Story Library

Being told stories and being read to leads children to develop the rich storehouse of language, grammar and vocabulary they need to bring to texts when learning to read and write. 
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Iculo lofudu

Author

Ixoxwa kabusha nguPirai Mazungunye

Illustrator

Imidwebo nguSamantha van Riet

Translator

Ihunyushwe nguMalungi Mbhele

Kudalo, kwake kwaba khona isomiso esashisa yonke imifudlana, imifula, imithombo neziphethu. Umhlaba wonke waphenduka ugwadule olunothuli. Umuhlwa wasobozela wonke amaqabunga notshani okwakusasele, izilwane zaphoqeleka ukuba zize zidle nezinswazi ezomile ukuze ziphile.  

 

Njengoba impilo yabe seyinzima kangako, izilwane zahlangana ukuze zidingide le nkinga. Zaxoxa zaxoxa, zaphinde zaxoxa zaxoxa zaze zagcina zivumelene ngokuthi indlela yokuthola amanzi, kwakuwukuba zimbe umthombo ojulile. UNogwaja kuphela owenqaba ukuba yingxenye yalokhu.  

 

“Ngeke! Icebo lenu ngeke lisebenze,” kusho yena, “ngakho ngeke nje ngichithe isikhathi ngokumba.”  

 

“Ngakho-ke nathi ngeke sabelane nawe ngamanzi ethu!” kwasho ezinye izilwane.  

 

Wavele wazihlekela nje unogwaja, kodwa ezinye izilwane zazinesiqiniseko sokuthi icebo lazo lalizosebenza.  

 

Ngakho-ke, ngalo lona lolo suku, izilwane zehla zaya emhosheni, lapho umhlaba wawushone phansi kakhulu khona. UBhubesi waqala wemba umgodi. Kwalandela omunye, nomunye nomunye, izilwane zangena emgodini zemba – zonke ngaphandle kukaNogwaja noFudu.  

UNogwaja wavele wahlala phansi wazihleka. Wayengafuni ukumba, futhi akekho owamphoqa. Kodwa kwakwehlukile okukaFudu – wayethi uma ethi uyahuquzela ezokumba naye, abanye bangamvumeli ukuba ambe.  

 

“Hhayi ngeke, Fudu,” kusho bona. “Wena wenza kancane kakhulu. Uzosichithela isikhathi nje!”  

 

Kwaphela izinyanga. Babelokhu bemba kwaze ekugcineni kwaba nomgodi ojulile ... kodwa kungekho neconsi lamanzi.  

 

“Ha! Ha! Ha! Nginitshelile!” kuhleka uNogwaja. “Akukho manzi phansi lapho!”  

 

“Uqinisile kodwa,” kwasho uNtibane utshela uDube. “Asivele siyeke!”  

 

“Cha, asiqhubeke. Sizowathola amanzi,” kusho uFudu.  

 

“Weeee, uyafisa nje!” kuhleka uNogwaja.  

 

Usuku ngalunye, uFudu wabukela buthule ezinye izilwane zishintshisana ngokumba. Kwadlula isikhathi zilokhu zisaqhubeka nokumba, kodwa kwakungekho phawu lokuthi kukhona amanzi ayezovela.  

 

Ngelinye ilanga elalikhipha umkhovu etsheni, lapho zonke izilwane sezikhathele ziyimvithi zilele elangeni elishisayo eduze nomgodi ojulile nowomile, uFudu waphinde wacela ukuba naye bandla anikwe ithuba lokumba. Izilwane zavele zamziba nje. Ezinye zazo zase zikhathele, sezingasenandaba nokuthi wenzani. Eziningi zazo zazizilalele, zijuluka, zibubula ebuthongweni.  

 

UFudu washaya kancane enwabuluka eya emgodini, waqala wemba. Inhlabathi yayilukhuni satshe, kodwa waqhubeka ehwaya, ephonsa inhlabathi eyomile emva kwakhe. “Ngiyahwaya, ngihwayela ukuthola amanzi,” ezisholo ngenkathi emba. “Akulula, kodwa ngiyazi kuzoba nomvuzo!”  

 

Kungekudala wayeseqambe iculo lakhe lokumsiza ngenkathi emba. UFudu walicula leli culo lakhe eliphindaphinda:  

 

“Ngiyahwaya ngiyahwaya ngihwayela ukuthola amanzi, Ngizomba, ngimbe, ngimbe ngize ngiwathole.”  

 

Emva kwesikhathi, kwaqhamuka uNogwaja ezishayelwa umoya. Wathi uma ezwa lawa mazwi eqhamuka emgodini, waphubuka wahleka. Lokhu kwavusa ezinye izilwane. Ngokubhodla okunentukuthelo, uBhubesi wagxumela emgodini, wacosha uFudu wamphonsa le endundumeni yenhlabathi eduze nomgodi.  

 

“AWU!” washo ezikhalela, wathi gakla phansi. “Akulungile neze lokhu! Nami ngiyafuna ukumba!”  

 

“Musa ukuchitha isikhathi sethu! Dlala lapho enhlabathini eduze nomgodi,” kwasho uBhubesi ngesankahlu esenza uFudu wavele wakhala.  

 

Ezinye zezilwane zaludabukela bandla ufudu olunesibindi. “Mnikezeni naye ithuba bandla!” kuncenga uNkonka. “Yebo,” kwasho uNdlulamithi, “mvumeleni naye azame bo!”  

 

Engashongo lutho, uBhubesi wanwabela ngaphandle komgodi wadedela uFudu angene. Wanwabuluka-ke, esula izinyembezi zakhe wagibela waphindela emgodini. Waqala phansi, wemba futhi ecula:  

 

“Ngiyahwaya ngiyahwaya ngihwayela ukuthola amanzi, Ngizomba, ngimbe, ngimbe ngize ngiwathole.”  

 

UNogwaja noNkawu babegingqika phansi befa yinsini.  

 

UBhubesi naye waphonsa umhlwenga wakhe emuva wamamatheka. “Nginitshelile ukuthi nizichithela isikhathi nje!” kusho yena.  

 

UBhejane wasondela ngaphambili ukuze alunguze emgodini ... kwathi engazelele wezwa umsindo othi, THWAXA! isigaxa senhlabathi emanzi sandiza siphuma emgodini samshaya ebusweni!  

“Qaphela, uzongilimaza amehlo!” wamemeza emboza ubuso bakhe, kodwa ezinye izilwane zabona ukuthi inhlabathi yabe imanzi.  

“Amanzi!” zamemeza. “UFudu uthole amanzi!”  

Izilwane zaphuthuma zeza ngaphambili, zizama ukufika emthonjeni lapho amanzi ayephuphuma khona. Izilwane ezinkulu zasunduza lezi ezincanyana endleleni, kodwa uNdlovu omkhulukazi wayemkhulu kunabo bonke abanye. Ngamathamo nje ambalwa, wawaphuza wonke amanzi, waqala wemba efuna amanye. Ezinye izilwane zagcina ngokububula nje zakhala – noma zakhama inhlabathi emanzi ukuze zithole noma amaconsana nje amanzi.  

UNdlovu wemba ngamandla wakhipha izigaxa ngezigaxa zenhlabathi. Kodwa esikhathini esincane nje, izilwane zaqaphela ukuthi inhlabathi ngenhlabathi ayeyiphonsa, yayingathi iya ngokuya yoma kakhulu, kwaze kwathi ekugcineni inhlabathi ephumayo kwaba ngeyome nkwe.  

Izilwane zabukela ngokudangala. Kancane, kancane, isilwane ngasinye saphendukela kuFudu owayehleli kujana nje.  

“Ndlovu!” kumemeza uBhejane. “Phuma!”  

“Fudu! Fudu!” izilwane zamemeza kakhulu. “Sicela usisize bandla!”  

Ngakho uFudu waphinde wagibela waya phansi emgodini lapho aqala ukumba ecula iculo lakhe futhi:  

“Ngiyahwaya ngiyahwaya ngihwayela ukuthola amanzi, Ngizomba, ngimbe, ngimbe ngize ngiwathole.”  

Kodwa manje, ezinye izilwane, zacula kanye naye:  

“Uyahwaya uyahwaya uhwayela ukuthola amanzi...”  

Akuphelanga sikhathi esingakanani uFudu wabe esephonsa inhlabathi emanzi iphuma emgodini. Wabe esema ukuhwaya phansi wadeda. Amanzi ahlanzekile, abandayo aphuphuma eya phezulu agcwalisa umgodi womthombo.  

Izilwane zacula zasina, zaphuza amanzi zazidelisa. Ngisho noNogwaja wahlanganyela nazo – kwazise phela, wonke umuntu wayeneme kakhulu, wakhohlwa nokumxosha. UFudu wayebasindisile bonke!