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Nuwe skryfwerk | New writing > Poësie | Poetry > English > Unpublished poets

Song of the JuJu man

James Whyle - 2011-07-14

Untitled Document

Song of the JuJu man

The pale thieves, the pale murderers
They must go
The pale ones must leave
They must take everything they brought with them
Roll up the roads and the telephone wires
Coil up the cables of our knowledge
The books and the poetry and the plays
The medicine and the science and the radio
The Einstein and the Engels, the Freud and the Fanon
Take away the entangled particles and the big bang
Take away the computers and the steel and the seeds
Take English away, and Afrikaans
Take away the horses and the revolution
And we will walk in the glory of our preliberation
We will enter the blood-rich womb, the unfurling drama of the darkness
We will dance in the iambic heartbeat of Africa
We will walk with spear and knobbed stick in hand.
We will turn to the witches to make the land clean again
If they fail
We will burn them.

  • James Whyle's published dramas includes National Madness, an Amstel Play of the Year runner-up, and Rejoice Burning, which was commissioned by the BBC. His story The Story was chosen by JM Coetzee as winner of the 2011 Pen/Studzinski Award. His screenplay Otelo Burning has been filmed and is due for South African release in 2011.