I always thought that love was forever. He said that our love was timeless. I sit here on the floor, twisting the locket around and around in my hands. Outside the window I see the leaves of the lone standing tree in the compound sway to the gentle breeze. There is a lulling quality to the motion and looking at it fills me with inexplicable peace.


I still remember the day he gave me the locket. He prepared a lovely picnic for me, and after we were done with our meal, he presented me with a small black velvet box. Inside was a very beautiful sight; a solid gold heart shaped locket, attached to a thin gold chain. He showed me how he had affixed both of our photographs inside the hollow center, beneath which was the engraving: For All Time.

My hands had gone lax, and at this point, I was barely breathing. There are no words to describe the fullness my heart felt at that moment, or the next one when he sat up to loop the chain around my neck.


From that moment on, whenever he said he loved me, I believed it. Whenever he said that our love was timeless, his words ran true. After all, didn’t I always have a representation of his heart over my own?


I might try to make myself forget how it all changed, when he stopped looking at me with that special light in his eyes, but these events are ingrained in the deepest recesses of my mind. It all started when he arrived. The little one.


I always thought I would love my child. The kind of love that is limitless. Isn’t that expected of a mother? I tried, I really did. I would sit hours looking at the child, trying to feel, but it was a fruitless effort on my part. For every ounce of indifference I exhibited, the little one was showered with twice as much love from his father.


Slowly, I became normal again. I started to feel something towards the child. Resentment , first, and the beginning stirrings of hate. What did he have that made his father look at him like that? Was he not the one who had always told me that our love was eternal, that we were living our very own happily ever after? When did the light in his eyes go dim for me?



Finding the kitchen knife wasn’t hard. It was done in one swift strike to the head; he never saw it coming. The hard part was the waiting. What would he say when he came home? Would he be happy? I mean, I did it for him, for us. Now we could resume our forever.


I don’t understand how he didn’t see it my way. I had to remove the piece of the puzzle that didn’t fit. It was the only way. I did it all for him, for us. Why, oh why, does he refuse to talk to me now?

So I find myself here. Alone. They tell me I’m locked up ‘for my own safety’. They tell me my hands are tied together because ‘I’m a danger to myself and others’. I hear them say that he hates me, that I disgust him. I thought love would last forever. Silly me.

I don’t think I did anything wrong. I don’t feel like a bad person. Does it even matter?


I’m sorry, where are my manners? I should have started by introducing myself. My mama is probably rolling in her grave, she taught me better than that. My name is Miriam, but they call me insane.


I’m single, very single. So single, in fact, that my mum is probably about to call up a church committee to come pray for me.

It’s not like I’m keeping some persons dangling. This is the kind of single where there aren’t even any prospects.

But you’re a man hater, Maureen, said random person of the internet. I read your posts and WUEH! Moto wa kuotea mbali.

I’m sorry…. Wait, what am I saying? I’m NOT sorry. I love men; I just know very few good ones.

My mum asked me when I’ll introduce her to my boyfriend. I told her I don’t have one. She asked if I’ve been looking. I almost laughed at that one.

You see, girls like me, the ‘certified men haters’, don’t have to go looking. They find us. Every insecure, sniffling boy man with a hero complex finds us. They want to ‘change’ us, fix our ‘broken souls’, fight our ‘demons’ , blah blah blah. They’ll come with their ‘I miss u’ texts, their ‘niambie’ texts, their ‘knowledge’ of what makes you tick, and when they say coffee date, they’ll mean soggy fast food chips and a soda. They’ll want surface conversations, like what you’re having for supper (waoh, can I come over?) or how cold it is (do you want me to come and keep you warm?). It won’t matter what you say or how you say it, they’ll always find a way to make it less.

At my age the pressure to be half of a unit is intense. I’m reminded daily that I’m not getting any younger. It’s not that I haven’t had chances to change this narrative, I just choose not to. You see, I use my mind in all things, especially in matters of the heart. My mind demands to be stimulated. My mind wants to get past the tedium of small talk and dig deep. My mind refuses to settle for mediocre.

When my mum asks me why I’m single, I tell her I’m working on myself. What I mean is, in addition to working through my many faults, I’m trying to accept the idea that maybe what I’m looking for no longer exist. Maybe I just happen to be at the wrong place at the wrong time.

So I’m single, and mingling nowadays is just too fucking exhausting.