Tuesday Shorts: Lyrics – Nomashenge Dlamini

Part I: The Pilgrim

Burdened by this ghostly cargo,
The carnal leakage too far gone.
Lucid dreams swindle my rest,
A timely vent for a smothered soul on a prodigal quest.
I self-mutilate like a vandal,
A nagging summoning to let myself go.
Delay my demise another day,
To feign control over mortality.

A pilgrim to my every scar.
A pilgrim to my every scar.

Discerning spirit from breath,
Like anchor from stifle.
Discerning wanderlust from abandonment,
Like freedom from habit.
Discerning peace from death,
Like dark from black.
Discerning shadow from shade,
Like fate from consequence.

Who am I?
Am I you?

A pilgrim to my every scar.
A pilgrim to my every scar.

Part II: The Boogyman

Dining with the boogyman
Gobbling like a hooligan
Glutton for a can of worms
Hunger give me busy jaws
Troubles loitering my plate
Silver spoon ain’t got no weight
Starve from peace, serenity
Drown in pain and mockery

Whispers utter after life
Slicing with a blunted knife
Lover left an open wound
Turned my body to a tomb
Burying breathe and mother’s dreams
Blinding light an ultra beam
Honking sound a woman’s wail
Told them read between the rail.

Attempting to fathom
The dawning of doomsday
Attempting to fathom
The dawning of mayhem

Failing with the upkeep
An insufficient black sheep
Creeping in a corner
Intentional with the horror
Detangled from a noose but

Gagging on a fake gut
Tell him tears are timid
Watch him sink in livid

Emerging as a monster
Pounce on all the daughters
Evaded by his conscious
Discardable and callous
The panic and the frenzy
The frantic seed of envy.

Attempting to fathom,
The dawning of doomsday,
Attempting to fathom,
The dawning of mayhem.

Hide the children close the curtain
A former child is lurking,
Is death the only certain end
or are we still retrieving?

Attempting to fathom
the dawning of doomsday
attempting to fathom
the dawning of mayhem.

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The Sibongile Fisher Collection

Sibongile Fisher has been holding down the fort in the Tuesday Shorts lane and I can proudly say it has been nothing short of amazing. Sibongile has written four Tuesday Shorts during her residency and this is the Sibongile Fisher collection.

She kick started the month with Mary. The story left me asking if the comfortable silence in which we sit with those we’ve always known is really comfortable? In this story it isn’t. It’s a silence that swallows the things one hasn’t yet found the courage to say.

Second came Kintsukuroi, which stands testament to the saying – You can take a person out of the village, but not the village out of a person – in this case, poverty, strife. Can one truly leave behind who they are? Curses and all?

Third was The Legend of Mobu. Stories are like a photograph, they capture a specific moment in time and avail it to those who dare look. This here story captures the root of many South African stories both modern and ancient. It reads as a rich adaptation of a myth, with nothing lost in translation and everything captured delicately in the poetry.

Sibongile signed out with The Pigeon’s Nest and by now it is clear that death was the chosen subject. Death, the thing we never see happen. We know it’s coming. It taunts and threatens, it teases and mocks, and we appease it only for us to be tricked by it, denying us to witness the smoothness with which it operates and when it has passed we can only say, She had faded into the most peaceful corpse I had ever seen.’

What an honor it was to be graced by this amazing writer. I’ll forever be grateful for her gifts.

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About Sibongile Fisher

Sibongile Fisher is a poet, writer and drama facilitator from Johannesburg, South Africa. She holds a BCom degree in Marketing Management and a higher certificate in Performing Arts and wishes to pursue an MA in Creative Writing. She is the co-founder of The Raising Zion Foundation, an arts organisation that focuses on promoting literature, poetry and the performing arts in high schools. She is also the winner of the 2016 Short Story Day Africa Prize for her short story, A Door Ajar which is also shortlisted for Brittle Paper Literary Awards. Her short story Sea of Secrets written for young adults was published by Fundza under their mentorship program and it appears in their “it takes two!” volume 2 anthology.

Photo: Provided by Sibongile.

Tuesday Shorts: The things we forget – Baeletsi Tsatsi

My aunt tells me that my father left me three weeks before my fourth birthday. He knocked at her door and handed me over to her like a parcel, he could not handle it anymore he said. My mother left ten days after my birth, leaving my father with their first child. My aunt tells me my parents relationship had always been toxic. They met on the 21st of December in downtown Johannesburg. My aunt and my mother were doing the last Christmas shopping before going to my grandmothers place for the festive season.

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