You don’t remember-

You don’t remember-

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He’s just a teen,
Bound to get his back up,
At every little thing-
Don’t you remember it,

Defensive
Without an offence
Attack, eager to depict-
I’m an adult now,
alternating between
rebellion and obedience,
Don’t you remember it,

Enthralled,
By the illusion of teens
In cliques,
Conforming to their
status quo,
At the risk of all
You’ve been raised to be;
Don’t you remember it,

When all you needed,
Instead of a hand,
On your body,
Violently sweeping across,
Were words.
Simply words.

But you don’t remember it.
As your hands,
Violently,
Swipe across his body.
While the words he yearn
He needs to hear-
Silent.
You’ve forgotten,
What it means to be-
A teen.

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Writer’s quote: Langston Hughes

Writer’s quote: Langston Hughes

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Hello and welcome to writer’s quote Wednesday where I share some of my favourite poems written by other authors.

I know I haven’t posted in a few days, but you didn’t think I’d miss Writer’s quote, did you? This week, I am sharing one of my favourite authors whose poem I have shared previously before too. It’s Langston Hughes, one of the poets I do not tire from reading his poems.

It’s amazing to see that in every generation, through every cycle of oppression, there’s always someone using whichever means they have to speak out against it. It makes me happy to read works written by writers and poets, which clearly would have put them at odds against the authorities during those times. But they wrote. They used the one weapon they had, the pen, and its makes me proud to be writer.

Below is the poem, it’s a fairly popular poem so you may have come across it. I hope you enjoy it.

I, too by Langston Hughes
I, too, sing America.

I am the darker brother.
They send me to eat in the kitchen
When company comes,
But I laugh,
And eat well,
And grow strong.

Tomorrow,
I’ll be at the table
When company comes.
Nobody’ll dare
Say to me,
“Eat in the kitchen,”
Then.

Besides,
They’ll see how beautiful I am
And be ashamed–

I, too, am America.

All I Am-

All I Am-

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They called me black,
When words were
in their possession,
Once spoken,
Was law and order,
They stated-
          I am black.

She’s a woman,
They reassured;
As if the gender,
Possessed lesser power,
They ordered-
         I am just a woman.

She’s Muslim,
And the veil on my head,
Became heavy,
The venom on their face,
Evident.
         Muslim- I was a threat.

So many labels,
One individual,
Am I black,
      A woman,
             Muslim?

The skin they pointed at
Hardened,
Impenetrable to their words,
I grew to accept,
I was all they had labelled.

Now, when I say
I am a black Muslim woman,
They say-
          I am human.
Funny,
How they seemed to forget,
When the words,
Were in their power.

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Closure-

Closure-

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One word… seven letters.
I always had this idea that to move on, to let go of the past, to put one foot in front of the other through the door called future, I had to have it- closure.

And I sought it, I chased it, I pled for it.  Each time I thought I was close to it, closure merely opened a can-worm of emotions I had no idea still existed within me, no idea how to handle them.

The search for closure led me down a path I should never have tread, a path of hurt of pain of emotions I should never have felt again. And every single time, I still kept going back, for that closure. The person In me, never learnt.

I’m only now understanding, coming to the conclusion- closure isn’t a conversation that needs to be had, it’s not a word that needs to said or unsaid, it’s not a meeting which needs to take place, one last time.

Closure, simply is putting my big girl pants on, taking that big leap of faith through the door into the future with the ideology- Life starts now. And it doesn’t matter, whatever words lie behind the door which were never said, whatever final meeting which never happened, closure doesn’t have to come from an outside source.

The only closure I need, is the closure from within myself, to be able to say done and dusted, and mean it… closure comes from me.

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Writer’s Quote: Dear Reader

Writer’s Quote: Dear Reader

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Welcome to another writer’s quote/poem Wednesday, where I share some of my favourite poems written by other authors.

Today’s poem talks about taking care of a patient with Alzheimers, from the point of view of the nurse. I love the fact that the writer, Rita Mae Reese, left the identity of the patient and the carer genderless. Leaving it up to our creative minds to fill in the blanks.

This poem, “Dear Reader“, is not a poem one reads and immediately whips out the pen and notebook because of its poetic inspiration. No, it’s one of those reads which strike a chord in the heart. For lack of better wording, it’s what I like to call “beautiful and heartwarming”, and reading it, left me wanting more of it. Below is the poem:

Dear Reader by Rita Mae Reese
You have forgotten it all.
You have forgotten your name,
where you lived, who you
loved, why.
I am simply
your nurse, terse and unlovely
I point to things
and remind you what they are:
chair, book, daughter, soup.

And when we are alone
I tell you what lies
in each direction: This way
is death, and this way, after
a longer walk, is death,
and that way is death but you
won’t see it
until it is right
in front of you.

                Once after
your niece had been to visit you
and I said something about
how you must love her
or she must love you
or something useless like that,
you gripped my forearm
in your terrible swift hand
and said, she is
everything
—you gave

me a shake—everything
to me.

                   And then you fell
back into the well. Deep
in the well of everything. And I
stand at the edge and call:
                      chair, book, daughter, soup. 

If you could describe this poem in two words, what would they be? 

Flash Fiction: red-handed

Flash Fiction: red-handed

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Is that what I think it is”, was the first statement which came out of mama’s mouth the minute she stepped into the house. Her gaze went directly to the cup standing in the middle of the living room. 

The horror on our faces was impossible to hide. We didn’t know she was coming back so soon, we didn’t have time to formulate any theories. Heck, we didn’t even think she would be back early enough to see it.

I looked to Tracy and Brianna and they glared back at me. Oh crap!

“Well“, she was clearly waiting for an answer as she motioned towards us three.
I laughed nervously and the words that came out of my mouth were,
At least, it’s not human poop.”

It was too late to take it back; Brianna gasped, Tracy looked like she needed to puke. I glanced at my mum again, and the look on her face told me one thing- Lord help me!


word count: 162 words. The above story is in response to Flash Fiction For Aspiring Writers photo prompt challenge, hosted by Priceless Joy, where each week we are provided with a photo and are to write a 75-175 word story on it. Thank you very much for this week’s photo @artycaptures.wordpress.com

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All or nothing-

All or nothing-

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I don’t want to be the reason for your living,
to be the oxygen required,
For your every breath,
I don’t want to be your all or nothing.
I am a compilation of cracks,
barely staying glued together.

I want to go to bed knowing,
my breaking-
is not your breaking,
My ruination,
Is not your ruining,
When I doom one life,
I haven’t doomed two.
I can’t bear, that responsibility
On me.

If for some reason,
I do not make it,
I need to know,
That you will;
You will push through,
Even without me…

I can’t be the reason
For your living,
I am only human,
flawed… fickle.

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writer’s Quote: Joan Murray

writer’s Quote: Joan Murray

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Welcome to another writer’s quote/poem Wednesday, where I share some of my favourite poems written by other authors. I had initially planned on sharing a poem by C.K Williams, titled the Nail, as this week’s submission, but then decided against it today.

Why? Because, I personally have had enough of what’s going on in this world. We are not good to one another. I mean, just look at the ridiculousness carried out by “white supremacists”, in the United States. How did we even get here. From celebrating the first black president just a few years ago, to having to convince people that something as simple as the colour of one’s skin doesn’t make a person inferior.

This has got to stop. And so, I decided for this week, instead of bringing another poem depicting the sad world we live in, I wanted to take you guys along to South Africa, in this poem. Where one woman, against the backdrop of poverty, politics and economic difficulties, displays strength and courage. She plays her part in a society where even the leaders fail to play theirs.

Her Head by Joan Murray
Near Ekuvukeni,
in Natal, South Africa,
a woman carries water on her head.
After a year of drought,
when one child in three is at risk of death,
she returns from a distant well,
carrying water on her head.

The pumpkins are gone,
the tomatoes withered,
yet the woman carries water on her head.
The cattle kraals are empty,
the goats gaunt—
no milk now for children,
but she is carrying water on her head.

The engineers have reversed the river:
those with power can keep their power,
but one woman is carrying water on her head.
In the homelands, where the dusty crowds
watch the empty roads for water trucks,
one woman trusts herself with treasure,
and carries water on her head.

The sun does not dissuade her,
not the dried earth that blows against her,
as she carries the water on her head.
In a huge and dirty pail,
with an idle handle,
resting on a narrow can,
this woman is carrying water on her head.

This woman, who girds her neck
with safety pins, this one
who carries water on her head,
trusts her own head to bring to her people
what they need now
between life and death:
She is carrying them water on her head.

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The price of colour-

The price of colour-

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I read in the papers
Today,
A young boy and his father,
Under the blanket
Of night,
Hitched a boat, set sail
Across the ocean;
Behind them- the ground
Waiting, waiting to be
Stepped on and triggered into
Explosion-
(A boy and his father escaped).

Across the ocean,
to a land- the land of the free,
Where freedom comes
With no price, and life
Is valued.

A young boy and his father
Arrived- thrilled- alive.
Two years down the line-
August 11,
The newspaper reads;
A young boy shot down
On the street,
The young boy who escaped
To be free,
The young boy thrilled
To live,
Gunned down, for the colour
Of his skin.

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