Albert Nyathi is a survivor, one of the few full time artists who graduated from the stormy corridors of Zimbabwe's sole University (at that time) in the 1980s.
very human struggles for freedom in the region influenced his poetry and
his social desire to bring change through the power of oration. Certainly
he has persuaded people to sit up, listen and take command of their situation.
He gave up his rapidly advancing career in government service as a very well informed senior member of Zimbabwe's National Arts Council to concentrate on performance and the development of youth training programmes in the arts in Harare's townships.
His background in the performing arts allowed him to try various forms of experimental performance from his early career with Alcyti his
first public attempts with accompanied poetry. His first major stage performance
as an actor was in the outstanding production of Mandela- The Spirit Of
No Surrender in the early 1990s produced by the community theatre company
Zambuko/ Izibuko and the ANC as a co-production about a family's struggle
in the townships through the period of Mandela's encarceration.
We dedicate this page to extracts from Albert's poetry some of which is available in book form. Echoes from the Kraal (links to follow):
Welcome to Zimbabwe (land of contradiction)
Once colonised in 1890
Uncolonised in 1980
This is the land of contradictions my friends
Where you will meet,
The laughing hyaenas and the crying children
The chattering monkeys and thr roaring lions,
Where you will meet the doubting eagles in the sky
And the hissing snakes in the grass
Visitor, welcome to Zimbabwe.
This is where you meet
The bleating sheep and the hooting owls
The croaking frogs and the barking, yelling,yelping,
Visitor ,welcome to Zimbabwe
This is where the Zambezi water slowly crushes its way
Towards the Indian Ocean, and you would hear the gushing of mad waters
Down the Victoria Falls, vomiting fish and crocodile,
From its overloaded stomach,
"Hey you selfish Zambezi,
Why do you feed your stomach too much, when others are hungry?"
Victoria falls, Mosi Oa Tunya , the Smoke that Thunders.
Mzilikazi quietly sleeps at Entumbane in Matopos side by side
With Rhodes the rival who arrived for a rest here
Nehanda spirit roams around Mazoe among the orange plantations
In Nyanga the deep waters have no word to say except the mist and the mistry abound
This is where you meet, Harare the city of one who does not sleep-Haa-rare!
UBulawayo, umafavuke njengedabane- the city of Kings!
And now Zimbabwe is aculturated
It is a boiling pot of countless cultures,
It is a hotch potch a wish wash.
And because of the media American culture is tops
Amongst the Zimbabwean youth,
Everywhere you go its 'yo-man'
Even to mum and dad in the country side.
Welcome to Zimbabwe.