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Ibali elimangalisayo likaZimkhitha owayebhabha

Author

Helen Brain

Illustrator

Magriet Brink

Translator

Iguqulelwe esiXhoseni nguNobuntu Stengile

Kwaye kukho intombazana egama linguZimkhitha eyayikuthanda kakhulu ukuhleka. Kwakumcaphukisa kakhulu utata wakhe oku kuhleka. Ngenye imini wayemgodusa ngemoto, bevela esikolweni. Bathi xa befika ekuqaleni kwesitalato sabo, wabe sele edikwe nyhani! Wemisa imoto.

“Uza kude uyeke ukuhleka okanye uza kugoduka ngeenyawo?” wabuza. Kodwa uZimkhitha wanga uyaqinisa ukuhleka.

“Kulungile ke,” utshilo, “hamba ngeenyawo ugoduke.” Wamkhupha emotweni waza waqhuba yena wagoduka, emshiya apho.

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“Uphi uZimkhitha?” wabuza umama wakhe ukungena kukatata wakhe. “Ndipheka okona kutya akuthandayo.”

“E-e, S’thandwa,” watsho utata wakhe. “Ndithe makahambe ngeenyawo ukusuka phaya ekoneni kuba ebengayeki ukuhleka.”

“Usana lwam?” wakhala wenjenjalo umama kaZimkhitha. “Uthe usana lwam malugoduke ngeenyawo? Lodwa? Masiye kumkhangela.” Bakhangela, bakhangela, kodwa wayengabonakali ndawo uZimkhitha.

“Umshiye phi?” wabuza uMama. “Uphi Ron umntwan’am?”

“Owu madoda,” wambombozela ngesingqala njalo utata kaZimkhitha, ekhangela ezicithini nasemithini.

“Zimkhitha,” wakhwaza umama wakhe. “Zimkhitha, uphi?”

Mfazi uthile wemisa imoto yakhe. “Ndinganinceda?” wabuza.

“Silahlekelwe yintombi yethu encinane,” watsho umama kaZimkhitha. “Ukhe wayibona?”

Lo mfazi wajikeleza isitalato ngemoto wabuya wazisa ingxelo, “Ndibone ikati emnyama, inja etyheli nendoda ethengisa ibhanana. Kodwa andibonanga ntombazana naphi na.”

Utata kaZimkhitha waphakamisa amehlo wambona, nankuya uZimkhitha, ebhabha phezulu, phezulu esibhakabhakeni, njengebhaloni epinki.

“Owu bantu bakuthi,” kukhuza uMama. “Ufikelele njani phaya phezulu?”

Umfazi onobubele wajonga phezulu esibhakabhakeni, ebukele uZimkhitha ebhabha emafini. “Ingaba … u-u-u-yahleka?” wabuza.

“UZimkhitha wasoloko ehleka,” batsho bobabini umama notata wakhe. “Asikwazi ukumenza angahleki. Mamela.” Iphuma phezulu esibhakabhakeni intsini kaZimkhitha, yayivakala ngathi yintsimbi ekhenkcezayo.

“Owu hayini!” ukhale watsho umama wakhe, ethwele izandla entloko. “Mhlawumbi uzakuwela elwandle.”

“Okanye kwimithana enameva,” kuncwina utata wakhe.

“Ndingusonzululwazi,” watsho umfazi onobubele, “enye yezinto zokuqala esizifundileyo yeyokuba umoya uyabhabha. Inoba uginye umoya omninzi ngexesha ebehleka watsho wabhabha njengebhaloni.”

“Yho, yho, yho, yho” bakhala njalo abazali bakaZimkhitha.

“Inye kuphela indlela esingamthoba ngayo,” watsho umfazi onobubele. “Kufuneka simenze alile.”

“Owu Nkosi,” kutsho umama wakhe. “Oko akulula. Yintombazana ehlala igigitheka leya.”

“Kufuneka sikhwaze, simazise ngento embi,” watsho utata kaZimkhitha, elilela kwitshefu yakhe.

“Kufuneka sifumane abantu abaninzi, size sikhwaze sonke ngaxeshanye,” utshilo umfazi onobubele. “Akasoze asive thina sobathathu.” Ngoko ke bankqonkqoza kuzo zonke izindlu ezikufutshane, bacela abantu ukuba baphume phandle. Utata kaZimkhitha wamisa zonke iimoto, wacela wonke umntu ukuba aze kunceda. Ngethutyana nje elingephi kwakuzele kunyakazela ngabantu ababesolatha, bewangawangisa, befota uZimkhitha ngeeselula zabo.

UZimkhitha wahleka, wahleka. Le, yayiyeyona nto ihlekisayo wakhe wayibona.

“Siza kuthini ukuze simenze alile?” kubuza umfazi onobubele.

“Ndiyazi!,” watsho utata kaZimkhitha, waza wabaxelela ukuba bathini.

“Inye, zimbini, zintathu, masitsho sonke sithi …” kuyalela umfazi onobubele.

Ngalo myalelo, isihlwele solatha esibhakabhakeni saza saduma, “We Zimkhitha! Siyabona ngaphantsi kwelokhwe yakho!” Phezulu emafini uZimkhitha wabeva. Wajonga ezantsi, wabona abantu abangamakhulu amahlanu bolathe ilokhwe yakhe, waze wayeka ukuhleka.

Wehlela ngezantsi. Kodwa njengokuba esihla nje, amafu amnyumbaza, waza wacinga ukuba kuyahlekisa ukuba phezulu kangako, lo gama wonke umntu esezantsi. Waze waqalisa ukuhleka kwakhona.

“Owu Nkosi yam,” watsho utata wakhe. “Le nto ayisebenzanga.”

“Ndiyazi!” watsho umama wakhe. “Masimxelele ukuba siyayibona ipenti yakhe enamachokoza.”

Ngoko ke isihlwele saphefumla kakhulu saza sakhwaza kangangoko sinakho sathi, “We Zimkhitha! Siyayibona ipenti yakho enamachokoza!”

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UZimkhitha wayeka ukuhleka, waza wehlela ezantsi kangangeemitha ezingamashumi amahlanu. Kodwa uthe xa ejonga umngcelele weemoto neentatheli zikamabonwakude namawakawaka abantu abambukeleyo, waqalisa ukuhleka kwakhona. Wasuka wanyuka kwakhona.

Umfazi onobubele wahlunguzela intloko. “Kuza kufuneka sibe ngathi sithetha kakubi ukodlula oku,” watsho, egxininisisa. “Ngawo nawuphi na umzuzu umoya ungavuka aze abhabhe emke umphelo. Yeyiphi eyona nto imbi eniyicingayo esinokuyithetha kuye?”

Bahlanganisa iintloko bacinga, bacinga, bacinga. Ekugqibeleni bayifumana.

“Sisonke ke ngoku,” wakhwaza utata kaZimkhitha, ekhwele phezulu kwiMercedes Benz. “Wonke umntu makakhwaze kangangoko anakho, ngaxeshanye.”

Sonke eso sihlwele samawaka amane abantu nenja emthubi, ikati emnyama kunye nendoda ethengisa iibhanana sakhwaza ngaxeshanye, “WE ZIMKHITHA! SIYAYIBONA IPENTI YAKHO, KWAYE INOMGQOBHO!”

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UZimkhitha wayeka kwa oko ukuhleka.

Nanko esihla. Wehla, wehla, wehla. Wehla ngakumbi nangakumbi wada ekugqibeleni wasondela kakhulu emhlabeni.

“Umntwana wam endimthandayo!” wakhala umama wakhe, emthi nqaku ngemilenze emtsalela eMhlabeni. “Ndibulela ukuba ungenzakalanga!”

UZimkhitha wajonga elo gquba labantu laliyiyizela lihleka limqhwabela izandla. Wayeneentloni kangangokuba wazigquma, ubuso wabaleka wagoduka.

“Owu Nkosi yam,” watsho utata wakhe. “Simkhathazile. Ngoku uqumbile.”

Ngoko ke abantu baphinda badibanisa iintloko bacinga into efanelekileyo abanokuyithetha, ukumenza angaqumbi.

“Masitsho sonke ngoku,” wakhwaza umama wakhe.

Bonke baduma besithi, “WE ZIMKHITHA! BESIKUQHULA!”

UZimkhitha wema, wayeka ukubaleka.

“SINYANISILE!” bakhwaza bonke. “BESINGENAKUYIBONI IPENTI YAKHO, KUBA UNXIBE IBHULUKHWE EPINKI!”

Waza ke uZimkhitha waqala ukuhleka.

“Yho, mbambe kamsinyane,” wakhwaza umama wakhe.

Bamthi nqaku bambamba. Kanye ngexesha elifanelekileyo.