via party of one | Harare: The Great White Colony 25th Aug 2014
We watched as the mupostori hoisted his flag over that open piece of land near our house.
He stood back and admired it as it fluttered in the wind. Like Major Frank Johnson and his Pioneer Column planting the Union Jack up on the Salisbury Kopje, or Neil Armstrong and his comrades on the moon, here was a new flag raised over freshly conquered territory.
Later that day, I saw Madzibaba in front of his new congregation; dancing sideways, then forwards, then sideways again, as if in some victory dance. That night, all through the night, they sang.
All across the city, more native land is being conquered. Every day, a new Mapostori flag proudly flies over newly found land.
That spot of green next to the race course? Conquered. That whole Forestry Commission gum tree plantation up on the Enterprise bypass? Colonised. That open field near Snake Park. Flags flying!
Where were you when the Coca-Cola Corner in Graniteside was conquered? The famed Madzibaba Israel and his Johane Marange church have flown their flag over that colony for ages now.
Now, it spreads. The number of mapostori groups multiplies exponentially every day, but unclaimed land is running out. So it’s a holy scramble out there.
Like back in Berlin, the land shall be carved up among the powerful ‘white’ colonialists.
The Johane Masowe Jerusarema, the ones that wear yellow belts over their white gowns. They have that headscarf too, called the “Samaria”. They are the ones that do the “mhorodai” dance, a rather creepy sideways movement, heads thrusted back and forth.
And there is the Johane Masowe yekwaEsnai, the ones with the big green cross over their gemenz. What about the Johane Masowe yekwaMitchel. Nasty lot, they say. Specialise in vengeance and stuff.
And Johane Masowe Yemwedzi Minomwe (Johane Masowe of the Seven Months). You need an errant lover back? These are your guys. Don’t even get me started with infamous Madzibaba Ishamea and his cop-bashing crew.
All of these groups need land. So, much like Major Johnson, they’re sending out an explorer – a modern day Courtney Selous, but in white gemenz – to scout the uncharted territory out there.
They seek new colonies to conquer, and to bring the light of the Lord they worship to these untouched lands, just like the settlers of old. And, just like Lieutenant Edward Tyndale-Biscoe did that September morning back in 1890, madzibaba will raise his flag.
No open land shall be spared. Your parks; your community soccer pitches; your gum tree plantations. And your marshes; if they’re not building Chinese malls on them, a conquering madzibaba flag will soon fly over them.
And they shall do the mhorodai dance in celebration.