african rennaissance

we was always beautiful

We was always beautiful
Even when our collective memory didn’t recall
When we were called names
Suffering from a trauma induced amnesia
When we couldn’t recollect who we are

We was always beautiful
Even when your mentality refuted a glaring fact
Black is beautiful
You know what I am talking about
Am referring to your plantation mentality
Your self-defeating attitude right there

We was always beautiful
Thank goodness for the brothers and sisters who recognised
Focused on a glaring fact
Glorified by the halo of the afro
Dressed in black garb from head to toe
Leather jackets, polo necks, berets
Armed with knowledge
Reminding us against our will
Coining a phrase with no change in our pockets
But bold enough to change many a mind set
Including mines and my generation
Cos black is beautiful was the platform of my birth
When I realigned my mind set instead of my facial features
When I parted ways with the moonwalker
When I parted ways with insecurity
Embracing my coarse textured hair
My broad nose fulfils its primary objective
Keeping me alive with a constant supply of my stash
Hooked on oxygen by default
Trying my best to breathe

We was always beautiful
When our skin was undiluted
When it was diluted
We give the world its true complexion
Cos our souls will never be diluted

knox mahlaba
Author – Back From The Dead: The Rising of an African Spirit
Copyright © 2015

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Photo: property of zen magazine africa

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person of interest

Walking on desolate roads
Going nowhere on a dusty back road
Leaving everything behind
Everything I own on my back
In my backpack
Homeless apart from my memories
A citizen of no man’s land
Without country of belonging
No passport
No visa
My plight headline news
The source of my plight an open secret
The open wound that doesn’t heal
A refugee wherever I go
Even in the country of my birth
I am a refugee
A consequence of your foreign policy
A good Samaritan
Returning the favour
Impacting on your way of life
A reluctant migrant
A human being nonetheless
A person of interest

Knox Mahlaba
Author -Back From The Dead: The Rising of an African Spirit
Copyright © 2015

#refugee   #migrants   #migrantproblem   #hungary   #croatia   #serbia   #slovenia   #libya   #iraq   #syria   #visa   #passport   #unitednations   #europeanunion   #cnn   #skynews    #backfromthedeadtherisingofanafricanspirit

cry wolf

The world is silent to my tears
Deaf to the plight of the voiceless
Blind to cries for help
When my voice loses its pitch
Decreases in volume
Drowned by the establishment
As I try to breathe
Gasp for a pint of air
Will you recognise my goat wails
My pleas for help from behind the veil of a choke hold
Should a strong uniformed arm over power me
Place my fragile neck in a vice grip
Will you document the proceedings
Just in case the surroundings decide to do me in
Should the most probable occur
Don’t look away
Place your recording on record
As my corpse is placed on trial
Castigated for my dress style
Persecuted because I wore a hoodie
Please highlight my side of the story
Or at the very least
Allow me to state my case in absentia
Tell ‘em I ain’t no thug
When the world ignores my cries
Trying to breath is no crime
Mistaken for resisting arrest
Tell ‘em I have ghetto mentality
I don’t do no fairy tales
I don’t play no cry wolf
I am dying

the future

Reading my palms like an encyclopaedia
Searching for a heads up on the future
The red paths on my white palms signalling a danger ahead
Streams of veins forming an intricate network
A complex highway interchange
Rubbing my hands in tentative anticipation of what’s to come
Society making us sick with its protocols
Forced to work all the time like farm labourers
Imprisoned by an unnatural pastime
In order to amass more than we need
Driving some of us crazy with depression and hypertension
Breaking our backs with stress fractures
A nervous breakdown one pill away
The most mentally deprived people are the normal ones
The perfect citizens with medical insurance and life assurance
Oblivious to the dangers of the mainstream
Voting for different people with the same corporate mandate
Life has no guarantees
Going back and forth like ants on the job
Whilst I am busy swinging gently like a pendulum
My tongue skiing on the slopes of my ice cream cone
Enjoying a cold treat in the middle of winter
Going against the grain
Watching society commit suicide
Placing people in a pressure cooker
Whilst the status quo cooks the books
Tempers with the history as it occurred
Contaminates the future of drinking water
Making my way back to the future
Returning to the ways of my ancestors
Securing the soul of my people
Peace of mind a greater priority
Far ahead of expensive real estate and it’s material appendages
Safeguarding what belongs to me in my ark
My rebellious mind depriving me of vanity
My roots anchoring me in anticipation of a great flood
When all the feeble people will be washed away
Washed away by pollution infested waters
The city can drive you crazy with its hustle and bustle
Losing your mind is acceptable
But losing your soul is a completely different chapter altogether

knox mahlaba
Author – Back From The Dead: The Rising of an African Spirit
Copyright © 2015

Photo: Walter Sisulu Botanical Gardens, Ruimsig, Johannesburg, South Africa

stars & stones

We so blessed
Our skin is the blueprint of our beauty
Resembling black gold
Smooth like crude oil
A back drop for gold
Oh my
We so blessed
Essence of beauty
A universal complexion
Dark skin
So beautiful
Our skin a solar panel
Absorbing the sun with ease
No wonder we warm hearted
We so blessed
Coffee coloured
Covered in melanin
Nature’s indulgence
Jet black
The colour of the gods
Onyx, Tourmaline, Obsidian
Gemstones
Lauren, Alek, Viola
Stars
Nature’s desire
A variety of black
Damn!
We so blessed

knox mahlaba
Author – Back From The Dead: The Rising of an African Spirit
Copyright © 2015

the spoor

my search continues
seeking mammals amongst reptiles
scavenging the hills for pretty words
looking for the comfort of fragile settings
beautiful landscapes
though thorns reside
side by side
with colourful flowers
leaving no stone unturned
scowering the terrain
searching for for people amongst the mainstream
kind hearted individuals
following the spoor
footprints left by my nomadic ancestors
like the Amazon i carry baggage
sediment from where i come from
a chequered past
a history rich with experiences
scar tissue from life’s lessons
heritage from chromosomes
forensic evidence of where my people come from
somewhere in Africa
deep in a forest
under a mound of rocks
lies my title deed

knox mahlaba
Author – Back From The Dead: The Rising of an African Spirit
Copyright © 2015

amen

a watershed moment
happy for no reason
no particular reason
smiling with my heart
uncontrollably joyous
feeling the urge to get down
dancing one miracle too far
sitting my ass down
appreciating the genes i have
amen

knox mahlaba
Author – Back From The Dead: The Rising of an African Spirit
Copyright © 2015