Archive for June, 2018


84 … for our father


http://www.thepresidency.gov.za/national-orders/recipient/moosa-mosie-moolla



84 …



(for our father and grandfather and comrade Mosie Moolla who turned 84 years old this June 12)


Mosie Moolla with Nelson Mandela in the 1950s



84 …


The number says so much, the years of sacrifice and struggle that can never truly be left behind,


the stark years of revolution when you and the countless footsoldiers shared the tightest bonds of comradeship,


the dedication to the cause of freedom against the savage cruelty that was the crime against humanity – Apartheid,


the 27 years in exile, separated from your two children, your family, your home,


holding the hand of our mother who stood by your side, torn apart from her children, her family, her home.




84 …


the number says so much, more than half a century ago, forging relationships in the cauldron of resistance,


your brothers and your comrades –


Nelson Mandela,

Oliver Tambo,

Walter Sisulu,

Moses Kotane,

JB Marks,

Joe Slovo,

Nana Sita,

Bram Fischer,

Ahmed Kathrada,

Alfred Nzo,

Yusuf Dadoo,


and so many more,

in whose hearts and spirit the fires of the just fight roared on, never to be dimmed.




84 …


the number says so much, of our mother and of your shared sacrifice, of not knowing the joys of seeing your daughter Tasneem and your son Azad grow, the pain of being ripped away from your families, your homes, your motherland,


to travel to distant countries to keep the fight alive on the outside, building solidarity in the world to isolate Apartheid South Africa,


to fan the embers into the flames of international pressure against Apartheid South Africa.




84 …


the number says so much, returning home when your comrades Nelson Mandela and so many other giants were released from Apartheids’ prisons,


to work in mobilising the tasks for the  groundwork to build a new, free, non-racial, non-sexist democracy for people of all colours, regardless of religion or tribe,


to finally see your comrade Nelson Mandela become the first President of a free South Africa.




84 …


the number says so much, as you still keep the lessons of history alive, as you shake us all to remember and never to forget the comrades who were executed, tortured and killed, who fell on the battlefield, the comrades who did not see the birth of their dream of a free South Africa.




84 …


the number says so much, yet the furnace rages on,


inspiring us and many more,


the furnace will rage on,


in our hearts,


deep in our shared core.







(for our father and grandfather Mosie Moolla who turned 84 years old on this 12th of June)



receiving The Order of Luthuli in Silver from former South African President Jacob Zuma


Johannesburg 2000s


with old comrades 2000s


with comrades 2000s

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The Cost of Revolution …



(in memory of the June 16th 1976 student uprising in South Africa)





You hurled rocks, stones,

Molotov Cocktails,

Sling-shots against the brutality of racial oppression.



You fell on the streets of Soweto,

Thokoza,

Kagiso,

Sharpeville,

Tembisa,


and countless more across this nation. 



Tasting the acrid stench of tear-gas,


Feeling the flesh ripped off your bones by their dogs,


Drenched by water-cannons,

Stung by rubber-bullets,

Whipped by sjamboks,

Shot in the head by lead,

Paid for by your country’s gold.



You stood trial for Treason,

Facing the hangman’s noose,


You stood firm, you did not break,

Even though,

You had wives, sons, daughters, lovers, brothers, sisters, and friends to lose.



The revolutionary dream burned bright,

In all your hearts,


Even as the jackboot of Apartheid,


Fractured your bones and tore your families into broken and splintered parts.



You left your brothers,

Sisters,

Sons,

Daughters,

Lovers,

Wives,

Comrades and friends,


Seeking out foreign lands,

With only the ammunition that you held in your hearts, your minds and in your never-wavering hands.



The enemy did not waver either,


Tyranny didn’t cease.



2 AM knocks on doors around this land,

Meant to stifle, to intimidate,


Yet,

You took a stand.



Hungry,

lost far away from home, pining for freedom and your loved ones,


Still,

You stood firm,

You fought on,


“Release Mandela and all Political Prisoners” was your cry,

In capitals in far-off lands,


You feared not the bayonet in the enemy’s hands,


The revolution was burning bright,


Even as the dawn of Freedom was in sight.



Finally on a February day,

They released him and the joy was palpable, nothing stood now in the revolution’s way.


All the while,

The enemy consolidated its power,


Paying off traitors,


Seeding violence,


Orchestrating mayhem to taint the noble cause,


And still you took the tyrant’s rifles and clenched their muzzles in-between your brave jaws.



Never standing down,

Backing away,

Retreating to safe space,

The fire of revolution burned,

Spreading through the plateaus and valleys and townships and cities and villages in this pained land,


And still,


Still,

You held that Kalashnikov in your hand.



And when that day of freedom came,


You felt the stirrings of joy and pain and yes,

Of shame.



You felt the shame of leaving those you left behind,


You tasted again the pain,

Of economic hardships,

Of capitalism and its illusory promise,

Of a revolution left incomplete,


Till,

Every man, woman and child has enough to eat.



A revolution still incomplete,

Where hunger stalks the night,

Where mercy,

And comradely solidarity,

Left last night on a first-class flight.



You stand tall still,

Working as you always have,


Polishing the metal chariots of those you once bled for,


Still feeling the injustice,

Of not having the two cents more,


That deprives you of your daily bread,


And you try hard to remember,


Whether this is the revolution,


For which so many died,


The countless whose names remain unsaid,


The brothers and sister,

mothers and fathers,

Lovers and friends,


the martyred dead.






(dedicated to all South Africans who sacrificed their lives, their families, in pursuit of the revolutionary dream. A dream that remains a dream to many, and a dream that will continue to be dreamed)



all photographs from google



All that Jazz

art from google



?



is it perchance

that moment


tattoed in my mind ?




our shared dance ?


a lifetime ago ?


in jazzy-smoked ol’ johannesburg town 



?


was it perchance

your smile


as gentle as the whispers of my perennial dream …


… your eyes


an ocean into whose smokey waters i yearn to drown


away from this

away from it all


far

far

away from this life


this daily

work-sleep-cage

of vacuumed lies


this

cavernous

prison


of leaden skies




breaking the shackles


casting off the burden


of carrying it all

of shouldering this world


your world


while

feeling at times


like your back is

closing in

against a blank wall.




2.




ah but enough of that talk


that talk of yesteryear



for now


i dream


i dream waking dreams


of that night

in whiskey-glazed

ol’ johannesburg town


of holding on

to that shared dance


is it that moment

that crystallised moment


is it

perchance



?



art from google

apologies to her

art from google



apologies to her who knows …





I walk through this neverending thicket,


thorns jabbing at my side, 


left out in the cold, a shimmering blade,

slicing emotions apart,


as she prepares once more, to depart.

I find her settled in a corner of my manic mind,

shedding yesteryears moulting skin,


beating through the foggy thicket,

my feelings flailing, gnawing, stretching my mania thin.



She leaves, burying herself deep,

in the convoluted recesses of my remaining senses,


having stormed the ramparts,

overrunning my paper thin  defences.



Do tell her that I miss her,

and all the moments we shared,


do please also tell her that I am sorry.


I was cold.

I should have cared.


art from google

love | peace | respect

for Wendy Cope

“Billie Holiday” art by Banksy




For Wendy Cope.



(Inspired by her poems ‘Bloody Men’ and ‘Flowers’)



1.


I may not have brought you flowers.

I know I was always late.


You tolerated my moodiness,

and my ever-increasing weight.


2.


You said men were like buses,

and you had grown weary of waiting,


Of putting up with my quirks and my fusses,

though we barely knew we were dating.


3.


Ah, but we weathered the squalls;

Your patience has always been saintly.


And now that old age palls,

our tiffs are recalled only faintly.


4.


We laugh at youth’s follies and know,

the beauty we had sought unaware;


It’s as wide as a calm river’s flow,

and as timeless as our years of care.





Art from Google





(Inspired by Wendy Cope’s poems ‘Bloody Men’ and ‘Flowers’)



Special thanks to Donald Webb of ‘Bewildering Stories’ for kindly editing this poem.




Art from Google

my recurring dream


my dream,

recurs,


delicious,

boundless, seamless,


one in which i am

allowed to savour,


lingering sensations,

quickening of the pulse,


the infinite pleasure,

of a few murmurs together,


profound,

intimate,

true,


for just as eternities may be lived in an instant,


i too may live a few lifetimes,


in a moment spent with you …




( dedicated to the countless souls who made the ultimate sacrifice in the war against Nazism and Fascism )



photograph from google

photograph from google





D-Day: France, June 6th, 1944.





1.




They were thrashed by the merciless sea.



They were drenched by the savage waters, their uniforms clinging to their shivering bodies.



They were mowed down as they approached the beaches of death.



The beaches of unspeakable horrors.



Gold.

Omaha.

Juno.

Sword.

Utah.



They were brothers and fathers and sons and friends and cousins and nephews and grandchildren and boys and men.




2.




They surged on, facing the metallic death of Nazism and Fascism,


they surged on and were cut into pieces of bloodied flesh and shattered bone,


yet they surged on.



They surged on so that we may live.



They surged on so that we may breathe the air of peace.



They surged on and on,



and on.




3.




Today their bones lie buried, along rows of crosses.


Today they lie beneath this earth.




4.




Today they live.


Tomorrow they shall live.


They who sacrificed their lives for humanity.



They shall live on eternally,


within us all!



photograph from google



( dedicated to the countless souls who made the ultimate sacrifice in the war against Nazism and Fascism )



photograph from google

art from google


seeking solace …





Bracing howling winds of fate, of love, 

enveloped by darkening clouded skies above,

what becomes of the heart that feels too much,

but desolate emptiness.


Merely traversing the daily grind,

fragile are the bonds, the ties that bind,


still hopeful, still searching,

for the solace that seems so hard to find.




bipolar blues

art from google






bipolar blues …



twisting minefields,

tearing neurons,

imploding with ferocious intent,

till synapses freeze,

numbly content.




I am rendered wasted, unfazed,


while the mind falters,
stagnating in puddles of highs and lows,


dumbed down, the mind ceases to gallop,

pulling the reins as every real thought –


S  L  O  W  S


– idle,
inured, pharmaceutically hazed,


all emotion stunted, razed,

floating,


aimlessly dazed …



art from google

Two Short Scribbles

art by banksy






Two Short Scribbles …



1.



nothing reaches,

the inner reaches,

of a heart,

that reaches too far.



2.



Alone, I rest.

In solitude, I breathe.

Alone at rest.

At last.





art from google

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