Date released:
November 9, 2021
Photo credit:
Ramphoko Mahula

IN THE BEGINNING and another poem


There was a boy, one who learnt the synonym of anger is pain.

He tells the story of a gaunt man whose modesty is buried in the scars of a hidden trail,

A lost footpath in the land of booze while his teachings are inflicted

On that boy That once called him father.

This boy watched as that man fed his mother vodka of torment.

A swing down her throat reverberated in her spine,

Her happily ever after confined in the pores of her blood

While that boy learnt to live under the shadows of his mother’s suffering,

He is nuzzled with a chant, “the closest to the one who sins is guilty”.

His bedtime is showtime for a distraught man,

Listen, boy, listen to her cries, listen to his beer speaking.

Listen when that bottle shatters on her body, pounding her head, her stomach.

Watch! His hangover is her makeover. Watch! Learn! Look! See!

Here is a boy accustomed to a childhood of aphorism meant to simmer a notion,

A false explanation to an act of cowardice, pain a remedy for pain.

He is a ball of emotions ready to erupt, perhaps he will one day,

Hopefully, when he is not drowning in a pool made from his father's blood

Because he swears, it is heartbreaking flying with clipped wings,

One day. One day, but today, let him bask in the blood of his coward mother,

With the notion, "the closest to the one who sins is guilty".


Writing had been my only friend, for it is the only parent I know.

It held my words and embraced my feelings

When I watched time steal mama,

A strand of hair soothing warmth to her comb till it finally took her tomorrow.

It buried me in its fortress when Father Bernard realized my potentials as a child,

A profane tool for comfort, an appraisal to the god he served, he said.

As he desecrated my body, burned incense, a thanksgiving to my spirit.

Oh, forgive me, for a night came when I watched his blood sprawled

On the ground like eagles ready to soar, a reminder of our fickleness as humans.

His Bible, which he held to his chest, now rested on his blood,

Floating gently, obeying the Archimedes principle.

Forgive me, for I watched a man who buried my voice underneath his palms

Like seedlings as he watched them germinate into rage, then wither like a plant.

His eyes bore an innocence his vestments protected,

An exaggerated lie to hide the conscience of a depraved man

Who crushed my childhood, ruined my existence,

As he eloped with my hope of living.

Forgive me as I embrace the thurible incensed with his earthly scent,

For I wish to live, long to breathe and yearn to survive.

Forgive me.

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