Tag Archive: Trade Unions

Slaughter at Marikana

Slaughter at Marikana.


Bullets tearing,
into muscled flesh,

bodies slump,
dead as dust.

Sweaty and bruised,

mining the land of the ancestors,

descending into hell,
day by wretched day,

for shiny metals,

like those shiny metal bullets,

that tore,
into muscled flesh,

bodies slumped,

dead as dust.


How can we mourn,
the slaughtered,

how do we cleanse,
our blood-soaked hands,

betraying our complicity,

in the slaughter at Marikana,

as we lightly tread,
on the mine-fields,

of greed,
of profit,

on the backs,
of the slaughtered dead.

(dedicated to the human beings massacred at Marikana)

For Tony Benn
( 1925 – 2014 )

You have not passed silently into the coming night,

your conscience towers above the brittle edifice of capital and of greed,

for as long as there remain hungry mouths to feed,

your soul is enmeshed within our collective whole.

You have not passed silently into the coming night.

Your battle is done,

the war!

the war is far from won!

So we pick up your scarlet standard,

and we continue to rattle the foundations at No. 10,

though today,


we pause,

today we say,

‘Hamba Kahle’*,

to you,

our comrade,

our leader,

our towering ‘Big Benn’.

for Anthony Neil Wedgwood “Tony” Benn.

(3 April 1925 – 14 March 2014)

* – ‘Hamba Kahle’ means ‘go well’ in isiXhosa/isiZulu

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