©2008 Rethabile Masilo
you left for work
without a word/
I just felt nuts,
smoking the cleft
of day/ a bird 
is caught by time
till twilight wraps 
my thought and
feathers fly home/ 
so I feel nuts 
again, then you 
tap the padauk
door which I go
to open with 
the other hand.


©2008 Rethabile Masilo
The main thing is to 
disparage no one
among the freshly 
chosen ilk. Let the 
old carry their poise 
in ageless stance and 
stolid gaze—we will
learn from each and each 
from all, as the wheel 
turns to meet the 
coming of the storm.
And in fine, British
tailored suits worn over 
the philosophy 
of the East, you faced 
guns and fire from 
enemies, spent your 
gift fighting nemeses.
Each message captured 
us that came from you, 
Hani, Sobukwe, 
and Fischer, too—
  [Anyone need to 
make amends!] If their 
words are well-meaning 
but pale, we shall help 
them paint vocal works 
of art with a-cappella 
hues, and sounds.
But then, before we begin, 
1 by 1, I'm gonna have to
ask my people if we can.

Africa America Jamaica (thinking of Stephen and Geoffrey)

©2008 Rethabile Masilo
In the hollow cost of the sea you sailed across
you rebuilt you grew strong you get reverence from me—
you’re strong for passing through that storm
Let our voices carry the weight of the world
let us fathom Africa where the colours of the world began
life in its leanest and most magnificent form
the roar of the beast
the fall of the empire
the wail of the islands across the sea 
Life written in the greenness of the trees
in the cleanness of the air that we breathe
Now, what shall we talk about
that is the beauty of us three, that binds us
in isosceles brotherhood?
[click to view introduction]