Tag Archive: emotions


broken verse

metallic tastes burrow deeper into me,

‘i am lost’, i say,

as leaden weight blankets my vision,

and emptiness looms with frantic precision,

‘i am lost’, i say,
once more,

driving the stake deeper and deeper,

into my innermost core,

leaving me

impotent,
torn,
broken,

a shade,
of all i thought i was before,

lost amidst the myriad strands,

of tomorrows yet to dawn,

caught,
drawn,
quartered,

in the vice grip of yesterdays pain,

always,
always,

always,
against the grain,

of cultured norms,
and polished forms,

digging,
stabbing,

skewering those moments,
lost forever,

in a paradise of thorns,
where carcasses are mounted onto silken sheets,

plundered,
pillaged,

by mere men,
monsters sans horns,

where desolation stalks the empty spaces,

etched on numberless faces,

battered and beaten down,

gurgling,
gasping,

snatching odd breaths,

as the edifice itself,

sinks,
tugged below,

ever so slow,
into the quicksand of oblivion,

where suns dipped,
and souls tripped,

onto the final barge,
stammering on our river,

cut to pieces,
shred,
mangled,

diced and sliced,
sliver by agonising sliver

may your sleep be gentle,
as dawn hushes night,

may your morning be paintbrushed,
in hues of warm light,

may your day be bathed in earthy colours, embracing you tight,

may your tomorrows nourish your dreams,
lifting your spirit in delicious flight.

a wish for you, my dear friend …

the sapling that took root,

enmeshed in the sweat-soaked gulag of kisses & pain,

silence & self-pity,

will grow to be a tree,

rising above the prejudices of men,

higher & higher,

to that point when looking down,

humans all look the same.

and so …

I stretch out my arm,

my thumb defiant in the oppressive air,

& as I bid you an almondsweet adieu,

I hold you close,
whispering these words:

so long, my friend,
& stay well,

& know that I shall be counting down the days to how & to when,

I will see you here …

peace | love | uBuntu

Hamba Kahle*, Senzo Meyiwa!
( 1987 – 2014 )

My Captain is gone.

Shot dead,
in cold blood,

another senseless killing,

another son of the soil snatched away from us,

leaving us empty,
cold,
desolate.

My Captain is gone.

shot and killed,

my Captain is gone,

leaving a void,

that can never be filled!

Hamba Kahle, my Captain!

Hamba Kahle, Senzo Meyiwa!

May your soul rest in eternal peace …

* – ‘Hamba Kahle’ – lit. – Travel Well, an isiXhosa expression, used especially to bid farewell to a person who has passed away.

From News24:

Cape Town – Senzo Meyiwa, who was tragically shot dead on Sunday evening, began his football career as a striker for hometown club London Cosmos in Umlazi, Durban in the 1990s.

He soon converted to the goalkeeper position and went on to represent KwaZulu-Natal in the Transnet Under-14 and Coca-Cola Under-17 Inter-Provincial tournaments in 2000 as a 13-year-old. His performances caught the eye of Orlando Pirates scouts, who brought him to the club’s development programme.

After making impressive progress through the youth levels, Meyiwa made his official debut for Orlando Pirates in a 2-1 win over AmaZulu on November 8, 2006.

He was an important part of the Pirates squad that won a famous ‘Double Treble’ in 2010/11 and 2011/12, claiming two MTN8 titles, two Absa Premiership titles, the Telkom Knockout and Nedbank Cup.

In 2013 Meyiwa’s career took a dramatic upswing, as he reclaimed the number one position at Orlando Pirates and was the team’s best player on their epic run to the final of the CAF Champions League, with his heroic performance in the away leg of the second round tie against DR Congo’s TP Mazembe particularly memorable.

He also made his Bafana Bafana debut, coming on as a substitute for Wayne Sandilands at half-time of a 2-0 friendly win over Lesotho in Maseru on June 2, 2013.

In 2014 the goalkeeper continued his rise to prominence, helping Orlando Pirates win the 2014 Nedbank Cup before taking advantage of the injury-enforced absence of close friend and goalkeeping rival Itumeleng Khune to be Bafana Bafana’s first choice goalkeeper for their 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying matches in September and October.

Meyiwa was not only the first choice goalkeeper, but also handed the captain’s armband by new coach Ephraim ‘Shakes’ Mashaba. Inspired by the honour, the Pirates goalkeeper kept four successive clean sheets as South Africa claimed top spot on the standings after four matches and put themselves within touching distance of qualification for the 2015 AFCON.

Meyiwa’s last professional appearance was on Saturday, October 25 at Orlando Stadium as he helped the Buccaneers to a 4-1 victory over Ajax Cape Town in a Telkom Knockout quarter-final.

He was aged 27 years and 32 days upon his death on October 26 in Vosloorus.

Senzo Meyiwa factfile:

Born: September 24, 1987

Place of birth: Umlazi, Durban

Position: Goalkeeper

Former clubs: Orlando Pirates juniors and Yebo Yes United (Pirates reserve team)

Orlando Pirates debut: November 8, 2006, Orlando Pirates 2-1 AmaZulu

Orlando Pirates starts: 157

International honours: Former South Africa U-17, U-20 & U-23 international; 7 Bafana Bafana caps (6 starts, 1 sub)

Bafana Bafana debut: June 2, 2013, Lesotho 0 South Africa 2

Honours: 2010 & 2011 MTN8 winner; 2011 & 2012 Absa Premiership winner; 2011 & 2014 Nedbank Cup winner; 2013 CAF Champions League runner-up

Mirage …

the charade swoons ever on,

moulted remnants of dulled pain,

lie scattered across the blank page,

as slowly approaching dawn,

offers a glimpse,

a fleeting mirage,

of a fragrant new morn …

Dreaming of Words …

The dream floats,

ink drying on celluloid,

words mangled,

verses strewn to the winds,

across burning sandalwood skies.

The mind wrestles,

the pen digs into parchment,

metaphors skewered,

thoughts stilled by the cacophony of solitude.

Words devour space,

shredding time,

leaving me ever hopeful,

for hardly a reason …

… but for paltry,

meagre,

empty rhyme …

Port of Call

Port of Call
 
 
Barefoot on a talcum beach,
 
alone, not lonely,
 
with the breath of the ocean a caressing balm,
soothing pained memories away,
to the swaying of a solitary palm.
 
 
Barefoot on a talcum beach,
 
alone, not lonely,
 
feeling the brushing away of all past turmoil,
on a quest for solace, ever so hard to find,
yet comforted by the crashing of the waves,
as the tide cleanses all pain,
and leaves despair far, far behind.
 
 
Barefoot on a talcum beach,
 
alone, not lonely,
 
drenched in a sea-breeze of mist,
that hushes the ache of bygone moons,
tasting the salty tang on my lips,
as the burnished sun,
over the distant horizon,
swoons,
 
and dips.
 
 
Barefoot on a talcum beach,
 
alone, not lonely,
 
searching, ever searching,
for a slice of solitude,
as memory bids a final adieu,
reaching under the sea so vast,
and seeking comfort in the depths,
while embracing,
the tomorrows to come,
wishing that they be true.
 
 
Barefoot on a talcum beach,
 
alone, not lonely,
 
seeing my truths drown,
as they slip beneath the turquoise waters,
 
feeling my heart ablaze,
with a passion that rarely falters.
 
 
Barefoot on a talcum beach,
 
alone, not lonely,
 
yet knowing that I am home at long last,
wishing the waves would wash away,
the defences that once stood,
like an impregnable wall.
 
 
Barefoot on a talcum beach,
 
alone, not lonely,
 
I have found, at long last,
 
my final port of call.

In the solitary depth of night,

as dreams whisper forgotten lies,

memories murmur,
desires nibble,
passions simmer,

between the embers,
of sweetly burnt eyes.

As dawn’s breath cascades,

skimming over the borders of my hapless heart,

my eyes finally surrendering to slumber, peaceful and deep,

leaving me,

to dream of you,

dreaming,  asleep.

My Heart is with You

My Heart is with You…

Far too much has been said,
too many miles have been tread,

it looks like the end of the line,
keep it safe, that old heart of mine…

splinters, fragments
of
thoughts, emotions,

fragment, and
splinter
my
emotions, my thoughts

The Nearest Exit

The Exit …

… discarding memories,
suffocating in nostalgia’s throttling grip,

I flee, moment by moment,
away from the now,

seeking, yearning,

chasing phantom clouds of promise,

coveting shrouded whispers of hope,

seducing empty vessels of belonging,

I flee, moment by moment,
away from the now,

seeking, yearning,

lost, alone, torn,

slowly crawling to the nearest exit

I Stand, Alone


I stand, alone.

Scratching for my truths,
peeling away the veneer,

I stand, alone, before this
impregnable cliff so sheer.

Cocooned in my solitary shell,
wrenching a smile from a tear,

I stand, alone, a little odd,
and definitely quite queer.

I stand, alone.

Why I Write

…Emptiness tightens its shackles,

imprisoning me.

Jagged shrapnel,
piercing my heart,

my emotions trickle away,

yet hope refuses to flee.

I write, to feel again.

Something, anything.

I write,

to be free.

I write to feel again.

something, anything.

I write to be.

Aching to Ache

Clawing into myself,
digging, scraping, scratching a phantom itch.

Amputating feelings, thoughts, emotions,

love,

always excising love,

to feel some pain,
for once, to feel the ache, the heartbreak, the anger, the desolation, the loss, the pangs of remorse,

to feel anything at all,

not this numbness,
these tattered synapses, this innured state of anaesthetised unfeeling, the brittle thoughts that shatter, painless, when I stumble and crash, and fall.

I ache for the ache, pining to pine, hungering to hunger, bleeding fragments of myself, only to bleed, to feel,

alive,

again…

Tendrils of Hope

Refusing to succumb,

to the alluring haze of self-pity,

I refuse to wallow,
in an ocean of regret,

I choose to banish thoughts of despair,

dispelling pain, while tempting joy to emerge from its shielded lair.

I shall sow the seeds of promise,

nourishing well,

the tendrils of hope,

breathing new life into my nights, my days.

I must stand, I will rise, I have to believe,

in a better tomorrow,

not perfect, nor rosy,

yet filled with tidbits of bliss,

as well as with shards of sorrow.

My Family: A Historical Journey Through the Seasons.

Part Three: A Summer Digression.

And now, dear reader (may your patience be praised!), I am going to steer this ship of memories as we embark on a journey of emotions – a subjective voyage through the feelings that I have felt, the emotions that I have experienced during the course of my 40 year old life.

You, dear reader, may stop reading right now if you find outpourings of emotion and wearing one’s feelings on one’s sleeve not your cup of Earl-Grey! If however, and I sincerely hope you do decide to read through this ‘summer’ of life’s memories, I assure you that what you will read will be savage honesty, however painful and hard it is to bare one’s soul for all to see the flawed human-beings that we all are.

And so it was that just past my 18th birthday in September of 1990, I found myself ‘home’ in South Africa, after 18. years of dreaming what ‘home’ would be like and how my brother and sister and cousins and aunts and uncles would take me into their homes and lives.

I was overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and kindness showered on me, the ‘returning’ boy who was not really returning, but was dipping his toes into the early 1990’s, a period of South African history, just preceding the first free and democratic election in 1994, that was one of the country’s most trying of times.

The Apartheid regime, having unbanned all political organisations and liberation movements and releasing political prisoners such as Nelson Mandela and others, was still not willing to relinquish power, and had embarked on a cynical and dirty campaign of fomenting violence in the sprawling black townships in Johannesburg, Durban and other cities around the country.

There were killings and hit-squads that roamed and terrorised communities while negotiations between the Apartheid government and the African National Congress (ANC) offered hope and then broke down, and then were restarted until finally, on April the 27th, 1994, black South African, for the first time in their lives, cast their ballots which resulted in sweeping Nelson Mandela’s ANC into power, with Nelson Mandela or ‘Madiba’ as he is known becoming South Africa’s first black President.

I attended the inauguration of Nelson Mandela as South Africa’s first truly democratically elected President in Pretoria on a crisp May 10th morning along with friends and comrades, and we openly wept as the South African Air-Force flew overhead, the flag of our new ‘rainbow’ nation fluttering below.

A Flash Back –

My early days in South Africa were ones of family dinners and visits to relatives and old family friends and comrades in the struggle. My father started work almost immediately at the ANC’s headquarters in central Johannesburg, and I attended my final year of high-school, also in central Johannesburg.

Looking back now, I see myself then as a caricature of the immigrant who just wants to fit in, always being on one’s best behaviour, and under no circumstances allowing the turmoil within to bubble to the surface.

I was born to parents who were non-religious, my father definitely more so than my mother, who ‘believed’ in God, though was never one to make a show of it.

I grew up not really knowing what religion I was born into, as my parents never, and though never is a strong word, it is applicable here, my parents never mentioned religion at home.

My mom would cook up a storm on Eid-ul-Fitr every year, the feast that is the culmination of the fasting month of Ramadaan, but then we never fasted or paid attention to religious ritual or practice. I can say that religion was absent from our home, whether we were in India, Cairo or Helsinki.

I am forever indebted to my parents for having raised me with, and this may sound pompous of me to say, humane values, rather than strictly religious ones, not that the two are mutually exclusive!

I attended a school in Delhi in the 1980’s, Springdales, an institution founded by two great humanitarians, Mrs. Rajni Kumar and her husband Mr. Yudhishter Kumar, both human-beings who possessed the highest qualities of compassion, humanity, and a burning sense of the need to tackle injustice, wherever and in whatever shape or form it was to be encountered.

My years at Springdales in Delhi, though I was hardly a promising academic student (having failed standard 8!), I now look back and am forever indebted to the culture of tolerance and respect for all people, regardless of station in life, religion, caste, gender or race, that my still-beloved Springdales inculcated in me.

The culture of Springdales School and the manner in which my parents raised me, has led to a life-long aversion to intolerance in any shape, colour or form, and a strong belief in the power of rational and critical thinking.

I thank my parents again, and my Springdales, for bestowing on me this invaluable gift.

A Flash Forward –

And so I find myself, now in the teen years of the new millennium, still always feeling that I am on the outside, looking in – and I find this vantage point to be, strangely, comfortable now, I must admit.

I do not have much time for religion or for cultural affiliations. Again, this is not meant to be offensive to anyone, these are the feelings I am comfortable with. I cannot stress this enough, just how my upbringing and my years at Springdales have hewn into my consciousness, the absolute need for the respect for all.

I am growing weary of talking about myself, as I am sure you, dear reader, are as well, and so I shall stop this monologue with the words of Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara who when responding to a woman who also bore the ‘Guevara’ name and who had written to Che asking him where in Spain his ancestors came from. This was Che’s response …

“I don’t think you and I are very closely related but if you are capable of trembling with indignation each time that an injustice is committed in the world, we are comrades, and that is more important.”

Thank you, dear reader, for your patience, and for your taking the time to read these ramblings of mine.

TO BE CONTINUED…

Three words,

murmured in exhaled whispers,

filling infinite ears,
through numberless tongues.

Three words,

soothing, embalming, teasing, cajoling, suffocating, giggling,

spoken so much, meaning so little,
conveying dreams, hopes, life, peace,

offering solace, comfort,
bliss,

stoking fear, frustration, anger,

emptying days of meaning,

offering rickety crutches,

onto which countless emotions end up leaning.

Three words,

mumbled, gargled, spewed, spit out,

violated, battered, ripped open, casually desecrated,

crashing down upon skewered hearts,

shrinking into nothingness,

in each breath that departs.

Three words,

‘I love you’,

blaring out of empty mouths,

emblazoned on fluff,

rings on fingers, cards, flowers, puffed teddy-bears,

stuff,

hollow stuff.

Three words,

mortify me, as I scribble this verse,

rendered catatonic by fear,

revisiting the truant past,

knowing,

three words,

curled-up, wounded, gasping for air,

accepting at last,

that,

you do not care

Savage lies, mercilessly spoken,

battering emotions, a heart exposed, nakedly open,

companionship was all that was sought,

not blue-chip bonds, hastily sold and bought.

The bonds I sought were simple,

peaceful nights, scribbling verse in unseen black,

delicately caressing words of love, my fingers tracing poems, over the contours of your soft back.

It saddens me to say, my thoughts were dreamed in vain,

and it grieves me see, the ashes of our love,

floating down the streets we walked,

scattered in the rivulets of this night’s pouring rain.

Alone I scribble this paltry verse,

the darkest of nights, in the midst of howling storms,

and though I may heal some day,

the memory of the ashes of our love,

floating down the streets we once walked,

shall remain buried deep,

until my dying day

Tattoo

An imprint of you remains,

mingled in the blood racing through my veins,

hewn into my flesh you stay,

a chiselled tattoo from our long-lost yesterday,

deeply branded by your entire being,

rooted to a memory incapable of fleeing,

torn, and twisting inside my skin,

the pain screeches like jangling cans of tin,

a desolate nightmare this agony feels,

with a phantom whiff of your sweet breath my soul reels,

now that you are gone, lost within a labyrinth of illusions,

your voice swarms inside my desperate delusions,

scratching, clawing layers of past moments spent with you,

you are a part of me, an unfaded, vivid tattoo,

and as my dreams of you frantically race,

I am unable to erase,

the blazing picture of your exquisite face,

so let me be, and leave me to burn in this furnace of my hell,

I should have known better,

but all that matters little,

because it was for you, that I fell.

A Promise of Love

Sprinkling kisses,
on dusty lips,

as,

knots of desire,
twist beneath the veneer.

A yearning heart,
dipped in a blazing cauldron,

knows not,
the coolness of the dew,

settling on the dawn petals,
lonesome as a solitary tear.

Cast away, floating,
adrift on the waters of fate,

I catch,
at last,

a glimpse of love.

Fleeting, impermanent,

yet,
poised to take flight,

to soar,
into the great blue sky,

while alone,
again,

I feel the tugging need,

of surrendering to the ocean,

and,
embracing the unknown,
in a slow dance.

A tango with truth, and with unshackled love,

as the dice rolls,

with the intoxicating promise,

of,
that final chance