my family tree

 

Uprooted from Africa
Transplanted on a plantation
My roots severed
Growing in an alien environment
Growing despite the harsh conditions
Tornados, typhoons, tropical cyclones
Flourishing in an unfavourable ecosystem

My family tree as old as the Boababs
My brothers and sisters
Uncles and aunts
Mommas and pappas
All crying a silent cry
Weeping for those we lost
Left hanging on trees
Southern entertainment
I hate trees
Picnics too

I hate trees so much
Yet the tree only has so many branches
Killing a few at a time
Now they plant private prisons all over the show
Killing millions at a go
I hate trees so much
My attitude is destroying me now
Affecting my family
‘Cos I hate trees so much
My family tree is at risk

I hate trees
It’s not the tree itself
It’s what it symbolises
What it produces
The tree is an accomplice
Aiding and abetting in crimes against my people
The ship that brought us here
The gavel that sends my brothers away
The wooden furniture in the court room
The crosses that burn on our lawns
All made of wood
Not forgetting the branches from which nooses hang
I hate trees for a reason

Copyright © knox mahlaba 2014

Author of: Back From The Dead: The Rising of an African Spirit

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