Through Vangi-tinted glasses

Perspectives from an African

broken door January 13, 2015

broken door

on a taxi yesterday

I met a grey haired ghost with a rumbling silence

swollen, her belly brewed a hushed anger

a stillness of breaths

that remembered promises and children.

She told me of a dream she once had

a country she once carried.

she told me of twenty six days of night

how she imagined the sun and the sky

lay dreaming on a cement wetness

fought memories of a broken door 

her babies’ screams

one was five, the other three.

she could not allow herself to think of them

of what had happened to them.

she did not cry

nor was she cold

she could not tell me when exactly her womb had turned to lead

only that countries and children are a sorrow

worse than dying

 

going to war – a poem for the akward girl in a little blue dress January 5, 2015

going to war

you will learn to wear words

the way soldiers hold up shields

know that you are different

a tragedy of dark

and fat

in a world of skinny yellow bones

you will have two choices

cower into a hole

eat, drink, sleep

your hurt away

build walls

keeping in a cold

sharper than loneliness

or you will carve a sword

out of talent and character

fight insecurities dressed as dragons

inherited from mother to daughter

to that little girl who

didn’t know any different

playgrounds are our first 

taste of war

words shot into the sky

only those who learn love early

will know the armour it takes to survive

 

HUMAN4HUMAN – COMING TO JO’BURG THEATRE FRIDAY 03RD OCTOBER September 30, 2014

Please join us for our first theatrical staging of HUMAN4HUMAN:

3 October 2014
Jo’burg Theatre – Space.com
R100 (R80 for students)

Kiri Pink Nob and Iinstomi present HUMAN4HUMAN through poetry and music.

(more...)

 

Spoken Freedom Festival Line Up Announced June 27, 2014

Filed under: #fortheloveofpoetry,Uncategorized — Vangi Gantsho @ 12:28

I’m so excited about this festival!! Catch me at the Market Theatre on Saturday but be sure to check out as many shows as you can. You won’t regret it!

#fortheloveofpoetry

Word N Sound Live Literature Company

SpokenFreedomFest
In a rapidly changing socio-economic landscape, art takes the role of noting where we’ve been and, plots the path to where we’re going. Enter: The Spoken Freedom Festival. This Annual Festival is an exciting showcase of the best Spoken Word voices in South Africa, and takes place from the 3rd of July at the Market Theatre.

The Spoken Freedom Festival is first and foremost an exciting showcase. It provides both audiences and artists an opportunity to witness and partake of engaging artwork through the media of words, music and visuals. It’s a chance to collectively look at how far South Africa has come over the past two decades, and to position Spoken Word as a medium to both chronicle and shape the South African journey in the years to come.

This first edition of what will become an annual festival was born out of the shared visions of both the…

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A Letter to my stolen sister – reblogged from Vanguard Magazine June 24, 2014

Today, the girls have been missing for 71 days!!!  SEVENTY ONE.

Posted on 17 June 2014

“My darling, it has been sixty one days since you were stolen from us, and I have wept for you incessantly since. Everyday. I know this letter will not reach you today, or tomorrow even. But I pray that you will read it when you are home, because I believe in my heart that you will return. You have to.

I have tried to write to you so many times. Tried to find the words. But what does one say to a stolen child? How do I comfort you or give you hope or tell you that this will pass and you will survive? That you will come home, and you will survive! I want to tell you that I would search those forests barefoot for as long as it takes to find you, if I could. Because we are the same, you and me. I am older and we are separated by many mountains and rivers and a dessert even, but we are the same. We are two black girl pawns on different chess boards, in the same tournament. Our bodies and lives are statements. Objects. We exist to be taken… on the way from the grocery store, from our beds, from school! We do not belong to ourselves.

When they took you, the world remained silent for what must have been a lifetime to you. No one but uMama cried. And then there was noise. We heard screams in cyber space and outrage on airwaves. Voices from around the world sent virtual search parties for you, but we know the truth about this virtual world: hashtags don’t bring girls home.”

— READ MORE

 

21 Days/ 21 Poems: Castletown, Isle of Man by Jackie Kay June 15, 2014

Filed under: #fortheloveofpoetry,My Love letter to Poetry — Vangi Gantsho @ 03:34

Ah!! Poetry!!

Kinna Reads

Castleown harbor

The Harbour at Castletown, Isle of Man by Charlie Dave, CC-BY-2.0

It’s the first day of my Another 21 Days/ 21 Poems to celebrate (US) National Poetry Month.  Today, I feature a European poet of African descent.

jackie_kay_lge Jackie Kay

We all have our favorite poets and poems; I’m no exception.  There are poets whose poems have kept me company throughout the years.  I keep going back to their work, sometimes to a specify poem.  Invariably, when I have to put together a poetry rooster like the lineup for this  month, I will refer to an unwritten list of favorite poets.  Sometimes, I craft the themes so it allows me to revisit an old favorite!  This year, though, there’ll be plenty of new-to-me poets whose poems are truly dazzling.

This intro is just to present another favorite, the award-winning Scottish poet Jackie Kay.  Another delightful problem I have: choosing one…

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in the Friday afternoon queue June 5, 2014

Filed under: #fortheloveofpoetry,Poems by Vangi — Vangi Gantsho @ 21:06
Tags: , ,

In the Friday afternoon queue

a woman eats a sandwich
just bread. no butter. no milk
another keeps asking me the time
she has to fetch her granddaughter from crèche
says she had to wait for her madam to come back from work
couldn’t leave the children by themselves

i recognize Mme Gladys, a few people ahead of me
she works as a teller at the BP garage
her husband left her sometime last year
after she had her ovaries removed
said he couldn’t be with someone
who wouldn’t be able to have children

he is sixty one
they have two boys and a daughter
together

in the past thirty minutes
only one taxi has passed
Mme Gladys is now at the front of the queue
this makes me happy
she’s been through so much already

there are only two men in this line
many men walk past
all in some kind of a rush
Some carrying black plastic bags
i remember that it’s Friday

if a taxi doesn’t come soon
i will be late for my date

feels quite insignificant though
considering these women
who have spent all day cleaning
and ironing

they still need to cook
and wash their grandchildren.
service their men, maybe

 

 
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