I wanna see you smile, Burundi


This is a song, a poem, a tribute to the small yet beautiful country that saw me growing. A place where I witnessed both precious and bitter moments. A land where my first tear was dropped. But above all, a land that saw my first little smile. A smile that I miss and I would love to see on my country’s face every time I wake up. 

I grab this pen, away from the thorny turmoil
To tell you, no, to remind you how beautiful you are
In every morning bird’s mouth lays your beauty
The sun shines on your thousand hills
Rivers flow, mountains echo their halo

Like a faithful and lovely mother
You are always the same
With your beautiful landscapes and scenery
Most sadly are you there
Watching us, fed up with our whims

Because I want to see you rising
From your ashes, from your falls
I chose to sing this psalm for you
I wanna tame you my lovely motherland

A mother you are, yes, bruised,
But you stand tall and proud
I want to paint your magnificence, your highness

I wanna paint you, draw you
On the map of great regions, great countries
On the map of super powers
Cause your people are super heroes
Let me sew you with my beautiful song

Among the richness you are gifted with
Are people that stand out, in their diversity.
With different backgrounds, minds and lifestyle,
But with so much in common

Yet, they still continue to be torn apart
Like small children, for a piece of cake.
Let me sing this song
For them to notice that you are their mother
That they are the same
Forever and ever

And your land, our heritage
We should dig it, not to bury your children
Not to cultivate hunger, war, violence and corruption
But to beautify you, with flowers and tasty food
To saw seeds of Ubuntu, seeds of love and hope

How can I not celebrate you?
When I talk about you with friends abroad
Homesick is their feeling
You fed them, breastfed them
Under the sun, they made their first steps
They could never get rid of you
Neither in their thoughts, nor in their souls

Some folks say you are a small country
Yes, small but great, and amazingly rich
They call you heart of Africa
I call you pulse of my heart
My blood was made, mixed under your shade
I admit, you can only matter for yours
“Ntawanka kwonka nyina ngo agwaye amahere”

Dear motherland,
Home country, You will always be my pride
Under the rain, the storm,
I will always sing for you
East or West, my home
You will always be the best for me

I wanna see you smile, beautiful Burundi
I wanna see you rise after the storm
I wanna see you smile with your drummers,
With your pastoral poems and beautiful songs
I wanna see you smile…


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