songs, have the following sec-

A second

tists lies in their



I

I

I

tions: a.

Conscientisation songs.

b.

Songs conducting an argument by proxy with the opposition. Songs appealing to the ancestral spirits for guidance. Songs appealing for assistance from, and expressing gratitidue

c.

d.

to,

progressive countries

and

finally,

in which liberation armies take stock of events, thinking about the past, present and the future.

e.

Songs

The songs of the home

artists in Part

II

were divided

into the following

categories: a.

"Harambee"

songs,

i.e.

those appealing for unity

among

the people.

Songs inspired by tribulation. c. Songs defying and deriding the colonial system. conclude the book by analysing songs by both liberation choirs and the other artists (songs), composed and performed to celebrate independence. The upsurge of Chimurenga music during the armed struggle means that it is not possible (from an academic point of view, not necessary) to analyse each and every one of them. Academically, one needs merely to study a representative sample of the phenomena that one has to account for. One then formulates a hypothesis which must be tested using more data from ttie same phenomenon. That data may not prove, but may sup-

b.

I

It is, at that point, up to others interested in the to demolish or prop up the hypothesis. With time and more assumes the status of a theory.

port, the hypothesis.

phenomenon research

it

look forward to hearing from others on my findings. would personally be flattered and feel most humble if this book went some way towards complementing the sterling work which our Ministry of Education and Culture has embarked on the reviving and dynamising of our cultural values, including music, among our people, particularly in our schools. Our children must produce food in order to feed the nation. Equally, they must grasp the essence of, and enrich our arts food for the I

now

I





nation's soul.

The Liberation War is a landmark in our history. It was a celebration of what may be termed a significant and satisfying new phase in group development. The music of the period emphasised and asserted both the yearning of our people for human dignity and the vitality of folk art. That art was a response to a particular shared experience of the people of Zimbabwe: the so-called unacceptable face of imperialism manifesting itself in the form of white minority rule in the heart of a continent inexorably committed to ensuring the demise of colonialism. In conclusion, ought to point out that this book is my work only to the extent that have collected and translated the songs and attempted to identify those unifying trends in them, which form the most articulate message of the people of Zimbawbe to the outside world. Beyond that, have no claims to make for myself. A few specially gifted sons and daughters of Zimbabwe composed these songs, tapping our common cultural heritage and gave those songs to us all In times of crisis they help us to think collectively about our problems; sometimes to forget those problems and carry on inspite of them. Finally, they are a most potent catalyst for cementing our solidarity. These songs belong to Zimbabwe; they are part and parcel of our identity, our history, and they help I

I

I

us to face the future with a confident purposefulness. A.J.C.

PONGWENI

INTRODUCTION THE ROLE OF MUSIC

IN

A PEOPLE'S CULTURE

When

the European settler first came to Africa, he had to adjust to a of new and novel experiences: he fell in love with the climate; range whole he quenched his aquisitive drives on Africa's natural resources; he dismissed the natives and their culture as "Uncivilised". He developed a caricatured image of the indigenous folk; describing them as "Child-like", "Simple" and "Backward" (P. Berliner, 1977, p. 3), "In need of slow development by their European mentors toward the ultimate standards of European civilisation". This patronising interpretation of the new experience ran parallel to the blatantly racist, whereby blacks were regarded as "Genetically inferior, condemned by their constitution to remain in a



primitive

state

forever,

passive,

docile

and basically apolitical"

(P.

Berliner, 1977, pp. 5)

was extended to the new culture. was represented as "Charming", but with the The music in particular, "All they (blacks) really have is rhythm". Since the maqualification that never trouble took the jority of the newcomers to learn the language, rhythm was all they could observe, but uncomprehendingly, and the two cultures gazed at each other uncomprisingly across the racial line. Music has played (and continues to play) a role in our history, comThis limited view of the black psyche

parable to that of the Afro-American spirituals in the history of the slave, both before and after emancipation. It is the barometer of the mood of our people: in times of tribulation it is exhortatory, defiant, supplicatory and educative; in victory, celebratory and imbued with caution and vigilance.

When we sing them we recapture memories; the years pass from us and we find ourselves back in wartime, enduring, striving and carrying on. One of the most important aspects of these songs is that mostly they were sung in choruses. Everyone took part in them. And when we sing them now, they remind us of that splendid comradeship of the liberation war, which

kept us going through the darkest chapter of our history. It is right that these songs which helped us to pack up our troubles in those days should now help those who are still suffering or enduring hardship because of the war. Their recording, analysis and publication also makes them available, in this unique form, to those who are still gallantly marching along the literal and figurative mine-field that is the road to the liberation of their fatherlands.

The

between our music and the Afro-American spirituals, based and political function, is not drawn light heartedly. Several Afro-Americans have written eloquently on the music of their community; none more feeling than W.E.B. Du Bois (1903, p. 16 ff).

on

parallel

social, historical

I

In the Chapter called, "Of the Sorrow Songs", he points out that the music of his people was often "Neglected, half despised, persistently mistaken and misunderstood". Like Du Bois, the present writer knows "Little of music and can say nothing in technical phrase"; he, however, knows "Something of men, and knowing them", knows that these Chimurenga songs are the articulate message of his struggling people to the world This is "The music of an unhappy people, of the children of disappointment; they tell of death and suffering and unvoiced longing toward a truer world .

.

." (Ibid, p.

162).

as in the America (US) of the slave trade, there was in Rhodesia of the settler regimes, a clearly articulated assumption that the "Probation of the races had passed; that the backward race (the blacks) was not worth saving. This was an assumption tantamount to arrogance in a people irreverent of time. ("Not in a thousand years") and ignorant, maliciously, or otherwise, (more likely the former) of human potential: "So woefully unorganised is sociological knowledge that the meaning of progress, the meaning of swift or slow in human doing, and the limits of human perfectability, are veiled unanswered sphinxes on the shores of science ." (Our own italics) (Du Bois ibid p. 168).

The creator bestowed gifts on our people, gifts fundamental to human life: song and dance; the gift of sweat and brawn to beat back the wilderness, conquer the soil and above all, a gift of the spirit. Our invitation to the settler to be a good neighbour recalled in the song .", and reflected in the policy of reconciliation "Maruza" "You have lost in immediate post independent Zimbabwe — he trampled on, like the clumsy elephant.

communal

.

.

Alain Locke's (1969) article on the "Negro Spirituals", is written in a vein similar to that of Du Bois's, "If they (Negro Spirituals) do not gain immor-

because they are fundamentally and everlastingly human, they will because they are typical of a group and representative of a period underneath the broken words, lies an epic intensity and a tragic profundity of emotional experience and political commitment of which the only historical analogy is the spiritual experience of the Jews and the only analogue the Psalms They lack the grand style, but never the sublime effect." tality

Our music during and after the war was an expression of what the Germans call Zeitgeist: the sum of the thoughts, attitudes, strivings, drives and themselves with given causes and Herder held the view that for unwesternised societies, "Music is the first of the fine arts, by which every mind is moved. But music, however crude and simple, speaks to every human heart, and this with dance constitutes nature's general festival throughout the earth; for the music of a nation in its most imperfect form and favourite tunes, displays the internal character of the peoples." living forces of the people, expressing

effects

There

in

is

a definite course of events

a sense

ticularly in the

in

which the music under study is folk poetry, parin which it is composed. D.K. Wilgus (1959 p. 4Ì

manner

"The orthodox communalist held that folk poetry is which precedes and is antithetical to the poetry of art, that it is a genre the people." The song without a fixed text gives collectively by composed improvisation by the versatile soloist. If he makes a for spontaneous scope particularly striking impression on his audience, they will go away from the performance remarking "That singer is a thorn in the flesh." This, lightheartedly, because such a soloist seizes the opportunity to point and lash out at social or political deviants. And yet the words and ideas he expresses are not, strictly speaking, his own alone. As D.K. Wilgus (1969, p. 7) points out, "Truly national and popular poetry develops in a stage of society in which there is such a community of ideas and feelings that the whole people form one individual." This community of thought and feelings explains why the composition of one man "Will always be an expression of the mind and heart of a people as an individual and never the personality of individual men." We venture to call the songs under discussion folk poetry much as Kittredge contended that the English and Scottish popular ballads were quite apart from what we call poetry worth serious investigation. ". literature, there is a great mass of miscellaneous song and story which circulates among those who have neither books nor newspapers. To this oral when a nation learns to read it begins literature education is no friend to disregard its traditional tales; it feels a little ashamed of them, and finally it loses both the will and the power to remember and transmit them .... To this oral literature belongs the popular ballads, and we are writes of folk poetry:

.

.

.

.

.

them folk poetry." (1904 o. 741 The manner in which the ballad was characteristically composed is similar to the way Chimurenga songs were composed: "Improvisation in the presence of a sympathetic company which may even, at times, participate in the process." Kittredge adds, "It makes no difference whether a given ballad was in fact composed in the manner described ... or in solitude, provided the author belonged to the folk, derived his material from popular sources, made his ballad under the inherited influence of the and provided, moreover, the method described, and gave it to the folk folk accepted the gift and subjected it to that course of traditk>n which ... is essential to the production of a genuine ballad." (/1904 p. 105) The war was a landmark in our cultural history. It was a celebration of justified therefore in calling

.

.

.

A. Lock (1968, p. 4) called "A significant and satisfying new phase of group development." It emphasised and asserted the dignity of an oppressed people and through its music, the vitality of folk art. The music

what

was an



effort to establish the legitimacy of class expression as a response to a particular experience in our history: the so-called unacceptable face of imperialism manifesting itself in white minority rule on a continent inexorably gravitating towards black majority rule. Through music the sons and daughters of Zimbabwe were attempting to relate the significance of the fatherland, as a community of diverse elements to its prototype in the cultures of other nations. In this way, the material handicap of political oppression was turned to a spiritual advaniii

Our cadres used race

Harlem Renaissance used idiom of expression" (A Lock, 1968, P, 26). Prior to the armed struggle, as with Afro Americans prior to the Harlem Renaissance, the chief bond among our people was a common condition, political economic and cultural oppression, rather than a common consciousness. The undisguised political content of the nightly songs from "The voi< e of Zimbabwe" on radios Maputo in Mozambique, Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, etc., complemented by the veiled and ambiguous protests permeating the music of local artists, went a long way towards the political conscientisation of the masses. Once this political consciousness replaced the condition of oppression as the chief bond among the people, the demise of the anarchronism that was Rhodesia was a foregone conclutage. it,

"Not as

as the artists of the

a provincial cul-de-sac, but an

sion.

Following Amiri Baraka (1968,

p.

16)

we

are concerned with

babwean Chimurenga music was composed, because

this

why Zim-

leads to an

understanding of the attitudes and emotional philosophy contained in it it was composed leads one to a preoccupation with structural issues which, though important in themselves, do not lead one directly to consideration of meaning and worth In analysing the music of the Chimurenga period as folk poetry, we are acutely aware of it being language used to communicate something, as language often is. Language is at once the expression of the individuality of each human being and the psychological matrix in which man's consciousness is aroused and deepened. It is therefore immersed in the ongoing life of a society. Language is an instrument of control as well as of communication, as Kress and Hodge (1979, p. 6) rightly point out They make another, cautionary, point: "Linguistic forms allow significance to be conveyed and to be distorted. This way hearers can be both manipulated and informed, preferably manipulated while they suppose they are being informed." An example of manipulation is the following song, composed by officials of the Whitehead Administration in 1962 to persuade blacks to vote: (Shamuyarira 1965, pp 13-14)

The question how

Come I'll

everybody and listen to me: you a story to help the country

sit

sing

.

The road to your future is really so clear, Your vote is quite secret, with nothing to

.

.

fear

So make up your minds to vote — you will be glad 'Coz people who don't vote — they will be sad This country is good enough for us all to enjoy Let's work together, every man and each boy.

The new constitution is here to stay You can't help your country by running away. IV

We

hear there

But

this just spoils

is

about intimidation; our reputation.

talk

Now jump everybody and make your own choice; The best politicians don't use a loud voice .

.

.

"People who don't vote — they will be sad": compare "We hear there is talk about intimidation." "The new constitution is here to stay": compare "Make your own choice." "This country is good enough for us all to enjoy", as equals, presumably. But "Make your mind up — to vote". an example of the ideological use of language: "A systematic in the service of class interests." The basic values expressed in white Rhodesian music, both before and during the last war, emanate from the pre-eminence of property, individualism and technology; while those expressed in Chimurenga music spring from the pre-eminence of the human spirit, from a craving for social justice and freedom. The latter contain a flair for iconoclasm and pulsate with the historic tensions and spiritual vitality of the contemporary black experience. The soul, morale and comradeship of everyone involved positively in the liberation struggle is encapsuled in Chimurenga music. As for what soul is, we leave to B.W. Bell (1974, p. 67): "As the brother on the block would say, to have soul is knowing how to walk that walk and talk that talk, how to get down to the nitty gritty and work with the grits and greens; how to tell it like it is and This

is

distortion

keep on pushing; how to be what you are and believe in what you do. To have soul is getting your thing together and sharing it with your brothers and sisters — those who have paid their dues, black or white, and are delivering the news In other words soul power is the primal force of human nature, tempered by a common experience of suffering and struggle for survival that manifests itself through the shared modes of perceiving and expressing that experience; it is, above all, the affirmation of the resiliency of the spirit — the inner experience— in a world of insecurity and blues — like absurdity." Comradeship in the sense that it is viewed in the socialist party, presupposes the identity of perception and experience so eloquently enunciated by Bell. In this case the thing that you get together and share with your brothers and sisters is the song emanating from the political frustration that you share with them. They have paid their dues because they have left their families and schools in order to participate in the armed liberation struggle. They are delivering the news because their music and speeches at the all-night political gatherings are imbued with the common political stand designed to conscientise the masses. The equivalent of soul in Zimbabwe today is morari, morale. "A snake thrust his head from his hole and bit and killed a cockpartridge. The partridge hen in her grief and indignation lamented day and night Her plaintive cries cast a dark veil ot desolation over the forest in spring. Her cries touched a great composer passing that way, who stopped to listen. He said 'Only music can express this soul-stirring agony'. He com-

posed a melody conveying agonised protests and longing for vengeance which stirred the hearts of all who heard it and made their blood boil no matter whether on chilly mornings, bright days or lonely nights. Then everyone went out to look for snakes and killed any snake they came across, whether he was the murderer of the cock-partridge or not. Art is for justice. It should encourage people to wipe out evil. (Feng Xeufeng, 1981)

The music of anger and strife is a symphony denouncing fascist deeds, it makes the listener and singer angry and combative. These raw emotions have been filtered and caught by the imagination at each end of the transmission: the composer transmutes experiences of anger into art by imagination; the listener receives the images and symbols in this form and recognises them. Knowledge is thus sensually conveyed. Our music has not for a long time been viewed as art for arts sake, and because of our troubled history, may never be. We take a deliberately utilitarian view of art, as the author of the Chinese fable does and as did the seamen of the seven seas (S. Hugill, 1961. p. 1) did: "To the seamen of America, Britain and Northern Europe, a shanty was as much a part of the equipment as a sheath knife and pannikin: always associated with his work." Given the important role of songs during the armed struggle, we can make the point that the guerilla who was significantly called Comrade Shoot Straight, was not a more vital part of the war machinery than his colleague who composed stirring revolutionary songs. Prowess on the battlefield was as much valued a part of the guerilla as his ability to break into celebratory or ex.

hortatory song

— at

.

.

the appropriate

moment.

THE STRUCTURE* OF TRADITIONAL SONGS Viewed

as folk poetry, traditional song has several distinguishable types

"On p.

the basis of form, content and performance practice". (Berliner, 1978, 160)

The

Fixed-line type This type has the function of providing entertainment in mundane contexts. It is a repetitive type of poetry in which a few composed lines are repeated several times before the next. As we shall see later, this structure type song was used extensively by Chimurenga song composers and sung,

not for entertainment per

se,

but for conveying political sentiment.

The Narrative Type This song type tells a complete story. It has its counterpart in Shona "Ndyaringo", which deals with particular situations and individual experiences in a narrative mode; and aims at entertaining adult audiences through the virtuosity of language invention and a personal flair for vivid

description on the part of the lead singer. (Berliner 1978,

*Paul Berliner (1978 structure. VI

p.

160

ff)

p.

165)

has done an extensive study of Shona music

This song type is characterised by subtlety of imagery and symbolism. Eminent examples of adaptations of this type are the ZANLA choir songs "Hapana chavo" and "Maruza vapambi vepfumi". The song is further characterised by the segmentation of the story into a succession' of clear individual pictures by the use of closely parallel or repetitive phrases designed to set off the sections of the story and to give continuity to the narrative. There is considerable use of hyperbole and fantasy to meet the expectation of an audience wishing to be entertained and educated. The emotional response of the audience to the narrative is intensified by the use of non-verbal vocal expressions by the narrator, who may also contort his face in various ways as he assumes different narrative roles. The non verbal vocal passages are placed between major episodes

creating suspense.

The imagery may often be dramatised by the use of onomatopoetic expressions (Berliner 1978, p. 169). The narrator also uses parenthetic lines in order to embellish his narrative differently each time he tells it. The Mosaic type This type comprises inter-woven patterns of improvisational lines porthemes reflecting traditional life, with the participants contributing their own lines. Since subtlety is the hallmark of the art of Shona traying

"Kudeketera", which the mosaic type of poetry is, the performers strive to express themselves indirectly. The result is that listeners to a performance may come out with different interpretations of the message. There are several reasons for this mistification of the themes of "Kudeketera". The Shona often express their feelings about personal, political or social matters through allusion rather than direct statements. On political issues in particular, this practice became widespread during the colonical era because people were anxious to continue the educative debate of issues of mutual concern while at the same time avoiding being neutralised by one or other of the draconian plethora of law and order maintenance statutes of the Rhodesian Front. This song type was developed to an extremely sophisticated level by the home artists during the war of liberation. Typical examples of this are songs by Thomas Mapfumo, "Kuyaura", Green Arrows, "Vaparidzi Vawanda", and Mhuri yokwaMandaza, "Pa Sinoia." The texts of many Chimurenga songs refer to the spirit world, mourning the dead, showing respect for, and asking for guidance in the vicissitudes of the struggle for life from, the ancestors. Phrases of a historical nature remind participants of their common heritage and promote solidarity.

THE THEMES OF TRADITIONAL POLITICAL SONGS As we have seen, traditional music is sung and performed at gatherings and other occasions that demand solidarity, as are the so-called Negro spirituals of the Afro-Americans. What is truly political in art is the need to free the conditions under hich it is produced. »

VII

The

in our recent history was not car Mozart opera or the disco band, but rather by the indigenous culture which has adapted so well to the needs of the struggling masses, as Jessica Sherman (1981, p. 80) has observed. Our cadres

ried

spirit of

by the

the struggle for liberation

string quartet,

knew that the influence of the Christian missionaries among the masses was considerable and that they had to take it into account. They decided therefore, that in the war situation, since no other form of popular culture exerted a strong enough influence to reduce reliance on hymns, it was imif only to mock it. Consequently, several Chimurenga songs have Christian hymn tunes pickled with politics by the words. An outstanding example is the song "Nzira Dzemasoja". Yet we should point out that the influence of the spiritual in our political history, positive or negative, was not manifesting itself for the first time in the recent war. According to Samkange (1968, p 35), the 1896-97 mass uprising was inspired by traditional Shona religious leaders. Secondly, the founding of African independent churches from about 1915 onwards introduced 'perversive' political sentiments into the minds of the converted, who reflected their new political consciousness in hymns such as "Ishe Komborera Africa", imported from their South

perative to exploit this form,

African brethren. Thirdly, the

development of African nationalist

1950s and 1960s was a

fertile

political parties in the

source of material for the composers of

Chimurenga songs. Traditional Shona songs Traditional music, as Berliner (1977, p. 7) has pointed out, has political significance on two levels. First, it promotes a feeling of solidarity within the community and reinforces an appreciation for the traditional values of the people's culture. This has the effect of perpetuating respect for traditional (rather than European) authority figures.

cultures

in

It

sets the

two competing

a parallel relationship.

Secondly, the texts often contain subtle meanings that are implicitly "Kudeketera" texts where lines are improvised at the time of the performance. Traditional songs can be divided into several categories, depending on their appropriateness for different occasions. Paul Berliner (1977, p. 8) observed that the performance of war songs, for example, "In which traditional enemies are named, requires only the mental substitution of the names of contemporary oppressors for the songs to take on political meaning. " He cites as an example the song "Baya Wabaya", first sung in the mid-19th century in wars against the Shangaani and the Matebele raids, but much later as a boxing song, and latterly, at nationalist political rallies in the 1960s, along with songs such as "Kanda Mapfumo"* and political, particularly in the

"Yave Nyama Yekugocha." Dance songs have the characteristic that

their literal translation often meanings. The song "Butsu Mutangives very little hint to their underlying and recorded by Thomas Mapdarikwa" is quite old. When it was sung VIII

fumo during the war with an acculturated rendition (.cf R. Kauffman, 1972)— its import remained veiled from the cynical white police. One of its lines; Butsu butsu ini ndaneta, 'Boots, boots I am fed up' i.e. with the oppressive political system. The Ndebele have a traditional- dance (Ngcuzu) with the same message ilizwe seliyacitheka The country is

perish. This







about to

dance

is

performed

at

weddings and concerts.

Beer songs are noted for their subtle allusions to the unhappy lot of the people. The famous Mbhakumbha song Chivaraidze, The diversion, declares indirectly that people drink beer in order to forget their tribulations. When set side by side with the deliberate ambiguity of Chengeta chikwama chababa literally, "Look after the father's/husband's wallet, otherwise "Guard the people's secrets", the political content of beer songs seems all too transparent, for an insider. The people's secrets must not be divulged to the white man and his "Spineless" appendage, the black in-

former Funeral songs were no exception, as far as their use as vehicles for

sentiment is concerned. "Waora mutengeni" loaded song: Lead Singer: Waora mutengeni, Chorus: Kashiri kamambo mutengeni, Lead Singer: Mutengeni, Chorus: Uya uone mutengeni, Kashiri kamambo mutengeni.

political

is

a particularly

The Mutengeni tree is one of the most resilient types in the African it does not succumb to the frost or to drought. It does not rot. Its ability to survive under the most adverse atmospheric conditions is paralleled only by the immortality of the black man's spirit, his determination to continue the struggle for life and the restoration of his human dignity against apparently overwhelming odds. The death of one's relative is a set-back to one's eternal optimism: the dead man's spirit flies like a bird to deliver a message to Cod, asking for his guidance and strength for those remaining behind. The little bird (Kashiriri kamambo, God's little bird) is the traditional messenger linking mankind with Mwari — Coo'. he working alliance between the beyond and mankind was seen at work during the 1896-97 struggle. It is to this alliance (T.C. Ranger 1967, p. 207), that the remarkable co-ordination between the different parts of Mashonaland can be attributed Its latter day counter-part was the socalled "Bush telegraph ", used to devastating effect by the liberation forces during the struggle and manned mainly by the elusive "Mujibhas" (cf L Cliffe 1981) The ZANLA choir song "Maruza vapambivepfumi" gives ZANU(PF) the metaphorical emerge of a bird, "Nhengure", "The fork tailed Drongo", exposing the machinations of the white settler. The political lines in the traditional "Kudeketera" are of four different bush;

I

types: (a) those that refer to the general plight of the people, (b) those explicitly or indirectly ridiculing or blaming the European oppressors, (c)

those referring to fellow blacks considered to be part of the problem and, those referring to historical figures and events. The Chimurenga

finally, (d)

IX

songs discussed later in this book show distinct connection with these various traditional song types Berliner (1977, p. 13) has listed examples of the punch lines for each of these "Kudeketera" lines: 1.

Tozvireva nepapi (tamanikwa)?

Where can we make our complaint—oppressed as we are? (cf Thomas Mapfumo's "Matiregerera

mambo") 2.

Izvo hamuchaziva rakudyai.

pfumo

There, you never

Uya uzoona chinobairanwa

Come and

Ndiyo nhamo yakare

kill

isibve

mumba.

spear

Mutukud-

"Ndiri Bofu")

zi's

3

know what

will eat you. (cf Oliver

see what makes them one another. This is the very

same trouble that does not part with us [cf "Harambee" songs generally).

4.

Aripano anoti pasi ndepangu.

Everyone says that this land is his "Vaparidzi vawanda". Green Ar-

(cf

rows)

Vakagara pedyo neHwedza vakatobvutwa

Those who settled near Wedza hill were put into detention (of ZANLA choir's

"Hondo yakura muZim-

babwe") 6

Core rimwe muchasungwa

One

nemapurisa.

the police (cf

year you will be arrested by

Thomas Mapfumo's

"Tumira vana kuhondo" esp. the punch-line "Hona muchadura"). 7.

Kusakurira kuvategota

Year after year sleeping

in a

room — no improvement

in

boy's

my

for-

tunes (cf Oliver Mutukudzi's

"Ndipeiwo Zano" and Mutswairo's

poem "NeHanda

Nyakasikana").

THE SONGS "It

is

a truth forever that

where

the speech of men stops short, there, music's reign begins."

— Richard

Wagner.

Chimurenga music is not as homogenous as the name might suggest. The songs fall into two easily distinguishable categories: those composed and sung by the choirs from outside Zimbabwe; and those composed and sung by the home artists. The former are marked by the explicitness of their political content deriving from the unencumbered circumstances under which the cadres operated, away from the watchful eye of the enemy's police. Further, those songs are the artistic products of a team of young men and young women whose hearts and minds were brimful of confidence and defiance: confidence in their own ability to liberate Zimbabwe and defiance of the system which would have them remain forever unwanted, but necessary servants, whose role was to service a way of life both alien and antagonistic to them and theirs. These young people, to use Bell's (1974) expression, had "Paid their dues", and their songs "Tell it like it is". The latter songs are the products of men and women living apparently, permanently, as hostages in "Enemy" territory. The texts of these songs abound in deliberate ambiguities, elusive, metaphor designed to woodwink the ubiquitious enemy, whose draconian legal machinery no offending "Fanatic" could hope to escape. But these two categories of song have these two basic features in common: first, that they derive from and hug, a common cultural milieu; they are modern manifestations of a musical tradition that is as old as the people's history. Secondly, they are called Chimurenga songs because they are the music of an unhappy people; of the children of disappointment.

They tell of death and of suffering and of desperate longing for a truer world. The critic is often faced with minor cadences of despair, but these often change, in the same song, to triumph and confidence. At any point in the structure of the song, the message is clear: that sometime, somewhere, men will judge men by their souls and not by the colour of their skins.

The two categories of Chimurenga music outlined above, and several other thematic sub-divisions, were discovered each with a distinct line of thought, canvassed and developed from different angles and using different idioms.

There was an unintentional, but effective division of labour between the liberation choirs and the home artists. All the members of the choirs underwent deliberate and intensive political conscientisation as an integral, if not the predominant part of their training as liberation cadres. Political education is indispensable to any guerilla movement seeking to overthrow a well established but inimical system: both the fighting forces

and the masses among

whom

they operate need to have a

common

view

of the world,

in

and biggest

1.

Of the the richest

our case, a revolutionary socialist perspective

several sub-categories into which liberation choir songs

fall,

that consisting of conscientisation songs:

is

CONSCIENTISATION Nzira

dzemasoja—

The soldier's code of conduct.

Hapana chavo—

They (the oppressors) have no claim to anything in Zimbabwe.

Maruza vapambivepfumi—

Exploiters,

you

will certainly lose

in this conflict.

Zvinozibwa ne

ZANU

ZANU

knows

the

way

ZANU

forward.

Tochema kuZANU

We

Hondo yakura muZimbabwe

The liberation war has intensified (spreading to every corner of Zimbabwe].

Tora

gidi

Uzvitonge

appeal to

(to

save us)

Take up arms and liberate yourselves.

Zvikomborero

Blessings.

Muka muka

Wake

up;

Nxa

When

the rain thunders.

izulu liduma

Siyabatshiya abazali

We

Oh' Wake up'

will leave

our parents behind.

Because they were acutely aware of the concentrated counter propaganda which the Rhodesian regime used to maintain the confidence of their supporters and the subservience of the unwilling blacks, the liberation choirs composed some songs whose purpose it was to persuade, by proxy, the regimes supporters in Zimbabwe to see their situation from a different angle

2.

2

Argument by Proxy Kugarira nyika yavo

Sacrificing for one's country.

Tichakunda

We

Phetsheya kweZimbabwe

Over

shall

in

overcome.

Zimbabwe.

Chimoto

A

Zakhali izibhamu

The guns fired

Mukoma

My

Takanyi

lighter.

brother Takanyi.

The historicity of the liberation war was, as we have pointed out in the introductory chapter, a valuable source of inspiration to the fighting guerilla forces. By involving ancestral spirits and leading figures who died in the struggle, at home and abroad, the liberation cadres were out to demonstrate that their mission was not isolated, but rather a continuation, a new phase in the historical struggle of the people of Zimbabwe. They were emulating the indomitability of spirit of their forefathers in what they determinedly set out to make the final showdown with their oppressors. 3.

Appeal to Ancestry Titarireyi

Please watch over

Mbuya NeHanda

NeHanda our

us.

titular spirit.

The cadres did not view

their revolutionary struggle in isolation, not onterms of Zimbabwean history, but also with reference to that of the colonised and formerly colonised peoples of Africa in particular, and of the world generally. This worrd-wide revolutionary context in which our own struggle was viewed by the cadres was a fertile source of both inspiration and material assistance. It is critical to point out that the material assistance which liberation forces sought from friends in the^ progressive world was never extended to include a combative role on the part of the benefactors. That role was, as a matter of sacred political principle, the patriotic duty of the sons and daughters of Zimbabwe. From the inception of the armed struggle in the early 1960s the slogan "We are our own liberators" was adopted to herald a new philosophy (in the context of the recent history of the nationalist movement) that was to inform and direct the activities of the liberation movements up to the heroic attainment of ly in

independence

in

April 1980.

in which the liberation choir songs, expressing gratitude to, and appealing for assistance from progressive friends, are to be seen.

This

4.

is

the context

Appeal for assistance and the expression of gratitude Ruzhinji rwe Africa

The masses of

Ndiro

It is

gidi

Vanhu vese vomuno muAfrica

Africa.

the gun.

All the Peoples of Africa.

The abandoned and abundant joy which all members of ZANU(PF) felt when the party won a deserved landslide victory in the March 1980 elections was captured in song by many Zimbabwean artists. In fact since independence, not many events have been momentous enough to inspire local artists to the same extent. This self congratulatory mood among the people seems, unfortunately, to have for the time being, arrested the imagination of the artists. The ZANLA choir (since the integration of all armed forces into the Zimbabwe National Army, The People's Choir) composed several songs to commemorate electoral victory and independence. 5.

The

past, present

and future

Yakanga yaoma

Things had

become

hard.

The efforts of the home artists, as we have pointed out previously, complemented those of the liberation choirs. A persistent theme in their music is the need for unity among the people. This came about out of the realisation that unless our people pulled together in the spirit of "Harambee", then they would not be effective in their role of supplying the fighting forces with material and moral support. Unless, they, as a captive nation, identified solidly with their sons and daughters in the bush, then they would become allies of the opposition. 6.

Harambee Songs

Samhembere

Batanai (Oliver Shingai (Mhuri

yekwa Mandaza

after your parents

Mapfumo)

My

Vashe vangu

Muzuva ano Zivai

Persevere

Look

Chengeta vabereki (T.

Unite

(Inter Jazz

Band)

nemwoyo

Lord

These troubled times

Keep

it

secret

that, "When two elephants fight each the grass that suffers", was no where more tragically corroborated during our liberation war than in the communal areas (the then tribal trust lands) of Zimbabwe. The Rhodesian security forces were acutely aware of the pivotal role that the people in the communal areas could play in providing information to guerilla movements, just as the guerillas themselves expected, and got this kind of service from the people. When it

The truth of the Swahili saying

other,

it

is

soon became apparent to the Rhodesian security torces that, however much they denounced "Terrorist intimidation", the people stubbornly continued to assist the guerillas, they, like the Americans in Vietnam, built the so-called protected villages for the people. This would make it easy for the Rhodesian forces to monitor the movements of the villagers and to isolate them from the "Terrorists" who were so dependent on them for food and information. Those villagers who violated the new regulations found no mercy from the trigger-happy Rhodesian security forces and their mercenaries. Whole villages were wiped out, food stocks destroyed and houses razed to the ground. The people in essence became fugitives in their own country of birth

They found refuge on the outskirts of several towns in the country, the most celebrated being the "Chirambahuyo and Magaba" squatter camps — rows upon rows of motley plastic shacks which became an eyesore for philanthropic organisations, and were among the first candidates for resettlement by the people's government The plight of these displaced people was immortalised by Jordan Chataika's famous song Ndopatigere pano, This is where we now live". The themes of the songs that were inspired by this experience is desperation. The unpredictable vicissitudes of the lives of an unwanted people, normally proud of having homes of their own and able to fend for themselves, led the most resilient among the peasantry and urban poor to ask the most existential of questions concerning the designs of providence, the fickleness of fate and the role of ancestral spirits: they mostly did this through song, much in the same vein as Solomon Mutswairo's celebrated poem 'NeHanda Nyakasikana' 7.

Songs Inspired by Tribulation

Kuyaura

(T.

Mapfumo)

Communal

Chirizevha chapera (T

life

has been destroyed.

Mapfumo)

Zaiwona zaiwona Matiregerera (T

Tribulation

(T

Mapfumo)

mambo

Come and

oh come and see!

see,

Lord, you have

abandoned

us.

Mapfumo)

Tozvireva kupiko

Ndipeiwo zano Ndiri bofu

Cunguwo

(T.

(O.

Mapfumo)

Mutukudzi)

(O Mutukudzi) (O.

Mutukudzi)

Who

shall

Please give

we

me

tell

advice.

I'm a Blind man.

The crow.

our troubles to?

Ishewangu

(B.J.B.

Jazz Band)

Togura masango (Search

My

Lord.

We

are traversing the bush.

Brothers)

Zimbabwe Ithemba Lethu

Zimbabwe

our hope.

is

(People's Revolutionary Choir)

Ndopatigere pano (Jordan

This

is

now

our home.

Chataika)

Hama

dzapera (Green Arrows)

Our people have been

Vaparidzi vawanda (Green Arrows)

There are too

Ishe (Elijah Madzikatire)

Oh

many

finished.

preachers.

Lord!

Although, on the whole the music of home artists is characterised by a deliberate ambiguity to avoid recrimination by the Rhodesian regime, there is a number of songs which are remarkable for their gallant defiance of the authorities. They, in the main, talk explicitly about the war, the political problems plaguing the nation, and the history of European settle-

ment 8

in

Africa.

Songs of Defiance and Derision

Muchindiuraya

(T.

Mapfumo)

Tumira vana kuhondo (T

You

me.

Sending our children to war.

Mapfumo)

Mhandu musango

(T.

Mapfumo) Enemy

Musango munehangaiwa (Green

the bush.

in

There are

some pigeons

in

bush

Arrows)

9.

will kill

Zimba rakanaka (Green Arrows)

A

Nyoka yendara (Green Arrows)

The

beautiful Mansion. File Snake.

Conclusion: Songs of celebration

Zuva ranhasi (ZANLA Choir)

This particular day.

VaMugabe votonga (Green

Mugabe

Arrows)

is

now

in control.

the

Gukurahundi

The storm.

(Elijah

Madzikatire)

Nyaya huru, By

T.

Sasuka

parts

one and two

A

serious issue.

Mapfumo le

Makhaya

(P.M. Choir)

We

left

our homes.

CHAPTER ONE CONSCIENTISATION SONGS

Part

I

Liberation Choirs

NADZO

NZIRA DZEMASOjA DZEKUZVIBATA Kune

2.

Soldiers have a

Tisava tinotora zvinhu zvemass yedu. Dzoserai zvinhu zvose,

We

zvatorwa kumuvengi. 3.

Taurai zvinonzwika kuruzhinji

rwevanhu;

4.

code of conduct by which they live;

nzira dzemasoja, dzekuzvibatanadzo Tererai mitemo yose nenzira dzakanaka, Kune nzira dzemasoja, dzekuzvibata nadzo Tererai mitemo yose nenzira dzakanaka.

Obey

rules

and

regulations.

code of conduct by which they live;

Soldiers have a

Obey

all rules

and

regulations.

must not exploit or rob the

masses.

We

must return

all

contraband to

the enemy.

You must communicate your stand clearly to the masses.

Kuti

mass inzwisise Zvakananga musangano.

They must know the party

Bhadharai zvamunotenga

Pay fair prices you buy

nenzira dzakanaka Nokuti mudzosere zvinhu

line.

for everything that

Return anything that you have

zvose

Zvamunenge matora Bhadharai zvamunotenga nenzira dzakanaka

Nokuti mudzosere zvinhu zvose Zvamunenge matora.

Confiscated for military reasons. Pay fair prices for everything that

you buy Return anything that you have

Confiscated for military reasons.

5.

Tisava tinotara zvinhu zvedu zvemass yedu. Dzotserai zvinhu zvose

zvatorwa kumuvengi. 6.

Taurai zvinonzwika kuruzhinji

must return the enemy.

all

contraband

clearly to the masses.

Tisaite

choupombwe muhondo

choupombwe muhondo

to

You must communicate your stand They must know the party

inzwisise.

Vatinenge tabata.

line.

We

mustn't engage in promiscuity While waging a revolutionary war. We must not harass prisoners of war.

We

Tisanetse vasungwa Vatinenge tabata.

mustn't engage in promiscuity While waging a revolutionary war. We must not harass prisoners of war

Tisave tinotora zvinhu zvemass

We

Tisaite

yeChimurenga.

yedu Dzoserai zvinhu zvose

zvatorwa kumuvengi. 9.

We

mass

yeChimurenga Tisanetse vasungwa,

8.

must not exploit or rob the

masses.

rwevanhu; Kuti 7.

We

Taurai zvinonzwika kuruzhinji

rwevanhu Kuti massinzwisise

must not

exploit or rob the

masses.

Return

all

contraband to the

enemy.

You must communicate your stand clearly to the masses.

They must know the party

line.

Zvakananga musangano. 10.

Aya ndiwo mashoko akataurwa Kare naivo vaMao, vachitidzidzisa

Aya ndiwo mashoko akataurwa kare naivo vaMao,

These are the words of wisdom

Handed down

to us

Tung The Revolutionary

by

Mao

Tse

sage.

vachitidzidzisa. 11.

Tisave tinotora zvinhu zvemass

yedu Dzoserai zvinhu zvose zvatorwa

kumuvengi. zvinonzwika kuruzhinji rwevanhu Kuti mass inzwisise zvakananga musangano.

12. Taurai

We

must not exploit or rob the

masses. Return all contraband to the

enemy Communicate your stand

clearly

to the masses.

They must know the party

line.

The soldier's code of conduct is a politicisation piece directed at both the soldiers themselves and at the masses and the enemies in the field. To 10

the soldiers it serves as a reminder of the lessons given to them at the time of training. For their part, the first rule is to obey all rules and regulations. The actual rules in the text are: Do not exploit the masses among whom you operate. Return all contraband to the enemy, hence the release of prisoners of war at various times during the armed struggle. Explain the party line unambiguously to the masses. That way they will

— —



become your

than your betrayers. everything that you buy and, if out of operational necessity you confiscate property, return it to the owner when the dust has settled. This rule is repeated twice by way of emphasis. Do not engage in promiscuity. This would not only damage the image of the guerillas in the eyes of the people, but would also make them extremely vulnerable to the machinations of the enemy. They would be running the risk of being caught literally, with their pants down. Do not harass prisoners of war. The ZANU(PF) party's stand has always been that, given the correct orientation, man is not intrinsically evil. The barage of propaganda to which the unsuspecting masses were subjected by the Rhodesian regime went a long way towards explaining their apparent lack of understanding of the motives of the revolutionary cadres. So unless an individual was known to be deliberately and maliciously undermining the cause, he was given an opportunity to reform. Finally, tne song text reveals the source of the code of conduct which is being canvassed: Mao Tse Tung, that doyen of revolutionary warfare. Here, the song is performing what Mazrui (1975, p. 197) would regard as the typical function of music and dance in African society: "Dance and song in a highly oral society also have significant functions in the socialisation of the young. In all countries economic socialisation involves teaching children values and skills necessary for their society's economic survival and emphasises the need to serve the family. In Africa, proverbs and songs are the devices which enable the young to memorise lessons of social commitment and service and to remember with awe the hazards of disloyalty to kinsmen and ancestors."

— Pay

allies rather

fair prices for





HAPANA CHAVO Forward with the cock'!

Pamberi ne jongwe! Pamberi! Pamberi naPresident Mugabe!

Long

Pamberi!

Forward!

Pamberi negore ramasimba evanhu! Pamberi!

Forward with the year of the people's power! Forward!

Pasi

nevapambepfumi!

Pasi navo!

Forward! live President

Down Down

Mugabe!

with exploiters! with them! 11

2.

Chimurenga chakarwiwananiko?

NeZANU

PF

Who

fought the liberation war? PF fought it in Zimbabwe Who fought the liberation war? ZANU PF fought the war in

ZANU

muZimbabwe

Chimurenga chakarwiwa, Chakarwiwa neZANU PF.

Zimbabwe.

Who

Chakarwiwa naniko? Nemhuri yeZimbabwe Chimurenga chakarwiwa, Chakarwiwa neZANU PF

4.

?

The Zimbabwe nation The revolutionary war was fought It was fought by ZANU PF.

Chimurenga, chimurenga, chimurenga (Chakarwiwa, chakarwiwa,

neZANU

PF

Chimurenga chakarwiwa)

Pavakarohwa neZANU; vadzvanyiriri

Kwakumanyira kuzvim-

When ZANU

hit them hard The oppressors turned to the

quislings;

bwasungata Who are prepared Zvinokanganwa mhuri yavatema masses And pander to the Zvoenderera kuzvido zvavapambi exploiters; Vevhu mberi nai amawo What a shame! .

.

to forget the interests of

.

Ya.

6.

Vakauya nenyiko vadzvanyiriri

muZimbabwe? Vakanga vasina nechinhu,

Whaf did the exploiters bring Zimbabwe? They had nothing but empty

to

stomachs

Kunze kwematumbu avo Atodembera nenzara

Sagging because of no food

in

Britain.

dzekuBiriteni

7.

Vatinyima Zimbabwe Hanzi tinemabhizinisi, Vachiti vanema Investments Vaiti vanemapurazi, Zviri zvemhuri yevatema Imi ka ruzhinji henyu.

rweZimbabwe

They won't leave our country to us Because they claim They have businesses to protect. They have investments They have farms All these belong to the people to you the masses of Zimbabwe.

Chinyiko bhizinisi rake

Munyika yeZimbabwe, Vanonyepa chaizvo Ndezvenyuka imi veZimbabwe.

What is the white man's in Zimbabwe? They are blatant

business

liars,

All these things belong to you,

Zimbabweans. Regai zvenyu Itsanangure Bhizinisi

ZANU

PF

Let

ZANU

What he

imba yamakavaka

Nezvidhina zveZimbabwe Zvinobvaka muvhu reZim-

babwe Zvakanywa nemvura reZimbabwe Munyika inoka yeZimbabwe Zvichikanywa nemi vatema Hapana chavo apa.

PF explain

all this

calls his businesses

Are structures built from Zimbabwean raw materials. These come from the soil of

Zimbabwe made using Zimbabwean

Bricks

water Bricks burnt using

Zimbabwean

fire.

On

this

Zimbabwean

very

soil

They are made by you black people

They have no claim to anything 10.

Vangataure

kuti

marata

Ndezvedu veZimbabwe, Tino atora KuBeringwe, Shabani

neMashaba Kana uko kuKamativi,

Muno muZimbabwe Hapana chavo 11.

Vangataure

will tell

ndezvenyu,

is

you that the

theirs,

But that belongs to Zimbabwe Asbestos is mined in Belingwe, Shabani, Mashaba and in Kamativi Right here in our country, They can't claim any of it.

apa.

kuti magetsi

Ndeenyu veZimbabwe, Anobva murwizi rweZambezi Mudhamu guru ramakavaka

Dhamu

They

roofing

anoipfirira

guru reKariba

Rakavakwa nesemendi Yaibva mudombo reZimbabwe Rakanywa nemivatema Hapana chavo apa

They is

will claim that the electricity theirs,

No! It belongs to Zimbabwe, It comes from the river Zambezi From the dam which you built The Kariba Dam. They used cement, mineq in 1

Zimbabwe

And mixed by you

the children of

Zimbabwe, They simply have no claim to 12.

Vangataure kuti kopa Inofambisa moto uyo Ndeyenyuka imi veZimbabwe.

kuMhangura Munyika ino yeZimbabwe

Tinoitora

What

if

it.

they claim that the

Copper which conducts the Electricity

Answer

is

'no'

theirs?

because

it

belongs

To you Zimbabweans 13

Hapana chavo

13.

apa.

We get it from Mangula Right here in Zimbabwe They have nothing. What Used

Ndeyenyuka vana veZimbabwe

It's

of the machinery industry Zimababweans. yours all

Regai zvenyu nditsanangure

Let

me

Vakapinda 1890, Vakatanga kuchera zvicherwa Munyika yoseka yeZimbabwe

Once

Vangataure

mushini

kuti

Irimo mubhizinisi

in

explain,

they invaded the country

Vaichera kiromu, Vachichera ghoridhe Vaichera mhangura. Vaichera kopa Vaichera fertiliser Vachichera zvose zvose.

in

1890 They immediately began mining

Zimbabwean 14.

Mine

minerals.

They mined chrome, They mined our gold

Our

iron too,

They even mined copper Even fertiliser attracted them Every mineral resource was exploited lust look at

Hakuna Hakuna Hakuna Hakuna Hakuna

wegoridhe,

Do you

wekiromu,

Piles of iron,

wemhangura, wekopa,

Fertiliser?

wefertiliser,

Where did they

murwi murwi murwi murwi murwi

Vaitora vachiisepiko? 16.

Zimbabwe

kwazvinocherwa Munyika yeZimbabwe

15. Tikatarisa

Vaibidza mhiri kwavo, Mhiri

kwemakungwa,

Where all mined

What

Overseas of course! To their 'mother country'

where they made the machinery which they marked

Made Made Made Made

Made Made Made Made

England, America,

in

Germany,

in Britain,

Zvounzwa muZimbabwe

transport all this

wealth to?

That's

in

see heaps of gold,

of copper,

Vosvika vogadzira mushini Vodhinda zvidhindo in

these minerals are

Then

in

England, America,

in

Germany,

in

in Britain. it

was re-imported

into

Zimbabwe Zvonzi hazvisi zveZimbabwe

With

a boast that

it

is

not

Zimbabwean Vanonyepa vapambepfumi; Ndezvenyu veZimbabwe;

Exploiters are

Hapana chavo apa

They have absolutely nothing.

liars:

These things belong to you

Zimbabweans,

17 Vangataure kuti

hembe

D/atinopfeka tose isu, Tinodziwana mudonje

reZimbabwe Ratinorima munvika mo

kuKadoma Hapano chavo apa

Tichirigadzira

Thev

will

claim that the clothes

we wear

are theirs,

made of Zimbabwean cotton Crown here in Zimbabwe And processed in Kadoma Rut thev are

Thev can't claim

it

is

theirs.

song with a call and response slogan. The chorus, he would take his message in the operational areas, willingly commit themselves to the plausibility of the arguments that he is about to advance — because thev respond to his opening salvoes according to form The call and response was a particularly effective device used bv preachers of the independent African churches in the early

The

soloist begins the

also the audience to

whom

days: Soloist "Forward with the cock'" Chorus: "Forward" Then he proceeds to explain some of the propaganda to which the audience has been subjected by the opposition The title of the song is the bottom line of the sermon: the imperialists have no leg to stand on; they have no claim to Zimbabwe's resources By the time he comes to destroy the opposition's arguments one by one he has succeeded in making the audience acknowledge their debt to ZANU PF: "Who fought the war?'' Chorus,: "ZANU PF!" Then the soloist complements that answer by saying that it is the masses who fought the war. That complementation is not to be glossed over. Because if the two statements "ZANU PF fought the liberation war'' and "The masses fought the liberation war'' are true, then a fundamental claim is being made here: that ZANU PF is the masses, and conversely, that the masses are ZANU PF And at the time of the 1980 general election one of the most eloquent posters that the party displayed conveyed that message: ZANU PF VANHU, ZANU PF is the people, VANHU IZANU (PF), The people are

ZANU

PF

Secondly, the soloist has identified the obstacles to the attainment of nationhood: the quislings to whom the enemy turned when the going had been made tough on the battlefield by ZANU PF The 1978, 3 March agreement between Ian Smith, Muzorewa, Sithole and Chirau had the effect of delaying genuine indeoendence and of prolonging suffering. There are those who will dismiss the soloist's arguments (actually those of ZANU PF. "Let ZANU PF explain") as populist or peurile. That would be to miss the point: the efficacy of that argumentation does not derive from the actual arguments or facts presented; but rather from the wide, emotionally charged socio-political context in which it is placed. The arguments have plausibility for us, because they are at the centre of the North-South dialogue They carried weight with the masses of Zimbabwe because the singers were, after all, the children of tribulation They had paid the price and 15

were now communicating their new consciousness to us who were anxious to know, and to be one with them, in a new Zimbabwe.

MARUZA Hondo maiona

vapambe-

imi

You

pfumi

Vathibva Biriteni Vachibva kuAmerica Vaibva kuFrance Ku German kwavakatandaniswa nenzara: Vati nanga-nanga

neZimbabwe

Havazivi kuti inyika yavatema

nomukaka

Ngezveduka isu vatema Vakapinda muZimbabwe vaine gidi

Kekutanga Vodzokera

exploiters, you've experienced

the war now.

Hondo yeZANU ka chimurenga Vakauya muZimbabwe

Izere uchi

IMI

vachiti

vanovhima kunyepa

iko kuri

ZANU's revolutionary war, They came to Zimbabwe, From

France,

And

from Germany, the lands of hunger and suffering. They made for Zimbabwe But this country belongs to the blacks flows with milk and honey, Yes, but it's our country.

It

They brought

their

guns

Zimbabwe They came to hunt

And would The

Vapambepfumi, Huwe huwe uwere here vapambepfumi Vavhimi vavoka vana Selous Vatongorora mugariro weZim-

Britain,

America,

to

they said,

return to their

homes —

liars.

Despoilers,

Oh

you marauding hoards,

You see

their hunters, Selous

and others were reconnoiters

babwe. Nenzira dzokupinda nadzo

They were studying our way of

mangwana Tuhama twake twaitevera Vodaidza mupambepfumi

and charting

the course for their

invading

who came hard on

Ndizvo here here kani?

What

Ona nenguva

isipi

takazoona

ilk,

life

their (hunters) heels

In

trickery!

no time the Pioneer Column

zimudungwe Richibvaka nekumaodzanyemba Appeared, from the south of

eZimbabwe Vapambepfumi

Zimbabwe, iko Selous (kari)

pamberi,

Ndivo vapambepfumi Tande kuFort Tuli 16

Guess who was leading the way!

None

other than Selous, the hunter They made for the places they call Fort Tuli,

now

Tande kuFort Victoria, Tande kuFort Charter, Dzamara muSalisbury, Vapambepfumi vatopamba

Then Fort

And

Ona vachangosvika muHarare Ndokudzika mureza wavo, Kupangidza (kuti) vatopamba

for Zimbabwe was underway— How could you?

Wainzi iwo The Union Jack

woye

A

reliable index of their intention

rechigumi namaviri,

Vapambepfumi vapamba nvika yevatema

Vapambepfumi huwe-huwe uwerere Asi ivo vose maPioneer dzaive nhunzvatunzva,

Nharadada vanhu vasina mabvi vaingoda Kuzvifadza havo.

Vakanganwa

imi

The

Zimbabwe

flag they called the

Union

lack,

Ndivo vaya maPioneer mugore ra1 890 Mumwedzi waCunyanya zuva

veZimbabwe

Varid/i venhaka here here

wove 5.

As soon as they reached Harare, They hoisted their flag, to colonize

nyika here here

finally Salisbury.

The scramble

nyika yevatema. 4.

Victoria,

Charter,

Takatangaka veZimbabwe

kumuudzaka Ngatigarisane zvakanaka

Mupambepfumi wotoramba, Votodzika mitemo yavo, Imbwa, huku, nemombe, madhongi, vanhu dzimba Dzotereswa naivo vapambepfumi Vanababa vodaidzwa Uyai uyai kuchibharo musimudzire nyika yedu/yenyu Naivo vapambepfumi migwagwa yogadzirwa Mabhiriji ogadzirwa Idzo njanjika dzogadzirwa Zvichibva kunze kwenyika. Upfumi hwenyika hwoyeredzwa

They were the Pioneer Column of 1890 They arrived on 12th September, of that year.

The despoilers' rape of our country was now a fact of life Yes, the colonisers

had arrived

But these Pioneers were all, to man, smart Alecs They ignored your interests completely

a

Sons and daughters of Zimbabwe Yet you are the beneficiaries of your fathers' legacy.

We

took the initiative to invite

them (since they'd come) To be good neighbours But they would have none of it. Instead they proceeded to promulgate laws to govern us,

Demanding

taxes for our dogs.

Chickens, cattle, donkeys, houses. Even personal tax was levied. All the men-folk were press-ganged into communal work. Ostensibly "To develop your/our

country" The marauders started building roads and bridges

They constructed railways lines Linking our country with the 17

navo vapambeptumi, Ndizvo here here kani? Voti

outside world.

ngwengwere ngwengwere

Then Zimbabwe's rich resources began flowing out

Was

nezvindege

this fair?

Kumakamba evatema Maninira kuenda kuita kwavo ivo

Zvino

vapambepfumi (isu) veZimbabwe takava-

dziidzisa.

Manzwa

imi vapambepfumi mukaona muvengi odaro

kuti

Ava pedyo kudzokera kwake, Kumusha kunonhuhwa nhamo Kune masango anosura nzarà, Mazitama anonyepa, Mazimhuno akabhenda Mazimhanza anokuya dovi, Kune tukadzi tune unyope Tunongoita zvokurodza nzara

Dzekuzokwenya veZimbabwe ZANU nhasi yazoyimba Kwenyu-kwenyu vakomana, Here here woye Zvino kuipa kwavokwose uku, Nemanyepo avo ose, Zvakazofumurwa nenhengure Onai

ZANU

chiororo yakaunzaka

zano rehondo

Manzwa vapambepfumi? Hondo maiona pfumi

imi

vapambe-

But we Zimbabweans have taught

them

a lesson

Now

you know, you invaders, When you began to goad us you Invited your own expulsion back to your country.

A home whose atmosphere

is

saturated with suffering

Whose forests forebode starvation Cheeks that spout lies, Crooked noses, Bald heads on which one could grind groundnuts Thin indolent women who spend their time sharpening fingernails For poking us Zimbabweans.

Now ZANU

sings 'Co back home!' go! All the machinations and lies Have been exposed by the smart bird ZANU the panacea, Has the message sunk — robbers? Have you seen what our fighting forces are capable of? Yes,

The song Maruza Vapambepfumi, You Have Lost the War you Marauders, celebrates the intensification of the war with the revolutionary forces on top of the situation. In addition, and like the previous song, it is a conscientisation piece in that it presents an alternative interpretation of our history. The soloist sets out to explode the myths of the motives behind the European scramble for Zimbabwe. Even the Americans were represented among the "Pioneer Column". Whereas our history books extolled the virtues of the first settlers—courage, self-sacrifice, patriotism, etc., the soloist dismisses them all to a man, as adventurers armed with greed, mendacity, disrespect. They did not come out to civilise, bearing the so-called white man's burden. They were, on the contrary, running away from starvation and 18

general decadence; "Their

women back home spend

their time polishing

fingernails.".

Like the clumsy elephant, they rode rough shod over all ceremony: erected their flag, the Union Jack; began taxing the people and their possessions, and above all, made us "Volunteer" our labour for the construction of railway lines, bridges and roads. Little did we know that these were intended for shipping Zimbabwe's wealth to their impoverished countries. Our country was colonised specifically for economic and chauvinistic purposes. "I contend that we are the finest race in the world and that the more of the world we inhabit, the better it is for the human race. Just fancy those parts that are at present inhabited by the most despicable specimens of human beings, what an alteration there would be, if they were brought under Anglo-Saxon influence, look at the extra Africa is still employment a new country added to our dominions gives lying for us, it is our duty to take it. It is our duty to seize every opportunimore territory simply means more of the ty of acquiring more territory Anglo-Saxon race, more of the best, the most human, most honourable race the world possess."* This image of England, and therefore the image of Europe and America, was new to the masses. The settler had made us believe that he left behind him a rich country, civilised and decent beyond the blackman's wildest dreams. The fighting cadre, who had been out of the country for a long time and experienced the white man's way of life, could now, through song, denounce what he had seen and rejected as being anathema to our own traditions. The white man had run away from "A home whose very atmosphere is saturated with suffering and whose forests radiate starva.

.

.

.

.

.

tion".

*Cecil John Rhodes, quoted 248-251)

in

Cec/7

Rhodes by John

Flint (1976,

pp

19

ZVINOZIBWA NEZANU Zvinozibwa

neZANU

MuZimbabwe wanhu

The sons and daughters of

Kuwamba musangano weZANU WaMugabe takawasarudza

Zimbabwe Came together to form The Zimbabwe African

Kutungamiririra wanhu Nhasi zvombo tinazvo, nemauto

Union We chose Mugabe

takaungana

tinawo

National

to lead the

people.

Today we have the arms, we have an army

Rubatsiro ticharuwanepiko?

Zvinozibwa

a Party

neZANU

Where

are

we going

to get

assistance from?

Only Takasara tikabuda kunze

Mumwe nemumwe

ZANU

knows

the answer.

After our leaders left the country, We followed them, one by one In small groups until there were many of us; We came together again (this time)

kusvikira

tawanda Takaunganidzanazve kunze Kuti tidziidze hondo

zvombo tinazvo Nemauto tinawo

Nhasi

Rubatsiro ticharuwana kupiko? Zvinozibwa neZANU.

to train as a guerilla army Today we have arms, we have a dedicated army too; But where is help going to come

from?

Only

Mabhunu ndokubata Takawira Newamwe wake waimutevera Ndokuisa vose mutirongo. Wamwe ndokuurayiwa.

zvombo tinazvo Nemauto tinawo. Nhasi

has the answer.

Then the oppressors arrested Takawira Together with other comrades Who shared his revolutionary thoughts They were all locked up.

Some

Rubatsiro ticharuwanepiko? Zvinoziba neZANU

ZANU

of these comrades were

murdered.

Now we Our

are

armed

to the teeth,

soldiers are spoiling for a

fight.

Who

is going to assist us? is a ZANU secret. answer The

The central

role of the party

in

the revolutionary struggle

song — "Zvinozibwa

neZANU", Only

is

ZANU

further

has the underlined in this Answer. A comparatively short account of the history of the party, sung by cadres who have crossed the Rubicon. The first three lines of the first 20

and the first four of each of verses two and three, contain new inforformation, whereas the remaining lines of all three verses are identical ming a refrain. That refrain contains the main thrust of the song's message: that is, as far as assistance in the liberation struggle is concerned, ZANU has a policy (cf introduction). The weapons are there, the soldiers are there and above all, they have been trained. So the question in the refrain is really rhetorical. ZANU knows the answer: "We are our own liberators". The injustices which the people have to liberate themselves from are kept constantly before the listener so that he knows what the struggle is all about. The masses of Zimbabwe, having decided to free themselves from bondage, got together to form a party— ZANU; elected their leaders, some of whom the enemy proceeded to arrest, incarcerate and murder. Some of the leadership left the country, to organise the armed struggle from friendly territories. The party's supporters followed, trained as guerillas and now are ready to prosecute the revolutionary war under the party banner. verse,



TOCHEMA KUZANU Tochema kuZANU, Mhuri yeZimbabwe Tochema kuZANU,

kuti inunure kuti inunure kuti inunure

NeHanda naKaguvi, vakaurayirwa Zimbabwe NeHanda mudzimai wekutanga, Kuurayirwa Zimbabwe.

3.

4.

ZANU

to rescue our

We

appeal to

ZANU

to rescue our

ZANU

to rescue our

nation.

Mhuri yeZimbabwe. 2.

appeal to

nation.

Mhuri yeZimbabwe.

Tochema kuZANU,

We

PF

We

appeal to

nation.

NeHanda and Kaguvi were murdered because they loved Zimbabwe. NeHanda was the first woman, To be killed for Zimbabwe.

"Mapfupa achamuka"

But before she died, she said "My bones will live again"

Asi asati afa akati,

PaSinoia kani pakafira

Zimbabwe died

Zimbabwe, VaChitepo vakafa,*kufira

Zimbabwe,

Zimbabwe

Takawira too.

at Sinoia Chitepo, our hero, died for

Takawira akafa, kufira

Zimbabwe. 21

5.

Tochema kuZANU, Zimbabwe Tochema kuZANU,

kuti inunure

We

kuti inunure

We

Zimbabwe. 6.

Pa

Mboroma

kani, pakafira

kani,

zvondibaya

Ndarangarira ropa zhinji rakasarapo

kani, yuwi!

A

kuTembwe,

lot of

at

Nyika yeZimbabwe yatora wangu, Tochema kuZANU kuti inunure Mhuri yeZimbabwe. Tochema kuZANU kuti inunure Mhuri yeZimbabwe.

Mwoyo

blood watered the ground

Niazonia

Chimoio is saturated with the blood of the comrades Tembwe is drenched with our blood. /

dedicate

appeal to ZANU to liberate The oppressed masses of

We

Zimbabwe.

zhinji rakasara

PaChimoio,

Chimoio,

Ropa rakawanda rakasara KuTembwe.

A

Kufira

lot

spilt at

spilt at

of blood was spilt at

Tembwe. ari

Some

On

muZimbabwe,

Mamwe magamba eZANU

entire life to

liberation.

lot of blood was Niazonia, A lot of blood was

Niazonia,

Mamwe magamba eZANU

my

Zimbabwe's

A

Ropa rakawanda rakasara

ari

muZimbabwe.

of

ZANU

's

heroes are dying,

the battlefields

in

Zimbabwe,

of ZANU's heroes are dying, the battlefields in Zimbabwe.

Some

On

Ropa rakawanda rakasara

A

PaChimoio.

Chimoio. We appeal to

Tochema kuZANU kuti inunure Mhuri yeZimbabwe 22

can't

Ropa rakawanda rakasara

Kufira

Mboroma

at Chimoio mention Chimoio, Without shedding tears, and I

Tern b we Melts my heart.

Ropa

at

breaks my heart to mention Niazonia, I recall with sadness, The rivers of blood that flowed there;

Ropa rakawanda rakasara PaChimoio Ropa zhinji kwazvo rakasara KuTembwe.

11.

to rescue our

Zimbabwe died

PaNiazonia

10.

appeal to

Zvondibaya mwoyo wangu.

Ko, iko

7.

ZANU

our

Zimbabwe died

kani, pakafira

Zimbabwe PaChimoio

to rescue

It

mwoyo wangu PaChimoio

ZANU

nation.

Zimbabwe KuNiazonia

appeal to

nation.

lot of

blood was

spilt at

ZANU

Masses of Zimbabwe.

to rescue the

"lochema kuZANU kuti inunure Mhuri yeZimbabwe. Nyika yeZimbabwe yatora Mwoyo wangu,

We appeal to ZANU to rescue the Masses of Zimbabwe.

Tochema kuZANU

We

kuti inunure

Mhuri yeZimbabwe.

/

dedicate

my

Liberation of

everything to the

Zimbabwe.

appeal to ZANU to liberate The masses of Zimbabwe.

appeal to ZANU PF is a song of lamentation, a choir take stock of the vicissitudes of war: the Sinoia battle of 28 April 1966 at which Zimbabwe's pioneer gallant cadres

Tochema kuZANU,

song

in

which the

We

ZANLA

fell after putting up a spirited fight against overwhelming odds. It recalls with humility and gratitude, the memory of Herbert Chitepo, the late chairman of the "Dare", the ZANU War Council, who died in a landmine explosion in Lusaka in 1975 at the hands of the enemies, in whose cowardly hearts his sterling work in the revolution inspired fear and envy. The song further mourns the death in enemy custody of Leopold Takawira, "The lion of Chirimuhanzu", a selfless doyen of the Zimbabwe revolution, whose nickname, far from imputing any parochialism in his political vision, merely demonstrates his gratitude, and the nation's acknowledgement of that debt, to the people of his home area among whom he grew, and who nurtured the politician in him, until he exploded on the battle arena, like a lion among the befuddled prey Chimoio, Niazonia, Mboroma and Tembwe are, must be, eye-sores on the whole panorama of the history of Western imperialism in our land: irrefutable evidence of the obscenity of the Rhodesian Front's claim to be the last bastion of civilisation on the continent of Africa Their callous war machinery rained death on thousands of unsuspecting refugees in those camps and maimed scores of hundreds more Indeed, those who survived the carnage of the Rhodesian "hot-pursuit" raids into the People's Republic of Mozambique and Zambia, and those who have seen the horror films of those macabre deeds, cannot think back with equanimity. The song is effective, it stirs us because of the pain and suffering of our brothers and sisters, our fathers and mothers who were

killed.

Yet this horrendous chronicle of death, suffering and frustration was not the end of the world for our people, least of all, for our fighting forces. The relentless barbarity of the enemy was viewed in its proper historical perspective. The death of our leaders and of the peasants and guerillas at the hands of the enemy during the liberation war was a set-back to the eventual, inexorable realisation of the prophecy of our heroic ancestor, NeHanda, the spirit medium, who inspired the first armed struggle against imperialism. She was the first woman freedom fighter to be executed by the colonialists. Her last words, defiant to the bitter end, were "My bones will live again". Every guerilla in the armed struggle that led to victory in 1980 can be viewed as a reincarnation of NeHanda. Her last words served notice to the enemy: "The struggle continues". 23

HONDO YAKURA MUZIMBABWE 1.

lyo iyo

hondo hakura ndodi-

There

is

bitter fighting

throughout

Zimbabwe.

niko?

Hondo yakura MuZimbabwe

What

zvehondo Chero hondo yevanhu

shall do? The was has spread throughout the motherland, This is the time to take stock

Hondo hum ngationei Panguva yaambuya NeHanda

armed

Vanaamai nanababa vaisungwa,

Let us study any people's war;

Vakomana nevasikana

Take for example the war

Pari

zvino ngationgororei

vairohwa,

Nepamusana pekuti vairamba, Kudzvanyirirwa chete chete.

I

Let us consider the nature of struggle of whatever people; in

NeHanda fought, Old men and women were

which

arrested

While the young were tortured All because they rejected oppression and exploitation.

2.

Panguva iyi hondo yanga yatandavara serunyemba Zvana zvidikika zveZimbabwe Pavaiswera vose vachitamba Umwe wavo akaramba zvaida vamwe, mubvunzo Wavaiwana wairwadza

"Haudiwo zvatinoda murungu here— iwe gara

At that time the war had spread to every corner of the country,

With no end

used to spend their day playing games, When one of them refused to co-operate they had a searching question for him,

Ainzi, Uri

pasi?"

in sight,

Little children

They would ask: "Don't you want

Chana cheZimbabwe choranga-

to play the

same

games with us?"

rira

"Are you playing white?"

Kusanzwisisa kunoita bhunu, Kusafanana kwavakaita nesu Utsinye huya hwarinoita,

Sit

Wazoona paya chagarawo

the Boer's selfishness, the Boer's strange character.

pasi

Vototanga kurangana zvehondo paya paya Hanzi,

"Mukoma wangu

riri

pano Kuti ndinzi ndipfeke sutu kuti

Ndinzi nditungamire

ndigomubata Zvasaitaba.

down and conform!"

Then the

little

down and

child

would

sit

recall with revulsion

Particularly his cruelty. After this the little child

would

join his playmates. They would also begin to play war games and say "Brother, can you believe this?

I'm being urged to wear a suit

lead

my

people.

cannot do that — Why should join the Boer oppressing my people?"

"I

I

24

in

and

3.

Panguva iyi hondo yakanga yakura muZimbabwe Vana sekuru Kaguvi panguva vakatsutsumwa, Ndokutora danhorekupfura

iyi

Meanwhile the armed struggle had spread throughout Zimbabwe. Our ancestor Kaguvi and his comrades were completely dissatisfied with the state of

zvombo

affairs,

Zvehondo huru

So they decided

yaiuya,

Panguva yacho hondo yanga yatandavara serunyemba.

to forge

weapons

In readiness for the bitter war,

At

that time the

war had spread to

corners of the country, Like the cow pea plant. all

Hondo Yakura muZimbabwe, The War has Intensified throughout Zimbabwe, is a multi-facted politicisation song. It provides the historical background to the current struggle. Given the fact that the war has spread throughout the country: "This is the time to take stock. Let us consider the nature of armed struggle of whatever people" But the composer is anxious to emphasise the relevance of such a discussion to the current experience of the people of Zimbabwe. And so, rather than wander through the history of armed struggle throughout the world, he uses the seminal work of NeHanda as an example. This is done on the premise that if the audience can understand the vicissitudes of their own experience and that of their own ancestors, then they will begin to understand the nature of the revolutionary armed struggle generally: "During NeHanda's time, old people were arrested while young people were tortured all because they rejected oppression

and

exploitation".

The unstated but implied message is that the machinations of the establishment and its reactionary forces are the same throughout history: that what the people are going through may be new for them, but certainly not unique to Zimbabwe. The second concern of this song is to explain that in every (armed) struggle there are renegades. Betrayal comes as naturally to a revolutionary movement as the innocent refusal of a child to participate in a game with its

peers: Little children

used to spend the day playing their games When to join in, they had a searching question for

one of them refused him,

They would ask "Don't you want

to play the

same games with

us?

Are you playing white?

Then the

little

child

Sit

would

down and conform!" down and recall with

sit

revulsion the

Boer's selfishness,

The Boer's

selfish character, particularly his cruelty, After this the re-educated little one would return to the fold and together they would begin to play war games.

25

The message is clear: those among you who become turn-coats need to be rescued from their folly. Explain the party line to them and their eyes will soon be opened. They will begin to see the hazards implicit in identifying with the oppressor, both mentally and physically: "Can you believe it brother? I'm being urged to wear a suit And lead my people (astray) " cannot do that as the little child, newly converted to the popular cause, would put it. At the time of NeHanda: Our ancestors Kaguvi and his Comrades were completely dissatisfied with the state of affairs So they decided to forge weapons in readiness for the bitter I

.

.

war".

Oppressed peoples throughout history have reacted to exploitation in the same way. And always, they have fought their subjugators. We in Zimbabwe are going through the same process, inexorably marching toward deserved victory.

TORA

GIDI

kufa vachitaura shuwa Kuti "Zvino ndofira nyika ino" Shoko rimwe ravakatiudza, "Tora gidi uzvitonge," Mbuya NeHanda kufa vachitaura shuwa Kuti, "Zvino ndofira nyika ino. Shoko rimwe ravakatiudza, "Tora gidi uzvitonge."

Our ancestor NeHanda died

Wasara kuhondo Shuwa here, Tomhanya-mhanya nema-

Aren't you

Mbuya NeHanda

sabhu, Totora anti-air, Tora gidi uzvitonge

Wasara kuhondo shuwa here, Tomhanya-mhanya nema sabhu, Totora anti-air, Tora gidi uzvitonge. 26

UZVITONGE

with these words on her lips, "I'm dying for this country" She left us one word of advice

"Take up arms and Liberate yourselves."

coming with us

to fight?

Aren't you really?

We

are running about carrying sub-machine guns

We

carry anti-air missiles

"Take up your arms and liberate yourselves."

VaChitepo kufava chishereketa, Kuti "Zvino ndofira nyika ino" Shoko rimwe ravakatiudza, "Tora gidi uzvitonge."

Chitepo died with these words

on

his lips

"I'm dying for the fatherland." He left us one word of advice,

"Take up arms and liberate yourselves.

4.

Baba Chitepo kufa vachishereketa Kuti "Zvino ndofira nyika ino"

Shoko rimwe ravakatiudza "Tora

gidi

uzvitonge."

Father Chitepo died in the thick of the struggle, Saying: "Now I'm dying for the fatherland". His last words for us were

"Take up arms and Zimbabwe." 5.

Toenda kuhondo, shuwa here Tomhanya-mhanya nemasabhu,

Hence,

Totora anti-air, Tora gidi uzvitonge

We

liberate

we

are going to the war

the

enemy and

front, hit

run carrying

sub-machine guns, We brandish anti-air missiles.

"Take up arms and liberate yourselves."

Tauya kuhondo, shuwa here, Tomhanya-mhanya nemasabhu

7.

Now we

are

in

the thick of

it,

Running up and down with our

Totora anti-air, "Tora gidi uzvitonge."

guns, our anti-airs too. "Take up your arms and liberate your fatherland."

Mbuya NeHanda

NeHanda died

kufa vachitaura shuwa, Kuti "Zvino ndofira nyika ino" Shoko rimwe ravákatuidza, "Tora gidi uzvitonge."

on her

with these words

lips,

"I am dying for our country." She left us one word of advice, "Take up arms and

Free yourselves." 8.

VaChitepo kufa vachitaura

Chitepo died with these words

shuwa, Kuti "Zvino ndofira nyika ino."

"I

Shoko rimwe ravakatuidza,

His

"Tora

gidi uzvitonge."

on

am

his lips,

dying for our country".

word of advice was, "Take up arms and

Liberate yourselves." 9.

Wauya kuhondo; shuwa

here

Now

you have joined the struggle!

Tomhanya-mhanya nemasabhu,

Have you

Totora anti-air, "Tora gidi uzvitonge."

Together

really?

we

run up and

down

carrying our anti-airs too 27

"Take up your arms and rout the

enemy" 10 Voruzhinji kufa vachitaura

The masses are dying saying,

shuwa Kuti "Zvino tofira nyika ino,"

Shoko rimwe ravakatuidza, "Tora

gidi uzvitonge."

"We

are dying for our fatherland". They too leave us one message, "Take up arms and reclaim

Zimbabwe." 11.

VaChitepo kufa vachishereketa, Kuti "Zvino ndofira nyika ino", Shoko rimwe ravakatiudza, "Tora gidi uzvitonge".

12 Wasara wasara; shuwa here,

Tomhanya-mhanya nemasabhu, Totora anti-air "Tora gidi uzvitonge."

Chitepo died performing wonders. am dying for this

Saying, "I

country.

Take up arms and

free yourselves."

Are you staying behind? Aren't you coming to fight? Well we shall keep running up and

down Carrying our guns, our anti-airs too, "Take up your arms and liberate

Zimbabwe." 13.

Wauya, wauya—-shuwa here, Tomhanya-mhanya nemasabhu,

Oh, have you come? Have you really come to join

Totora anti-air, "Tora gidi uzvitonge."

Lef's harass the

battle with us?

enemy

with our

guns,

Our

anti-air too,

"Take up your arms and regain your liberty." Tora gidi uzvitonge, Take Up Arms and Liberate Yourselves, is a recruitsong. The people who live in our communal areas are deeply steeped in traditional religion. And anyone wanting their co-operation in any undertaking whatsoever will have to take cognisance of this fact. There was a time when many obstacles were placed in the way of party activists in the country, making it extremely difficult and dangerous to recruit

ment

young men and women for the guerilla armies. This song, it would seem, was intended to complement the

efforts of

cadres inside Rhodesia. And the ZANLA choir is again at pains to make the masses understand the issues before they jump on the band wagon: It is true, some of those who enlist will die in the struggle. But this should not deter anyone. The most famous Shona spirit medium of the last century Mbuya NeHanda, laid down her life for her country, our country. She gave us this advice, "Take up arms and liberate yourselves" Her words would have had a magical appeal in the hearts of many graduates of the political 28

school and military training camp: the near identity of NeHanda's words Mao's "Power comes from the barrel of the gun", could not have gone unnoticed. This would have given all who heard these words in the song added pride in their heritage, and fuelled their enthusiasm for the cause. This is the thrust of the first verse. In the chorus, which immediately follows that verse, the choir, all to a man, point their conscience-piercing fingers at the able-bodied compatriot who has stayed at home, while the brave and patriotic have joined the armed struggle. Their message to the stragglers is quite candid: "We have enlisted in response to the call by our departed heroes, NeHanda and Chitepo, to take up arms and liberate Zimbabwe. Our commitment is total, even if we should pay the ultimate price, death: our heroes NeHanda, Chitepo and others, paid no less. What are you still doing at home? Aren't you coming to join us "Running up and down carrying our guns, our to

anti-air missiles?"

a certain level at which this song communicates only to those paid their dues No outsider can listen to that chorus without finding the apparent complete resignation (on the part of the singers) to killing and being killed, strange. In the song Zvikomborero, (below) the opportunity to be a part of this dance of death is called a "Blessing". Viewed in isolation, our music would seem peculiar in this respect. But WEB. Du Bois (1903 p. 167), had some very revealing comments to make on the music of the children of tribulation: "Sometimes it is faith in life, sometimes it is faith in death, sometimes assurance of boundless justice in some fair world beyond", that predominates at any given moment in the

There

is

who have

song Song, in this context, can be used to remind the singer of his problems; it can further be used to help him forget those problems. This particular song was sung to rally support from all compatriots in order to overcome the national problem

ZVIKOMBORERO 1.

Pamberi naPresident Comrade Robert Mugabe,

Forward with President Comrade Robert Mugabe,

Pamberi;

Forward;

Pamberi

neZANU

PF.

Pamberi. 2.

Forward with

ZANU

PF.

Forward.

Ivainera, ivainera, ivainera,

Ivainera

Baba

ivainera,

Ivainera baba, Ivainera

Ivainera 29

Zv Zv Zv Zv Zv Zv Zv Zv Zv

komborero,

It is

komborero baba.

Yes, father

komborero, komborero, komborero,

We

Baba ndoshereketa Ndoshereketa baba, Ndoshereketa Ndoshereketa Ini

ndoshereketa.

Ndoshereketa baba, Ndoshereketa Ndoshereketa

Baba ndorova sabhu Ndorova sabhu baba, Ndorova sabhu Ndorova sabhu Ini ndorova sabhu Ndorova sabhu baba, Ndorova sabhu Ndorova sabhu

Ini ndochere mota Ndochera mota baba, Ndochera mota, Ndochera mota.

Izvo zvikomborero Zvikomborero baba, Zvikomborero Zvikomborero Izvo zvikomborero Zvikomborero baba Zvikomborero, Zvikomborero.

Icho chikomborero Chikomborero baba, Chikomborero Chikomborero

it

is.

are blessed

Yes, we are. Our ancestors have given

komborero baba komborero, komborero, komborero.

a blessing

us their

blessing

no doubt about

There's

What

that;

a blessing:

Indeed.

Father Yes,

I

am am I

performing wonders!

You haven't seen anything like it No, you haven't. You will never believe it, And yet it's true, me, your child I am performing wonders, I am doing just that. The submachine-gun is my weapon can use it so well, it's like my toy am in complete control

I

I

I

am

Me,

breaking I

it

am now

Yes, father,

it's

to pieces

capable of true,

all this

every word of

it.

The sub

is

like a

toy to

me now

I

know

I

can even dig up a mortar

every

trick in the

game.

bomb

Yes, that too.

These blessings are now mine count them, father.

I

That It

is

is a blessing that. indeed.

Ichi chikomborero Chikomborero Chikomborero Chikomborero

The revolutionary struggle! For the liberation of Zimbabwe, Forward with ZANU PF! Forward. Long live Comrade Robert

Chimurenga! Chekusunungura Zimbabwe, Pamberi neZANU PF! Pamberi Pamberi naComrade Robert

Mugabe! Long live. Forward with the revolutionary armed struggle!

Mugabe! Pamberi.

Pamberi neChimurenga! Pamberi. Viva FRELIMO!

Forward.

Long Long

Viva!

FRELIMO!

live live.

As we noted in our comments on Tora gidi uzvitonge above, the cadres the song Zvikomborero, Blessings, viewed the opportunity to participate in the armed struggle as a blessing They were able to take this view because they were convinced of the historicity of their role: they were merely taking over the work which our famous heroes left. The level of political consciousness which our forces enjoyed was not shared by those (including their parents back home) who had not had the opportunity of education in cultural history The history taught in Rhodesian schools recognised European heroes only: the stand taken by NeHanda and others being dismissed in a few lines as some necessary but dispensable appendage to the main fabric of the story of the white man's civilising mission. The mission which the cadres were fulfilling in the struggle for Zimbabwe was a revolutionary one in two respects: they were out to correct the misconceptions which the coloniser was perpetuating through his education system: that all who have dared to oppose settlerism are rebels (cf 1896-7 Rebellion), and must not be emulated This song says it is a blessing to be running up and down the hostile bush carrying sub-machine guns and anti-air missiles for fighting the enemy with. The freedom fighters are performing a pedagogical act at the level of the song; but a concrete revolutionary one at the level of actually engaging the enemy on the battle field in order to sweep from the face of the earth, all institutional manifestations of imperialism and oppression, replacing these with a new dispensation run by a popular, socialist oriented government. in

am performing wonders father The sub-machine gun is my weapon can manipulate it, it's like my toy

/

.

I

Father, all this

And The song

text

I

is

is

true

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

.

regard this as a blessing. skeletal.

Because

this

is

a

work song. Convoluted syntax 31

would defeat the whole purpose of such a song. The lead singer picks out the thematic line, which the chorus repeat. And the audience remember it forever after. The tune is that of a dance song: the dance of young men and women expressing their inexorable commitment to a cause they know to be right, and which they hope the listening world will see as such. In the last line, they express their solidarity with FRELIMO, their hosts, who themselves have gone through the painful motions of self-liberation, and are thus an obvious inspiration.

MUKA MUKA 1.

The armed struggle!

Hondo!

Hondo

yatora,

The armed struggle,

Hondo yatora Zimbabwe.

It

Hondo!

The armed yatora,

It

yatora Zimbabwe.

It

Hondo

Vana vemuZimbabwe, Tasara munhamo, Nyika yapanduka,

Muka! Muka! Vana vemuZimbabwe, Tasara munhamo, Nyika yapanduka,

Muka! Muka!

4.

has liberated Zimbabwe. struggle,

has liberated,

The armed struggle,

Hondo,

3.

has liberated,

Hondo,

Hondo

2.

It

has taken Zimbabwe.

Sons and daughters of Zimbabwe, The whole world has left us in our troubles, The world is upside down, Wake up, oh please wake up. Children of Zimbabwe, We are left in problems The world has turned upside down, Wake up! Oh! Please wake up.

And

Nyika yapanduka,

yet you should not panic, The world is upside down,

Muka! Muka!

Wake

Nyika yapanduka,

The world

Muka! Muka!

Wake

Vana mai vanababa, Sei tiri varombo? Vana mai vanababa, Sei tiri varombo?

Our mothers and

Musarohwe nehana,

Wake

up! upside down, up! Wake up! up!

you, Why are

is

we

fathers

we

ask

we

ask

so poor?

Our mothers and

fathers

you

Takauya seiko isu zvino? Takauya nerumanikidzo here? Kana kuti magariro edu here? Kana kuti takapambwe nyika 32

Why

are

we

How

did

we come

so poor? here? to leave our

Did anyone force us country? Or,

is

this the

way we normally

Takauya seiko isu zvino? Takauya nerumanikidzo here? Kana kuti magariro edu here? Kana kuti takapambwe nyika?

live?

Or

is it because our country was captured by the enemy? How did we come here?' Did anyone force us to leave our country? Or, is this the way we normally

live? is it because our country was captured by the enemy?

Or

Vanamai vanababa, Sei tiri varombo? Vana mai vanababa, Sei tiri varombo?

Mothers and

Why

are

we poor?

Takauya seiko isu zvino? Takauya nerumanikidzo here? Kana kuti magariro edu here? Kana kuti takapambwe nyika? Takauya seiko isu zvino? Takauya nerumanikidzo here? Kana kuti magariro edu here? Kana kuti takapambwe nyika?

How

did

we come

Why

are

fathers.

we poor?

Mothers and

fathers,

here?

Did anyone force us

to leave our

country?

way we should because the enemy captured our country?

Or,

Or

is

is

How

this the

live?

it

did

we come

here?

Were we forced? Or is it the way we should Or is it because the enemy

live?

captured our country?

The role of the freedom fighter as teacher/pedagogue is further underlined by the structure of this song The very title of the song Muka! Muka!, Wake up! Wake up!, defines the role of the singer and that of the audience. By definition, someone who is fast asleep cannot urge others to wake up. The singer has seen the light, whereas the audience has not. Verse 2 makes two claims in two categorical statements: "The whole world has left us in our troubles; the world is upside down", with the chorus repeating the topical line, "Wake up! Wake up!". The singer has seen the world, has been to the political school, so he is in a position to make these pronouncements And he is acutely aware of the fact that his listeners must be wondering when he is going to substantiate his claims. But he is not going to spoon-feed them. They must discover the answers with him. And so he asks them "Why are we poor?" Poverty here referring both to material and moral deprivation. Material poverty is inherent in a system whereby the economy is controlled by, and run for, the benefit of a minority class. Moral poverty from which, as from a dream, the audience must wake, was manifested by an apparent lack of national pride and the will to assert one's right to a place in the sun along with other nations (who have left Zimbabweans behind), on the part of the 33

singer's audience.

Verse 5 asks some equally fundamental questions. What is your explanation of our decision to leave home, work and school, to come here, where we face the constant threats of death, starvation and capture? Is it not our determination that we should put Zimbabwe on the map, occupying its place with pride alongside other nations of the world? Or have you fallen victim to the malicious propaganda which the enemy is pushing: that there are only a few self-seeking die-hard agitators, among the otherwise peace-loving contented Rhodesian Africans, who are abducting innocent children to fight for a cause (or non-cause) they cannot possibly com-

prehend? In this song the answer to the pedagogical/rhetorical question "Are we here because we want to reclaim our right" must be "Yes". Otherwise to this day those singers would still be singing this song, running up and down in the bush, wielding their sub-machine guns and anti-air missiles.

NXA IZULU LIDHUMA 1.

Nxa

izulu liduna

Ubolungisa inhlanyelo Nxa izulu liduma Ubolungisi khuba Vuke kuseni usuqondemasimini.

When

Wake up the

Mhla

sifika

eZimbabwe

Sizongena nge slogani hawu, Sizo phakamisi ijombo

Lozodabuku valu ibhunu, Seliqonde Europe, Elinye liqonde e Melika. 3.

the rain thunders,

Prepare the seed, When it thunders Prepare the plough in

the morning

and go

to

fields.

When we

reach Zimbabwe, on the double will raise our boots, The Boers will panic Then they will rush to Europe, Others will go to America.

We We

will enter

Nxa singena nge katusha, When we enter with rifles, Kuzonyikinyikineka, lozodabuku The earth will shake so much and valu bhunu, The Boers will panic and tremble Seliquonde e Europe, They will wake up in the morning Elinye liqonde eMelika. and pick up their belongings and go to Europe. Others will go to America.

The opening image in this song is a pastoral one: that of the imminent rain announced by the thunder in the horizon, prompting the peasant farmer to prepare for the planting season, his hoe, seeds and other paraphenalia at the ready. It is a routine picture of the peasant's intuitive response to the changing season. But the second verse soon disabuses us of the simple interpretation 34

above. The thunder stands for the sound of a raging liberation war. The ordinary Zimbabwean must rise to the occasion, just as the combatant has abandoned what little comfort he had at home to face the oppressor on the battlefield.

SIYABATSHIYA ABAZALI Siyabatshiya abazali

Sikhumbula ke ngamanye

We We

are leaving our parents, therefore think of other countries,

amazwe khona izwe Zimbabwe.

Siyolilwela

Izwe

le

lakithi,

Where we

be based when we

will

fight.

For our country, Zimbabwe. Zithulele

Noma Noma Sifele

mama

sifile

Do

sifile thina,

sona sizwe

not worry mother,

Even Even

bo, sakithi,

Sizwe se Zimbabwe.

We

died, died,

have died

our country

for

Zimbabwe.

Do

Noma Noma

Even Even

befile bo, sifile thina,

sona sizwe

if

will

Zithulele baba.

Sifele

we have we have

if

sakithi,

We

not worry father. if they have died, if

will

we have

died,

have died

for

our country,

Zimbabwe.

Sizwe se Zimbabwe.

Another of the People's Revolutionary Choir songs that was intended to convey a similar message is Siyabatshiya Abazali, We are leaving our parents. The people had to be made to understand that exile for their children was a necessary and temporary evil. It was also a military necessity since the liberation forces could not, from the outset, gain the essential know-how within Rhodesia then: Sikhumbulake ngamanye We've set our minds on other

amazwe Siyolilwela

countries

khona izwe

lakithi.

From there we

shall fight for

our

country to the parents of the combatants is more explicitly arsong: do not worry, mother. Even if we have died we will

The reassurance ticulated

in this

have died for our country. This, no doubt, may have come as cold comfort to parents who,

tradi-

knowing the fate of ancestors who dared invader, were oppose the far from convinced that their own children to could dislodge the better-armed and deeply entrenched descendant of the tionally, respected authority or,

same

invader.

The song for us depends for its efficacy and appeal to the parents, on one phrase: "Sizwe sakithi": "Our country". That phrase, together with several of its formal scatters, particularly "Umfana wakithi", "The young 35

man who solidarity

belongs

to,

is

and communal

one of our people", pride.

When

used, as

is

a powerful catalyst for

in this

phrase, to describe a

between them and us. Zimbabwe is "Isizwe sakithi", "Our country" and Europe and America, to which the last song says the shocked "Boer" will retreat in panic are "Amazwe person,

its

function

is

to

draw

a line

akibo" "Their countries" The audience back home were bound to have their old pride and sense of belonging revived by such a song and to give their whole-hearted support, logistical

36

and otherwise, to the fighting liberation

forces.

CHAPTER

ARGUMENT

TWO

BY PROXY

KUGARIRA NYIKA YAVO Pamberi

neZANU

Forward with

PF!

ZANU

PF!

Pamberi.

Forward.

Pamberi neChimurenga!

Forward with the revolutionary

Pamberi.

struggle!

Forward.

Smith usaone vana vamai vedu Kugara musanga Vanogarira nyika yedu.

Smith don't get the wrong idea, When you see our brothers and sisters

Choosing to live in the bush. They are there because they

Want our Smith usaone vana vamai vedu Kugara musango Vanogarira nyika yedu Smith usaone vana vamai vedu Kugara musango Vanogarira nyika yedu.

country.

Smith don't get the wrong idea When you see our brothers and sisters

Choosing to live in the bush, They are there for the love of

their

country.

They live in the bush, To liberate our country. Kurara

mumba;

Kugara

Is

do.

pasi,

Vanongokudawo. Kurima munda, Vanongokudawo. Asi kuti vanogarira nyika

in a comfortable home, something they would love to

Staying

Vanongokudawo.

Resting, Is something they would Love to do.

yedu

Asi kuti vanogarira nyika yedu,

Ploughing the fields, Is something they would

Asi kuti vanogarira nyika yedu.

Love But

to do.

their priority

is

to free our

country. 37

Dupont!

Dupont!

Usaone vana vamai vedu Kugara musango,

Don't get the wrong idea, When you see our brothers and

Vanogarira nyika yedu.

Dupont!

Usaone vana vamai vedu Kugara musango, Vanogarira nyika yedu.

sisters

Choosing to live in the bush They are there because they want our country. Dupont! Don't get the wrong idea, When you see our brothers and sisters

Choosing to live in the bush They are there because they want our country. Kuita mhuri,

Raising families

Vanongokudawo. Kuvaka musha, Vanongokudawo.

Building a

Kusevenzawo,

Getting a job

Vonongokudawo.

Is something they love to do. But their priority is to free our

Asi kuti vanogarira nyika yedu.

Is

Is

Asi kuti vanogarira nyika yedu. Asi kuti vanogarira nyika yedu.

something they love

to do.

home

something they love in

to do.

industry

country.

But

their priority

is

to free our

is

to free our

country.

But

their priority

country.

Muzorewa! Usaone vana vamai vedu Kugara musango, Vanogarira nyika yedu.

Muzorewa! Usaone vana vamai vedu Kugara musango, Vanogarira nyika yedu.

38

Muzorewa! Don't get the wrong idea When you see our brothers and sisters choosing to live in the bush. They are there because they want our country.

Muzorewa! Don't get the wrong idea. When you see our brothers and Sisters choosing to live in the bush. They are there because they want our country.

Kusevenzawo Vanongokudawo.

Is

Kuita mhuri,

Raising families.

Vanongokudawo. Kuvaka musha, Vanongokudawo.

Is something they love to do. Building homes, Is something they love to do.

Taking up a job something they love to do.

Asi kuti Asi kuti

Asi kuti

vano vano vano

garira nyika yedu.

But

garira nyika yedu. garira nyika yedu.

their priority

our

is

to free

is

to free our

is

to free our

country:

But

their priority

country:

But

their priority

country.

Chirau!

Usaone vana vamai vedu. Kugara musango, Vanogarira nyika yedu.

Chirau! Don't get the wrong idea When you see our brothers and sisters opting to stay in the bush. They are there to liberate our

country

Chirau!

Usaone vana vamai vedu, Kugara musango Vanogarira nyika yedu.

10.

Kuvaka musha, Vanongokudawo. Kurara

mumba,

Vanongokudawo. Kugera ndebvu,

Vanongokudawo. Asi kuti vanogarira nyika yedu. Asi kuti vanogarira nyika yedu. Asi kuti vanogarira nyika yedu.

11. Sithole!

Chirau! Don't get the wrong idea When you see our brothers and. sisters opting to stay in the bush They are there because they want to liberate our country.

Building a home, Is something they Sleeping indoors Is something they And shaving their Is something they

But their priority our country: But their priority our country.

love to do. love to do.

beard at leisure love to do. is

to liberate

is

to liberate

Sithole!

Usaone vana vamai vedu Kugara musango, Vanogarira nyika yedu. Sithole!

Usaone vana vamai vedu Kugara musango, Vanogarira nyika yedu.

Don't get the wrong idea, When you see our brothers and Sisters choosing to live in the bush.

They are there to our country

liberate

Sithole!

Don't get the wrong idea when you see our brothers and sisters

Choosing to live in the bush. They are there to liberate our country. 12.

Kusevenzawo,

Vanongokudawo. Kusevenzawo,

Vanongokudawo. Kurara

mumba,

Taking up a job, something they

Is

live to do.

Working in Industry, Is something they love

to do.

Sleeping indoors, 39

Vanongokudawo. Asi kuti vanogarira nyika yedu. Asi kuti vanogarira nyika yedu. Asi kuti vanogarira nyika yedu.

Is something they love to do. But their priority is to free our

country;

But

their priority

is

to free

our

country. Sithole!

13. Sithole!

Usaone vana vamai vedu Kugara musango,

Don't get the wrong idea when you see our brothers and sisters

Vanogarira nyika yedu. Sithole!

Choosing to live in the bush. They are there to liberate our

Usaone vana vamai vedu Kugara musango,

Sithole!

Vanogarira nyika yedu.

country.

Don't get the wrong idea when you see our brothers and sisters

Choosing to live in the bush. They are there to liberate our country. 14. Kuita mhuri,

Raising families

Vanongokudawo. Vanongokudawo. Kuvaka musha, Vanongokudawo.

Is something they love to do. Sleeping indoors, Is something they love to do. Building a home, Is something they love to do.

Asi kuti vanogarira nyika yedu.

But

Kurara

mumba,

their priority

liberate 15.

Pamberi

neZANU

PF!

Pamberi.

Pamberi neChimurenga! Pamberi! Icho!

is

to

our country.

Forward with ZANU PF! Forward! Forward with the revolutionary

armed

struggle!

Forward!

Charira!

Kugarira nyika yavo, They are there for their country, is the first of the songs that we have characterised as those conducting an argument with the enemy by proxy. It is addressed to Ian Smith (and the late Clifford Dupont, one of Smith's unflinching lieutenants), Muzorewa, Chirau and Sithole, the signatories to the ill-fated 3 March, 1979 agreement. What the song is urging on these misguided compatriots is a basic fundamental, fact: that the children of Zimbabwe who are living in the bush, endangering their health, are not acting out of a misguided desire for a pre-historic existence. They are making this sacrifice because they love freedom more. Verse 3 enumerates the rights and privileges which the free citizens of a country enjoy, and which the guerillas would like to enjoy: sleeping in

commonsensical

40

one's

own home unmolested,

above

all, tilling

the

soil to

resting after a piece of work well done and, achieve self-sufficiency in food and other basic

necessities.

But because of the oppressive system which Smith and the quislings have instituted, they (the cadres) must fight for justice first. Verse 6 adds to the list of mundane pursuits which the conscientious cadres have found secondary to the priority of human dignity, which they must restore through armed struggle to their people: raising a family, building a home, exercising the fundamental human right to work for a living, and (Verse 10) shaving one's beard, which they cannot do under the exigencies of a raging war. The song begins and ends with a call-and-response slogan: Forward with ZANU PF! Forward! Forward with the revolutionary war! Forward! I spy the revolutionary war! Yes, it is now ringing in everyone's ear! In other words, our attempts to reason with the powers that be have all been scoffed at. There is no alternative but to fight. The slogans between which the song text is sandwiched commit the respondents to the armed struggle, because all traditional attempts to convince the authorities of the justice of the cause have been treated with the scorn that they did not deserve.

CHIMOTO Nhai! vakuruwe!

Vakuruwe musazokanganwa. Kuti Zimbabwe taitora. Nhai! vakuruwe!

Vakuruwe musazokanganwa. Kuti Zimbabwe taitora.

2.

Ndipeiwo chimoto! Ndipeiwo chimoto! Nechimwanda cheuswa! Huni ndichazodziwanira: Ikoko ku Zimbabwe.

Gentlemen! let me have your ears; You should never forget Gentlemen, that we have taken Zimbabwe. Gentlemen, let me have your ears; You should never forget That we have taken Zimbabwe. Please give Please give

A

lighter

me me

and

a lighter! a lighter!

a small

bundle of

grass.

Not That

to I

worry about firewood: shall find plentiful in

Zimbabwe. Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika

yemadzibaba, yeZimbabwe. yemadzibaba, yeZimbabwe. yemadzibaba, yeZimbabwe. yemadzibaba, yeZimbabwe.

Our

fatherland,

Yes,

Zimbabwe.

The country of our

birth,

Zimbabwe.

Our

fatherland,

Zimbabwe.

Our

fatherland,

Zimbabwe. 41

Dupont!

Ho! Dupont wo!

Dupont woye usazokanganwa.

Zimbabwe

Kuti

taitora.

Ho! Smith wo! Smith woye usazokanganwa.

Zimbabwe

Kuti

taitora.

Ndipeiwo chimoto! Ndipeiwo chimoto! Nechimwanda cheuswa. Huni ndichazodziwanira Ikoko kuZimbabwe. Ndipeiwo chimoto! Ndipeiwo chimoto! Nechimwanda cheuswa. Huni ndichazodziwanira Ikoko kuZimbabwe.

Dupont you should never forget; That we have liberated Zimbabwe. Smith! Smith you must never forget; That we have taken Zimbabwe. Please give Please give

A

lighter

me me

and

a lighter! a lighter!

a small

bundle of

grass.

Not That

worry about firewood:

to I

shall find plentiful in

Zimbabwe. Please give Please give

A

lighter

me me

and

a lighter!

a lighter!

a small

bundle of

grass.

Not That

to I

worry about firewood: shall find plentiful in

Zimbabwe. Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika

yemadzibaba, yeZimbabwe. yemadzibaba, yeZimbabwe. yemadzibaba, yeZimbabwe. yemadzibaba, yeZimbabwe. yemadzibaba, yeZimbabwe. yemadzibaba, yeZimbabwe.

Nhai! vakuruwe! vakuruwe musazokanganwa kuti

9.

42

taitora.

Dupont wo! Dupont woye usazokanganwa

Nhai! Kuti

10.

Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe

taitora.

Ndipeiwo chimoto! Ndipeiwo chimoto! Nechimwanda cheuswa.

Our

fatherland,

Yes,

Zimbabwe.

The country of our

birth,

Zimbabwe.

Our

fatherland,

Zimbabwe.

Our

fatherland,

Zimbabwe. Our fatherland, Zimbabwe.

Our

fatherland,

Zimbabwe. Gentlemen, let me have your ears! You should never forget that we have taken Zimbabwe.

Dupont!

Dupont you should never forget. That we have liberated Zimbabwe. Please give Please give

A

lighter

me me

and

a lighter!

a lighter!

a small

bundle of

grass

Not

Huni ndichazodziwamra Ikoko kuZimbabwe. 11

12.

Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika Nyika

to worry

There

is

about firewood. in Zimbabwe.

plenty

yemadzibaba

Our Fatherland

yeZimbabwe

Yes, Zimbabwe Our Fatherland Zimbabwe

yemadzibaba

yeZimbabwe yemadzibaba yeZimbabwe yemadzibaba yeZimbabwe

Country of our

birth

Zimbabwe Our Fatherland Zimbabwe Our Fatherland Zimbabwe Our Fatherland Zimbabwe

yemadzibaba

yeZimbabwe yemadzibaba yeZimbabwe

Pamberi ne Chimurenga!

Forward with the revolution! Forward!

Pamberi!

Pamberi neZANU PF! Pamberi! Pamberi naComrade Robert

Forward with

ZANU

PF!

Forward!

Long

live

Long

live

Comrade Robert Mugabe

Mugabe Pamberi Pasi naSmith Pasi naye Pasi Pasi

Down Down Down Down

nezvimbwasungata nazvo

with with with with

Smith

him quislings

them.

This song, Chimoto Lighter, is pregnant with symbolism, in particular the second verse. The opening lines are a confident assessment of the progress of the war, from the view point of the guerilla forces. For them, Zimbabwe is as good as free: the only problem left being to convince the oppressor (Smith) and some of his fellow-travellers (Dupont) and their lackeys (the quislings), that the revolutionary change from Rhodesia to Zimbabwe is irrevocable. It is these forces bent on the perpetuation of a decandent system that the lead singer sarcastially calls gentlemen or

"Vakuru"; "Respected elders". The secona verse contains the loaded words chimoto, lighter, uswa, grass and hunt firewood, i.e. the whole paraphernalia for making a fire. In the context of revolution, the lighter would seem to stand for the correct party ideology; the grass for a conscientised, responsive and committed party cadre; and the firewood for the masses. A match stick sets grass alight, and the grass in turn burns firewood and one has a fire that has the potentiality of becoming a conflagration as more grass and more firewood

becomes This

is

available.

precisely

what happened

in

the

Zimbabwe

revolutionary armed 43

combatants

struggle; an initially small contingent of

(grass) returned to

Zimbabwe after military and political training abroad (light), (cf the song "Muka Muka" above) and engaged the enemy in battle while simultaneously initiating an important and complementary programme of political education among the masses, (firewood) "Moto", Fire, comprises one verse taken from the Bible, "Ndakauya munyika kuzobatidza moto; saka ndinoti dai wachipfuta zvawo": "/ have come to bring fire to the earth, and, oh that my task were completed!" (Luke 13:49).

The author of these enigmatic words left behind him a team of twelve, well-adjusted disciples, whose sterling work in disseminating his message, the gospel, in the world is a decidedly unthwartable conflagration. For the masses among whom the ZANLA cadres operated during the armed struggle, ZANU PF and everything it stands for are a religion Converts to the new ZANU PF revolutionary philosophy have done and are doing, sterling work among the masses to promote a socialist democratic view of the world.

MUKOMA Anamai vanonetswa nema-

mukoma

Takanyi

Mhinduro yavo inotenderera. Sendekera mukoma Takanyi Kutaura haimboreva wave comrade. Sendekera mukoma Takanyi.

Unozovanzwa; "Vari mumapurazi"

Sendekera

mukoma

Takanyi

Munoseenzwa musina Sendekera

zvitupa.

mukoma

Takanyi Ndokuone zvatinoverenga. Sendekera mukoma Takanyi

Ndokuone zvatinoverenga. 3.

are being harrassed

Who

ask them, children?"

"Where

are your

answer is long winded, They never reveal that the children are now comrades.

Their

They may reply; "Our sons are working on farms, Where they do not need registration certificates." This

is

This

what we read

the newspapers.

in

is

what we read

in

the newspapers.

KwaMrewa tinowana madomasi. Mrewa produces tomatoes.; Chiredzi produces sugar. Sendekera mukoma Takanyi KuChiredzi tinowanaka nzimbe. Sendekera mukoma Takanyi Centenary tinowana chibage. Sendekera mukoma Takanyi

Cokwe tinowana mhazhanje Sendekera mukoma Takanyi 44

Our mothers

by the Boers.

bhunu,

Vanobvunzwa; "Vana varipiko?" Sendekera

TAKANYI

is famous for maize. with wild fruit. abounds Cokwe

Centenary

We

get ocra from Bindura.

Mt Darwin

is cotton territory. Inyanga produces the bulbous

root (d hum be).

KuBindura tinowana mapari. Ndizvozvoka mukoma Takanyi Darwin tinowana donje. Sendekera mukoma Takanyi Kulnyanga tinowana

There are lots of caterpillars in

Bulawayo.

madhumbe, Sendekera

mukoma

Takanyi

Bhuruwayo tinowana madora. Sendekera 4.

5.

mukoma

Takanyi.

Anotongera fevha. Sendekera mukoma Takanyi Anotongera fevha. Sendekera mukoma Takanyi. Kudai ndichibhururuka, Ndega ndaienda

Kumass yeZimbabwe. Sendekera mukoma Takanyi Ndaizosvika kwaMtoko, Bindura, Que Que, Umtali. Sendekera mukoma Takanyi Ndichivaudza tavekuda nyika Sendekera mukoma Takanyi. 6.

Asika sabhu haina hukururo.

Sendekera mukoma Takanyi Kutaura ukaiona waiziva. Sendekera mukoma Takanyi.

He

(the oppressor)

is

not an

impartial ruler.

His justice

If

I

is

one-sided.

had wings

would

I

fly,

Back to the masses of Zimbabwe. Land at Mtoko, Bindura, Que Que or Umtali and Tell them that we must Now wrest power, from the Oppressor.

But we cannot negotiate now that We are carrying sub-machine guns. This will be patently clear, to Anyone who sees a sub-machine gun.

7.

Kaitano waimbovhaira kwazvo,

Akarohwa nemakamaradha. Ndizvozvo lye Smith

mukoma

ari

Takanyi kuvhaira kumusha

kurohwa nemacomrade. Ndizvozvo mukoma Takanyi.

Ari

8.

Mozambique yave FRELIMO Sendekera

mukoma

Takanyi

Mozambique yave FRELIMO. Sendekera 9.

mukoma

Takanyi.

Zvipi izvozvo wakwira bhazhi,

ndege Sendekera mukoma Takanyi Pasina anorambidza. Sendekera mukoma Takanyi

Caetano was big headed, But the comrades hit him hard. Yet Smith seems to have Learnt nothing.

The comrades are sorting him out. Brother Takanyi.

FRELIMO reigns supreme in Mozambique now. Mozambique has become synonymous with FRELIMO. You can

travel

And no one You can, All

in

human

by bus, aeroplane

will harass you.

Mozambique enjoy

rights there. 45

10.

Zvipi izvozvo wakwira bhazi, Chipi pasi napasi pose, Ndizvozvo mukoma Takanyi.

Yes, brother Takanyi.

NeHanda akataura

NeHanda predicted

achireva,

This revolutionary war,

Sendekera mukoma Takanyi Hondo yacho yeChimurenga

Chaminuka

our ancestors foresaw this also had the premoni-

Yes,

baba.

tion;

Sendekera mukoma Takanyi Yakataurwa navatateguru. Sendekera mukoma Takanyi Chaminuka wakafemberaka, Sendekera mukoma Takanyi. anotaura kuti imbwa

When he said his bones would Come back to life. And this is exactly what has happened. Yes, brother Takanyi.

As

far as

inokosha, kupfuura munhu. Zvinova zvatisingazive isu

the

dog

Kana pamberi ipapo yabheuka Bhasa anenge afa. Kana vaakuda kutora statement, Vanouva kuzobvunza inini,

Something strange to us Blacks. Then when there is an accident and the boss is dead. The police want a statement, They come to ask me how the boss

11. lye

Kuti bhasa afa sei?

Ndinozvizivawo here

kuti afa

Asi kuti

imbwa

yangairi

kumberi.

Ndiyo yanga ichiona kuchinjwa

kwanga

he

human

is

concerned,

more precious than

is

All

I

I

supposed

can say

is

to

that the

know

that?

dog

was with him up front, Observing how the boss was: changing gears!

Kuchiitwa magiya. Zvinhu zvoudzvanyiriri izvozvo. Takasotarisa mubhuku raMao;

Unonzwa paakutaurwa kunzi: Simba rezvematongerwo enyika, Rinobva mumuromo weDfuti. Ndizvozvo mukoma Takanyi Ndosaka takauyo kuno kuti

is oppression, an insult to the black man. We know this from reading Mao's works. Who states in no uncertain terms "Political power comes from the barrel of a gun". That's why we came here to take

This

up arms.

'titore gidi

Titore simba enyika.

rezvematongerwo

This

is

the only

way

to secure

political power.

mukoma Takanyi mumuromo wepfuti Chokwadika mukoma Takanyi. Ndizvozvo

From the

Richibva

That's the plain truth.

Kana tichinge takadaro vana veZimbabwe, Takabatana.

Ndizvozvo

a

being.

died.

How am

sei?

46

this war,

Kuchauya hondo.

mukoma

Takanyi

And

barrel of a gun.

if all Zimbabweans accept fundamental truth Then we have unity of purpose Then we can sing our way To victory.

this

Zvirinyore kuti titore Zimbabwe,

Taura tinzwe Tinoitora

Zimbabwe

Sendekera

Ah Ah

mukoma

mukoma

tinoitora tinoitora

Zimbabwe Zimbabwe

mukoma

Tichaitora

Zimbabwe

Sendekera

mukoma

Takanyi,

questions, brother Takanyi?

Yes,

shall regain

we

are

Zimbabwe,

bound

to liberate

Zimbabwe. There's no doubt about

ka.

ka.

We

Takanyi

shall

it,

overcome.

ka.

Takanyi.

My

many themes

Do you have any

We

ka:

Takanyi.

Sendekera

Mukoma

Takanyi?

elder brother Takanyi,

is

a song that deals with

ranges over a whole the war, before the war, experiences of the masses and of the guerillas in the field. The first and second verses describe the harrassment of the parents of fighting cadres by the regimes security forces, who were always of the view that these parents were co-conspirators with their children in making trouble for the regime. These two verses are a tribute to the parents who risked all kinds of punishment by giving misleading answers to the Rhodesian forces, "Our children are away working on farms. If you have no record of them, then perhaps that's because their employers do not insist on our children producing registration certificates (identity cards)", the parents would reply. This was a particularly provocative reply to give to the regimes law enforcement officers, and the singers are here expressing a wish that when confronted with such a question by the regime's security forces, they (parents) should subtly remind them of the crime of child labour committed by white farmers. They did not register their child labour because this would reveal the ages of the children as well as the starvation wages which they were paid. Verse 3 goes on to give an inventory of some of the resources of Zimbabwe: tomatoes from Mrewa; sugar cane from Chirezi; maize from the Centenary area; wild fruit from Gokwe; cotton from Mount Darwin etc. The next verse points out the injustice on the part of the white rulers of the country who refused to share the wealth of the country with the black people: "His justice is one sided" in that only he and his kith and kin benefit from Zimbabwe's natural resources, while the black labour which harnesses that wealth, goes unrewarded. nearly as

panorama

as there are verses

of bitter experiences

in

it.

It

in

If had wings would fly back to Zimbabwe and tell people that we must now wrest political power from the oppressor, says the fifth verse. But, retorts the sixth verse, that would be to resume negotiations: we are out here because we have opted for the armed struggle, the jaw-jaw approach having been scoffed at. We are now fully committed to the warwar effort. Anyone seeing us will be left in no doubt that we have crossed the Rubicon. Besides, verse 7 adds that Smith does not seem to have learnt anything from the experiences of his erstwhile fellow traveller, Caetano of Portugal, overthrown in a military coup by army officers fed up with this I

I

47

pursuit of adventurist policies in Africa, against the wishes of the natives, who were ready for self determination. On the contrary, Smith seems to be growing more and more arrogant, relying on his so-called "Hot pursuit"

Mozambique to destabilise the popular FRELIMO government. FRELIMO has brought freedom to Mozambique (verse 9): people

forays into But,

are free to ride on buses, travel by air and indeed enjoy every fundamental human right one can think of. And so, as far as the guerillas are concerned,

the struggle continues. But again the singers are anxious to establish (verse 10) the sense of history in what they are doing; when did it all begin? Where did our forerunners leave things? How do we relate to them and their efforts? These are very fundamental, almost existential questions, to which their training before active service would have provided some ready answers. The current armed struggle was foreseen by NeHanda, whose prophecy concerning a revolutionary war we are fulfilling. Further, Chaminuka also warned that his bones would come back to life, and we are those bones, prosecuting a fierce war for the liberation of Zimbabwe.

Verse 11 recounts the dangers which the cadres face in the bush: "Given we would not opt for life in the bush. We are out here because we love our country more." The pathos of the intervening line defies translation: "Zvamunoona tafa nekurwara, "It may be difficult for you (listeners) to appreciate the full extent of our suffering, but we are dying in droves from disease." Given a 'choice' must be contextualised: the choice giver is not the contemporary leadership; they too have no choice but to struggle on. NeHanda, Chaminuka, Chitepo — all revolutionary heroes and guardian spirits who preceded the cadres and their leaders — put a premium on the life of every son and daughter of Zimbabwe worth his salt: that life is not worth living, no black person could regard himself as a legitimate descendant of these pioneers of the revolutionary struggle, unless he/she played a part in a choice

the struggle to regain Zimbabwe. Dying in the bush from disease; or from bullet wounds, in one's home set alight by the vengeful enemy; or in custody of the enemy after an "Unsuccessful interrogation", was part and parcel of the struggle, each one playing their part in the process of the consummation and concretisation of the dreams and prophecies of the nation's dead heroes. The general unpalatability of the content of verses 1 through to 11 is ameliorated by the humour, no matter how macabre, of the last verse. The Shona, traditionally find that laughter, even in the midst of the most unrelenting adversity, can be a paliative. The story in the last verse, which became a common joke among people in the early 1970s, derives from the people's humiliating experiences: that the police can harass a black man, soaked to the skin with rain, in the back of an open truck, by demanding

know how

the white driver met his death in an accident without ever he (the blackman) could not have seen everything that happened—since the whiteman was sharing the front seat with his dog! "This is sheer oppression; an insult to a black man." to

realising that

48

Wondering how on earth he could correct such a situation, the ZANLA somehow fell on the following words in Mao's Red book: "Political power comes from the barrel of the gun": that is why the guerilla is running up and down in the bush carrying/brandishing the gun. The song ends by appealing for a general acceptance of the wisdom of Mao-Tse Tung's words, since that is all that is required — a sharing of a common view of things — to regain Zimbabwe. cadre's eye

ZAKHALI IZIBHAMU 1.

Zakhali izibhamu,

Sekubaleka izinduna, Zakhali izibhamu, Sekudilika amapulazi, Yenu Smithi use tshabalala. 2.

Heyi wena nduna, Ulokhuhleli eZimbabwe, Hayi wena nduna, Ulokhu thengisi sizwe

Mind you

Vuka! phaphama! Khumbula

Wake

kusasa Uzosala esitulweni. 3.

The guns fired, Then the chiefs took to flight The guns fired The farms were deserted And Smith is perishing.

Nyana

sithathilizwe,

has remained in Zimbabwe You who continues to sell the nation,

up! wake up! think about tomorrow You will be left behind.

The day we take over the country, will lose your position When we take over the country, You will be left behind,

Wenu zosala esitulweni, Mzwana sithathi lizwe, Wenu zosale esitulweni,

You

Mdlana

When we

Wenu

sesibusa,

zosale esitulweni.

chief,

Who

You

will

are ruling,

be

left

The Council of Chiefs was used by the colonial respectability to their oppressive governments. Since

behind.

rulers to give

some

most encumbants of

the chieftainships were old and politically unsophisticated, the regimes found it easy to persuade them that their nationalistic sons and daughters were trouble makers under the employ of ruthless communist and foreign

governments.

The song, Zakhali Zibhamu, The guns thundered, chastises the chiefs for propaganda of the colonial regimes — particularly the

falling victim to the

Smith regime. As soon as the war hotted up in the rural areas, many chiefs found refuge in the urban areas, where they continued to draw salaries from the oppressive government, while their subjects remained at home in the countryside to give essential support to the fighting forces. A considerable number of white farmers also deserted their farms for the same reason (Verse

1).

49

Verses 2 and 3 are an attempt to mance the chiefs wise to the regime's machinations: unless they stop selling out, they will not retain their previously respectable positions in the new order.

PHETSHEYA KWEZIMBABWE

Nga phetsheya kweZimbabwe Nga phetsheya kweZimbabwe

Over Over Over Over

Ngawamela.

/

Ngafela bona.

/

Phetsheya, Phetsheya, phetsheya,

1.

2.

Sebezokhala ngawo amabhunu; Khonu sebenza, usebenzelu kufa.

3.

there, there,

over there;

in

Zimbabwe

in

Zimbabwe.

stood up to them. died because of them, The Boers will complain about you;

You will be working but you be working for death.

will

Ngawamela stood up to them Awu, awu sodhibana selizovuma Ah, ah, we will meet, Lodwi bhunu lithi yebo! The Boer will admit. Banzima abafana. The Boer will say yes! /

The boys are hard to 4.

beat.

Ngawamela,

/

Awu awu

Ah, ah,

Banzima abafana.

The Boer will admit The Boers will say yes! The boys are hard to beat.

sodhibana selizovuma Lodwi bhunu lithi yebo!

stood up

we

to them, will meet,

Phetsheya kweZimbabwe, Over there in Zimbabwe, is both a soliloquy a dialogue between the cadres and the powers that be. It is a soliloquy in the sense that the singers are describing what they and fellow Zimbabweans have been and are experiencing. Standing up to the coloniser because he was making them toil for him for a pittance: Khonu sebenza, usebenzelu kufa; You work, but you work only for death. In other words, what crowns your long days of sweat and toil is not a fat pay packet, but your broken back and final death — when your place in the work party will be taken over by yet another unrewarded Zimbabwean. But the Boers will never thank you for your efforts. The song is a dialogue in the sense that the singers promise the Boer that one day they will meet, and he will say yes, the boys are tough: Sodhibana, selizovuma lodwi bhunu, Lithi yebo! Banzima abafana. Admittedly, the words are put into the Boers mouth — hence the soliloquy on the part of the composer. But once the two sides confront each other in the imagination of the composer we have, on the same level, a dialogue: the cadre defying his oppressor and fighting him physically, and the latter admitting "Yes, the boys are hard to beat".

and

50

CHAPTER THREE

APPEAL TO ANCESTRAL SPIRITS

TITATIREYI

Mudzimu woye; mudzimu woyere he hahe

mambo. Mudzimu woye; mudzimu

Vatarirei

woyere he hahe

mambo.

Vatarirei

Nhandi VaTakawira mudzimu wedu baba Nhandi VaNeHanda mudzimu wedu baba Titarirei

mambo

tidzoke

Zimbabwe Mudzimu woye mudzimu

Our guardian

We

spirit

pray to you to protect them

(the fighting forces)

Our guardian

spirit,

We

pray to you to protect them.

Oh, Takawira, our guardian spirit, NeHanda our ancestral spirit Protect us as we fight our way back to Zimbabwe. Our guardian spirits we Pray to you to please watch over us.

woyere Titarirei

mambo. 51

Nhandi VaMugabe mutungamiri wedu; Nhandi VaMugabe mutungamiri

wedu

We We

appeal to you Mugabe; appeal to you our

revolutionary leader;

Lead us

Titungamirirei titore

Zimbabwe.

We

Mudzimu woye mudzimu

until final victory.

also appeal to our guardian

spirits;

Protect us from the enemy.

woyere;

mambo. Mudzimu woye mudzimu Titarirei

woyere; baba.

Titarirei

lye zvino

kana

vari kunetseka;

Vana mai vedu varikutambura; Vana baba veduwo kani vari kunetswa; rini

If

If

Zimbabwe? Mudzimu woye mudzimu

Vachauya

If

titore

woyere

mambo. Mudzimu woye mudzimu

Titarire

they are suffering now; our mothers are suffering as of now; our fathers are being oppressed;

When

coming to join Zimbabwe?

are they

struggle for

Please tell us our ancestral Please watch over us.

the

spirits.

woyere Titarirei

mambo.

Nhai vaNeHanda, baba, baba, Nhai vaNeHanda,

Mudzimu wedu Mudzimu wedu

Mudzimu wedu baba Titarirei

baba,

We

cry to you

NeHanda our

guardian angel,

you are that

Yes,

We

cry to you

to us.

NeHanda our

guardian angel,

you are that to us. Please guide our steps in this struggle Yes,

Tidzoke Zimbabwe.

Until

we

return to a liberated

Zimbabwe. Nhandi vaChaminuka.

Mudzimu wedu

baba,

We

appeal to you too Chaminuka. You are our ancestral spirit

Nhandi vaChaminuka,

We

Mudzimu wedu baba, Vatarirei mambo,

You are our ancestral spirit Guard and protect our cadres in The field, their victory will pave The way for our journey home.

Tiende Zimbabwe.

Mudzimu woye; mudzimu woyere Titarirei

mambo

Mudzimu woye; mudzimu

We

appeal to you too Chiminuka,

appeal to our ancestral To protect us We appeal to our ancestral To protect us.

spirits

spirits

woyere Titarirei

8.

mambo.

Vamwe veduwo

kani here

Vari kutambura,

Vamwe veduwo

kani here

zvinowo

Vari

kani,

mumakomo

lye zvino

are concerned about our comrades' welfare, They are destitute,

Our colleagues

Vari kushupika, lye

We

wo

kani,

Vari kungonetswa.

Vamwe veduwo

kani here

Mozambique. Vamwe veduwo kani here

are suffering

bitterly

Even as we sing here, they are living in mountains like animals, Others are being harassed. No, we cannot forget these brave

Zimbaowe. Mozambique, others are

children of

Vari

In

in

Tidzoke Zimbabwe.

Tanzania. Please protect them until we all return safely to Zimbabwe.

Woye! mudzimu woye

Please protect them until

Vari Tanzania. Vatarirei kani

mambo

Woyere! mudzimu woye

all return safely to

We

we

Zimbabwe.

appeal to you our

titular

spirits!

We

depend on you

entirely!

The songs that we have discussed so far have in common that the proin the liberation army exude confidence: confidence that arises from the sheer justice of the cause; the precedents which struggling masses in the world, particularly in recently independent Africa, have set; confidence deriving from the very logicality of the rigid and determined stand which the Party has adopted, that is, that power comes from the barrel of the gun; confidence that final victory must crown the selfless efforts of a well trained, dedicated team which saw itself as a reincarnation of the bones of those heroic ancestors, particularly NeHanda and Chaminuka, whose prophetic words at the point of death-in-the-struggle every combatant hung on to for reassurance. But a long bitterly fought war has its moments of celebration interlaced with memories and forebodings of mourning. The latter can, and did, have psychological pressures on the fighting forces, so that they had to ask some very searching questions concerning their destinies. The supernatural, far removed from the illogicality and inconsistencies of concrete day-to-day events, often provided psychological solace as a refuge from the harsh realities and vicissitudes tagonists

of war.

The song

Titarirei, Please watch over us, is an appeal to the guardian the nation for help and, in the contemporary phase of the struggle for Zimbabwe, to inspire and nurture the thoughts of the revolutionary leader, Comrade Robert Mugabe and to protect the courageous young men and women, running up and down in the operational area, from the callous machinations of the unrepentent foe: "Please guide our steps until spirits of

we have

liberated

Zimbabwe." 53

The words "Nhandi" and "Kani" (verses 3 and 8) collocate with maiwe Shona lamentation as follows: Nhandi maiwe! Maiwe kani! And those two constructions are untranslatable The Shona word mai or amai (dialectal variants) means mother. An old man of seventy, confronted with imminent and certain danger of his life will scream "Maiwe", i.e. "Mother please come and save me!" Not to mention younger men and women, finding themselves in similar situations. The disciplinarian father will often have the swings of his whip punctuated by cries of "Maiwe" and "Nhandi maiwe", elicited by the pain he is inflicting on a truant son or in

daughter. In the context of the song, these words come from the children of tribulation, engulfed by uncertainty and suffering, individually and collectively, presently and in the future. They are temporarily unsure: concerned for those of their comrades who may pay the ultimate price for their convictions on the battlefield, for those refugees on whom the enemy may spray death at any moment. And they wonder too, how it is that their compatriots can remain at home (verse 4) in the enemy camp and not come out to close ranks with their kith and kin in the bush. And so they turn to providence for guidance, inspiration and protection, particularly providence as manifested through the heroic deeds and words of NeHanda, Chaminuka and Takawira.

MBUYA NEHANDA 1.

Mbuya Mbuya Mbuya Mbuya

NeHanda, NeHanda, NeHanda, NeHanda,

mbuya mbuya mbuya makareva.

We

sing your praises

mbuya

NeHanda Chorus:

We We

take or inspiration from you sing your praises

mbuya

NeHanda Chorus: We take our inspiration from you Mbuya NeHanda, you foresaw all this.

Mbuya Mbuya Mbuya Mbuya

NeHanda, mbuya NeHanda, mbuya NeHanda, mbuya

NeHanda makareva.

We

sing your praises

mbuya

NeHanda

We We

take our inspiration from you, sing your praises mbuya

NeHanda

We

take our inspiration from you,

Mbuya Nehanda, you

foresaw

this.

Gidi chete, gidi Gidi chete, gidi Gidi chete, gidi 54

Only the gun, the gun answer Yes, you were right

is

the

all

4.

Rakatora nyika yedu.

Only the gun, the gun is the answer Yes, you were right The invader used the gun to subdue us.

Gidi chete, gidi Gidi chete, gidi Gidi chete, gidi

Only the gun, the gun is the answer Yes, you were right Only the gun, the gun is the answer Yes, you were right The invader used the gun to subdue us.

Rakatora nyika yedu.

5.

Mapfupa aNeHanda akamuka. Pfumo reZANU, ndokubaka

NeHanda's bones have come back

moto, Moto uyu igidi reZANU. Rakatora nyika yedu.

Now

Mapfupa aNeHanda akamuka. Pfumo reZANU ndokubaka moto, Moto uyu igidi reZANU Rakatora nyika yedu.

to

life.

the spear of emitting fire,

ZANU

is

The fire is ZANU's gun. The very gun that took our country.

NeHanda's bones have come back to

life.

Now

the spear of emitting fire,

ZANU

is

The fire is ZANU's gun. The very gun thai took our country.

Vapambepfumi munyika yeZimbabwe, Vaipona neropa revanhu Vachisveta simba revanhu, Gidi rakapedza

izvi.

Vapambepfumi munyika yeZimbabwe, Vaipona neropa revanhu Vachisveta simba revanhu, Gidi rakapedza izvi. 7.

Mbuya Mbuya Mbuya Mbuya

NeHanda, mbuya NeHanda, mbuya NeHanda, mbuya

NeHanda makareva.

The despoilers of Zimbabwe, Subsisted on the people's blood Sucking the people's strength, The gun has put a stop to all that. The despoilers of Zimbabwe, Subsisted on the people's blood Sucking the people's strength, The gun has put a stop to all that.

We

sing your praises

mbuya

NeHanda

We We

take our inspiration from you sing your praises mbuya

NeHanda

We

take our inspiration from you 55

Mbuya NeHanda, you foresaw

all

this.

8.

Mbuya Mbuya Mbuya Mbuya

We

NeHanda, mbuya NeHanda, mbuya NeHanda, mbuya

sing your praises

mbuya

NeHanda

We We

NeHanda makareva.

take our inspiration from you sing your praises

mbuya

Nehanda

We

take our inspiration from you

Mbuya NeHanda, you

foresaw

this.

Gidi chete, gidi Gidi chete, gidi Gidi chete, gidi Rakatora nyika yedu.

10. Gidi chete, gidi

Gidi chete, gidi Gidi chete, gidi Rakatora nyika yedu.

Only the gun, the gun is the answer Yes, you were right Only the gun, the gun is the answer Yes, you were right The invader used the gun to subdue us.

Only the gun, the gun

is

the

is

the

answer

Only the gun, the gun answer.

you were right The invader used the gun Yes,

subdue 11.

Honai hondo

yeZANU

to

us.

Lo and behold, ZANU's armed

Yakafararira munyika

struggle

yeZimbabwe Kudzamara Zimbabwe yedu

It

spread to the four corners of

Zimbabwe,

Yava kutongwa nejongwe.

It

continued to rage

until final

Victory, with the rooster

on top of the 12.

Honai hondo

yeZANU

situation.

Lo and behold, ZANU's armed

Yakafararira munyika

struggle

yeZimbabwe Kudzamara Zimbabwe yedu

spread to the four corners of

It

Zimbabwe,

Yava kutongwa nejongwe.

It

continued to rage

until final

Victory, with the rooster

on top of the 13.

Mbuya NeHanda, mbuya Mbuya NeHanda, mbuya

56

We

situation.

sing your praises

Nehanda

Mbuya

all

VÌ^aj^^^ fnsptcii/oa Mbtiya Nehanda

We^s/ng your

ma kareva *

p ra/f es :

li^^^^^B^BBit

from

vol*

Mhu\a ^ yiiip .,- s

tó;tòfe^aa)". inspiration íwm vol):



find

it

difficult to relax

Even though I'm in How can this be? I'm not an orphan,

What

shall

I

do

my

mother's

lap,

to correct this situation?

Brothers and sisters. Please give me an answer

.

(verse 2)

Traditionally, when a child is born, the umbilical cord and placenta are. buried in a particular place, usually the hut in which the baby is born. That act establishes the new baby as a child of that area. He may later, as a grown up, leave the area and settle elsewhere, but the spot and region where his placenta and umbilical cord are buried is where he will start, if called upon to identify himself in terms of who his parents are and where his home is. It is this context that verse 3 has to be read: To be miserable when I'm standing on the very soil which covers my grandfather's placenta! One has to be particularly headstrong to enter another person's "Home" and mess up that person's whole life: and this is what the people of Zimbabwe found puzzling about the white invader, "Pfumojena", "The White Spear". The same self-searching questions as we find in many of the songs of tribulation, trouble, Mutukudzi's mind here: Cod tell me what I did wrong I implore you to tell me; you too, my friends, advise me what shall I do? This is too much. And the singer's appeal to "Vasikana ne Vakomana", "Brothers and Sisters", to advise him are reminiscent of the opening line of Mutswairo's poem, NeHanda Nyakasikana, as is the impassioned imploring of God to give a rational explanation of the suffering of the people. Specifically, the line that asks Cod what it is that the people of Zimbabwe did wrong has a parallel in Mutswairo's:

Tinechitema chakakura sei What foul crime have we Chokubva matiramwa zvakadai? committed That you should abandon us

like

this?

Further,

stranger

Mutukudzi's expiession of frustration at being made to feel a own country can be traced to Mutswairo's seminal poem of

in his

alienation:

Vana vacheche vatinobereka

.

.

Nhasi vokura vakasunzumara,

Munyika yokwavo

.

The young ones our women bear all have an uneasy time,

.

.

m

...

.

their

own

land.

NDIRI BOFU By Oliver Mutukudzi and

Amai

ndiri

bofu

ini

mune

rino

pasi,

Amai Amai Amai

ndiri bofu. ndiri bofu, ndiri

bofu

pane ini

rino pasi

mune

rino

ndiri ndiri

Lord I'm a blind man in this world Fumbling to find my way / cannot see my way in this world. I'm lost, please lead me along Lead me, I beg you Oh God Please lead the way.

pasi,

Amai Amai

Wagon Wheels

bofu bofu pane rino

pasi.

109

Chorus: woiwe woye;

Chinditungamirirai Nditungamirirei,

2.

Woye woye Mwariwe, Woye woye nditungamirirei.

My

Tadzungaira

We We

isu,

Mambo mune

rino pasi,

Tadzungaira mambo, Tadzungaira mambo,

Mune 3.

Please lead me;

Lead Yes,

me

please,

I pray to you please lead the way.

Lord,

are confused, can't

make any sense

of this situation,

Thoroughly confused.

rino pasi.

Vakafa vakazorora,

The dead have nothing to worry

Mambo mune

Vakafa vakazarora mambo, Vakafa vakazarora mambo,

about, Resting peacefully in their graves; Please lead us, if life is going to he

Chitungamirira isu tatambura; tatambura.

Yes, lead the

rino pasi,

Woye woye

worth

We

living;

way

are the children of tribulation.

Lead us, We cannot find our way, Titungamirirei baba We plead with you, Woye woye tigarewo vakomana, There's no alternative to you Titungamirireiwo tadzungaira. Only then can we live like people. Chitungamirira

Woye

Ah!

isu

tadzungaira,

woye,

vakomana

tashupika,

Woye woye titungamirirei Woye woye Mwariwe; Titungamirirewo tashupika Ah! varume woye tayaura; Titungamirei Titungamirei tayaura

Ah!

my

friends

we

are in real

trouble,

Please Lord of heaven lead us, Please show us the way out of

our tribulation; are a people in distress Please lead us from this troubled

Man we land.

Oliver Mutukudzi's songs are noted for their richness in evocative imagery, emitting from his admirable command of the Shona language Ndiri bofu, / am a Blind Man,' is a song saturated with images of suffering, describing the unhappy lot of a destitute people striving to find their way through a hostile world The singer has put everything that the nation feels, what it longs for and the harsh reality of the present situation into seven suggestive expressions: Ndiri bofu,

Nditungamirirei,

Tadzungaira,

Tatambura, Vakafa vakazorora,

no



verse 1 / am a Blind Man verse 1 Please lead me We are confused — verse 2 We are in real trouble verse 3 The dead have rested — verse 3





We We

Tashupika, Tayaura,

can't

have peace of mind — verse

are desperately helpless

— verse

5

5

The unpleasant experiences catalogued above compel the sins and all still experiencing them or living with the constant threat thereof, to view death, as a more attractive alternative. That was because life had generally become insupportable. The living felt cheated, spending their days in the abyss of misery. Traditionally, when the Shona are faced with a thorny problem, and there is a possible risky solution to it, they will often those

latter, asking resignedly Kusiri kufa ndekupi What is the difference between dying and living this way? In other words, we do not care if we get killed in the process of attempting to right this situation, because as it is, we are as good as in our graves. In rhetorically envying the lot of the dead, Oliver Mutukudzi is in effect saying that it is better to follow in their footsteps; fight the system and be killed if necessary.

opt for the

GUNGUWO By Oliver Mutukudzi

Cunguwo, Gunguwo, Aiwa iwa vakomana Gunguwo,

Lei us

compare our

lot to the

crow's

The crow

is

a wild bird,

think about that The crow, Even you women put your minds

Every man,

let's

bird,

Ho! vasikana imi lyowe were.

to this matter.

Gunguwo, gunguwo rakapona negwakumukwaku;

The crow mouth,

Vakomana

Yes,

imi

consider

from hand to

that,

Gunguwo, gunguwo rakapona

The crow gleans its subsistence But you are normally better

Nekupara-para; Vasikana imi lyowe yowere Nhasi ndiwe une dura,

Can you boast about that today? You answer that! You have been reduced to a crow-

Hupenyu hwako huri papi? Ndiudzewo muzukuru

Can you deny

Nhasi ndiwe unopara;

Show me

Ndiudzewo Hupenyu hwako

you and that wild bird; The tables have now been turned, You are the one living from hand

lyowe yowere

huri papi?

organised storing food,

like existence,

to

3.

lives

Gunguwo

that? the difference between

mouth

Let us

compare our

lot to the

crow's ill

Vakomana,

The crow

Gunguwo

Every man,

Aiwa iwa vakomana lyowe yowere.

is

bird, the

imi,

a wild bird, let's

think

women

Even you

about that

crow.

put your minds

to this matter.

4

Gunguwo, gunguwo rakapona negwakumukwaku;

The crow mouth,

Vakomana

Yes,

imi

consider

from hand to

that,

Gunguwo, gunguwo rakapona

The crow gleans its subsistence Bu.t you are normally better

Nekupara-para; Vasikana imi lyowe yowere Nhasi ndiwe une dura,

Can you boast about that today? You answer that! You have been reduced to a crow-

Hupenyu hwako huri papi? Ndiudzewo muzukuru

Can you deny

Nhasi ndiwe unopara;

Show me

lyowe yowere

Ndiudzewo Hupenyu hwako

5

lives

huri papi?

Gunguwo

organised storing food,

like existence,

that?

the difference between you and that wild bird;

The tables have now been turned, You are the one living from hand to mouth.

compare our lot to the crow The crow is a wild bird, Every man, let's think about that Let us

Vakomana,

Gunguwo Aiwa iwa vakomana

imi,

lyowe yowere.

bird, the

Even you

crow.

women

put your minds

to this matter.

6

Gunguwo, gunguwo rakapona Negwakumukwaku,

Vakomana

imi,

lyowe yowere

Gunguwo, gunguwo rakapona Nekupara-para Vasikana kani lyowe yowere Nhasi ndiwe une dura

Upenyu hwako

huri papi

ndiudze,

Muzukuru Upenyu hwako huripapi? Ndiudzewo soko Ndiudzewo soko Ndiudzewo munununa, Ndiudzewo sahwira kani, Ndiudzewo iyowe yowere.

The crow has no fixed home. me remind you my friends. It survives by its resourcefulness Mothers be like that bird. You normally have a granary, But now you don't, so what are you going to do? You tell me grandson, Where do you stand today? Tell me, soko Yes, you tell me

Let

Answer that my brother You too. my friend What can you say to that?

Fenenga iya fenenga Fenenga ini fenenga Fenenga iya fenenga Fenenga ini fenenga Fenenga fenenga, ini fenenga Fenenga iwe fenenga Fenenga ini fenenga Fenenga iwe fenenga Iwe hoye, Fenenga iwe fenenga Fenenga ini fenenga Fenenga iwe fenenga Fenenga ini fenenga

Yes, sitting pretty I

a I so

used to

live in

comfort

Yes, in luxury I

did.

You used But

to enjoy

life,

that's a thing of the past

now

Yes, sitting pretty I

also used to live in comfort

Yes, in luxury I

did.

You used But

to enjoy

life.

that's a thing of the past

now

Yes, sitting pretty.

Oliver Mutukudzi's song, Gunguwo The Crow, takes its inspiration from the Bible. The singer had accepted, or been forced by prevailing circumstances to accept, the plausibility of Christ's lesson to his disciples: "Don't worry about whether you have enough food to eat, or clothes to wear. For life consists of far more than food and clothes. Look at the ravens — they don't plant or harvest and have barns to store away their food, and yet they get along alright for Cod feeds them. And you are far more valuable to him than any birds" (Luke 12: 22-24)

The theme

complete destitution, articulated so continually in these is here given a Christian garb. The people of Zimbabwe who have been reduced to the status of birds of the wild, must find hope in this message from the son of God. The desolation of their way of life is all part of the struggle, part of the hazards on the way to the promised land. At the same time as the song points the way out of the unpalatable present, it serves to underline the complete misery and relentless suffering of of

songs of tribulation

the people, particularly through the crow and that of his audience:

The crow

lives

way

the artist juxtaposes the lot of the

from hand to mouth, But you are normally betfood Can you boast about that today, my

ter organised; storing

grandson?

There is a level at which the singer is imputing that Christ is not keeping the promise to the disciples in respect to the children of Zimbabwe. The question addressed to the listener by the artist, who assumes the persona of the grandfather and then that of elder brother in successive verses, has an element of pessimism, though accepting that there is a saving precedent in the scriptures. The song concludes with a sarcastic ideophone recalling days when, by comparison to the present, the lot of the average Zimbabwean was much better. "Fenenga", describes the state of complete satiation: lots of food, a home and company. Now this is all gone, and the people have to make do with what the forests provide. 113

ISHE By Ishe

B.J

WANGU

B Jazz Band

wangu, inga tinopera,

Tumai Razaro azotinunura Ishe wangu tapera nehondo Ishe wangu iwe inga tinopera, Tumai Razaro azotinunura Ishe wangu iwe tapera nehondo

Vana vedu rave gombawakomba, Zvoda usiku mambo ishe

Lord we are being wiped out, Please send Lazarus to our rescue My Lord the war will sweep us all That is definite, Unless you send Lazarus to the rescue;

no

This

war

Our

children are surrounded,

will leave

survivors.

Particularly at night like animals,

Prey for the rapacious hunter.

wangu, Ishe wangu, tapera nehondo. Ishe

wangu, inga tinopera,

Tumai Razaro, azotinunura Ishe wangu, tapera nehondo

iyi

wangu, inga tinopera, Tumai Razaro azotinunura Ishe

Ishe

wangu iwe tapera nehondo

Lord we are being wiped out, Please send Lazarus to our rescue My Lord the war will sweep us all That is definite, Unless you send Lazarus to the rescue. This

Vana venyu kufira musango, Tumai Razaro azotinunura Ishe, wangu tapera nehondo Vana venyu kufira musango, Tumai Razaro azotinunura Ishe wangu, tapera nehondo

How

war

can you

Kuchema kwavo, baba baba baba nehondo baba

Kuchema kwavo Mwari, Mwari, Mwari, Tapera Mwari,

let

no

survivors.

your children

die in the bush?

Plese send us a Lazarus The war is sweeping us mercilessly Your children are dying in the

bush.

Send us No one

Mwari, Mwari, Mwari, Tapera Mwari,

will leave

a Lazarus will survive this war.

Their cry

is

Cod, our father Cod, our father Cod our father

We

shall perish in this

war

Cod, our father Their cry

is

baba baba baba nehondo

Cod, our father Cod, our father Cod, our father

baba.

Cod, our

We

shall perish in this father.

war

we are being wiped out, Please send Lazarus to our rescue My Lord the war will sweep us all That is definite, Unless you send Lazarus to the rescue This war will leave no survivors.

Ishe wangu inga tinopera, Tumai Razaro azotinunura Ishe wangu im.i tapera nehondo Ishe wangu inga tinopera Tumai Razaro azotinunura Ishe wangu imi tapera nehondo.

Lord,

Vana venyu rave gomba-

The enemy surrounds your

wakomba Kukombwa usiku,

Particularly at night

Mambo Ishe

ishe

wangu

wangu imi,

tapera

nehondo.

children,

He's going for the kill, God, you're my Lord

We

shall

be decimated

in this war.

How can you let your children Vana venyu kufira musango, Tumai Razaro azotinunura die in the bush, Ishe wangu imi tapera nehondo, Please send us a Lazarus Kuchema kwavo; The war is sweeping us mercilessly, Mwari, Mwari, Mwari, Mwari, Tapera

baoa baba baba baba nehondo.

Kuchema kwavo, Mwari, Mwari, Mwari, Mwari, Tapera

baba baba baba baba nehondo.

Kuchema kwavo, Mwari, Mwari, Mwari, Mwari, Tapera

baba baba baba baba nehondo.

Kuchema kwavo, Kuchema kwavo, Mwari, Mwari, Mwari, Mwari, Tapera

baba baba baba baba nehondo.

Their cry

is;

God, our father God, our father God, our father

We 1

shall perish in this war.

heir cry

is,

God, our father God, our father God, our father

We

shall perish in this war.

Their cry

is,

God, our father God, our father God, our father

We

shall perish in this war.

Their cry

is,

Their cry

is,

God, our father God, our father God, our father

We

shall perish in this war.

115

Ishe Wangu, My Lord, is B.J.B. Jazz Band's prayer to God to come to the rescue of the oppressed masses of Zimbabwe. The second line of verse 1 reveals the song's biblical inspiration: Please send Lazarus to our rescue. In this section on the songs of the children of tribulation, we have come across several passages in which the artists desperately seek to find a rational explanation for the nation's suffering: Have we offended our guardian spirits? Have we sinned against God? Is there no penance for such sins, if our unmitigated suffering is not enough? Is the rest of the world made up of saints? How come other nations are enjoying the fruits of independence while we remain subjects of heinous dictators? These and other questions, it would seem, had persuaded B.J.B. Jazz Band into believing that what could save the people was nothing less than the biblical rich man's penitence: "There was a certain rich man," Jesus said, "who was splendidly clothed and lived each day in mirth and luxury One day Lazarus, a diseased beggar, was laid at his door As he lay there longing for scraps from the rich man's table, the dogs would come and lick his open sores. Finally, the beggar died and was carried by the angels to be with Abraham in the place of the righteous dead The rich man died and was buried, and his soul went to hell There, in torment, he saw Lazarus in the far distance with Abraham "Father Abraham, he shouted, "have some pity on me! Send Lazarus over here if only to dip the tip of his finger in water and am in anguish in these flames" (Luke 16: cool my tongue, for I

20-24)

The peopre's desperation was fuelled by the unrelenting savagery of the enemy: Our children are surrounded particularly at night like animals (verse 2).

The people were dying in the bush and no one dared go there to give them a decent burial Their relatives could only appeal to God for help (verse 4)

ISHE By 1

Ishe

Elijah

Madzikatire and the Ocean City Band

hamunaurombo

imi

Nhai ishe hamunaurombo kani? Ishewo ishe. Nhai ishe hamudotiona Ishewo ishe.

Lord, have you no mercy left? Lord there can't be any mercy in

you

oh Lord. Lord of hea\en, please pity us Lord,

least

2.

Ishewo,

ishe.

Ho ishewo

ishe

Ishewo, ishe

Waanguwo 116

ishe.

Lord,

oh Lord.

Lord,

oh

my

Lord.

Yes Lord Lord, oh Lord

You are

my

Lord.

at

3.

Ndaati hamuna uromombo Ishewo ishe. Nhai ishe hamudotiona, Ishewo ishe

imi.

Wedenga hamudotiona, Ishewo ishe, Nhai ishe hamuna urombo iwe.

must repeat my on us, Lord, oh Lord. /

plea,

show mercy

Please look down on us. merciful Lord. Lord, oh Lord. Lord God of heaven be gracious to us.

Lord,

oh Lord.

Surely you are the merciful father. 4

Lord,

Yes Lord

ishe ishe

Ishewo,

ishe,

Wanguwo 5

ishe.

Nyaradzai madzimai aya anetseka mupfungwa; Podzai vasikana ava

Give our hard working fathers

some

rest;

oh

Ishewo, ishe

Lord,

Yes Lord

Ishewo, ishe ishe

Nyaradzai madzimai aya anetseka mupfungwa, Zorodzai madzibaba edu

anoshanda zvakaoma,

relatives

who

sleep

in

the open.

Ho

ishe ishe

king.

Please console these mothers; Reassure these unhappy girls;

Help our

Wanguwo 7.

my

You are

Zorodzai madzibaba edu

Anoshanda zvakaoma; Yamurai hama dzedu dzinorara dzisiri mudzimba.

Lord,

Lord, oh Lord,

rufaro;

Vashaya

6.

my

oh

Ishewo, ishe

Ho

my

Lord,

oh Lord, You are my king.

Lord,

Console our troubled mothers. Rest our overworked fathers, Comfort our disconsolate sisters. Help our comrades in the bush.

Podzai vasikana ava vashaya rufaro,

Yamurai hama dzedu dzinorara Dzisiri

mudzimba

Hinga nhasi ndatambura ishe iwe Ishewe, ishe Nhai ishe hamudotiona Ishewe, ishe Nhai ishe, nhai ishe iwe.

Ishewo ishe

Ho

ishewo, ishe

Yes Lord, mine

is an unhappv oh Lord. Lord have mercy on us Lord, oh Lord, Lord oh my merciful Lord, Lord, oh Lord.

lot

Lord,

Lord on my Lord Yes, Lord 117

Lord oh Lord You are my king.

Ishewo ishe

Waanguwo 9.

10.

ishe

Tibatsireiwo nhai ishe, Inga tiri vana venyu wani.

Please save us, oh Lord We are your children, always.

Ishewo ishe

Lord oh

Ho ishewo

Yes Lord.

ishe.

11.

You are

ishe.

Nyaradzai madzimai ayo, Anetseka mupfungwa, Podzai vasikana ava

Vashaya

some

rufaro,

king.

rest,

Help our

Anoshanda zvakaoma. Yamurai vanhu vese, Vanorara vasiri mudzimba.

relatives

who

sleep

in

the open.

oh my Lord Lord Lord oh Lord

Ishewo ishe Ho ishewo ishe; Ishewo ishe

Lord,

Waanguwo

You are

Yes,

ishe.

Elijah Madzikatire's Ishe, Lord,

my

Please console these mothers. Reassure these unhappy girls, Give our hard working fathers

Zorodzai madzibaba edu,

12.

Lord

Lord oh Lord

Ishewo ishe

Waanguwo

my

is

my

king.

a supplication to the Lord to

mercy on the suffering masses. To the extent that verses

1

and

2

show

accuse

the Lord of showing an apparent lack of concern for the tribulations of his people, the song falls within the genre of Shona, "Kupopotera vadzimu", "Shouting at the guardian spirits". Lord have you no mercy left? Surely there can't be any mercy in you? This flies in the face of the Lord's reassurance to his disciples: "I am the Lord of mercy". It serves as a reminder that the Lord has so.far neglected the welfare of the people, as verse 3 says, (capturing the desperation and even exasperation of the artist by its use of four near synonymous words of prayer).

Nyaradzai, Please console. Podzai, Please reassure. Zorodzai, Please rest. Yamurai, Please help. In each case the use of the honorific plural demonstrates the artists innate and unshaken faith in the grace of the Lord; the impatience in the tone of voice serving only to draw the Lord's attention to the urgency of the people's plight: Yamurai hama dzedu dzinorara dzisirimudzimba. Please protect our people, who now spend the nights exposed to the elements, (verse 3) These people sleep out of doors because of the ravages of war, ironically, making the bush somewhat safer than their hearths They are running 118

away from the anonymous midnight knock on the hard, searching questions that they

who

has lost the scent of his

door, and from the must answer from the bounty hunter

human

Hinga nhasi ndatambura ishe

prey:

mine is an unhappy mercy on us; Lord of heaven please have Yes, Lord,

Nhai ishe hamudotiona;

Wedenga hamuna urombo; Tibatsireiwo nhai ishe,

Hinga

lot

Lord, have

iwe,

tiri

vana venyu wani.

mercy; Please save us oh Lord, We are your children always.

(verse 5) lines ooze sincerity together with gems of penitence. The last line humble (by the use of hinga, It's obvious the artists want to imply that

These is

a

it is also redundant) restatement of facts. In other words, if we have behaved otherwise than as your children, Lord, forgive us. Throughout the text are scattered forms which are the essence of remorse and a desire for

and material uplifting: Hinga, hamudotiwona, How is it possible you can fail to see our unhappy lot? Tibatsirewo, Please only you can save us. The song is the Zimbabwean equivalent of the rich man's prayer to Abraham to send Lazarus to relieve his pain and suffering in hell. spiritual

that

TOGURE MASANGO By The Search Brothers 1.

Togure masango amai

We're traversing the bush,

Tichitsvaga kwakarasikira

In search of the family treasure,

Pfuma yababa, Togure masango

mambo

iwe

Ndichitsvaga pakarasikira Pfuma yababa.

Hona musango mune mbada, Hona sango rine shumba; Togure masango mambo iwe, Togure masango mambo iwe.

We are going from one end of the Country to another in search of Our

lost wealth.

But there's a leopard roaming the

A

bush. lion threatens our

life at

every

turn.

wandering about Wandering through the bush Yes, we're

like

lost sheep.

Imwe

misi tinoswera

Nenzara mambo,

Imwe

misi

tochema

Misodzi kani, Misodzi yaana sekuru

There are days

when we go hungry,

Days when we shed Crying, in mourning Relatives

who

tears, helpless,

for

our

are dying by the

Day back home.

Naanambuya, Vari kushaika

kumamisha 119

Uko 3.

kani.

Hona musango mune mbada

mambo

iwe,

Hona sango rine shumba kani Hona musango mune mbada

mambo

There's vermin everywhere Leopards and lions ready to eat

us up, There's vermin everywhere

Leopards and

iwe,

Hona musango mune shumba

lions

ready to eat

us up.

kani.

Ndoti hwa-ahwa uchahurega

Hwahwa,

can assure you you'll stop drinking beer

Uchahurega

mean

beer it alone Yes, I mean beer You'll leave it alone Yes, I mean beer You'll leave it alone. Stop drinking beer now Yes, I mean beer Leave it alone before its too Leave it implore you; Yes, beer Leave beer alone. Yes,

Hwahwa,

I

You'll leave

Uchahuregera

Hwahwa, Uchahurega Rega, rega, rega, rega, rega, rega,

Hwahwa Regera, regera, regera, regera, regera, regera,

Midzimu yaani masango? rini

iri

kutigurisa

Whose

ancestral spirits are respon-

sible for our plight?

mambo

Midzimu yaani masango?

late.

I

Hwahwa.

Togarika

/

iri

iwe?

kutigurisa

When

are

Can

be our own guardian

it

we going

to find

peace? spirits

Torturing us like this?

mambo

Togarika riniko

iwe?

When

will

peace come

to

Zimbabwe? 6.

Ho! aa hwahwa

Beer will be your undoing

up

Uchahurega

You'll

Hwahwa;

Beer will be your undoing You'll have to give it up Leave it now, Before it's too late Leave it now before it's too late. Leave it now before its too late.

Uchahurega Rega, rega, rega

l^wahwa; Rega, rega, rega Rega, rega, rega

have to give

it

Hwahwa; Rega, rega, rega. 7.

Midzimu yaani masango? Ndogarika

iri

riiniko

kutigurisa

Whose

ancestral spirits are respon-

sible for

mambo

iwe

When

our plight? we going to find peace?

are

Midzimu yaani masango?

kutigurisa

iri

Togarika riiniko

Can

it

be our own guardian

spirits

torturing us like this?

mambo

iwe?

When

will

peace come to

Zimbabwe?

A hwahwa

Hwahwa

can assure you you'll stop drinking beer Yes, I mean beer You'll leave it alone / can assure you you'll stop drinking beer Yes, I mean beer

Ndichahurega.

You'll leave

Rega, rega, rega

Stop drinking beer now Yes, I mean beer Leave it alone before It's too late.

/

Uchahurega;

Hwahwa Uchahuregera;

Hwahwa Ndichahurega;

Hwahwa Rega, rega, regera,

Hwahwa.

it

alone.

In Togure masango, We are Traversing the Forests, the Search Brothers have adopted the persona of the average freedom fighter. They have imaginatively placed themselves into his shoes in order to articulate what they believe to be going through his mind, exposed as he is, both to the unpredictable elements and to the beasts of prey (including the enemy that he is fighting). This exercise in empathising is very successful, artistically. The forest in the song represents Zimbabwe: it is a dangerous forest to traverse because in order to find the lost family or national treasure— freedom and self determination — the guerilla has to remove all the obstacles in the way, some of them decidedly insurmountable. There is the lion and the leopard, self appointed kings of the forest. These threaten the hunter at every corner of the bush. The venture is a particularly lonely one since, to avoid detection, the cadres often had to travel in small groups and sometimes individually— "wandering through the bush like lost sheep": There are days when we go hungry, Days when we shed tears, helpless, Mourning our relatives, Who are dying by the day back home (verse 2). The thought of the suffering and death of unsuspecting civilians at home also brought with it the chilling actuality of the treachery of renegades in the struggle, those who were daily giving away vital information about guerilla movements and the support they were receiving from the masses. Treachery had, in the mind of the artist, stupified the intellect of the quislings much in the same way as drugs and alcohol: / can assure you, you'll stop drinking beer yes, I mean beer leave it alone before it's too late,

(verse 4)

was never amenable to rational explanathe final analysis the supernatural had to provide the elusive answers, hence verse 5: Whose ancestral spirits are responThe contemporary

tion for the

home

situation

artists. In

121

When are we going to have peace and quiet? Surely it's not our guardian spirits subjecting us to all this suffering? When will peace and prosperity come to Zimbabwe?

sible for our plight?

NDOPATIGERE PANO By Jordan Chataika Chorus:

Ndopatigere pano, Ndopatigere pano, Lead Singer: Uyai muone pamakatiisa baba; C:

ndopatigere pano Pasi pemiti baba;

LS:

Netuhupfu twedu saga baba

Isu

turi

Ndopatigere pano.

LS:

Tumapoto twedu

turi

C:

Ndopatigere pano;

LS:

Madzimai edu achidzungudzika

C.

Isu

LS:

Tinevana vedu vachitambu-

C:

Ndopatigere pano. Uyai muone zvamakatiita baba Ndopatigere pano.

baba. ndopatigere pano

dzika

LS:

now

is

live,

our home,

come and see where you have dumped we now

live

us.

here

Under the trees We and our mealie meal packed This

pamiti iyo

baba

LS:

where we

Please Lord, Yes,

muma-

is

Chokwadi makatotikanganwa baba ndopatigere pano.

is

now home.

Our pots

are under those trees over

there. Yes, we now Our mothers

This believe

live here;

are in utter distress it

or not

is

our new

home. We have children here destitute We have to call this home. Lord come and see what you have chosen for us Whether we like it or not this is our home We have no doubt that you have

C:

Isu

LS:

Zuva rikauya rinongotipisa

This

C:

The scorching sun comes and

C:

Ndopatigere pano. Mvura ikauya inongotinaya. Ndopatigere pano

LS:

Mhepo

Come the torrential rains. And they find us exposed.

LS:

C: LS:

C: LS:

ikauya inongotivhuvhuta Ndopatigere pano. Chando chikauya chinongotitonhora baba Ndopatigere pano. Takanga takavakawo misha yedu baba.

forgotten is

us.

home sweet home

for us. fries

us.

That's

home

for us.

Who would

have thought we

would

home?

call this

The wind tosses us about

like

dry

leaves

And we must convince that this

122

in

ragged sacks

C:

C:

This

Yes,this

is

home.

ourselves

The chilling cold leaves us completely numb. Yes, our home sweet home Yet, Lord we were living in homes Built by our own hands. C: LS:

C: LS:

Ndopatigere pano Takanga takarima minda yedu baba Ndopatigere pano; Takanga takarima chibage

chedu baba C:

Ndopatigere pano. Takanga tichifudzawo

But we

now have

to

make do

with

this

We

had ploughed our

fields

dear

father

But

now we

We

had planted our maize crop

find ourselves here as

usual

mombe

dzedu baba

How far from home we are now! We used to graze our cattle on open

Alhlsu ndopatigere pano.

But oh

plains

how

fickle fate

is!

The migration of an intrinsically rural population into an urban environment usually has certain easily definable problems of orientation as concommitants. Basically, such problems have to do with a communal group suddenly having to come to grips with the cash-nexus ethos of the urban situation. The saving grace in these circumstances is that such migration is voluntary. Jordan Chataika's song is about forced migration: it is the story of a people violently uprooted from their natural element to find themselves in an entirely novel and decidedly hostile milieu. The pathos of their lot is underscored not merely by the strangeness of the new environment, it is further exacerbated by the destitution that the song so poignantly details:

We and our mealie meal packed in ragged sacks, Our (cooking) pots under those trees there, We have to call this home. This song became a group anthem for the rural refugees because it chronicled the salient features of their suffering, physical and psychological, so faithfully that it created in their minds and hearts a nostalgia for those pastoral values and pursuits which they may have taken for granted, through familiarity, but which had now been so rudely dislocated: Yet Lord, we were living in houses built by our own hands, we had ploughed our fields dear Lord, We had planted our maize crops as usual.

Then suddenly came the deluge, the storm which now had exposed them to the impersonal elements: Lead Singer: The scorching sun comes and fries us Chorus:

That's

Lead Singer:

Come

home

for us.

the torrential rains and they find us exposed. The wind tosses us about like dry leaves; 123

The chilling cold leaves us completely numb. For the traditional Zimbabwean mother and her children, the father is the tower of strength, able to fend for the family and to keep the enemy, of whatever nature, at bay. Having to abandon his home because he could not handle the situation created by the bitter fighting, and then having to make do with the tin shacks and meagre rations from the philanthropic organisations, were humiliating experiences for the menfolk These sour experiences fostered such "Red-hot" racial bitterness in the country that, it not for the statesmanship of Zimbabwe's new leaders who convinced the masses of the desirability of reconciliation, the landslide victory of ZANU PF would have ushered in a new, possibly more bitter phase of na-

were

tional self destruction.

The dispossessed refugees have returned to the homes they once were forced to abandon and are, characteristically, devoutly engaged in the process of reconstruction, and, for the first time in their lives, proud to be masters of their own destiny under a popular government.

HAMA DZAPERA By the Green Arrows 1.

Hama dzedu

dzapera

Nechigiriri chiri

mugomo;

Chorus:

mugomo;

Chorus:

Makanga mashayei

tateguru,

Kushamwaridzana nemhandu? Chorus:

Imhosva yamadzitategura edu akatiparira. 3.

Ko hinga kurima mairima

nemombe Vana vapera; Chorus:

Imhosva yamadzitateguru edu akatiparira, Ko hinga kurima mairima

nemombe 124

it;

Uur people have been wiped out by the vermin in the hills, our ancestors' fault They opened the door foj

It's

Imhosva yamadzitategura edu akatiparira. 2.

our ancestors' fault They opened the door for

It's

Imhosva yamadzitateguru edu akatiparira. Hama dzedu dzapera Nechirigiriri chiri

Our people have been wiped out by the vermin in the hills,

it;

Did you have

to befriend the ancestors? It's our ancestors' fault They opened the door for it;

enemy

You were good farmers, so you didn't have to beg,

Now

your children are being wiped

out,

our ancestors' fault; They opened the door for it, You had your cattle for ploughing We, your children, will be finished

It's

Vana vapera. Chorus:

our ancestors' fault: They opened the door for

It's

Imhosva yamadzitateguru

it;

-edu akatiparira. 4.

Our

Chorus:

It's

Imhosva yamadzitateguru edu akatiparira; 5.

Ko hinga kupfeka maipfeka Chorus:

Hama dzedu dzapera

nechigiriri

mugomo,

our ancestors' fault: They opened the door for

it;

Our people have been wiped out in

the

hills,

our ancestors fault: They opened the door for

It's

Imhosva yamadzatateguru edu akatiparira;

Makanga mashayei

it.

Kushamwaridzana nemhandu?

Did you have to befriend the enemy, ancestors?

Chorus:

It's

tateguru

Imhosva yamadzitateguru edu akatiparira. 3.

You could make your own clothes life expectancy is zero.

by the vemin

Chorus:

2.

it.

It's

Imhosva yamadzitateguru edu akatiparira;

Chiri

our ancestors' fault: They opened the door for

Our

wani vana vapera?

1.

You could make your own clothes. life expectancy is zero;

Ko hinga kupfeka maipfeka Wani vana vapera?

Ko hinga kurima mairima

our ancestors fault They opened the door

for

it,

Chorus:

You were good farmers, so you didn't have to beg, Now your children are being wiped

Imhosva yamadzitateguru edu akatiparira.

It's

nemombe vana

vapera;

Ko hinga kupfeka maipfeka, wani vana vapera; Chorus:

Imhosva yamadzitateguru edu akatiparira.

out.

our ancestors fault: They opened the door for

it.

You could make your own clothes life expectancy is zero.

Our

our ancestors' fault: They opened the door for

It's

it.

Hama Dzapera Our

People are Finished is the Green Arrows rhetorical committing the original sin in the context of the struggle for Zimbabwe. Their original sin was to sign treaties ceding portions of arable land and mining rights to the colonialist adventurers: Our people are being massacred by the foe in the bush. Chorus: it is our criticism of our ancestors for

125

ancestors fault because they have opened the door for the enemy. To the extent that It expresses regret that the people of Zimbabwe, in good faith, agreed to the settler setting up camp in Zimbabwe (according to the settler's own history books) this song is similar to ZANLA choir's "Maruza Vapambivepfumi" above. In both songs the character of the contemporary oppressor is being assessed and condemned using the benefit of hindsight. It did not seem to be such a bad idea at the time: confronted with a stranger looking for somewhere to build a shelter and generally appearing to be reasonable but destitute, our ancestors naturally gave their permission to him. Our people were not desperate, the song says: You were

good

farmers,

clothes.

I

You had your own

cattle, (verse

You could make your own

3).

verse 4)

line to all this is that the listener knows fully well that the object of criticism is not the ancestors, but those who took advantage of our people's good faith and, to all intents and purposes tore up the agreements detailing the conditions under which the settlers could remain in the country. In traditional Zimbabwean society a mother will use the same method of critising the behaviour of a neighbour's bullying child in the following circumstances. The latter being a bully, ill-treats his unsuspecting playmate. When his victim appeals to his mother to rescue him, she will often retort, "Why did you go there in the first place?" "Can't you find better friends to play with?" This retort will be made ideally when the bully's parents are within hearing distance. It is thusnot a criticism of the bully's behaviour alone but of his parents' upbringing of him as well. The oppressor is, for the first time in the music of the home artists, being referred to as "Mhandu" Hostile person, or "enemy". He represents everything that is anathema to the singer and his sympathetic audience.

The bottom

VAPARIDZI VAVVANDA By The Green Arrows Vaparidzi vawanda Haticházivi wekutevera; Honai baba tadzungaira Vaparidzi vawanda Hatichazivi wekutevera, Honai baba tadzungaira.

There are too

many

preachers

in

Zimbabwe, no longer know which one

We

Lord,

we

are thoroughly confused

There are too

many

preachers

in

Zimbabwe. We no longer know which one listen to,

We 126

to

listen to,

are thoroughly confused.

to

Tinomuvhunzo mukuru kwazvo

We

Ndiani achaparidza, Uko kuchechi yeZiyoni?

Which one of them

kuhope kuhope kuti tizivewo; Baba tirotsei kuhope Tirotsei kuhope kuti tizivewo Baba isu hatitaure

Lord,

Baba

3.

tirotsei

Tirotsei

Hatitaure, fungira

mumwoyo

Rwendo rembwa.

have a big question is going to preach in the church of Zion?

tell us the answer in our dreams, Yes, in the secrecy of our beds So that we know our future. Lord, tell us the answer in our dreams, Yes, in the secrecy of our beds So that we know the answer. We can assure you Lord, We will keep your secret We will keep this in our hearts Like the persevering, speechless

dog.

The Green Arrows' song Vaparidzi Vawanda The are

Now

Too Many

Preachers, expresses the frustration of the masses of Zimbabwe at the proliferation of nationalist parties all claiming to be their authentic representatives.

The song draws

a parallel

between the black people's experiences

the Christian religion and their political history. Christian missionaries belonging to competing denominations, all claiming to serve one God, caused a lot of confusion among the people just as much as the politicians of various ideological persuations claiming to be in

fighting for the liberation of

Zimbabwe.

Here the Green Arrows pray to God to

tell them, in secret, which one of going to eventually bring freedom for the long suffering Zimbabweans; Who is going to preach in the church of Zion? The people are as patient as a dog: you can take the dog on a long journey and it will sweat and puff without ever asking you where or how far you are going. Even if the dog eventually gets to know where you are going, it will not divulge the secret to strangers. Such is the loyalty and perseverance which the song claims for Zimbabweans. As we shall see later, the Green Arrows celebrated the coming of independence by using the same tune in the song congratulating the Prime Minister Mr Mugabe and Zimbabweans generally on the victory of ZANU

the politicians

is

PF:

VaMugabe vatonga Tavakuziva wokutevera Honai baba tasunungurwa

Mugabe is now in control Now we know who to follow Yes Lord, we have been liberated.

There is then no more talk of preaching in the church of Zion, but of "Ruling in Zimbabwe" after liberation. The substitution of the one phrase for the other marks the demarcation line between operating under op-> 127

pressive conditions on the one hand, and expressing genuine patriotic sentiments under conditions of freedom, on the other.

ZIMBABWE ITHEMBA LETHU Zimbawbe Ithemba Zimbabwe is our brothers' hope labafowethu A country which is more Ingabutho yezizwe, Zimbabwe ithemba lendlu emva victorious, Ngizocatsha emthunzini wayo. than any other country. Zimbabwe house Behind us

is

the

hope of the

will hide in

I

its

shade.

Chorus:

Zimbabwe ithemba Ithemba

Zimbabwe

lethu,

our hope,

Zimbabwe

is

our hope,

is

our hope,

Our hope,

lethu,

Zimbawbe^themba

lethu,

Zimbabwe

Ngizocatsha emthunzini wayo.

Zimbabwe ithemba bethu, Yiyona indhla

is

Our hope,

Zimbabwe ithemba Ithemba

lethu,

lethu,

la

I

will

bantwana Zimbabwe It's

lifa,

Zimbabwe ithemba

la

hide

shade.

in its

is

our children's hope.

the inheritor,

Zimbabwe

is

hide

in

'its

Zimbabwe

is

our children's hope,

bazali

I

will

our parents' hope, shade.

bethu,

Ngizocatsha emthunzini wayo.

Zimbabwe ithemba labantwana bethu,

Yiyona indla lifa, Zimbabwe ithemba labazali

It's

the inheritor,

Zimbabwe I

is

will hide in

our parents hope its

shade.

bethu,

Ngizocatsha emthunzini wayo.

Zimbabwe iyabonga abantwana

Zimbabwe

bethu Yagqitshela igazi Zimbabwe ithemba leAfrica

Blood

is

thanks our children, buried under it (its soil)

Zimbabwe I

is

will hide in

the its

hope of

all

Africa

shade.

yonke Ngizocatsha emthunzini wayo

Zimbabwe ithemba Lethu Zimbabwe is our Hope, is the one who is experiencing some problems would sing to

that

sort of

song

give oneself

courage to cope. Present circumstances give no promise of happiness, so

one

sings such a song with nostalgia for the better

In this song, that brighter

future

is

and more

just future.

associated inextricably with a Zim-

babwe yet to be born. Zimbabwe ithemba

Zimbabwe is our hope, lethu, / shall rest in her shade. Ngizocatsha emthunzini wayo. By using the Ndebele word Catsha, To Hide, the singers see the new Zimbabwe as a refuge where they can forget their past problems and rest for a change: they and their children and parents. When liberation comes, Zimbabweans will be the world's most admired victors will

— victors

And the nation as who brought freedom

of their erstwhile oppressors.

be grateful to the children (the cadres)

a

whole

at great

cost to themselves.

Zimbabwe iyabonga abantwana

Zimbabwe

bethu, Yagqitshela igazi.

Blood

is

thanks our children, buried under it.

129

CHAPTER EIGHT

SONGS OF DEFIANCE AND DERISION

Even allowing tor the ambiguity and the idiomatic Shona and Ndebele s the songs of the home artists generally, in the songs of defiance and derision, the children of tribulation managed to .get, away wit^murder These songs, in essence, strike at the very heart or the "Rhodesian way of life" leaving the listener with an average command of the languages in no doubt as to which camp these artists belonged The fact that they were allowed to continue to sing in this vein demonstrates more the oppressor's ignorance and dismissive disregard of an important manifestation of Zimbabwe's culture ("all they really have is rhythm .), than any imputation of liberality from that quarter. that chafatílj'r

130

,.

MUCHANDIURAYA By Thomas Mapfumo

1.

Vamudhara mapfeka manyatera Old man, you have put on your Ho mahunzwepi semune mari? Sunday best, Hona baba here woye, But wonder where you are going I

to find beer;

Hona baba vachadura.

Besides you have not a cent on you, But never mind, they will pay for this.

2.

Hona ka

ndati,

kazuwa

Well greetings

my

friend,

shamwari Baba here woye ha

Hona ka

ndati

kazuwa

muroyi, Baba here woye ha Hona ka ndati kazuwa

Greetings witch,

Greetings trickster,

ngarara,

Baba here woye ha Zvino ka nhasi timire papiko?

Baba here woye 3.

Now

where do we stand today?

ha.

Zvakadaka nhai vakuru veduwo, Our leaders have made a strange Hahe woye ha choice, They have given the baby two Vopa mwana mitupo miviri, totems. Baba here woye woye. Hurunduwe, hurunduwe Baba ndofira chokwadi baba here,

Hona baba ndofa

ndichitaura

Chokwadi here? Hurunduwe, hurunduwe Hona midzimu yakaipa, Baba here? Hurunduwe, hurunduwe Hona midzimu inoroya.

Government, government I'm going to die for the truth, Government, government I'm going to die telling the truth Government, government

Our

ancestral spirits are bad,

Government, government The ancestral spirits have turned their backs on us, Government, government The ancestral spirits behave like witches.

5.

Hona vachadura, Hona muchandivenga;

They

lye yiye yihe

You

Hona muchazvitaura,

(quislings) will face the

music, will hate

me

(for

exposing

you). 131

6.

Hona muchandiponda

You

lye yiye yihe.

Even

will confess if

you

Hona muchandiwuraya, Hona muchandivenga.

You You

will kill

lye yiye yihe

One

day,

Hona ndichazvitaura, Hona muchandizvonda.

I

kill

me,

will hate

don't

I

me

will

mind

your sins me.

(but

who

cares)

expose you,

the hatred.

Thomas Mapfumo's song Muchandiuraya, You

will kill me, You will me, represents the ultimate in defiance. It opens with what would seem to be an innocuous repetition of a traditional beer song Verse 1 portrays the picture of frustration personified by the old man who. dying to enjoy himself in the company of his drinking mates, puts on his best clothes, but finds his pockets empty. The traditional song is a cruel mockery of the ordinary man who can afford only one luxury at a time; clothes, but not beer or some other necessities, or vice versa. But in the context of the peoples' new political awareness, the destitute old man is no longer a figure of ridicule. Rather the social, political and economic dispensation which denies him the basics of a decent life are the objects against which the people's wrath is directed. Those opening lines have the effect of alluring the oppressor's mind into relegating the rest of the song to the dust heap of African "Uncivilised" artefacts. Verse 2, however, introduces the tone of hostility which the singer has against the system and those individuals who represent it, particularly the renegades: "We// greetings my friend'', immediately deteriorates to "Hello witch", "Hello trickster", "Where do we stand today?" The comrade-in-arms of yesterday has suddenly changed sides — Muzorewa, Sithole and Chirau and all their followers. They, like all the blacks of Zimbabwe, were once groaning under the merciless settlers regime. Rather than continue the struggle to the end, they had joined forces with the enemy, the "Trickster" whose malice they were unable to

have to

kill

They are the leaders who "Made a strange choice". "They have given the baby two totems".

identify.

the patrilineal Zimbabwean family, the children belong to the father, whom they inherit the name, and the totem that binds them as one family. It is a dangerous taboo for anyone of the children in the family even to be suspected of having more than one totem because that would mean that the mother had been unfaithful. The stigma of illigitimacy can weigh so heavily on one as to thwart one's development into a fully assimilated member of the peer group and the community generally In

from

The strange choice which the internal political parties had made was to accommodation with the Rhodesian Front and to name the country Zimbabwe-Rhodesia. There was no way in which Zimbabwe, as envisaged by the people could co-exist with Rhodesia and everything that Rhodesians stood for. Zimbabwe-Rhodesia was a 'bastard'. Verse 4 rubs it in by the continued sarcastic repetition of the words Government arrive at an

132

Government! In other words, how can anyone in their proper mind accept such an obscenity? Those were provocative sentiments on the part of Thomas Mapfumo. And he knew what the rulers were capable of in terms of retaliation. And so he makes it quite clear, returning to the title of the song: I'm going to die for the truth, I'm prepared to die telling it like it is;" and verse 5; You will hate me (for exposing you), But you will confess your sins, Even if you kill me. He was not afraid to die because he saw himself as only one individual whose place could easily be filled were he assassinated for championing the cause. And yet, amidst all that heroic self-sacrifice, he could not help but wonder as to what role the guardian spirits of Zimbabwe were playing.

They too seemed to have abandoned

Our

their flock:

ancestral spirits are bad,

The guardian spirits have turned their backs on us; They are like the contemporary witch. Those words from verse 4 do not amount to sacrilege, however. Whenever it seems as though one's guardian spirits have lost interest inone's welfare, one does not kneel under a tree to pray so much as to demand one's rights. Misfortunes such as those which this song laments prompt the Shona "Kunopopotera Vadzimu", literally "To go and shout at the guardian spirits". The final verse has a linguistic structure that leaves one in no doubt as to the mental and physical commitment of the artists and the audience to the cause:

Hona muchandiwuraya, Hona muchandivenga, Hona ndichazvitaura, Hona muchandizvonda,

/ /

/

/

know know know know

you'll kill me, you'll hate me,

you'// silence me, you'll hate me.

The word 'Hona' at the beginning of each line literally means See. We have rendered it as "I know" because the artist, as the central figure in the drama of defiance is potentially pulling the roof down on his own head, in the midst of a raging storm.

He

own

personal sacrifice and the consequences of his defiant stand, And in using an identical sentential structure for expressing both the anticipated punishment and his provocation of the enemy, he is saying that he is committed to taking both in one stride.

that

is

articulating both his

would be the

logical

consummation

133

TUMIRA VANA KUHONDO By Thomas

Tongotumira vana kuhondo, Hoho haha ha ha Hona muchadura. Hona muchadura. Tongotumira vana kuhondo, Ho ho haha ha ha Hona muchadura, Tichangotumira vana kuhondo. Hona vana kuhondo, Vana kuhondo vanamai vana kuhondo; Hona vana kuhondo Vana kuhondo vanababa vana

kuhondo Vana kuhondo iyeye Hona vana kuhondo. Tongotumira vana kuhondo vana kuhondo.

Hona tichapera, Hona vana kuhondo, Tongotumira vana kuhondo vana kuhondo Vana kuhondo iye iye vana kuhondo;

Mapfumo

We

will

continue to send our

children to

you

Yes,

We

will

fight,

will regret

one day

continue to send our

children to fight. they come back, there'll be gnashing of teeth,

When

We

shall continue to defy you by sending them. We'll send boys to the war

Fathers too;

The armed struggle, They will go, Even if it means every man and

woman, every boy and Try to finish us

if

girl

you dare,

We will defy you. Sending our children into battle The battle for the motherland You will confess your sins one day. There will be a showdown this year,

The final battle They will flock

to the war.

Hona vana kuhondo Hona muchadura, Tongotumira vana kuhondo gore rino iye

Hona gore

rino,

iye,

gore rino

iye,

Tongotumira vana kuhondo vana kuhondo.

Kuhondo muchapera, Vana kuhondo Vana kuhondo vakomana imi; Tichangotumira vana kuhondo imi;

Tichangotumira vana kuhondo imi;

Vana kuhondo vasikana, Kuhondo iyeiye, Hona vana kuhondo Vana kuhondo vakomana. 134

if we have to, war for Zimbabwe; all send our children into

We'll finish you In the

Let's

battle,

Even our daughters must go Yes, to the war

Our own Let

them

children go.

2.

Tichangotumira vana kuhondo Ho ho ha ha ha ha

Let us pull together,

Hona muchadura

Yes,

Tongotumira vana kuhondo; Ho ho ha ha ha ha

The enemy will be defeated. you will regret one day We will continue to send our children to fight;

When

Hona muchadura Tongotumira vana kuhondo.

they

come back

be gnashing of

We

will

continue to send our

children to

Tongotumira vana kuhondo; Ho ho ha ha ha ha Hona muchadura; Tongotumira vana kuhondo.

Vana kuhondo iye iye lye ye vana kuhondo Tongotumira vana kuhondo vana hondo,

Vana kuhondo vana Hona gore rino

fight.

send our children into battle, The enemy will accept defeat,

Let's

Let's

do

it

everyone:

Yes, to fight for

Zimbabwe

We

must do it. Mothers, have no

We

fear

are heading for a

showdown

this year;

mai;

Tichangotumira vana kuhondo,

Hona gore Hona gore Hona gore

there will

teeth;

rino iye iye

The strugle continues, But this year, this year The children must go; They will finish you.

is

critical;

rino

rino vakomana; Tongotumira vana kuhondo,

Vana kuhondo muchapera Vana kuhondo vakomana. Vana kuhondo vakomana, Tongotumira vana kuhondo.

Vana Vana Vana Hona

kuhondo vasikana, kuhondo vasikana, kuhondo iyeye muchadura

Go

every son and daughter of

Zimbabwe, Fight for your country.

Tongotumira vana kuhondo, Hona vana kuhondo vakomana Vana kuhondo hona vana kuhondo; Tongotumira vana kuhondo, Vana kuhondo iye ye ye Hondo kuhondo vakomana,

Hona muchadura Ho ho ho vana kuhondo Vana kuhondo hona muchadura, Tichangotumira vana kuhondo; Ho ho ha ha ha ha

Hona muchadura 135

Tichangotumira vana kuhondo.

Kuhondo iye ye kuhondo, Hona muchadura. dance song, Thomas Mapfumo had drawn the battle lines and, as in the preceding one, this has been done with the come-what-may attitude. Tumira Vana Kuhondo, Send your Children into Battle, is a song intended to encourage the people of Zimbabwe to send reinforcements to the pressed cadres fighting the bitter liberation war. The opening word of the first verse, "Tongo", expresses stubborness; it means "Whether you approve or not, we will continue to send our children to fight you". Throughout the song, the second line Hona mucnadura, You will accept defeat, is repeated nine times. Only once in the fourteenth line, does the singer contemplate the possibility that the people could lose the war: Hona tichapera We will be wiped out. But given his exuberant confidence as indicated by the second line of verse one, the line in question could be In this

read not as demonstrating lack of confidence so much as determination that victory will be sought—-at the expense of committing every Zimbabwean in the battlefield if necessary. The lines Hona tichapera We will be

wiped

out.

Kuhondo muchapera You

will

be wiped

out, (verse 23)

form a

psychological parallelism that your resolution to wipe us out is matched by our own to do the same to you. But the artist in this song is not prepared to concede that there is a fifty fifty chance on both sides. And so he upsets the parallelism by repeating the line expressing his confidence that the people have a better chance of emerging as the victors than the opposition, many more times than the parallelism. That line, in fact, is the last word of the song. By its sheer explicitness and defiance, this song belongs with those of

ZANLA

choir.

MHANDU MUSANGO By Thomas 1.

2.

Mapfumo and

Hoiyere mambo iwe, Hoiyerere A honde. Zita rangu ndini

the Acid Band

Oh! my

Lord,

Muchadura,

My name

is

Muchadura.*

Muchadura,

My name

is

Muchadura.

Hoiyere mambo lya honde. Zita rangu ndini

Hoiyerere A honde.

mambo

136

j^Tisjiaine^iandsfQi^J^mHthe

Zita rangu ndini Tafirenyika,

Hoiyere lya

My name

is

Tafirenyika

My name

is

Tafirenyika.

My name

is

Tafirenyika.

mambo

honde

Zita rangu ndini Tafirenyika,

Hoiyere mambo lya honde. Zita rangu ndini Tafirenyika,

Hoiyere mambo lya honde.

Kutaura handitye mambo, Hoiyere mambo A honde.

I

speak

my mind

Hona makuva musango mambo, Look and Hoiyerere iwe A honde.

lya

mambo

graves

see

how many

graves

fhere are in the bush.

honde

Hona makuva musango mambo

Look and see

Hoiyerere

how many

graves

fhere are in the bush.

iwe,

lya

how many

fear.

there are in the bush.

Hona makuva musango mambo, Look and Hoiyerere

see

without

mambo

honde

Regai vanouraya vauraye

Let the blood-thirsty oppressor

mambo,

kill

(me).

Hoiyerere iwe

A honde Regai vanouraya vauraye changamire, Hoiyere iwe A honde. 7.

Hona

tinofira

tinofira

chokwadi

do

his worst.

We

we

mambo We

we

chokwadi mambo,

Hoiyerere iwe A honde.

Hona

Let the murderer

iwe,

are being killed because dare speak the truth.

are being killed because dare speak the truth.

Hoiyere iwe

A honde. 137

This

name means "Wp

hP.no *r» h are

kmedbe, ause we want our country

8.

Nhaka gava rinogwada

ura iwe,

Hoiyerere iwe

This year the jackal will

he

constipated leating

human

The

field day.

flesh).

A honde

Hona nhunzi

inotsva rukore

fly will

have a

changamire, Hoiyerere iwe

A honde Nhaka honye

inotsva mupingi

iwe,

mambo.

Uraya mhandu musango

Honde

hondende Uraya mhandu musango Hondende iya hondende. 10

11

Uraya mhandu musango iya

Let's kill the

enemy

in

the bush;

Let's kill the

enemy

in

the bush.

Why in

should our heroes be buried the bush?

So many graves, anonymous, in the bush; There are so many graves bush.

in

the

Let's kill the

enemy

in

the bush;

Let's kill the

enemy

in

the bush.

honde;

Uraya mhandu musango Honde iya hondende. 12

iwe;

iya

Hona makuva musango Honde iya honde Hona makuva musango Honde iya honde; Hona makuva musango Honde iya honde.

Honde

will feast like a king

this year.

Hoiyere 9.

The maggot

Wona makuva musango mambo Why should our Hoiere mambo in the bush?

heroes be buried

A honde.

Wona makuva musango changamire; Hoiere mambo A honde. 13

Regai vanouraya vauraye

mambo; Hoierere

mambo

There are so bush.

many

graves

in

the

We

are prepared to die, to die in the process of correcting this

situation.

A honde. Regai vanouraya vauraye Hoierere mambo A honde. 138

We

are prepared to die, to die in the process of correcting this

situation.

14

Hona

tinofira

Hoiere

chokwadi mambo, We're being

mambo

by those face the truth

killed

who cannot

A honde. Inga tinofira chokwadi

Oiyerere

mambo;

mambo

We're dying because we dare

tell

the truth.

A hondende. i

15

Nhaka nhunzi

inotsva rukore;

The

fly will

have food galore.

Hoiere iwe lya honde.

Hona honye

inotsva mupingi

The maggot

will

To stop

carnage,

be

satiated.

iwe,

Hoierere

mambo

A honde. 16

Uraya mhandu musango

Honde 17

iya

iwe,

and

honde.

Hona makuva musango; Honde iya honde.

Hona makuva musango Honde iya hondende.

this

kill

How

let's

go out

the enemy.

can our people bush?

rot in the

So many anonymous graves

in

the

bush.

Mhandu musango, The enemy in the bush, is a song composed and performed in the same vein as Tumira vana kuhondo above. The enemy were the Rhodesian security forces and the bush was the battlefield on which they engaged the peoples' liberation army. Verse 1 is devoted to the so-called non-verbal vocalisations which, in Shona song, either as here, introduce the song, or are interpolated at critical points in the middle of the text. Their function is to create or maintain a particular mood and psychological disposition which is essential for the appreciation of the message of the song. In the second and third verses the artist introduces himself:

My name My name

is

Muchadura

(verse 2)

Tafirenyika (verse 3) Both pregnant names which, for the sympathetic audience, mean confrontation, and for the oppressor himself, masochism on the part of those who dare to call themselves by such names. It is this and other songs of the same calibre that led Thomas Mapfumo to prison at various times during the war. Verse 4 "I speak my mind without fear", immediately precedes the verse that catalogues the reasons which have prompted the artist to volunteer his head for the block. When people die in traditional Zimbabwean society, they are buried with respect and never forgotten. After a is

139

is performed to welcome their spirits back among the They become the guardian spirits watching over the fortunes of the living. Their graves are part and parcel of the 'home'. But during the war, people were killed and left to rot in the bush This is repulsive to African sensibilities. It is precisely this sacrilege which has prompted the artist to assume rhetorical names that encapsulate both the revulsion of the people and their determination to correct the situation: Muchadura: You, the oppressor, will confess your sins. Taf irenyika: Those left to rot in the bush have paid the supreme price for

year a ceremony family.

their country. Their death is not in vain or an act of purposeless masochism Given the callousness of the enemy and his insensitivity to and lack of respect for the people's values, the artist sees no choice but to accept death but in the cause of liberation (verse 6). Those dying in their thousands are being killed because (verse 7) they have dared to expose the evils of the colonial system. Their corpses have become food for all carnivorous animals (verse 8), maggots and flies. That catalogue of the macabre scenes in the countryside, rather than dampen the spirits of the people, galvanised them into



avenge the murder of their kith and kin, from the status of wretched death to that of heroic and selfless sacrifice for a noble cause: "Let's all go out and kill the enemy in the bush" a single-minded determination, to

raising

it

(verse 9)

MUSANGO MUNE HANGAIWA By The Green Arrows

Mwari baba tine zvichemo, Tiyamurei baba Chichemo chedu mvura Tiyamurei baba

Mwari isanaye musango, Tiyamurei baba

Musango umo mune hangaiwa, Tiyamurei baba Hangaiwa dzakatetereka, Tiyamurei baba Hangaiwa idzo ndedzemudzimu, Ichokwadi baba Mukadziona musadzibate; Tiyamurei baba Tangai maenda kuna NeHanda

140

help

We

a request,

us,

need

rain please,

But it must not fall in the forests. There are some pigeons there, Birds that have run wild, They are dedicated to our

ngainaye,

Mhondoro hum yenyika

Dear Lord, we have

ino,

ancestral

spirits;

Don't trap them

if you see them, You get NeHanda's permission

first,

The chief guardian

spirit

of

Zimbabwe.

You get NeHanda's permission

Ichokwadi baba Tangai maenda kuna NeHanda, Ichokwadi baba Mhondoro huru yenyika ino; Ichokwadi baba Tangai maenda kuna NeHanda, Ichokwadi baba Mhondoro huru yenyika ino. Tiyamurei baba.

Mwari

tine chichemo, Tiyamurei baba

Chichemo chedu mvura ngainaye,

Ichokwadi baba Mwari baba isanaye musango, Tiyamurei baba

Musango umo mune hangaiwa, Tiyamurei baba

Hangaiwa idzo ndedzemudzimu, Tiyamurei baba Tangai maenda kuna NeHanda; Tiyamurei baba Mhondoro huru yenyika ino, Ichokwadi baba Tangai maenda kuna NeHanda Tiyamurei baba Mhondoro huru yenyika ino, Ichokwadi baba Tangai maenda kunaNeHanda, Tiyamurei baba Mhondoro huru yenyika ino, Ichokwadi baba. 3.

Mwari baba

tine

chichemo,

Tiyamurei baba,

Chichemo chedu mvura

first,

The chief guardian

spirit

of

Zimbabwe; You get NeHanda's permission first;

The chief guardian

spirit

of

Zimbabwe.

God, we have a request; Let us have rains/

But it should not rain in the bush, There are sacred birds there; These pigeons have run wild; They belong to our ancestral spirits,

you see them, please don't touch them. Get NeHanda's permission first, NeHanda the guardian spirit of the If

nation;

Get NeHanda's permission

NeHanda

first;

the guardian spirit of the

nation.

Dear Lord, we have help

a request,

us.

We

need

it

rain please.

ngainyaye, Ichokwadi baba.

Mwari baba isanaye musango,

Bui

Tiyamurei baba

There are

Musango umo mune hangaiwa,

Birds that have run wild,

Ichokwadi baba

They are dedicated to our

Hangaiwa dzakatetereka, Tiyamurei baba

Don't trap them

must not

fall in

the forest there

some pigeons

ancestral

spirits. if

you see them. 141

Hangaiwa idzo ndedze mudzimu, Ichokwadi baba Mukadziona musadzibate; Ichokwadi baba

Get NeHanda's permission first, The chief guardian spirit of The nation.

Tangai maendakuna

NeHanda Tiyamurei baba Mhondoro huru yenyika Ichokwadi baba.

ino,

Musango Munehangaiwa,

There

are

Pigeons

in

the

forest,

is

a

Green Arrows' song in its extensive use of ambiguity The singers address Cod, the father, because they have a request to make: namely that the country desperately needs rain There is a further plea that when the rain does come, it should not fall in the forest, because there are some pigeons there that belong to the guardian spirits of the characteristic

land.

A number of questions arise in the listener's mind because of this enigmatic prayer. Rain is necessary for farming, and the farms are normally situated in places far removed from residential areas What sort of rain is it? And what is its intended use? What use do the guardian spirits have which we are

told, have gone wild? the areas where the civilian population lives, then it must be cleansing rain. There is a lot of confusion among the people, treachery that springs from a lack of understanding of what the war is all about. The people and not the fighting liberation forces, need rain,

for the pigeons, If

the rain must only

fall in

both to wash away their

sins

and to quench

their thirst for

knowledge and

appreciation of national issues. As far as some of them are concerned, the cadres have become wild pigeons because they have rejected the inequitable dispensation which the older generation have come to accept as a matter of course. Providence is further asked not to allow the pigeons to be captured without NeHanda's permission. They belong to that most revered of Zimbabwe's traditional guardian spirits because in fighting for the liberation of Zimbabwe, they are obeying her command to future generations of Zimbabweans: "Take up the gun and rule yourselves" Each line of the text is followed by either of the two refrains: Please help us Lord, Yes, Lord, that's true.

Those two lines function as a confidential word in the ear of God: in other words, we are publicly speaking in proverbs, referring to rain, wild pigeons etc, but what we really need is your divine assistance in solving the problems that plague our nation And we are most sincere in our prayers to you, our Lord and father This interpretation gives the refrain lines a somewhat central role in the whole fabric of the song text. Their place in the structure of the song as asides is further testimonv of the caution which informs the songs of the 142

Green Arrows group. That caution, designed to fool the ubiquitious "Big Brothers", far from detracting from the quality of the songs of the Green Arrows, had the unique advantage of making the people think deeply about national issues in order to excavate the message of the text. This explains the popularity of the group and will, in our view, assure their songs a permanent place in the history of the music of the revolution.

ZIMBA RAKANAKA By the Green Arrows

Hama dzangu

Our fathers and mothers Zimbabwe, Yes, in Zimbabwe

dziri

muZimbabwe, Dziri Zimbabwe

We

Hotatambura, Hama dzedu dziri

are suffering;

Our kith and kin Zimbabwe.

muZimbabwe.

in

are hostages in

Chorus:

Hunde, hunde, hunde, Baba wedu hona tatambura Hunde, hunde, hunde — hona

Hama dzedu

Yes, yes,

oh

no

let up.

yes,

are in misery.

Our fathers and mothers Zimbabwe. Yes, in Zimbabwe.

dziri

muZimbabwe. Dziri

yes.

father, there's

We

tatambura.

oh

Yes. Yes,

Oh

muZimbabwe

Hunde, hunde, hunde, babawe,

Oh

Hona tatambura. Babawe tapera kufa KuZimbabwe kuna baba.

By the thousands.

Hama dzedu

Our

dziri

muZimbabwe,

Lord,

we

are being killed

Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe.

relatives in

Yes, in

Hunde, hunde, hunde

Oh

Babawe tapera

By the thousands.

kufa;

in

Lord,

we

are being killed

Hunde, hunde, hunde

KuZimbabwe kuna

hama dzedu mumapako;

Ndati

baba. dziri

kugara

Mune

nzara nehondo Ndati hatidi kugara mumapako.

Kugara sehuku Tinoda kugara mumafura mhepo; Ndati hatidi kugara mumapako,

They are

living in caves;

Where they have no food. and face death from the enemy. We do not want to live in caves like animals; want to live in comfort,

We

They are

living in caves;

Where they have no

food, 143

Kugara sehuku Tinoda kugara mumafura

mhepo; Hunde, hunde, hunde KuZimbabwe kuna baba. 4.

Hama dzedu

dziri

muZimbabwe. Dziri

muZimbabwe

and face death from the enemy. do not want to live

We

in

We

Our fathers and mothers Zimbabwe. Yes, in

Babawe ho tatambura

We

Hama dzedu

Our

dziri

muZimbabwe, Dziri

muZimbabwe

Hama dzedu

baba Hama dzedu

are hostages

father there's no let up, oh yes we're in misery; Our fathers and mothers in Yes,

Zimbabwe;

Zimbabwe

We

are suffering; Our kith and kin are hostages in

Zimbabwe;

Oh

no let up, oh yes we're in misery Please come and see for yourself. father there's

Yes,

dziri

muZimbabwe; Babawe tapera kufa. Zimbabwe muna baba. Baba tumira mwana wenyu auye

Azoona pane madzibaba,

Ho tatambura Zimbabwe kuna Ndati tumirai auye;

and kin Zimbabwe.

kith

Yes, in

Hunde muZimbabwe Hunde muZimbabwe. Babawe tapera kufa Hunde muZimbabwe muna

Zimbabwe

Oh!

dziri

kuZimbabwe.

in

are suffering.

in

Babawe huyai muone, KuZimbabwe kuna baba

caves like animals, to live in comfort;

want

baba,

mwana wenyu

Azoona pane madzibaba. Ho ndatambura Baba hat id kugara mumapako, i

Hatidi kugara sehuku, Tinoda kugara kumafura

mhepo; Baba hatidi kugara mumapako;

In

Zimbabwe our

We

are dying

in

Zimbabwe our

fatherland.

droves

in

fatherland.

Lord, please send your son

He must see our parents' plight, We are now miserable creatures In Zimbabwe our fatherland; Lord, please send your son

He must see our parents' plight. We are now miserable creatures In Zimbabwe our fatherland.

We

do not want

to live in caves

like animals,

We We

want

to live in comfort;

do not want

to live in caves

like animals,

We

want

to live in comfort.

Hatidi kugara sekuku

Tinoda kugara kumafura

mhepo 5.

Mudzimuwe-e; Munotiona seiko mambo? Hona mhuri yotambura

Our guardian spirit; Have we become your plav

Vorara mumapako,

The nation

things? is

in tribulation,

They now inhabit the forests Hapachisina pokuenda Imi zvenyu makafa makazorora, Nowhere to go; We envy the dead, you've no Matisiira nhamo pano pasi. worries.

You

left all

those

down

here on

earth.

Hama dzedu

Our fathers and mothers Zimbabwe, Yes, in Zimbabwe

dziri

muZimbabwe, Hunde muZimbabwe Hunde muZimbabwe

We

Baba tapera kufa

MuZimbabwe muna

baba.

Tinoda kugara mumafura

mhepo. Ndati hatidi kugara

are hostages in

Oh

no

let up,

in

misery.

Tinoda kugara mumafura

mhepo;

MuZimbabwe muna

baba.

father there's

oh yes we're

They are living in caves where they have no food; And face death from the enemy We do not want to live in caves

mumapako,

Hatidi kugara sehuku

are suffering

Our kith and kin Zimbabwe; Yes,

Ndati hatidi kugara mumapako; Hatidi kugara sehuku,

in

like animals,

We

want to live in comfort. They are now living in caves where they have no food, And face death from the enemy We do not want to live in caves like animals;

We In

Hama dzedu

dziri

muZimbabwe, Baba wedu hona tatambura;

Hama dzedu

dziri

muZimbabwe; Baba wedu huyai muone. Babawe tapera kufa, Hunde muZimbabwe: Hunde muZimbabwe Babawe tapera kufa.

want

to live in comfort.

Zimbabwe our

fatherland.

Our fathers and mothers Zimbabwe. Yes, in Zimbabwe

We

in

are suffering.

Our kith and kin Zimbabwe;

are hostages in

Oh

no

father there's

oh

let

up

we're in misery. Oh Lord, we're being killed by the thousands: Yes,

Yes, in

yes,

Zimbabwe:

Lord, we're being killed

by the

thousands.

Mudzimuwe-e, Munotiona seiko mambo?

Our guardian spirit, Have we become your play

Hona mhuri inotambura;

The nation

is

things?

in tribulation,

145

Vorara mumapako Hapachisina pokuenda Imi zvenyu makafa makazorora,

We

Matisiira nhamo pano pasi, Vanakomana vanochema

You

Vanasikana vanochema. 10.

Hama dzedu

dziri

muZimbabwe, Babawe hona, tatambura

Hama dzedu

dziri

muZimbabwe, Hunde Zimbabwe, Hunde Zimbabwe, Hunde Zimbabwe.

They

now

inhabit the forests

nowhere

to go,

envy the dead, you've no

worries; left all

those

down

here on

earth.

Our fathers and mothers Zimbabwe, Yes, in Zimbabwe.

We

are suffering.

Our kith and kin Zimbabwe.

Oh

in

are hostages

in

no let up oh yes we're in misery In Zimbabwe, Yes, in Zimbabwe. father, there's

Ve.s,

Zimba Rakanaka, The Beautiful Mansion, the Green Arrows exercised caution only in the choice of the title. Zimba is Shona for a mansion but it is also made up of the first two syllables of the then contentious name of the country, Zimbabwe. Indeed the rest of the song makes no reference to Zimba but to Zimbabwe. The Green Arrows have here In this

song,

adopted a technique which other artists have used successfully: namely that of assuming the persona of the cadres, who, in their daily encounters with the enemy, must be constantly thinking about the plight of the loved ones back home. Their parents must be living with death as they (the cadres) do They must have been forced to abandon their homes and live in caves like animals: Our relatives are living in caves; Where they have no food and face death from the enemy. We do not want to live in caves like animals, We want to live in comfortable homes, In our country of birth. It is this amount of suffering that has forced the Green Arrows into an untypically aggressive mood, demonstrated by the constant use of the ex"/ have said this before, but I'll say it again we do pression; Ndati hatidi not want to" ... The absence of any immediate sign that the request is being heard sympathetically prompts the group to adopt a different approach "Please Lord, send your son down here, Let him come and see for himself the plight of our parents"

The duality of our

religious life further manifests itself in the

Green

Ar-

rows' (verse 5), appealing to another possible source of assurance, even before the Christian God has had time to consider their appeal to him: Our guardian spirits, we appeal to you Ha\e we become your play things? The nation is in utter misery; Your children now inhabit the forests; We envy you the dead, you have no worries You left all those down here on earth. As we have pointed out earlier, this vassilation between two faiths is a hallmark of the thinking of the home artists generally They were content 146

do what was expedient, consonant with the Shona saying: "Hauziv chakakodza nguruve", "You never know what made the pig fat". In other words, that animal is no fool, because it eats everything that comes its way, hence its ample proportions to

NYOKA YENDARA By the Green Arrows Takatoirova musoro nyoka yendara

have hit the cunning snake on the head;

Babawe-e nyoka inonetsa;

That snake

Takatoirova musoro nyoka yendara

We

Babawe-e nyoka inoshura; Takatoipfekedza nyoka yendara Babawe-e nyoka inoshura. 2.

We

Bad Be

Baba muZimbabwe;

Be grateful

Baba muZimbabwe. Tendai vakomana vanoridza hosho vana vamambo; Tendai vakomana vanoridza; hosho vana vamambo; Tendai vakomana vanoridza hosho vana muZimbabwe; Tendai vakomana vanoridza hosho vana vamambo; Tendai vakomana vanoridza hosho vana muzimbairo; Tendai vakomana vanoridza

wily;

luck.

Tendai vakomana vanoridza hosho*

Tendai vakomana vanoridza hosho

is

crushed its head; That snake is a bad omen; We now have it under control But oh that snake brings

grateful to the boys

playing the rattle to the

boys

playing the rattle

Be grateful

to the

Be

in

who

are

who

are

Zimbabwe,

grateful to the boys

playing the rattle

Be

in

are

Zimbabwe,

in

boys

playing the rattle

who

Zimbabwe;

in

who

are

Zimbabwe;

grateful to the boys

who

are

playing the rattle in Zimbabwe; Be grateful to the boys who are playing the rattle in Zimbabwe;

Be grateful

to the

boys

playing the rattle

in

who

are

Zimbabwe.

hosho vana muZimbabwe; Tendai vakomana vanoridza hosho baba muzimba iro; Tendai vakomana vanoridza hosho.

Baba, vanyadzisei Baba, vanyadzisei Vanoda kugara nyika vega

Muzimba ramambo; Tendai vakomana vanoridza hosho baba muZimbabwe;

Lord, put

them

to

shame

put them to shame They are selfish; Be grateful to the boys who Yes,

are playing the rattle in

Zimbabwe; 147

Tendai vakomana vanoridza hosho

Be grateful

to the

boys

playing the rattle

in

who

are

Zimbabwe.

MuZimbabwe ramambo.

*Rattle held

in

hand and played

in

rhythm with drums

Nyoka Yendara, The File Snake, is as much a deliberate ambiguity as the preceding song by the same group the Green Arrows. The file snake is not only notoriously venomous when it bites its victim, but has some awesome taboos associated with it. It does not bite people unless provoked and its colour is usually very similar to that of the vegetation around it, making it difficult to see.

The taboo associated with it is that if it appears in one's courtyard, it forebodes death or some other calamity The head of the family must kill the snake and perform a rite to ward off the impending misfortune The Green Arrows are here singing about the inhuman oppressor:*whose presence in the vicinity of one's home and whose actions almost always left behind a trail of misery and suffering. The song is a celebratory outburst in the middle of war because, as the opening line says: "We. have already crushed the head of the file snake" A further ambiguity in the song is contained in verse 2: "Be grateful to the boys playing the rattle" There are no rattle players among the Green Arrows group, so the line is not a reference to music. Rather, this song recalls ZANLA choir's Zvikomborero above, where the singers boast about performing wonders with their machine guns It is these cadres whom the Green Arrows are urging the audience to be grateful to: "Be grateful to the boys playing the rattle in

Zimbabwe. They are the Verse

3

is

king's children".

providence to frustrate the efforts of the selfish want to live comfortably while everyone else goes

a request to

rulers of Rhodesia, who without the basics of life.

AFRICA By Thomas

148

Mapfumo

am

Baba ndoenda kuAfrica Kune huchi nemukaka; Ambuya ndoenda kuAfrica Kune mari yepepa; Amai ndoenda kuAfrica Kwavanodya varere.

going to Africa and honey; Cranny I'm going to Africa. Where there's easy money; Mother I'm going to Africa Where there's luxury and no work.

Baba ndoenda kuAfrica Kune huchi nemukaka; Ambuya ndoenda kuAfrica

Father I'm going to Africa Where there's milk and honey;

Father,

Where

Granny

I

there's milk

I'm going to Africa

Kune mari yepepa; Amai ndoenda kuAfrica Kwavanodva varere. 3.

4.

Where there's easy money; Mother I'm going to Africa Where luxurious life is not earned.

Baba ndoenda kuAfrica Kune huchi nemukaka, Ambuya ndoenda kuAfrica Kune mari yepepa. Amai ndoenda kuAfrica Kwavanodya varere.

Father I'm going to Africa Where there's milk and honey; Cranny I'm going to Africa

Baba ndoenda kuAfrica Kune huchi nemukaka; Ambuya ndoenda kuAfrica Kune mari yepepa, Amai ndoenda kuAfrica. Kwavanodya varere.

Father I'm going to Africa Where there's milk and honey, Granny I'm going to Africa

Where

there's easy

Mother I'm going

money;

to Africa

The land of the lotus

eaters.

Where there's easy money; Mother I'm going to Africa The land of lotus

eaters.

Kana uchida kuenda Enda, zvako muzukuru Vamwe vakamboenda, Vakauya vaane mari.

you want to go my grandson Some went and came back

Kana uchida kuenda Enda, zvako muzukuru, Vamwe ndokuzoenda Vakasiya mhuri ikoko.

If you want to go, Go, my grandson Others went (but) They left their families there.

7.

Kana uchida kuenda Enda, zvako muzukuru Vamwe vakazoenda Vakauya vaane nungo.

you want to go Go, my grandson Others went (but) They came back lazy.

8.

Kana uchida kuenda Enda, zvako muzukuru Vamwe vakamboenda Vakatiza hondo ikoko.

If you want to go, Go, my grandson Others went (but) They ran away from the war.

9.

Kana uchida kuenda Enda, zvako muzukuru Vamwe vakamboenda Vakauya vaane mari.

Go, my grandson Others went and They came back rich

Kana uchida kuenda Enda, zvako muzukuru Vamwe ndokuzoenda

Go, my grandson Others went (but)

Vasiya mhuri ikoko.

They

5.

6.

10.

If

Go,

rich.

If

If

If

you want to go

you want to go

left their families there.

149

11.

12.

Kana uchida kuenda Enda, zvako muzukuru

Vamwe vakamboenda Vakauya vaane nungo.

If you want to go Co, my grandson Others went (but) They came back lazy.

Kana uchida kuenda Enda, zvako muzukuru Vamwe ndokuzoenda Vakatiza hondo ikoko.

Go, my grandson Others went (but) They ran away from the war.

If

you want

to

go

Thomas Mapfumo's Africa was banned* in Rhodesia on release it could not be played on radio and the singer was not allowed to sing it at his public performances. It is the story of a young adventurer bidding his family farewell, just before going to join the scramble for Africa. The artist is pointing out both the possible advantages of such a venture, which the would-be immigrant would have read about in colonialist propaganda literature, and the pitfalls which lie in the way of all soldiers of fortune.

Mapfumo

is

expressing the contradiction inherent

in

a philosophy of

life

which succumbs to the attractions of material wealth gained through plunder, murder and cheating, while still claiming origin. in a superior civilisation. Luxury that is not earned (such as that enjoyed by the legendary Lotus Eaters) eats away at the soul of man, his moral fibre, his personal pride and self confidence. If, as was/is usual in colonial Africa, it is enjoyed at the expense of the toiling masses, it engenders that sense of insecurity in the protagonist which renders him incapable of rational discussion: seeing an answer to political and social problems only in violent repression and suppression of opposition from the "have-nots". Hence the war which has sent some adventurers packing (in the song) and led to the death of their loved ones: Vamwe ndokuzoenda, vakasiya mhuri ikoko, Others went (but) they left their families there. The song mixes enough disadvantages of the colonial adventurism with the few fortuitous rewards thereof, to make it obvious that the wise should stay away from Africa. The indigenous people always eventually come out on top.

*He contravened this ban by singing it at Zimbabwe grounds, Highfield, on 27th January 1980 at a ZANU PF pre-election rally addressed by the party leader Robert Mugabe on his arrival from Maputo. 150

i

"

Part Ml

Gonclusioni

SONGS OF CELEBRATION The

liberation

war

in

Zimbabwe ended with the

victory of

ZANU

PF at

the polls in April, 1980. From the promulgation of the 'cease-fire' at Lancaster House to that date, a war of nerves, if not altogether war shooting, raged unabated, the former more bitterly than ever before in t history of the war for Zimbabwe. The attitude of the authorities with the backing of the press towards so-called external forces remained unchanged: they were murdero

hoardes incapable of returning to conventional soldier, or civilian leader, "status. They were alledgedly violating the ceasefire and were to be excluded from the electoral process. Stiff conditions were placed on the return of the senior ZANU PF leadership, particularly the jiarty president, Robert

Mugabe. Newspaper reports of the election campaign period were full of accusations of intimidation, terrorism and misrepresentation against the socalled external parties. "To deal with them accordingly" was a phrase which the authorities could use without being accused of intimidation, since the press was solidly behind them. The music of the troubled period reflects these tensions. And the songs that greeted the landslide electoral victory pf ZANU PF in particular, both self congratulatory,, on the part of these party supporters sacrifices had been rewarded, and ecstatic, oozing gratitude t< dian spirits of the nation, who had guided the people and th through the most trying moments in our history and that of our s the world.

jpneon to appi

leaders bàrrac severa

Is

to read the campaign speeches of lount of animosity that gre :ic Front Parties to Zimba :ted, ZANU PF would turn children or into dance h itants in

holy matrimony at

some

internal

CHAPTER NINE

ZUVA RANHASI By

ZANLA

Lead Singer: Zuva ranhasi izuva guru (Speech): Rewana veZimbabwe Ratino rangarira magamba ose

Edu akatisiya muhondo Yedu yeChimurenga Mbuya Nehanda, Comrade Chitepo Comrade Tongogara

nemamwe magamba.

Choir

Today is a red letter day For all the sons and daughters of Zimbabwe.

A day on which we remember All our gallant heroic

Who

comrades

died during the armed

struggle.

NeHanda, Comrades Chitepo and Tongogara, to name but

a

few.

Zuva ranhasi izuva guru Revana veZimbabwe Zuva ranhasi izuva guru Revana veZimbabwe.

For the sons and daughters of

Zimbabwe This

is

a crucial

This

is

a

day

to

moment. remember

Every son and daughter of the fatherland.

Chorus: Rekupira

midzumu

yedu L.S.:

Tinorirangarira, tinorira-

Chaminuka Chorus: Rekupira midzimu yedu

O

offer our

humble thanks

to the guardian spirit of the

ngarira

L.S.:

We

nation.

we remember Chaminuka

Yes,

Let's

iye ihe

Hondo yapera

Chaminuka Chorus: Chisara wo.

wega musango

in

particular

have a

ritual of thanks-

giving to him.

Today, Chaminuka, we celebrate the end of the bitter armed struggle.

We

take our leave of you alone bush.

in the

Oiye woye Nhamo inhamo vakomana; Oiye woye Chisara wega musango wo; Hendeeyi.

Raise your voices everyone and celebrate;

Looking back, we know what

scattered

all

over

Let us join hands

in

the bush.

and move

forward together who love Zimbabwe).

(All 152

it

means to suffer, Come on everyone, jump for joy; But we remember our dead comrades whose bones are

Zuva ranhasi Today, opens with a speech by the choir leader outlining the business of the day, 18 April, 1980. This song was sung just before midnight on that date, at Rufaro Stadium where, before tens of thousands of Zimbabweans and invited international guests, the Union Jack was lowered, to be replaced by the flag of the new nation. The occasion provided an opportunity for the peole of Zimbabwe not only to remember their fallen heroes with sadness and gratitude, but also to think about the future. We had reached a watershed between "bloodletting" past and a future which provided limitless opportunities for laying the foundations of a united, hard working and harmonious society, for both ourselves and for future generations of Zimbabweans. ZANLA choir expressed the nation's gratitude to Chaminuka, mbuya NeHanda, comrades Chitepo and Tongogara, heroes held in the highest esteem by all Zimbabweans: Today, Chaminuka, we celebrate the end of the bitter armed struggle. We take our leave of you, alone in the bush. The pathos of the chorus line derives from the fact that it echoes the sentiments of those who have just buried a loved one, turning their backs on his grave and making for home, wondering what the story of the world is all about. The poignancy of the moment is further underlined by the indomitable human spirit, determined to strive on, against the odds of a troubled past: Nhamo inhamo vakomana. Looking back we know (from experience) what it means to suffer. Hendeeyi! Lef us join hands and move forward together (all who love Zimbabwe). We shall overcome. A somewhat novel and nostalgic aspect of the ZANLA presentation was the accompaniment of the song text by a pulsating rhythm set by notes of "Mbira" music. The young "Mbira" players pierced the fabric of the hitherto western orientated consciousness much in the same way that the flood lights, especially positioned for the momentuous midnight ceremony, pushed back the darkness of the night. Those musicians asserted the legitimacy of the indigenous culture and gave it the pride of place among the traditional, defining artefacts of the nations of the world. The "Mbira" players were each a: String-chewing bass player, Plucking rolled balls of sound, From the jazz-scented night Feeding hungry beat seekers Finger shaped heartbeats, Driving ivory nails Into their greedy eyes,

words of Bob Kaufman's "Mingus"; a poem crowded with loneliness" (1965).

to use the

in his

"Solitudes

153

SASUKA EMAKHAYA By People's Music Choir Sasuka le makhaya lesasuka le makhaya, Saqonda e China e China, Safika eChina satholi zikhali, izikali bo,

We

left our homes, we left our homes, We went towards China, China, We reached China, we got weapons.

Sabuya e Zimbabwe sawatshaya We returned to Zimbabwe we beat mabhunu, the Boers, Kusukela namhlanje sesijabula. From today we are happy. Chorus Awu bayabula abazali! Bayabula bonke abazalathina

Ah, our parents are happy! They are all happy those who

gave

yeyi.

Ah

Abazala

Ah

thina,

Awu

yibolabo ma, Jabula bazali, Abazali thina.

birth to us.

Be happy

Jabula bazali abazala thina, Awu yibolabo nje, Jabula bazali,

it's

parents,

them,

Be happy parents, it's them mm, Be happy parents, You who, gave birth

We left our homes,

to us.

which the and uncertain journey to a strange but friendly country is now being enjoyed with hindsight. Now that victory has become a reality, the carrying of weapons and the bitter fighting with the opposition can be forgotten: only the happiness in the liberated Zimbabwe is what matters now. 1 he singers, in singing about their happy parents, are in a way expressing their gratitude to their mothers and fathers for looking after them until they were old enough to fight for Zimbabwe. Awu bayajabula abazali Oh our parents are happy, Bayajabula bonke abazalathina They are all happy, those who gave birth to us. Because the singers have brought joy to their parents, the song seems to say the parents, on their part are proud of their offspring because of a job Sasuka lemakhaya

is

a celebratory song in

singers recount the hard times of the past. But the long

well done.

154

GUKURAHUNDI By

Elijah

Madzikatire

You know me: you used to read about me You are talking about me 'cause you once saw me. You talk about me behind my

Munondiziva makambondiverenga,

Munonditaura makambondiona chete

Munondinyeye makambondi-

back.

bikira

Vasingandizive regai nditange Nezita rangu. Zita rangu ndini gukurahundi, Zita rangu ndini gukurahundi.

You used

to cook for me. For the benefit of those who don't know me; Let me introduce myself first;

My name Yes,

Mwoyo wangu hauna kumboipa

mudye muchiguta Mwoyo wangu hauna kumboipa Asi kuti

kwete; Asi kuti

is gukurahundi; gukurahundi.

I

am

I

do what

not a hard hearted person, have to do so that you can all live comfortably. No, I'm not a beast I want to see the black man's

mudye muchiguta

I

dignity restored.

vatema.

Mwoyo wangu hauna kumboipa

I

Ndaiti muzvitonge

must assure you,

I

don't have a

heart of stone.

muZimbabwe;

I

fought to ensure that you rule

Mwoyo wangu hauna kumboipa

Zimbabwe again, have a heart of gold mudye muchiguta, Mwoyo wangu hauna kumboipa Determined to secure a place Asi kuti mudye muchiguta you all in the sun. Asi kuti

I

vatema woo.

I

went out with

for

a single-minded

determination;

To restore Zimbabwe to

its

native

sons and daughters.

Gukurahundi yazouya, Hona tomhanya mhanya

nemumaguta

nhasi

Gukurahundi has come now,

We

can walk freely in our gukurahundi is here, can breathe freedom in

cities.

Yes,

Gukurahundi yazouya, Hona ndofema mhepo yakasununguka Gukurahundi yazouya, Hona ndopa masimba ese kuvanhu Gukurahundi yazouya, Ndakamboparadza dzimba

I

Zimbabwe

Oh yes, gukurahundi has come, am how giving power to the I

people Gukurahundi

is here to stay, After turning the old evil system on its head.

155

*The storm. The chaff (hundi).

been separated from the "Gukura" — The sweeper away of "Hundi" — "Chaff" first rains

after the harvest has

zvakasimba Gukurahundi yazouya, Ndakambotadzisa vamwe

kufamba 5.

am back; in my hey day, There was a curfew restricting some people's movements.

/

ini.

Munondiziva makambondiverenga Zita rangu ndini gukurahundi, Gore rakavanetsa ndiro regukurahundi

Yes,

one about

the

whom

you used

is gukurahundi, The one year which the enemy could not handle is "The year of

the storm", I

am

Asi kuti

mudye muchiguta Mwoyo wangu hauna

All

kumboipa, Ndaiti muzvitonge

No,

I

not a cruel

man

want

you to have

is

for

plenty.

All

muZimbabwe

I

I

am no beast wanted was for you

to

be

charge of your own destiny am a man of the people want the people to be happy. in

Mwoyo wangu hauna kumboipa kwete, Asi kuti

am

My name

Mwoyo wangu hauna kumboipa,

I

to read

I

I

mudye muchiguta

vatema. 6.

Gukurahundi yazouya

Hona topa masimba

ese

kuvanhu, Gukurahundi yazouya, Ndakambo paradza dzimba zvakasimba.

Gukurahundi yazouya, Hona tofema mhepo yakasun-

Gukurahundi has come now, We can give power to the masses have come, gukurahundi at your service, had to destroy the Old system to get here. I

I

We We

are the storm,

can now all breathe the of freedom,

Gukurahundi has come

unguka,

Gukurahundi yazouya

We

Hona ndomhanya mhanya nemumaguta;

I

Gukurahundi yazouya Nhasi ndopa masimba ese

the people But to achieve

kuvanhu;

can now walk the unmolested;

I

Gukurahundi yazouya Ndakambotadzisa vamwe kufamba ini. Elijah Madzikatire's

air

am backhome had

streets

to give

power

to

this,

to place this country in a

State of siege.

Gukurahundi, The Storm,

is

a very successful ex-

ploration of the mind of the guerilla who returns home after years of herioc fighting in the bush. He has had no opportunity to explain to his relatives, friends and countrymen, why he took up arms, and what he intends to do, now that he has won the war. He therefore begins by introducing himself, but in a very self-conscious way:

You know me because you used to read about me You are talking about me 'cause you once saw me You talk about me behind my back, because you used to cook for me For the benefit of those who are seeing the first time, had better give you my name:

me

for

I

Gukurahundi at your service, Sirs, Yes, none other! The returning freedom fighter nas obv.ously entered some very popular beerhall, or invaded a church gathering,

AK47

rifle at

the ready.

No

inten-

from it. "But they might as well see me in my true element, surmise on what used to do, and what can do, if don't get my way". Contrary to what you used to be told about me comrades, am full of good intentions: 'I'm not a hard hearted man, do what have to for your own good, No, am not a beast comrades, want to see the Black man's dignity restored, (verse 2). The protagonist is out to correct any misapprehensions which the Rhodesian propaganda machine may have instilled in the minds of the masses. His motives must be thoroughly understood if the people of Zimtion to spray the people with bullets, far

I

I

I

I

I

I

I

I

move forward together, exploiting all the opporby the new political order, particularly for the ordinary man's benefit. / must assure you, I do not have a heart of stone, I fought that you may rule Zimbabwe again have a heart of gold; Determined to secure a place in the sun for you all went out with a single-minded determination; To restore Zimbabwe to her native sons and daughters, (verse 3) From this point on, the song becomes an abandoned celebration of victory. It also becomes clear that the comrade's name is borrowed from the ZANU PF party's characterisation of the year 1979 as "Gore Regukurahundi", "The Year of the Storm". That year was called "The Year of the Storm" because the whole party machinery was geared to hit the opposition hard and to sweep away all the 'chaff within the Rhodesian society to babwe

are going to

tunities provided

I

I

make way for the new dispensation, just as the first rains that remains after the harvest has been collected. Hence verse 4:

do

to the chaff

Gukurahundi has now come, We can walk freely in our cities Gukurahundi is here, can breathe freedom can now give power to the people To get here, had to turn the old system on its head imposed a curfew on some Yes, there are times when People's movements. I

I

I

I

Verse 5 continues to boast about the exploits of the revolutionary in the year of the storm: the one year which the enemy could not handle is ''the year of the storm". I am not a cruel man All I want is for you to have plenty. forces

.

.

.

157

VAMUGABE VOTONGA By the Green Arrows

Mugabe is now in control We now know who to follow

VaMugabe vatonga Tavekuziva wekutevera Honai baba tasunungurwa.

Lord, behold we've been liberated.

Hapachisina zvekuvhunza Jongwe rakasarudzwa Munyika ino yeZimbabwe.

There's now no doubt in our minds The people of Zimbabwe Have made their choice, jongwe (the rooster).

Lord bless them

Baba varopafadzei, varopa-

Please bless all those who fought in the bitter struggle Bless them, we beseech you Bless all the heroes of the

fadzei

Vakarova hondo yakaoma Baba varopafadzei, varopafadzei

Vakarova hondo veChimurengá. As we have pointed out

earlier,

liberation struggle.

VaMugabe Votonga, Mugabe

is

now

Rul-

the linguistic reverse side of Vaparidzi Vawanda, There are now too many Preachers, by the same group. The songs have the same tunes, differing only in the words of the texts. Whereas here the Green Arrows are operating under conditions of freedom and can thus celebrate the landslide victory of ZANU PF in the hotly contested elections, in the earlier song they were constrained to be ambiguous and cautious, because of the prevailing circumstances of the times. Here they congratulate the party leader, Comrade Robert Mugabe, now Prime Minister of Zimbabwe now that the times of uncertainty (when they were obliged to wonder as to who, among the many preachers, would eventually deliver the sermon on Mount Zion) have passed. They express their debt ot gratitude to all the comrades who participated in the liberation struggle. Progressive art, which flourishes and abounds in unrestrictive conditions, can wither and become deformed, at best, disguised, under "Big Brother's" watchful eye. ing,

is

NYAYA HURU (PART By Thomas 1

Hona nyaya

inonetsa

Inotoda veZimbabwe. Hona nyaya huru Inotoda veZimbabwe. lyo nyaya inonetsa Inotoda vaMugabe 158

I)

Mapfumo

We

have a serious problem here

only the children of can resolve it.

Zimbabwe

no doubt about the magnitude of the problem. Only we Zimbabweans can solve There's

lyo nyaya inonetsa

ft.

This burning issue

Inotoda vaMugabe.

Requires the wisdom of our revolutionary leader Mugabe. No one else can tackle this problem — but our wise President Mugabe.

Ndiro jongwe guru muno Jongwe guru reZimbabwe, Ndiro jongwe guru muno Jongwe guru reZimbabwe.

He

is

the toughest rooster

The cock of Zimbabwe, He stands head and shoulders above everyone else in

Zimbabwe. 3.

Nhasi jongwe rakakukuridza Povo yese iri kufara, Nhasi jongwe rakakukuridza Povo yese iri kufara.

This rooster has

announced

his

presence, and the masses are wild with celebration. Yes, the cock of Zimbabwe is in

power and there's abundant and Abandoned joy everywhere.

Nhamo

Zimbabweans

huru yatakaona

Yakapedzwa navaMugabe,

Nhamo

are

now

singing

about their past problems which have now been wiped out by Mugabe.

huru yatakaona

Yakapedzwa navaMugabe.

Hona

soja rakambopenga, Inga wani rakazvitadza.

Tor example, soldiers of the Old regime did their worst

Pfumo revanhu ndokumbo-

But to no avail. Because the people's army Rose to the occasion. And under our revolutionary leader, we put an end to it. This, basically, is our problem

penga

Comrade ndokuzvipedza. Ndiyo nyaya inonetsawo Inotoda vaMugabe. Ndiyo nyaya inonetsa Inotoda veZimbabwe.

Hona nyaya

in

Zimbabwe.

To resolve it, there's no man better equipped than Mugabe. Yes, this basically is our quandary. But the children of Zimbabwe will

inonetsa

Inotoda vaMugabe.

find a way.

They are fortunate enough to have the pragmatic Mugabe as leader.

Nyaya Huru, A Serious

Issue,

is

a tribute to the President of

ZANU

PF

and Prime Minister of the new nation of Zimbabwe. Although in Shona it is usual and acceptable to refer to the man among men as the "Cock", the label became associated with ZANU PF during the election campaign of 159

1980,

when

it

was used

as a party

symbol on the ballot papers and election

posters.

two parts, the first of which (above) is impossible to interSung after the resounding victory of the ZANU PF party in the March, 1980 elections, the serious problem could refer to the task of forming a new government and accommodating all the disgruntled losers. This song

is

in

in isolation.

pret

This sounds plausible, given the amount of animosity generated by the landslide victory of a Party which the hitherto rulers maligned over a along period. They were not only disappointed that the elections they had lost had been declared free and fair by the international community, but

were also afraid that the new dispensation might unleash a reign of terror to avenge the atrocities committed by the previous regimes. This song expresses confidence in the leadership of comrade Robert Mugabe, that he will ably steer the nation through the charged and unpredictable transition from Rhodesia, with all its draconian oppressive machinery, to a free socialist Zimbabwe. It further expresses confidence in the masses of Zimbabwe, that having given their unambigious mundate to

ZANU

PF to govern, they

carrying out

will give their

unreserved support to the party

Hona nyaya

inonetsa;

Inotada veZimbabwe;

We have a sticky problem here; Only the children of Zimbawbe can resolve

NYAYA HURU (PART VaMugabe ndivo

II)

Mugabe

Jongwe guru reZimbabwe;

Nhamo

He put an end

ndivo chete

Jongwe guru reZimbabwe;

VaMugabe

ndivo chete

huru yatakaona vakaipedza; huru yatakaona

VaMugabe

Nhamo

to the nation's

tribulations;

Yakapedzwa navaMugabe;

The bitter suffering that we experienced he swept away;

Nhamo

He

huru yatakaona

obliterated the oppression

Yakapedzwa navaMugabe.

Which was ubiquitous Zimbabwe.

Hona vachena vakambotonga

The white man ruled our country, But in the end Mugabe put an end

Inga wani vakazvitadza

Pfumo nebadza ndokumbotongá Hona iwe vakazvikanya; Ziso revanhu rakambopenga 160

it.

is the one and only cock of Zimbabwe; Mugabe is the one and only cock of Zimbabwe; Mugabe is the one and only cock of Zimbabwe.

chete

Jongwe guru reZimbabwe;

VaMugabe

in

programme.

its

in

to that.

The enemy used UANC quislings. But our leaders saw through it all; The quislings spread terror among

Ndiyo nyaya inonetsa wo, Inotoda vaMugabe. Ndiyo nyaya inonetsa Inotoda vaMugabe.

the people,

Using "Gestapo" This

my

friends

need to

tactics.

is

the problem

we

resolve;

Who

can resolve it but our sagacious leader? Who can resolve it but our sagacious leader?

Hona kunze kwayedza Povo yese iri kufara. Honá kunze kwayedza Povo yese iri kufara. Hona kunze kwayedza Povo yese iri kufara.

4.

As you can

see, morning has broken The masses are celebrating. Yes, the morning sun is emitting rays of freedom And the people are overjoyed. The sun's rays are injecting freedom in every heart. And the people are rejoicing.

more explicit in its specification of the problem: it once in power in Rhodesia and having found it impossible to carry on, due to the armed struggle relentlessly waged by ZANU PF, handed over to the "Hoe and Spear" (the UANC's party symbol). That party harassed the masses through the instrument of a private army ironically called Ziso revanhu, The eye of the people. The masses defied these "Gestapo" tactics and continued to give support to externally based freedom fighters. Now victory has been attained and the masses are ecstatic, but the problem of what to do with the vanquished oppressor remains. If that question had been put to the masses, the answer would have been une". The New quivocal, but dangerous for the nation: '"An eye for an eye Prime Minister, Robert Mugabe, knew this, and he also knew that taking the popular course would have endeared him to his followers more, if the latter was possible. But he convincingly adumbrated the novel policy of reconciliation: Zimbabweans must not look back to the divisions and Part

is

II

of the song

is

that the whites were

.

.

.

animosities of the past, but rather they should exploit the opportunities development with unity offered by the breath-taking and providential outbreak of peace and, together, march forward. The war for reconstruction, resettlement and reconciliation would prove more demanding, more challenging and more rewarding, ultimately, than that which had just ended. But he sounded a warning: "Die-hards and unrepented racists and counter-revolutionaries would have no place in an egalitarian oriented Zimbabwe. If they persisted in their old ways and rejected reconciliation, then reconciliation would in turn reject them. In Zimbabwe's recent history, reconciliation is the line of demarcation between populism on the one hand (revenge) and statesmanship on the other. This is why the two parts of this song pay tribute to the sagacious leadership of the new Prime for

161

Minister and to the amenability of the masses to reason: Inotoda vaMugabe; Only Mugabe can resolve this problem, Inotoda veZimbabwe Only the people of Zimbabwe can handle this situation.

THANDO Thando luyakha ilizwe Kwabathandanayo Thando lumanyanis' abantu Ngumgcini wethu sonke,

Love builds a country

who

For compariots

by comradeship; Love is the catalyst

are for

bound

peace and

co-operation. Let us all

Ngomoya omuhle

With hearts free from suspicion and mutual hatred. Love must be nurtured, Delicate as an infant.

Thando

lufanel' ukondliwa Njengokondla umntwana

2.

come

Masithandaneni

Thando isinini esighle Kwabathandanayo Alukhethi bala lomuntu Dinini sethu sonke

Thando aluthengwa ngemali Kwabathandanayo Luphum' emoyeni womuntu Aluthengwa ngemali

Love

is

together

the faithful

Of those who care

in

love

companion

It

each other does not discriminate; it knows no colour.

It

binds us

No amount

for

all together.

of

money can buy

love,

No amount of money can separate those who love one another. True love springs from the heart. It is

4.

Thando sisekelo somuzi Wabathandanayo Thando lumanyanis' imuli

invaluable.

Love is the cornerstone of any home, Only those who have love know

Sisekelo somuzi

this; It

cements the harmony home:

in

every

Love, the pillar of the nation. 5.

Thando ngumalusi omuhle, Kwabathandanayo Luhlala kube naphakade Malusi wethu sonke

is the good shepherd For those who have found it. It is everlasting; ever present, A guide for us all.

Love

The song Thando, Love, takes its inspiration, like Mazuva ano by Inter jazz Band, discussed earlier, from Corinthians 1, 13, verses 4 and 13, in that

it

extols the salutary nature of love

above other

attributes

in

human

rela

tionships:

Love is very patient and kind, Never jealous or envious, Never boastful or proud. There are three things that remain —

Hope and Love— and the greatest of these is Love. Whereas previously we quoted these words to complement Mazuva ano's messaged unity during the nation's just armed struggle, we place the same words here by way of emphasising the need to avoid complecance after our victory — which is what the present song is about. Without that virtue all our efforts before independence will have been in Faith,

vain,

and the

loss of life in the process

an exercise

purposeless

in

self-

destruction.

BE

ZIMBABWE MASITHANDANE

BeZimbabwe masithandane, Sinanzelele abahlanyel' inzondo

BeZimbabwe masihlangane, Singakhathazani ezweni lethu,

Countrymen,

let's

have love

in

our

land,

Always on the lookout for those Who would plant hatred among us. Let us not molest each other In this land,

Ukuzwaha phela Yiyona ntwenkulu Ukuzondana kuchita isizwe Kumele sakhi sizwe ngothando Yikhona sizophumelela

Amatalenta esinawo Asetshenziswe ukwakha izwe lethu

Izithukuthuku mazijuluke, Ubuvila buyisitha sethu.

our

Comradeship

is

common

heritage.

the greatest asset;

Discord tears our country apart. Our salvation is in building our country on love. Prosperity will crown our efforts.

Our country overflows with talents;

Let us tap these to build a jewel of a country.

Let sweat cover the

brow of every

Hardworking patriot and let Idleness be our common enemy. Izwe lethu sesalithola, Sesakhetha u Hulumende wethu, Abatshutshisi ngabakhohlisi

Ungavumi ukulahlekiswa

We

have now achieved the The liberation of our country, We have now elected our own Government. Malcontents will have us forget this.

Let us be vigilant everyone;

Do

not be misled. 163

Chorus Nkosi Baba sekelela Imizamo yesizwe seZimbabwe

4.

Siyafisa into inye

Uthando ngamandla ezweni lethu

Lord of heaven, our creator Bless all our efforts: crown them with success, pray You: give us the love and strength

We

Necessary for achieving our goals. For Zimbabwe's sake, we pray You.

Be Zimbabwe Masithandane Zimbabweans, Let Us Love One Another, is an antidote for all things that can go wrong in a newly independent nation. We include it here because it urges a non-partisan approach to our national affairs. Whereas all the songs of celebration above were composed and sung in the deserved and justified festive mood of long-awaited independence, this song and the one above Thando, "Love" have been conceived and written with the benefit of the country's experience since that

momentous

date.

The song therefore is a considered overview of the pitfalls into which the conceit and over-confidence which our victory in the war of liberation may have led us. As sincere and patriotic nationals we may have fallen into the trap of leaving the donkey work to our elected representatives; in the belief that once defeated, the foe will not raise his head again. The foe is not a white man: not necessarily. Left to ourselves, we have a capacity for doing each other in, for sabotaging the economy through idleness and premeditated disruption, freedom.

in

a

misguided belief that

we

are exercising our

these reactionary tendencies do not spring from within us, we nevertheless may become accomplices by listening to, and therfore abetting, those who intentions are to see our nation fail. Sinanzelele abahlanyeli inzondo Let's look out for those who would Plant hatred among us (verse 1) Further,

if

have us forget good) not allow yourselves to be

Abatshutshisi ngabakhohlisi

Malcontents

Ungavumi ukulahlekiswa

(the national

Do

will

misled, (verse 3) All our efforts, all our ambitions, will benefit Zimbabwe in proportion to the extent to which they are motivated and galvanised by our concern for the national good: otherwise we must see ourselves as isolated self-

seekers with no identity but that of a cancerous growth in the centre of the organism, that is Zimbabwe: at best irrelevent, and at worst inimical, to its growth: Izithukuthuku mazijuluke Let sweaf cover the brow of Ubuvila buyi sitha sethu. every

Hardworking 164

patriot

and

Lei idleness be our

common

foe.

(verse 2)

Whether we are students, teachers, civil servants, factory workers or this song says, we must regard as our motto Love and Unity. Once we have done our part, the rest remains to providence: Lord of heaven, our creator Nkosi baba sikelela Imizamo yesizwe seZimbabwe Bless our efforts: crown them with whatever,

Siyafisa into inye

Uthando ngamadla ezweni lethu.

success.

We

pray you: give us the love and

strength

Necessary for achieving our goals. For Zimbabwe's sake, we pray you.

165

BIBLIOGRAPHY BARNARD,

F.M. (1965) Herder's Social and Political Thoughts Oxford: Clarendon Press BELL, B.W (1974) The Folk Roots of Contemporary Afro American Poetry. Broadside critics series. Detroit, Michigan 48238 BERLINER, PAUL (1977) 'Political Sentiments in Shona Song and Oral Literature' in Essays in Art and Science Vol. 6 No. 1 pp 1-29 BERLINER, PAUL (1978) The Soul of Mbira. University of California Press. Berkeley, Los Angeles CLIFFE, L (1980) 'The Zimbabwe Elections' in Review of African Political Economy. No. 15/16 DU BOIS, WEB. (1903) The Souls of Black Folk. Longman FLINT, J. (1974) Cecil Rhodes. Hutchinson of London GELFAND, M. (1962) Shona Religion Cape Town. Juta GIRAUD, S.L. (1930) The Songs that Won the War. Lane Publications HOWES, F. (1958) Music and Its Meanings. Three lectures delivered in London University, University of London. The Athlone Press. HUG ILL, S. (1961) Shanties from the Seven Seas JONES, LEROI (Imamu Amiri Baraka) (1968) Black Music New York Apollo KAEMMER, J. (1975) 'The Dynamics of a changing music system in Rural

Rhodesia'. Ph.D. dissertation, Indiana University R. (1970) 'Multi-part relationships in the Shona music of Rhodesia' Ph.D. dissertation, UCLA KAUFFMAN, R. (1973) 'Shona Urban Music arid the Problem of AcculturaCouncil 4: pp 47-56 tion'. Yearbook of the International Folk Music

KAUFFMAN,

& SARGENT H.C. (1904) The English and Scottish popuAbridged edition. Boston Houghton. Mifflin KRESS, G & HODGE, R (1979) Language as Ideology Routledge and Kegan Paul. London, Boston and Henley LOCK, A (1968) The New Negro. NY. Atheneum Publishers LOCK, A (1969) "The Negro Spirituals" in A. Gayle, Jr.ed. "Black Expression". Weybright & Talley. NY MAZRUI, A (1957) The African University as a Multinational Corporation: Problems of Penetration and Dependency in Harvard Educational Review Vol 45, No. 2 pp 191-120 MUTSWAIRO, S (1957) Feso. Oxford University Press, Cape Town MUTSWAIRO, S. (1974) Zimbabwe. Three Continents Press NKETIA, J. Kwabena (1963) African Music in Ghana PAGE, E.T. ed. (1963) Horace Odes, Vol. Ill, Macmillan & Co ROBERTS, M. ed. (1936) The Faber Book of Modern Verse. Revised by D. Hall, 1965 SAMKANGE, S. (1968) Origins of Rhodesia. Heinemann. London SCARBOROUGH, D. (1963) On the Trail of Negro Folk Songs. Folklore

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Ltd.

London

SHERMAN,

Jessica (1980)

"Songs of Chimurenga"

in

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(1963) The Sociology of Music. Routledge and Kegan Paul The Greatest is Love: an edition of The Living New Testament from The Living Bible (paraphrased) 1972 Wheaton. Illinois 60187, USA

WORK, S New

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(1940) American Negro Songs and Spirituals. Bonanza Books. York XEUFENG, Feng (1981) "The Snake and Music" in Seven Fables, Chinese Literature April

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An

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167

SONGS THAT

WON

THE LIBERATION

WAR

This book consists of liberation songs sung by the people of Zimbabwe, both inside and outside the country during the war; for the most part between the early 1970s up to independence in April 1980 The song texts, in both Shona and Ndebele are accompanied by translations in English, with each song followed by a discussion in which its message and place in the whole book is explained. The songs were sung at different times, places and under varying circumstances, but brought together as they are here, they reveal a singularly living unity of purpose. They were all a necessary part of the struggle for the total liberation of Zimbabwe from colonial rule. In the darkest days of the struggle these songs helped to instil grim determination among all the people in their fight against the settler. The texts constitute a guiding thread by which the reader may follow closely in song, the political history and development of the people of Zimbabwe in their struggle for freedom and national independence.

'The history of our struggle (Liberation) would have been incomplete without highlighting and discussing the central role played by the revolutionary songs'. C.S

Banana

President of the Republic of

Alec Area.

J.C.

Pongweni

He holds

is

a

Zimbabwe

Zimbabwean born 34

years ago

a B.A.(Hons) English, University of

in

Shurugwi Communal

Zimbabwe

(then University of

Rhodesia); an M.A. and Ph.D, Linguistics, University of London and an M.A.

He was a Commonwealth scholar from 1972 to 1975, and then an Overseas Development Aid Technical Fellow from 1975 to 1977. Dr Pongweni is a lecturer in English Language at the Universtiy of Zimbabwe where he is also Chairman of the Department of Linguistics. He has written several articles in African Studies, Zeitschrif firr Phonetic— Berlin, and The Journal of Asia and African Studies, Tokyo. degree, Leeds University. (Linguistics Gen.)