Tuesday, 3 November 2015


So it is over.
I sit on the plane heading home
Tearful as we take off
Not sure why
Relief I guess
Relief that this is over
Eager to wash off the stench of racism
Which sticks to my clothes
My skin my hair
There is contempt
A white contempt in the air
In SA that I have not exepreinced for a long time
It has taken its toil
Leaving is a relief
Saying goodbye is difficult
Leaving friends behind
Who live with this 
And do not have a place of retreat
Or sanctity.
It is a place I love and a place I hate
A place of beauty and a place of ugly
A play of joy and a place of great pain
A place stuck in the past but crying out for a future
A place of fire, of passion, of marching
Of young voices demanding, demanding
That their elders listen
A place where guilt seeps from white pores
But where true sacrifices are not made
Futile gestures
And patching up
But no real change
No real answers
I do not have the knowledge to break down all I have seen,
I can only explain how I feel,
I cannot theorise or intellectualise
All I can do is explain how I feel,
I cannot throw out names
Or break down political policies
All I can do is explain how I feel,
And even then sometimes words are not enough
Words cannot express
The hurt and pain
And poverty
It cannot explain the grown black men I have seen searching in bins on my early morning runs,
Searching for anything of us,
It cannot explain away the black bodies lying in grass,
momentarily at peace but not peaceful
Sleeping but not safe
It cannot explain away the old black woman 
so embarrassingly grateful for a few Rand
I place into her wrinkled hand,
It cannot explain the school children that walk miles to school everyday
It cannot explain away
The black labour force poorly paid
But grateful for work
It cannot explain away the filthy be-draggled young black boys
Hands always outstretched,
It cannot explain
The thieving behaviour of the ruling class
It cannot explain away how apartheid stooped
But racism and white privilege did not.

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