Sikwa-Ntu! There is only one way to describe my multisensory impressions of being at The Love House. Some people may hone or develop what is termed hospitality skills as they aim to create an impression or a profit in their business setting, but to some people that warm, hospitable feeling comes almost naturally. This is the essence of Isintu. I chose to use the word Isintu and avoid utilising the much abuse word Ubuntu purposefully.
The Love House has an energy or vibration of all the most inviting, Afrocentric and even revolutionarily attractive ideals. The hosts make everyone feel so welcomed it is as if they have always been a member of the family. Isintu is the people taken as a collective with all their cultural, customary, re-evolutionary and linguistic expressions. Isintu is a way of being, a way of behaving, a way of Speaking and a way of knowing others and oneself without recourse to theories, pretentions and social hang-ups.
As a Book Lover’s Hangout, as a home away from home and as a place to “discover, discuss and share new books” ideas and relations, The Love House is perfect and most appropriate. The celebration of Book Lovers Market one year anniversary was a resounding success due mainly to the atmosphere, the audience and the familial unit that was so enabling.
The performance by Vangile Gantsho was so heart-rending and evocative it spawned a discussion that resonated with everyone present. At a place like this the difference between the Artist, the Listener and the Organiser becomes blurred as the teacher becomes the student and the inter-personal communication enhances everyone’s natural ability to communicate and express themselves in their most human manners.
Zamantungwa Duduzile Mabaso, founder of Book Lover’s Market, came clearly prepared for all the Book Lovers and the marketing, promotional and reading material was professional and although the displays were somewhat informally arranged, the level of professionalism, accessibility and resourcefulness was commendable.
Words fail to describe the organic and electrifying yet calming feeling one experienced. It is a joy and inspiration to know that such oasis of peace, love, wisdom and Isintu still exist in the arid environment which is the urban setting. It is like after walking through a dry land and finally stepping into life giving water – Water from an ancient well. The presence of Love and humility makes for an unforgettable experience. The conversations after the Poetry and Ngoma recitals showed that everyone’s thirst was quenched.
Menzi Maseko is a Durban-based writer, translator and agitator. He works with Slam Poetry Operation Team, an Arts organisation that organises Slam Poetry events, Stage Performance and Writing Workshops. He blogs at www.litmusic-zwakala.blogspot.com