A 14-YEAR-OLD pupil at Christian Brothers College in Bulawayo, Mukudzeiishe Madzivire, recently launched his debut short story and poetry collection at the Bulawayo Music Academy.
BY JOEL TSVAKWI
Madzivire told NewsDay Life & Style that he was driven to pen the book — titled Inscriptions — by the desire to capture his observations as a young person.
“When people ask me why I wrote the book, my answer is in two parts. First, because I had to vent about the issues I saw surrounding us as humans,” he said.
Madzivire told the audience during the launch that he was an advocate for youth empowerment and had interests in women’s and children’s rights too.
“Our world today is now in desperate need of youth involvement in discussions of social problems and it is indeed an honour knowing that I am playing a part in putting the voice of the deliberately silenced out into the public,” he said.
He said he was challenged by his father to write a book after a friend had written one. The decision to follow the same path forced him to read extensively before he could commit pen to paper.
Madzivire said he was concerned about the erosion of reading culture among young people in the country but it was through reading that he became alive to a lot of problems afflicting society.
“The more I read, the more I began to notice a trend – the majority of children being abused don’t even know they’re being abused. They don’t know that they have the right to say no. I was furious,” he said.
“We tend to look far for ideas on how to change the world, yet often, the answers are right in front of us.”
He said he was passionate about environmental protection, the right to education, access to clean drinking water and young girls’ struggle to access sanitary wear.
Madzivire said he was highly indebted to Primary and Secondary Education minister Paul Mavima, who, however, failed to attend the launch as per plan because he had to attend the late academic Phinias Makhurane’s funeral.
Mavima provided the foreword to the book, a gesture for which Mazivire said he was grateful.