Jonathan Smith
CURRENT AFFAIRS, POETRY

9 August – A poem

Jonathan Smith
Jonathan Smith

By Jonathan Smith

09 August

A day, They say,

We will give them a day.

A day to honour, respect, love:

to show We Care.

 

 

Those grey, They say, We recall the grey.

The march, the mettle, the martyrdom

the equality won:

We Care.

 

 

But a Day?

They say. A whole Bloody day?

Suppose 364 in ration to 1 will show that

We Care.

 

 

More pay!

they say they want equal pay.

Since when is 24 hours not enough;

surely the day proves We Care?

 

 

RAPE!

They say, on this day, no talk of rape.

We give you a day, a doek, a talk.

We Care.

 

 

We do Care

They say, We gave you a day.

Be happy: now it is time for supper

and bed.

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Tendai Garwe
POETRY

They are telling lies

Tendai Garwe
Tendai Garwe

By Tendai Garwe

They are telling lies

Who tells these lies?

That women pull each other down,

Size each other up

And are not united?

Who is it?

It’s patriarchy

 

We celebrate each others’ child birth,

dance around and sing with joy.

Appease the ancestors and force facial similarities with ease.

We name the baby and collectively buy toys.

We have always been united;

They are telling lies

 

We cry at funerals, cook;

Meal after meal by the fire;

Whether they are genuine tears or smoke induced, it doesn’t matter, we do it together.

We hold each other tight when the pain is unbearable and stay up all night reminiscing the unbelievable.

We have always been united;

They are telling lies.

 

We face the same struggles;

Understand the sound of different laughter and pain;

Be it inequality and violence;

Lack of democracy and security;

Child birth and silence;

Betrayal and starvation.

We have always been united;

They are telling lies.

 

You fly, I soar;

You land, I lay;

You nest, I hunt.

There is room in the sky for all the birds.

We are an ecosystem you and I;

You do you and I do me.

You need me as much as I need you.

When I am weak you are strong; your strength propels me to a better us.

We have always been united;

not that we owe them an explanation.

 

This work was developed during the African Women’s Development Fund and Femrite African Women Creative Non-Fiction Writing Workshop in Uganda, July 2014.

Jen Thorpe
POETRY

‘Rapists’ is now trending in South Africa

Jen Thorpe
Jen Thorpe

By Jen Thorpe

Rapists is now trending in South Africa

#breaking – Rapists is now trending in

#South Africa

#rape?

#OMG

#VAW

#GBV

#TMI

#random

#notallmen

#itsnotrapeif

#yesallwomen

#SMH

#everydaysexism

#dearfeministmen , #RUSilent ?

#bringbackourgirls

#takebackthetech

#leadSA

#16days ?

#womensmonth ?

#everydamnday

Comfort Mussa
POETRY

Shut Up!

Comfort Mussa
Comfort Mussa

By Comfort Mussa

Do not discuss me

Like you do war zones:

I am not a basket case.

When you’re done analyzing my body,

Concluding my breasts are ironed and vagina mutilated,

You glance at my brain.

Hmm good relief.

Why bother?

Why see only what ‘covers’ my brain?

Yes, I wear my hair natural –

Now what?

It’s the only part of my body not tampered with,

Unfettered,

Even as the rest of me was prepared for you,

For your consumption–

Mcheew

In this constituency, my body, only one vote counts.

I won’t wait for you to shut up

I know better, now.

I’ll listen to me. I have something brighter

I’ll go and have a chat with my sisters.

If our laughter draws you in, feel free to pull a seat outside the window and learn–

 

This piece was written during the African Women’s Development Fund and Femrite African Women Creative Non-Fiction Writing Workshop in Uganda, July 2014.

POETRY

I am not your punching bag

By Ritah Atwongyeire

You beat when food gets burnt,

You beat me when food doesn’t get ready on time,

You beat me when another man greets me,

You beat when children do wrong calling me a bad mother,

You beat me when you don’t make money saying that I have bad luck,

You even beat me when I keep quite.

Though you beat me I am not your punching bag.

 

You have beaten all the love out of me,

You have beaten all the respect out of me,

You have beaten all the feelings out of me,

You have beaten all the emotion out of me,

But even though you have beaten me I am not your punching bag.

This piece was written during the African Women’s Development Fund and Femrite African Women Creative Non-Fiction Writing Workshop in Uganda, July 2014.