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Philo Ikonya

About Me: 

I am ardent poet. I have been a lecturer in semiotics, written novels and short stories. I was once a school teacher who would ask for leave from rich suburb private school to go to the slums and see how demolitions happen. I am a freelance journalist who follows an incredible spirit of expression which i also hear in my grandmother's stories but which bursts forth to the stars. I am so delighted to be who I am. I love it. I love what I did last to write. Walk barefoot with my friends in the village. We found a river where I fetched water more than forty years ago, I little. The river is dying, I wept. There were little girls whose age I was then, I put the water barrel on my back. I could remember how to strap it on my back since about the last time I did it. I wonder .... I was then 19 going to 20 years when I carried the last barrel of water on my back up that steep hill....Now, here I was doing it with Linda Cracknell, a Scottish writer snapping photos of me on a digital camera- I was not doing it for the photo. When they helped me get the twenty litres off my back..... I felt so light, I could have flown. I had forgotten that feeling.... and I wondered how this world is, will be without women leaders. I want to rehabilitate that river. I knew before it was dying. The black beetles disappeared.... the frogs no longer leave their necklaces of eggs... and they say Africa will be the worst hit by global warming. I think then of slavery. I think of many things. I think of sexual harassment. I think. I think of my gorgeous mother now a widow for 19 years... I love her body at 80 years. I think of my ancestors. I think connections. I think of the present. I think of how people starve not so far away from me... and of the walk I will do again barefeet with some celebs and tell my people and government... it is time to come down to earth... that is where we must be. I think of the river again and of the last water I fetched when i was 19... and of this water i have carried on my back now at this age. Now as a mother... I think of the girls who got into this river chased there by some men who wanted to rape them. I think of the other bigger rivers where girls first entered and then in the shade of a chosen home, they lost their labias and private parts in the name of 'maturity' and .... so many other things. This did not happen to me but I think of them. And so many problems they have endured and I wonder if they can love their village the way I love mine? And sometimes I think tribe gives nothing to woman. I think it takes away and so I mourn for my country that fought along tribal lines...after an election. I dressed in sackcloth for months...someone from Germany writes me a poem calling it my bulletproof sack... moving... there were bullets. I personally divorced my tribe.. woman does not have this kind of tribe... we have us. We now must redeem the vote to mean something for women too... and leadership. And women, the kind that I know do not forget the poor and marginalised people... Oh, I want to sing a song!

My Passions: 
Writing, reading,being with people....laughing
My Challenges: 
poor leadership in my country, seeing communities cheated...
My Vision for the Future: 
African nations full of pride, the pride of our mothers and women leaders.... and happy communities
My Areas of Expertise: 
Writing, Editing, Translating, Teaching communication, Reading performances, inspirational speaker
My Languages: 
English, Spanish, Kiswahili, Gikuyu, Norwegian

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