Author and poet Rabbie Serumula. File image.
Author and poet Rabbie Serumula. File image.

#PoeticLicence: The only thing we own is the psychological land

By Rabbie Serumula Time of article published Aug 8, 2021

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Johannesurg - How do we raise strong black boys and black girls when they grow up with their hands outstretched, begging for handouts?

Champions of living below the poverty line. They have been living day zero since day one. A cabinet reshuffle means nothing to them.

Sires of the squalor. Stallions and bulls, horses and cows kept for breeding.

They speak the language of bread and water.

Kings and queens living beneath their thrones.

Our people are in a dark hole. They keep mastering the patience to wait for a hand of God to pull them out. Too little climbing is learned. Our hands are weak, our bodies are frail, yet we can't carry their weight. We leave it in the incapable hands of the government.

Nearly half the adult population of South Africa lives in poverty. We grew up believing houses, water and electricity would be free. So would education, but fees do more rising than falling.

We are a people of a cacophony of chants, of screams, of sirens, of gunshots, of teargas canisters whizzing in the wind, and tumbling on concrete.

Government says it’s the people. But people who are starving. They live in the dark. They push wheelbarrows with empty buckets en route to communal taps, or a municipal truck, or a random white person’s bakkie with a jojo tank at the back.

Entitlement is a disease. And so we have forgotten who we are. We measure our growth by what can be done for us. Not by us.

The only thing we own is the psychological land. And we pray it will produce physical food.

We value what is outside of ourselves.

We have too many wars inside ourselves.

A post on Facebook read: “my child earns R460 from social grant, and I earn R350. How can a child make more money than me?”

How do we raise strong black boys and black girls when they grow up with their hands outstretched, entitled to handouts?

The black girls, begging the black boys for mercy. The black girls, begging the black boys for their lives.

Instead of mastering the patience to wait for a hand of God to pull you out, remember: No one is coming to save us.

Our mothers and grandmothers knew this in 1956 when they marched to the Union Buildings to protest the introduction of the apartheid pass laws.

How our history falls into a bottomless unknown. Further and further from our comprehension, our consciousness.

Our mothers, the fine rocks found in still waters. They bathe in the sun. The kind of smooth rocks we use to grind raw maize, grains, roots, beans, nuts, or seeds.

They are the catalyst for food to the soul.

But remember black child, no one is coming to save you.

The throne in heaven is empty. There are cobwebs across its hands and head rest.

God is not there. He has vacated and relocated within yourself.

The Saturday Star

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