Tag Archive: written word






Racism + Silence = Complicity.



racism stalks the cities, slimy and rotten,

memories of Apartheid, of segregation, so conveniently forgotten.



racism infects the home, reeking and vile,

memories of discrimination, of slavery, bubbling up like bile.



racism must be fought, in words, in thought.



racism must be defeated,

lest the repugnance of its history be repeated.







The 15th of August.

( dedicated to our late mother Zubeida ‘Jubie’ Moolla, and to all the women, the mostly unsung heroines in all the struggles for freedom across the world )

1.

Our mother was born on this auspicious day, in the winter of 1934.

Thirteen years later, also on this auspicious day, in the summer of 1947, India cast off the yoke of colonial oppression.

These dates, though a decade apart are bound together in our family, hewn together by the happenstance of fate.

2.

The threads of the struggle for freedom, the hunger for liberation, the thirst for democracy, the ache of sacrifice, are intertwined.

3.

The valiant freedom fighters faced the brutality of the enemy head-on, staring down the barrels of the imperialists with chins held high, relinquishing the comfort of inaction for the battle for those eternally noble ideals – the struggle against oppression, the quest for human dignity, the emancipation of women, the conviction of being a part of a greater cause in the service of humanity.

4.

The struggle for liberation in South Africa and in India left many martyred souls, many more victims of appalling cruelty, the harrowing pain of families’ torn apart, the parents and children ripped from each other, the savagery of torture, the massacres of the innocents, the decades spent in prison, the years spent in exile.

5.

The names of the martyrs bear witness:

Solomon Mahlangu.
Bhagat Singh.
Ahmed Timol.
Rajguru.
Vuyisile Mini.
Sukhdev.
Steve Biko.
Victoria Mxenge.

Just a few names of the many more who gave up their youth, cruelly executed by the merciless foe.

4.

The torch bearers of the struggles, are forever etched in our minds, always kept close to our hearts, for these were the giants who inspired countless more to join the just cause for universal human dignity.

Their names are legendary:

Nelson Mandela.
Lillian Ngoyi.
Jawaharlal Nehru.
Sarojini Naidu.
Walter Sisulu.
Mahatma Gandhi.
Dorothy Nyembe.
Oliver Tambo.
Charlie Andrews.
Ahmed Kathrada.
Sardar Patel.
Govan Mbeki.
Nana Sita.
Chris Hani.
Aruna Asaf Ali.
Andrew Mlangeni.
Margaret Mncadi.
Sucheta Kriplani.
Ruth First.
Subhash Chandra Bose.
Joe Slovo.
Raymond Mhlaba.

These are but a few of our eternal flames – the flames that shall burn bright in the hearts of all freedom loving people.

5.

Our mother was born into a politically active family. Our grandfather a fierce opponent of racism and sectarianism in all its grotesque forms.

Our mother grew up in this cauldron of political agitation.

Our mother married our father and a daughter and a son were born, while Papa made his way in and out of jail, Mummy was left to tend for the infants, Tasneem and Azad.

Our parents were forced into exile, with their beloved young children left behind in the care of loving maternal grandparents, uncles and aunts.

These are the scars of history.

These are the wounds that never heal.

These are the sacrifices that go unnoticed.

These are the gnawing ache that history often forgets.

These are the experiences of countless mothers and their children.

This is the price paid dearly for the freedom and democracy we share today.

6.

The 15th of August, a day of celebration of freedom in India.

The 15th of August, a day of reflection for our family in South Africa.

Long live the Women’s Movement!

Viva the strength and power of the women!

( dedicated to Zubeida ‘Jubie’ Moolla, and to all the women, the often unsung heroines in all the struggles for freedom across the world )

​War Clouds Gathering







the fear is palpable, sweaty, reeking, stagnant, primal.



the spectre of thermonuclear war, the ravenous vultures circling overhead.


all at the switch of a button.


infantile lunatics at the ready, exchanging taunts, rotten school yard bullies,


while the rest of us, the people, forced to hear the terrorising drivel and spewed vitriol of ad libbed threats,


of the hubris of dictators, whose people starve,


engaged in their machismo, their infantile game, their egos puffed and swaggering, their testosterone fuelled male ugliness putting on an obscene, murderous show.


they have rested easy, ensconced in their grotesque wealth, cocooned and coddled, while countless souls sleep hungry and wanting, while numberless souls slog for minimum wage.


these men are unspeakably dangerous, unhinged, seeing this world of ours as their fiefdom, devoid of humanity, brimming with twisted, smug arrogance.


we the people, can not, should not, and must not sit silent, lest we be complicit by being mute.


we the people, can not, should not, and must not allow our indignation to be squashed.


we the people, have for far too long, been battered blue by the actions of such men, always men, who have rained death and destitution and destruction upon millions.


we the people, can not, should not, and will not, sit quietly on the sidelines, as these men attempt to lead us to the precipice, the brink of horrific suffering for our fellow human beings. 


we the people, can not, should not, and will not allow our voices to be hushed, our collective outrage to be beaten down,


for we are now in the deep, murky waters of hate,


and unless we rise as one,


we doom ourselves to choke, gag, and drown.










​In your Eyes #6







your light blazed bright,



a comet slicing through the moonless night,



enveloped by your light, dimming the pangs of my plight,



i found my blue open skies,



in your eyes.






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