Saturday, 7 December 2013

7th December: a new dawn

Nelson Mandela brought a new dawn to South Africa. Here’s a poem by Dennis Brutus - more about him below

Christmas 1965

Through the bruises and the spittle
the miasma of invective
and the scaled refractions of our prejudice
painfully man emerges.

Straw, shavings, hay
and the mist of the cows’ cloudbreath:
and through it flickered the lambence
of man’s inherent divinity.

Dennis Brutus, 1924 - 2009. Born in Salisbury (now Harare) in Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) of coloured parents. Grew up and educated in South Africa. He taught English and Afrikaans in South African high schools. Because of his opposition to apartheid he was fired and banned from teaching and eventually jailed on Robben Island where he served 18 months’ hard labour. He was allowed to leave with his family and became an active campaigner. You can read an obituary here.

Tomorrow: Ken has arranged music for advent: The World Waits

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