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Freedom Voice

Hazel Duduwega
Hazel Duduwega

HAZEL DUDUWEGA | Crocodile Prize | An entry in
the Abt Associates Award for Women’s Literature

Freedom Voice was inspired by my passion for community development. Women have little or no voice in decision-making. Usually just one or two stand out, the rest stand back and watch for shame or for fear. Even in matrilineal societies, it is the men with whom the decisions rest and who are mouthpieces. Women bear the title ‘owner’; but an owner who has no voice. I salute those women who stand up in their communities - HD

For freedom of speech sake
Allow me to speak
This is a matrilineal society
A generation I inherited by birth
Treat me not like an alien
In my own land
You cannot deny
I have the right

To express my freedom voice

As a woman of this land
Full of milk and honey
Where we make plenty money
Yet not a chance
In decision making

To express my freedom voice

Do not give me the backbenches
I am part of you
I belong to this land
A matrilineal society
I live among you
So let me be among you

To express my freedom voice

I toil the land
Blood, sweat and tears
From dawn to dusk
For my family I work
If it concerns my land, my children
Allow me

To express my freedom voice

Equality for humanity
I advocate
For women folks like me to be heard
To participate freely
Without fear and intimidation
When making decision
That concerns my land

To express my freedom voice


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Michael Dom

A poem with nicely versed expressions, my favorite is "I live among you/ So let me be among you".

And I like the way each verse is linked by that single title line, it's a very smooth technique.

Durida Sisire

I love this piece, Haze! "Pawa Meri"

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