My Day with the Panye by Tami Charles Published:3 Jun 2021
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My Day with the Panye by Tami Charles Published:3 Jun 2021

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The panye means we are graceful when the load is heavy. We are strong, even when the earth is not. We are family, fed from love.

Fallon is going to the market with Maman. She ties her hair in a sun-yellow mouchwa, and places the panye carefully on her head. Fallon's toes tingle, she takes few few steps towards the door, and, BOOM!, the panye falls on the floor.

"Little by little the bird builds its nest," Maman says, "not everything is learned fast." As they walk past colourful walls under swirls of blue, cloudless sky, Maman carries the panye still on her head, graceful and strong. At the market, they buy their dinner, filling the panye with all kinds of fruits and vegetables. Then, as the sun dances across the sky, it's time to go home, and time for Fallon to try once again to carry the panye.

Will she be able to hold her head, graceful and strong, like Maman?