In the beginning

In the beginning
God made the earth,
After that he took two stones and made them into
Sun and Moon.
He further created Rain,
Whose desire was to fall down and cover the earth
with water,
And Darkness, over whom Moon scattered a
basketful of seeds,
Which were the Stars.

There were no people on the earth at first,
So God made Kiyomba, a man, and two wives.
One wife was a young woman,
The other, Kizumu, a snake.

kizumu gave her co-wife two fruits,
Saying: ‘Give one to our husband, and eat them
Only remember: do not eat the fruit on the way!’
But the young wife was curious,
On the way, she opened the fruit to see what was
Inside was a power,
It makes the young woman ashamed,
She knew she was a woman and her husband a man.
After Kiyomba had eaten the fruit, they started to

God gave Kiyomba some seeds,
Kiyomba plaited them into his hair,
When he reached home he spread the seeds on the
All fruit and vegetables grew from them.
God gave Kiyomba two baskets,
Saying: ‘One is for you, and one for Kizumu the
Choose which you want
Kiyomba’s basket was heavy,
He opened it,
It held Death.
Kizumu opened her basket,
It held Life,
It taught her to change her skin like a cloth when
it grew old.

God was angry with Kiyomba for choosing Death,
He left the earth and went off up in heaven.
Kiyomba was sad without God,
He longed to be with him again,
Together with his wife, he set on to find God,
Walking towards the horizon, to where the sky
rests on bonze columns,
Towards the country where the sun sets.
But they never reached the place. of their desire,
And on the way they had many children
Who fill the earth with people.

God said to Kiyomba:
‘As long as you are on earth you cannot join me,
But look! I have made a new thing:
It is called Soul,
It will be the kernel of life for you.
I will also give you sticks to rub together,
To make fire,
I will also give you a spear to hunt with,
The hoe to dig and make farms,
And finally I give you all the fruits of the earth;
You may eat them all but one–
That which is called Banana,
That you may eat.’

But Woman, Kiyomba’s wife, picked some bananas
And ate them.
Very soon, God saw that some bananas were
He called his four children together-
Sun, Moon, Man and Woman,
‘I will bury you all,’ he told them
But the one who did not steal will rise again
he buried them.
The first to rise was the Sun,
After only one night, he rose up out of the earth;
Then, four day afterwards, Moon arose in the sky,
At first she was thin and slender, but steadily she
After this two, on-one arose,
The first Man and the first Woman remained buried,
And buried they remain to the present day.

Only Mutima, the Soul, was taken to heaven by
Because it was his youngest creation,
And he loved it dearly.


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