December 14, 2012 Poetry , POETRY / FICTION







Poetry in December is all about borrowing time, loss, red apes, a fate that is uncommon, passion and tolerance,  and a long voyage in a small boat courtesy of Joseph Harker, Ilona Martonfi, Michael Kweku Kesse Somuah, Mohana Das, Karen Hancock and Mfundo Ntobongwana






Untitled # 1


Mfundo Ntobongwana





I’ve never met my Grandfather before

But I could tell from the single Wedding Day Photograph on my Grandmother’s bedside table

That he loved her dearly

Could tell he spent most mornings thanking whoever he prayed to for someone so beautiful to share a pillow

Spent most mornings thinking: Will she ever know that Sunflowers face the Sun to keep from the shade?

That a Bumble Bee spent half a day looking for things as pretty as her?

That Stars stare at their reflection in her eyes?


All this from a single Wedding day Photograph


I imagine they danced that day

Danced to a couple of chords of laughter spun together much like they were Stepping on his toes just to remind him that you lead only because I let you Reminding him to always lead with his left foot first

And to let his Heart follow soon after

Dancing To the rhythmic curve of her wrinkles

Waist deep in joy

Her skin A sky light shade of their favourite songs

That Sound exactly the way holding hands should

Or the way you blow a kiss hoping it reaches her before she changes her mind about a date

And how she catches it anyway, taking with it all those years it took for him to find her

Her smile and the way it seems to speak directly to his soul

And the way he asked her to marry him

because he didn’t quite know how to say


you’re all I’ll ever need tomorrow


The way he got on his knee in a room full of strangers

And how every face became hers, every freckle a Star

And every Star a vow scribbled on the back of this weeks grocery list

because I think of you at random moments everyday

Everyday I’ll make mistakes but I promise you I’ll try Try to get the Sun and the Moon to Moonwalk on my palm

Watch them finish just so I can say do it again with age old vinyls spinning in time to the Heartbeat I wish to one day match

And tell the Ocean That I can do bigger

Tell the Sun That I’ve seen hotter

Rip the Earth to its core just to say I know someone with more ability to give life Or the way we dance like 86 year old Children

The way we lay to rest with tales of tomorrow beneath our pillows


All this from a single Wedding Day photograph

When my Grandfather passed, all my Grandmother kept was his Journal and his Rosary

Said she always wanted to feel as if she’s holding his Prayers in her hands

In the Journal was a letter he Wrote that said something like Vera, I promise that when next we meet neither of us will have to leave

I promise that one day we’ll kiss on a Township corner and call it Paris

That I’ll run my fingers through your grey hair and all the wisdom that comes with it

I promise to Dream of you most nights

To breathe in whatever of you I have left over

I promise to still play our old Frank Sinatra records

And always pack a Picnic basket for two

And find the same park bench

If I didn’t Love you enough in this life I promise I’ll do better in the next

I can’t wait to see your smile

I hope you remember this photograph

We took it on our Wedding Day

I put it in to remind you that if a picture can tell a thousand Words

Then I must have loved you

A thousand times




Untitled # 2


Mfundo Ntobongwana



So this is for the cleanly pressed notes laid on cleanly pressed beds and for the Suicides that provide ink And for the Rosaries that lay beside them

This is for Suicidal Blues

This is for the ‘I’m sorry, I couldn’t stay here any longer Please water the plants in between your remembrance of me’

This is for Suicidal Blues

This is for the gay Pastor whose only mistake was thinking the grass is greener on the other side of the Bible that banished him for looking to the other side

This is for the Lesbian who took home her Partner to meet her parents and the last thing she’d ever do

This is for him that works couple hours a day for a couple cents And if Love was paid in cents she’d pick it up twice over this is for her

This is for 39 Panadoes taken at once with a glass filled with bitter regret to wash down bitter guilt 39 times over.

This is for her Uncle. Heavy breathing.A belt buckle. Heavy breathing. A zipper. Heavy breathing This is for Suicidal Blues.This is for her that grew up too early because he laid hands on her too early

This is for the Child with nothing to show Nothing to tell

This is for the cold Gun to the temple and for the Scripture he clutches in the other Open to just the right Verse seeking enough reason to say no, not like this

This is for the Verse he never found

This is for the geek we tease and bully in high school corridors and point at his weird glasses

This is for those weird glasses that now lay on the floor and look up at his lifeless torso that now hangs from the ceiling

This is for Suicidal Blues

This is for him that couldn’t speak the same English you do he didn’t fit in

This is for her with small breasts she didn’t fit in

This is for him that couldn’t afford much except for the Poison he used this is for him

This is for him who stood out too much at his all white School

This is for his Parents who only wished him an all White Education and now wish him farewell

This is for the blood that spilt on railway lines

This is for the blood left on the razor sharp blades and the razor sharp tears

that hit the bathroom floor like razor sharp questions as to why is there blood in the tub

why did we not see that the divorce was killing her as much as it did us

This is for Suicidal Blues And sometimes choosing to live Is just choosing another form of death And she said most suicides don’t really want to die, they just wan to end the pain So this is for when Death stops being scary, and what starts being scary is Hope. And this is for you to wake up and choose a better living instead 



Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6

1 Comment

  1. laura laveglia January 15, at 12:31

    To have a love like that is quite special and rare. I have dreamt of a partner with the kindness, love, understanding, but... Great poem Mufundo "Untitled #1"


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.