Spring Has Sprung | CHANGE

Bet you thought that nasty winter would never end. In this issue of Salon, we’ve got some fresh prose, an out of this world interview and knock your socks off poetry to usher in our favorite time of the year.
The Thing About Luzhin by Michael Moreci

How We Remember by Miranda Train

Garden by Susan Tepper
Understanding My Kenya by Bitsy

Oriovac by Catherine Kanjer Kapphahn
Firecrackers by S.G. Frazier

The Hello Girls by KC Trommer
Matthew Cheney by Nita Noveno

Nairobi | Feb 17, 2008

At this special “Let Peace Prevail” reading, four writers will share their fiction and non-fiction stories of the recent election in Kenya and its aftermath. All proceeds will be donated to the Red Cross towards the internally displaced families.

Simiyu Barasa
Parselelo Kantai
Charles A. Matathia
Professor Wambui Mwangi

Understanding My Kenya


I have often seen youth as the lyrical age, that is the age when the individual, focused almost exclusively on himself, is unable to see, to comprehend, to judge clearly the world around him… then to pass from immaturity to maturity is to move beyond the lyrical attitude. [Milan Kundera, The Curtain]

I search for meaning everywhere as I try to understand what is happening in my country, Kenya. Lyrical implies something beautiful, pure, good, even. Does it speak for the stage of being that Kenya has gone through, or does it speak for me as an individual, or can I even separate my country from myself as our birthdays …

Giants: Parade or Election?


Monday evening, I was walking down a desolate street, on my way to a church meeting. I heard a boy screaming something in the distance. I saw a couple carrying a box of Pizza from the Pizza parlor from the Main Avenue. Thinking about the New York Giants. My joy for them. My loyalty to New York. But when I heard that their parade would be on election day, my conspiracy theorist personality surfaced. What difference would the parade make on votes? How many would waste much of their day at the parade celebrating only to forget to vote? How many people held the election in the back …

On the Air

Listen to our archived Salon interview on WKCR-FM (look for the December 18 “Composed on the Tongue” broadcast down toward the bottom of the page & click on the speaker icon).

Oyunga Pala

Oyunga Pala is probably best known for his controversial column, “Man Talk,” in the Saturday Nation Magazine. He is an avid writer whose work ranges from social commentary to fiction as well as travel writing. His other regular column is the “Motorcycle Diaries” in Kenya ’s Drum Magazine. His work has also been published in issue 6 of The Reading Room on – this is published by

His mellow voice is remembered by many who enjoyed his radio program, “Sex Talk,” but his identity remains a well-kept secret, hence the lack of an accompanying photograph. He has, however, been known to surface at kwani? Readings (under the strict adage …

Iovanna Mesopir

Iovanna Mesopir was born in Nairobi in 1976 and has made it her home. She attended high school at Loreto Convent Valley Road then joined the Catholic university of Eastern Africa where she graduated with a BA in Social Science ( Sociology). Later she graduated with an Msc in Entrepreneurship from the Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology. Currently she works with East African Cables Limited. Iovanna describes herself as a novice writer. Her first unpublished short story “The boat to the boat” was inspired after attending the Kwani/SLS workshop in Lamu 2006.

Kingwa Kamencu

Kingwa Kamencu is a published writer whose first novel, To Grasp at a Star, won 2nd prize in the 2006 Wahome Mutahi Literary Award and the National Book Development Council Award (2003). Currently working as a journalist, she is not only a budding scholar but a social and political critic. She has previously published poems and short stories in local papers and magazines and is working on her second book. She is passionate about the emergence of Africa as a world power and the complete emancipation of women from political, social and economic setbacks. She recently graduated from the UON with a first class honours degree in literature and history. …

Suhaila Abu Cross

Born in Nairobi a long time ago of Ugandan/English heritage, she was brought up at the coast of Kenya and schooled at Loreto, Makerere and UC Santa Cruz. Having lived and worked all over the world she has now settled back where she started, in Mombasa.

After four children and several marriages she is now dedicating time and energy to lifelong sublimated passion to write. First time around she co-wrote a play for German theatre and radio with the founder of Green Party, Günter Groeshel. She contributed a regular column for Msafiri, the Kenya Airways in-flight magazine, for several years. She also works in film and has written produced, co-produced and …

Kimtai Too

Kimtai Too was born in 1981and grew up in Trans Nzoia district, attended Mother of Apostles Seminary in Eldoret before joining the University of Nairobi in 2002, where he is to date undertaking a BSc degree majoring in Soil Science. His passion for writing started in his first year of university. Current issues at the time led him to pen his first book Don’t vote…Count the Votes. After two years at the university he wrote yet another book, True Son of a Country, which is as yet unpublished. In 2004/5 he was nominated as Poet of the Year by the International Society of Poets(ISP) and some of his work can …

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