Sitting here scraping away the last vestiges of bright pink and orange from around my nails, I realise that I’ve neglected this space for a bit. I think it’s okay, though, because land and sheets of paper (however metaphorical or metaphysical) need to be left to lie fallow every once in a while. The cane must be burnt at night in a howling roaring frenzy of escaping animals and jubilant hunters, then harrowed in the slippery ashes ngocelemba and left to lie, to let the heat do its slow work in the sharp sweetness of the moba’s heart.

And I’ve been living this past week, especially while umakoti wami and abantwana bethu are on mid-term break.

But now it’s back to business, with a list of things I’m going to do – daily headlines from @isiKhovana, lessons to plan for my clients, more translations coming in, and a string of small household to-do’s unfolding in the hours and days ahead.

Before I dive in to the pile of work, though, I want to explain uMsombuluko.

Monday is the day of unfolding. It is also the day of regaining consciousness. It is the day of gaining wisdom and intelligence.

The ideophone sómbu can denote unrolling and loosening and unravelling, but it is also the sound of letting out something pent up deep inside you.

So let it out. See the day unrolling before you like a field of cane ready to be harvested, and go to it. If you haven’t screamed in a while, do so.