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`Umngani othembekile

Author

Retold Dawn Garisch

Translator

Busisiwe Pakade

Ngolunye usuku ekuseni uGundane Lexhaphozi  walunguzisa ikhanda lakhe phakathi komhlanga osebeni lomfula. Wabhekisa ikhala lakhe phezulu  watshikizisa umsila, ehogela  umoya ukuze ezwe ukuthi ubani owayeseduze. Kweza amatshwele amadada  ayesanda kuchamselwa eqhamuka ekhoneni, ebukeka njengeqoqo lamabhola anoboya obuningi. Unina wayelandela eduze ngemva kwawo. UMama uDada wayenobuso obumhlophe nekhanda elimnyama. Wayezama ukufundisa amadada ukuthi ame kanjani ngamakhanda emanzini.

“Angeke nikwazi ukudlisela ngaphandle la uma ningakwazi ukuma ngamakhanda,” elokhu ephinda la mazwi, ebakhombisa ukuthi kwenziwa kanjani. Kodwa amatshwele akhe   awazange amnake. Ayesemancane kakhulu,   engazi ukuthi kwakuzowasiza kanjani ukudlisela kwabanye.

“Zaze zedelela  lezi zingane!” kumemeza uGundane Lexhaphozi, “zifanelwe ukugwiliziswa.”

“Ayikho leyo nto,” kuphendula uMama uDada, “sonke kumele kube khona lapho siqala khona, futhi abazali kumele babe nesineke.”

“Hhayi! Angazi lutho ngokuba umzali,” kusho uGundane Lexhaphozi. “Angiyena ubaba futhi anginayo nenhloso yokuba nguye. Luhle uthando, kodwa kuhle  kakhulu ukuba nomngani othembekile.”

“Ucabanga ukuthi umngani onjani umngani othembekile?” kubuza uNogolantethe  onomlomo  ophuzi owayezwe ingxoxo ngesikhathi ehamba  emanzini aseduze nalapho.

“Nami ngingathanda ukwazi,” kusho idada, lime ngekhanda futhi.

“Naze nawubuza umbuzo owubulima!” kumemeza uGundane Lexhaphozi. “Umngani wami othembekile kumele azinikele kimina nje kuphela.”

“Wena uzomenzelani ngalokho?” kubuza uNogolantethe, enyakazisa izinyawo zakhe echokoloza odakeni ngomlomo wakhe omude ophuzi.

“Angiwuqondi umbuzo wakho,” kuphendula uGundane Lexhahozi.

“Ake ngikuxoxele indaba,” kusho uNogolantethe.

“Ngabe indaba emayelana nami?” kubuza uGundane Lexhaphozi. “Uma kunjalo, ngizolalela.”

“Ungase usho kanjalo,” kuphendula uNogolantethe, ebamba inhlanzi ngomlomo wakhe eyigwinya,  elekelela lokhu ngokunyakazisa ikhanda lakhe. Wama ngonyawo olulodwa, waphefumula ngendlela ekhombisa ukweneliseka wase exoxa indaba yomngani othembekile.

Isahluko sesi-2

Endulo kwakukhona umfana othembekile ogama lakhe lalinguSizwe.

“Wayethandeka kodwa?”  kugxambukela uGundane Lexhaphozi.

“Angicabangi ukuthi wayezama ukudlisela kwabanye abantu,” kuphendula uNogolantethe. “Wayenomusa kakhulu − leyo kwakuyindlela ayephila ngayo. Kulungile-ke, ake ngiqhubeke nendaba …”

USizwe wayehlala yedwa endlini encane eseduze nomfudlana.  Wayesebenza emasimini nsuku zonke. Kuyo yonke indawo  yasemakhaya yalapho  kwakungekho nsimu eyayigcwele izitshalo njengeyakhe. Kwakukhula ummbila, otamatisi, namathanga amakhulu alingana namasondo ebhala. Kwakukhona isipinashi, amazambane, nezihlahla ezinde  zikabhanana.  Amakherothi akhe  ayenoshukela futhi  esawolintshi kangangokuthi abantu babewadla  eluhlaza ngaphambi kokuba bawapheke. Ngesinye isikhathi wayetshala  amastrobheri  abomvu  anojusi.

Umfanyana uSizwe wayenabangani abaningi, kodwa umngani othembeke kakhulu kuyena kwakunguMlimi owayekhiqiza okobisi owayenepulazi elisegqumeni. Wayethembeke kakhulu kuSizwe lo mlimi ocebile okhiqiza  okobisi  kangangokuthi wayengadluli ensimini kaSizwe  engazange wagoba phezu kocingo  wase ekha izikhwebu zommbila noma isixha  sikabhanana azoya naso ekhaya.

“Abangani beqiniso kumele babelane,” kwakusho  uMlimi.  Umfanyana uSizwe wayevuma ngekhanda bese emamatheka, wayeziqhenya ngokuthi  umngani bakhe  wayewuthanda kangaka  umkhiqizo wakhe.

Umfanyana uSizwe akazange ake ame azibuze ukuthi kungani uMlimi ocebile okhiqiza  okobisi  engakaze amnike lutho yena.   Empeleni uMlimi  lo  wayenamasondo oshizi amaningi ayebekwe enqolobaneni engaphansi kwendlu, izinkomo zobisi ezingamashumi amathathu nomhlambi omkhulu wezimvu ezinoboya obuningi. USizwe wayejatshuliswa ukulalela zonke izinto ezinhle ezazishiwo uMlimi  mayelana nokungagodli lutho ebunganini beqiniso.

Ngakho uSizwe waqhubeka wasebenza ensimini yakhe. Wayelokhu ejabule   ekwindla,  ebusika nasentwasahlobo yonke, kodwa kwana izimvula ezinkulu ehlobo. Umfudlana wakhula waba umfula, umfula wadla izindwani wangena ensimini kaSizwe. Izitshalo ayezitshalile zakhukhuleka ezinye zabolela ngaphansi kwamanzi. USizwe wayengasenamifino ayengayoyidayisa emakethe. Ngalelo hlobo, isikhathi esiningi wayelala engadlile noma alale edle omango abambalwa nje.  Wayenesizungu, ngenxa yokuthi uMlimi okhiqiza  okobisi wayengasezi ngalesi sikhathi.

Isahluko sesi-3

“Akusizi ukuyobona umfanyana uSizwe ngesikhathi insimu yakhe isagcwele amanzi,”   kusho  uMlimi  kunkosikazi wakhe. Ipulazi labo laliphezulu egqumeni, ngakho izinkomo, izimvu namasimu abo ayesindile. “Uma abantu besenkingeni kumele kebayekwe  nje, bangalokho bephazanyiswa izivakashi. Ngizolinda aze  ehle  amanzi  uSizwe aze ukwazi ukutshala izitshalo ezintsha. Ngizobe sengimvakashela-ke,  anginike  ubhasikidi ogcwele imifino, lokho kuzomjabulisa  kakhulu,” kusho  uMlimi.

“Ungumngani omcabangela ngempela umngani wakhe,” kuphendula umkakhe  ngesikhathi efaka ukudla  esiqandisini sabo. “Ngiyamcabangela ngempela. Kushisa kakhulu ukuthi umuntu kungakhona lapho eya khona. Futhi kuzoba kubi kakhulu kumfanyana uSizwe ukuthi nawe ubone insimu yakhe eyonakele.”

“Kodwa angeke yini sikwazi ukumbiza akhuphukele lapha?” kubuza indodana encane yoMlimi   ihlafuna ukudla kwayo.  “Uma kuwukuthi umfanyana uSizwe usenkingeni, ngizomnika uhhafu wesementshi lami bese ngimkhombisa onogwaja bami abamhlophe ukuze akhohlwe okungamphethe kahle.”

“Siphukuphuku somfana!” kumemeza uMlimi.  “Kusizani ukukuhambisa esikoleni uma kungekho okufundayo?  Uma umfanyana uSizwe eza lapha phezulu bese ebona isiziba sethu esipholile  sokubhukuda,   ushizi wethu omuhle nomphongolo wethu omuhle kakhulu wewayini elibomvu, kungenzeka abe nomona. Umona uyinto embi kabi. Ungamguqula  umuntu onomusa. Angeke ngivumele ukuthi uSizwe aguquke  kulokho ayikho.  Ngingungani wakhe omkhulu. Ngizohlala ngimqaphele,  ngiqinisekise nokuthi ngeke angene akulingweni. Ngaphandle kwalokho, uma uSizwe engakhuphukela lapha kungenzeka acele ukunikwa ushizi ngesikweletu, angeke ngikwazi ukukwenza lokho. Ushizi awuhlangani nobungani, lokhu kumele kuhlale kwehlukene.  . Amagama alokhu kokubili apelwa ngendlela eyehlukene futhi achaza izinto ezahlukene ngempela. Akekho   ongakwazi lokho.”

“Uyiciko ekukhulumeni!” kusho unkosikazi woMlimi , ezithelela ubisi engilazini enkulu. “Ngingasho nje ukuthi ngizizwa sengozela ngenxa yokulalelana nawe.  Sekufana nokuba sesontweni nje.”

“Baningi abantu abenza kahle,” kuphendula uMlimi  okhiqiza okobisi, “kodwa bambalwa abangamaciko ekukhulumeni. Kunzima kakhulu ukuba yiciko ekukhulumeni, uyabona-ke ukuthi mina  ngiyindoda eyiciko kakhulu.” Wabuka indodana yakhe encane ngonya ngakolunye uhlangothi lwetafula, yazizwa inamahloni, yabheka phansi, izihlathi zayo zaba bomvu ngesikhathi ikhala, izinyembezi zayo ziwela etiyeni layo.

Isahluko sesi-4

“Ngabe iphela lapho yini indaba?” kubuza uGundane Lexhaphozi.

“Cha bo!” kuphendula uNogolantethe. “Isaqala le ndaba.”

“Lokhu kuchaza ukuthi usaqhuba isidala,” ” kusho uGundane Lexhaphozi. “Umxoxi omuhle  esikhathini samanje  uqala indaba  ngesiphetho sayo, kube yima  eyoqala ekuqaleni, bese iphetha phakathi nendawo.  Indlela entsha le. Lokhu  ngakuzwa  ngolunye usuku kushiwo  ngumhlaziyi  wobuciko bamagama  owayehamba osebeni lomfula wethu nenye insizwa. Wakhuluma ngalokhu isikhathi eside, futhi nginesiqiniseko sokuthi kufanele ukuba uqinisile, ngoba  wayefake  izibuko eziluhlaza okwesibhakabhaka,  enempandla,  kuthi njalo uma le nsizwa iphawula ngokuthile, yena  athi, ‘Hhiya, suka!’ Kodwa qhubeka nendaba yakho. Ngimthanda kakhulu uMlimi  okhiqiza   okobisi,” kusho uGundane Lexhaphozi.

UNogolantethe wadonsa kakhulu umoya waqhubeka.

Kwathi  esehlile amanzi,  umfanyana uSizwe waqala ukusebenza futhi. Walima, wafaka umquba wase etshala izitshalo zakhe ensimini yakhe. Wayesebenza kusukela ekuseni kakhulu  kuze kube  sebusuku kakhulu. Wayesebenza  aze  ajuluke  esiphongweni nesandla sakhe saphume  amabhamuza.

Esikhathini esingengakanani kwavela izithombo zakhipha amaqabunga ngaphansi komhlaba zawaphakamisela elangeni. Amaklabishi akhula aze aba ngangamakhanda ezingane, izitshalo zikabhontshisi zakhuphuka ngocingo. UMlimi  okhiqiza  okobisi wabona esegqumeni ukuthi insimu kaSizwe yase ivuke ngempela. Watshela unkosikazi wakhe ukuthi uzokwehla ayovakashela uSizwe,

“Hawu,  awuve unenhliziyo enhle!” kusho unkosikazi wakhe, “uhlale ucabangela abanye abantu. Ngicela uhambe nobhasikidi omkhulu  yikhona  uzophatha imifino.”

Ngakho uMlimi  wehla egqumeni egodle  ubhasikidi.

“Sawubona, mfanyana uSizwe,” kusho uMlimi.

“Sawubona,” kusho uSizwe ezimelela ngefosholo emamatheka kakhulu.

“Ubuphila kanjani ihlobo lonke?” kubuza uMlimi.

“Ngiyabonga ngokuthi uthanda  ukwazi,” kusho uSizwe, “kuhle kakhulu lokho. Ngeshwa ngibe nesikhathi esinzima kakhulu ngenxa yamanzi amaningi,  kodwa manje sengiyajabula, futhi nemifino yami ikhula  kahle.”

“Besihlale  sikhuluma ngawe ngesikhathi sasehlobo, Sizwe,” kusho uMlimi,  “futhi besizibuza ukuthi kazi unjani.”

“Nenze into enhle,” kusho uSizwe, “Bengicabanga ukuthi ungikhohliwe.”

“Uyangimangaza, Sizwe,” kusho uMlimi.   “Abangani abakhohlwana. Nanso into enhle ngobungani.”

UMlimi  okhiqiza  okobisi wabheka  ensimini. “Aze amahle amaklabishi akho!” kusho yena.

“Mahle ngempela,” kusho uSizwe, “futhi nginenhlanhla yokuba namaningi kangaka. Ngizowadayisela indodakazi yemeya. Ngizobe sengikwazi ukuthenga ngibuyise ikalishi lami ngaleyo mali.”

“Ukuthenga ubuyise ikalishi lakho? Ungasho ukuthi ubulithengisile? Wenze ubuwula!” kusho uMlimi.

Isahluko sesi-5

“Eqinisweni nje,” kusho uSizwe, “Yayingekho into  engangingayenza.   Ngangingasenayo imali yokuthenga isinkwa ngenxa yamanzi amaningi.   Ngakho ngaqala ngadayisa ibhantshi lami lesikhumba, ngase ngidayisa umgexo wami wesiliva ngagcina sengidayise nekalishi lami. Kodwa ngizokuthenga ngikubuyise konke lokhu.”

“Ngizokunikeza ikalishi lami,” kusho uMlimi.  “Alikho esimweni esihle hle. Uhlangothi olulodwa luphukile futhi kukhona nokungahambi kahle emasondweni, kodwa  ngizokunikeza lona noma kunjalo.   Phela angive ngiphana. Abantu abaningi bangacabanga ukuthi ngenza ubuwula, kodwa ngicabanga ukuthi ukuphana kuyisisekelo sobungani. Ngaphandle kwalokho, sengizithengele ikalishi elisha.”

“Ngiyawubonga umusa wakho omkhulu kangaka,” kusho umfanyana uSizwe ngesikhathi ubuso bakhe bukhazimula yinjabulo. “Ngingalilungisa ikalishi ngoba nginepulangwe elisegushede  lami.”

“Ipulangwe!” kusho uMlimi  ngenjabulo. “Yilokho engikudingela isikhala esivuleke othangweni lwami. Zizophuma izimvu uma ngingasivali.  Ngaze nganenhlanhla ngokuthi usho lokhu! Iyamangaza indlela isenzo esisodwa  esihle esiholela ngayo kwesinye. Ngizokunikeza ikalishi lami bese unginika ipulangwe lakho. Empeleni, ikalishi libiza ukudlula ukhuni, kodwa abangani beqiniso abazibheki lezi zinto. Phuthuma uyolanda ipulangwe ukuze ngilungise uthango lwami namhlanje.”

“Nakanjani,” kuphendula umfanyana uSizwe. Wagijima waya egushede  lakhe wadonsa ipulangwe.

“Alilikhulu kakhulu leli pulangwe,” kusho uMlimi  elibuka, “ngeshwa angiboni ukuthi likhona elizosala ozokwazi ukulungisa ngalo ikalishi ngemuva kokuba sengilungise uthango lwami, kodwa akulona iphutha lami lelo. Manje-ke njengoba ngikunikeza ikalishi lami nje, nginesiqiniseko sokuthi angeke ube nankinga nokunginika amaklabishi ngalo. Nanku ubhasikidi. Ngicela uwugcwalise.”

“Ngiwugcwalise?” kubuza umfanyana uSizwe kalusizi, ngoba kwakuwubhasikidi omkhulu kakhulu, futhi wayazi ukuthi uma ewugcwalisile, angeke akwazi ukuthola imali eyanele yokuthi abuye athenge ibhantshi lakhe lesikhumba.

Isahluko se-6

“Phela,”  kuphendula uMlimi,  “njengoba ngizokunika ikalishi lami nje, angikholwa ukuthi ngizobe ngikubulele ngokucela amaklabishi ambalwa. Mhlawumbe ngenza iphutha, kodwa bengicabanga ukuthi ubungani, ngisho ubungani beqiniso, abunakho neze ukuzicabangela wena wedwa kwanganoma iluphi uhlobo.”

“Mngani wami omuhle, mngani wami omkhulu,” kuphendula umfanyana uSizwe, “Kungcono ngilalele imibono yakho eyakhayo kunokuthi ngithole ibhantshi  lami lesikhumba.” Wagijima wayokukha  amaklabishi akhe amahlanu amahle ukuwadlula onke wagcwalisa ubhasikidi  woMlimi.

“Usale kahle,  mfanyana uSizwe,” kusho uMlimi  ngesikhathi ekhuphuka egqumeni etshethe ipulangwe ehlombe  lakhe ephethe nobhasikidi osindayo ngesandla sakhe.

“Uhambe kahle,” kusho umfanyana uSizwe ngesikhathi eqala ukugubha ngokuthokoza. Wayejabule kakhulu ngekalishi ayezoba nalo maduze nje.

Osukwini olulandelayo ngesikhathi esizwe esakhipha iminenke esivandeni sakhe sesipinashi wezwa uMlimi  ememeza emgwaqweni. USizwe wagijima wehla nensimu wayolunguza ngasothangweni.   Kwakumi lapho uMlimi lowo  ebelethe  isaka elikhulu elinoshizi emhlane wakhe.

“Mfanyana uSizwe  othandekayo,” kusho uMlimi,, “ungangihambela  bandla maleli saka likashizi uye nalo emakethe?”

“Awu, ngiyaxolisa kakhulu,” kusho uSizwe, “kodwa ngimatasatasa kakhulu namhlanje. Kumele ngikhiphe ukhula kuzo zonke izivande zami.”

“Angeke kwenzeke lokho,” kusho uMlimi. . “Uma ucabanga ukuthi mina ngikunikeza ikalishi lami,  akuyona into enhle ukuthi wenqabe.”

“Hawu, ungasho kanjalo,” kuphendula uSizwe. “Angeke ngingakukhombisi ubungani nganoma iyiphi indlela.” USizwe wagijima waya endlini yakhe walanda ikepisi lakhe, wahamba etshethe isaka elisindayo likashizi  emahlombe akhe.

Kwakushisa kakhulu. USizwe wayesekhathele kakhulu ngaphambi kokuba afike edolobheni, kwaze kwadingeka ukuthi ahlale phansi aphumule. Ekugcineni wafika emakethe lapho adayisa khona ushizi ngemali enhle kakhulu. Wabuyela ekhaya  ngokushesha, ngenxa yokuthi wayesaba ukuhlangana nabaphangi endleleni.

Isahluko se-7

Ekuseni kakhulu ngakusasa  uMlimi  okhiqiza  okobisi wehla wazolanda imali yakhe kashizi, kodwa uSizwe wayekhathele kangangokuba wayesalele.

“Mameshane,” kubhavumula uMlimi,  “uvilapha kakhulu. Ubuvila buyisono esikhulu kanti futhi angithandi ukuthi abangani bami babe ngamavila. Kungakuphathi kabi ukukutshela kwami iqiniso.  Kungashiwo kanjani   ukuthi  kunobungani obuhle uma umuntu engeke akwazi ukutshela omunye iqiniso? Wonke umuntu angakutshela lokho ofuna ukukuzwa, kodwa umngani weqiniso usho  nezinto ezingemnandi  ngoba  azi ukuthi wenza into enhle.”

“Ngiyaxolisa kakhulu,” kusho umfanyana uSizwe, ecikica  amehlo akhe, “bengikhathele kangangokuba bese ngilele embhedeni ngilalele ukucula kwezinyoni. Ngihlale  ngisebenza kangcono ngemuva kokuzwa izinyoni zicula.”

“Kuhle, kuyangithokozisa lokho,” kusho uMlimi  embambatha uSizwe emhlane, “ngoba namhlanje ngifuna uzolungisa uthango lwami.”

Umfanyana uSizwe wabantu wayenexhala  lokuyosebenza ensimini yakhe, ngoba wayedinga ukutshala u-anyanisi.

“Ngabe kuzokhombisa ukuthi anginabo ubungani  uma ngithi ngixakekile namhlanje?” ebuza ngokwesaba.

“Ngingathi nje,” kuphendula uMlimi,  “angikholwa  ukuthi ngikucele ukuba  ungenzele into elukhuni, uma ubheka ukuthi ngizokupha ikalishi lami, kodwa-ke uma kuwukuthi uyenqaba, ngizozilungisela uthango lwami.”

“Cha, awunakukwenza lokho,”  kuphendula umfanyana uSizwe. Wagqoka wakuphukela epulazini lemikhiqizo yobisi.

Wasebenza  lapho usuku lonke, kwaze kwahlwa, wase efika  uMlimi  ezobona ukuthi uqhuba kanjani.

“Hheshe!” kusho uMlimi  ngesikhathi ebona ukuthi uthango lwakhe selulungisiwe, “umsebenzi omuhle kakhulu yilowo umuntu awenzela abanye abantu.”

“Kuyinhlanhla enkulu ukukuzwa ukhuluma kanjalo,” kuphendula umfanyana uSizwe, ehlala phansi esula isiphongo sakhe, “kuyinhlanhla enkulu. Angiboni ukuthi mina ngingakwazi ukuqhamuka nale miqondo emihle kangaka.”

“Cha,  uzoba nayo,” kusho uMlimi.  “Okwamanje wazi okumele ukwenze ukukhombisa ubungani,  kodwa ngelinye ilanga uyowazi nomqondo ojulile wokuthi buyini ubungani lobu.   Kungcono ukuthi uye ekhaya uyophumula manje, ngoba ngifuna uqhubele izinkomo zami egushede  kusasa ekuseni kakhulu ukuze uzisenge.”

Umfanyana uSizwe wabantu wavuka ekuseni kakhulu ngakusasa.  Waqhuba izinkomo zoMlimi  zaya egushede,  wachitha isikhathi esiningi sasekuseni ezisenga.  Ngesikhathi efika ekhaya wayekhathele kangangokuthi wazumekela esitulweni.

Isahluko se-8

“Angive ngizoba nesikhathi esimnandi ensimini yami namhlanje,”  kucabanga uSizwe ngesikhathi evuka ekuseni ngosuku olulandelayo, noma izingalo zakhe zazisebuhlungu ngenxa yokusenga izinkomo.

Kodwa wagcina engakwazanga ukunakekela imifino yakhe, ngoba umngani wakhe uMlimi  wayelokhu eza kuye emthuma ukuthi ayomenzela izinto ezithile ezindaweni ezikude, noma ukuthi azolekelela epulazini lokukhiqiza ubisi.   Umfanyana uSizwe wayekhathazeke kakhulu, ngenxa yokuthi wayesaba ukuthi imifino yakhe izocabanga ukuthi uyikhohliwe, kodwa waziduduza ngomcabango wokuthi uMlimi  wayengumngane wakhe omkhulu, futhi wayezomnikeza ikalishi lakhe.

Ngakho umfanyana uSizwe wasebenzela  uMlimi  ngokuzikhandla, uMlimi lo  washo zonke izinto ezinhle mayelana nobungani. USizwe wayebhala yonke into encwadini yakhe yamanothi bese ezifundela la magama ebusuku, ngoba wayengumfundi omuhle.

Ngobunye ubusuku basebusika obubanda kakhulu, umfanyana uSizwe wayehleli ngaseziko  wezwa ngokungqongqoza okukhulu emnyango.

“Kufanele  kube umhambi odinga usizo,” kucabanga umfanyana uSizwe ngesikhathi ephuthuma emnyango. Kodwa wafica lapho kumi  uMlimi  okhiqiza  okobisi ephethe ithoshi ngesinye isandla ephethe induku enkulu ngesinye.

“Mfanyana uSizwe othandekayo,” kukhala uMlimi,  “Ngisenkingeni enkulu. Umfana wami uwe esitebhisini walimala. Udinga udokotela, kodwa udokotela uhlala kude kakhulu kanti futhi kubanda kakhulu  ngalobu busuku. Ngicabanga ukuthi kungaba ngcono  kube nguwe olanda udokotela esikhundleni sami. Angithi uyazi ukuthi ngizokunika ikalishi lami, ngakho kuhle  ukuthi nawe kube khona into ongenzela yona.”

“Nakanjani,” kuphendula umfanyana uSizwe. “Wenze kahle ngokuthi ungicele. Ngizohamba njengamanje. Ngiboleke ithoshi lakho, ngoba bumnyama kakhulu lobu busuku ngesaba ukuthi kungenzeka ngikhalakathele ezindongeni.”

“Ngiyaxolisa,” kuphendula uMlimi,  “yithoshi lami elisha leli futhi ngizobe ngilahlekelwe kakhulu uma kungaba khona okwenzeka kulona.”

“Akunandaba, ngizokwazi ukuhamba,” kusho umfanyana uSizwe. Wethula ibhantshi  nekepisi lakhe elifudumele elibomvu.  Wase ebophela isikhafu emqaleni wakhe wahamba.

Isahluko se-9

Babubanda kakhulu lobo busuku, kunenyanga esasiliva nje kuphela le phezulu! Umfanyana uSizwe wayengaboni kahle, kodwa ngemuva kokuba esehambe amahora alinganiselwa kwamathathu, wangqongqoza emnyango kadokotela.

“Ubani lowo?” kumemeza udokotela.

“Umfanyana uSizwe, Dokotela.”

“Ngabe ufunani, mfanyana uSizwe?” kumemeza udokotela.

“Indodana yoMlimi  okhiqiza okobisi ilimele, ucela ukuba uze njengamanje,” kuphendula uSizwe.

Udokotela wehlela ezansi wagibela ibhayisikili lakhe wahamba ngendlela eqonde endlini yoMlimi.   Umfanyana uSizwe  waqala uhambo olude lokuya ekhaya yedwa.

Kodwa amafu amnyama amboza inyanga, umfanyana uSizwe waduka. Wahamba waya ngasemfuleni,  okwakuyindawo eyingozi kakhulu. Kwakunezindonga eziphakeme ezinhlangothini zombili zomfula, umfanyana uSizwe wakhalakathela eweni waphonseka emfuleni ogelezayo.  Wacwiliswa yibhantshi lakhe elisindayo waminza.   Isidumbu sakhe  esasintanta emanzini  satholwa abelusi bezimbuzi ngosuku olulandelayo.

UMlimi  kwakunguye umlili omkhulu emngcwabeni kamfanyana uSizwe.

“Bengingumngani wakhe omkhulu,” kusho uMlimi.  “Ngakho kuhle ukuthi ngibe sendaweni ephambili kunabo bonke abantu.” Ngakho waya phambi kwebhokisi ede esula amehlo akhe ngeduku lapho wayezobonwa khona yibo bonke abantu.

“Ngokushona kukamfanyana uSizwe silahlekelwe kakhulu,” kusho  unkosikazi kaMlimi  sewuphelile umngcwabo. “Sizoba yini ngaphandle kwemifino yakhe?”

“Silahlekelwe kakhulu,” kuphendula uMlimi.  “Kodwa  njengoba  ngingazange ngimnike nje ikalishi lami, angazi ukuthi ngizolenzenjani manje. Livimbe indlela endlini yami futhi seliphuke kakhulu, angeke ngisakwazi ukulidayisa. Angeke ngiphinde ngiphisane ngalutho futhi. Umuntu uhlala ezithola esenkingeni ngenxa yokuphana kwakhe.”

“Kwase-ke?”  kusho uGungane Lexhaphozi, ngemuva kokuthi kuthuleke isikhathi eside.

“Empeleni, iyaphela lapho indaba,” kusho uNogolantethe.

“Kodwa kwenzekani kuMlimi  okhiqiza  okobisi?” kubuza uGundane Lexhaphozi.

“He! Eqinisweni angazi,” kuphendula uNogolantethe, “futhi anginandaba nokwazi.”

“Kucacile ukuthi ungumuntu ongenalo uzwelo umthetho wakho,” kusho uGundane Lexhaphozi.

“Engathi awuyitholanga ingqikithi yesifundo sendaba,” kuphawula uNogolantethe.

“Ini?” kubuza uGundane Lexhaphozi.

“Ingqikithi yesifundo,” kuphinda uNogolantethe.

“Uchaza ukuthi indaba inengqikithi yesifundo?” kubuza uGundane Lexhaphozi.

“Impela,” kusho  uNogolantethe.

“Awu, ngempela,” kusho uGundane Lexhaphozi ngolaka, “Ngicabanga ukuthi bekumele ungitshele lokhu ngaphambi kokuba uqale. Ngabe angilalelanga nhlobo.  Eqinisweni, kumele ngabe ngithe ‘Hhiya, suka!’ njengomcubunguli wobuciko bamagama.   Kodwa ngisengakusho namanje.” Wamemeza wathi, “Hhiya, suka!” ngezwi eliphezulu, etshikizisa umsila wakhe wase enyamalala phakathi komhlanga.

“Umthole enjani uGundane leXhaphozi?” kubuza uDada,  ebhukuda  eza ngakuye.

“Ngiyadabuka ukuthi ngimcasulile, ” kusho uNogolantethe. “Ngimxoxele indaba enengqikithi yesifundo.”

“Hhayi! Lokhu kuhlale kuyinto eyingozi ukuthi uyenze,” kusho uDada.  Wase  efaka ikhanda lakhe  emanzini  wama ngalo ukuze  adlisele kuNogolantethe.