Eish!!: A Meditation on South African Citizenship

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A Meditation on South African Citizenship

If being a South African means beating on the red door of a shack and demanding to see a green identity book – the dompas of citizenship, then I am a foreigner.

If being a South African means dragging a woman into the road to push up her skirt and drive my boot between her legs, then I am a foreigner.
If being a South African means sharpening my machete to split the skull of a man returning home from work, then I am a foreigner.
If being a South African means ripping an infant from the swaddling on its mother’s back to spit in its face wizened by terror, then I am a foreigner.
If being a South African means dropping concrete blocks on that mother’s head until it bursts like a ripe watermelon on the dry dust of my street, then I am a foreigner.
If being a South African means arrogating the roles of policeman, prosecutor, judge and executioner, then I am a foreigner.
If being a South African means hanging over my garden fence and watching the smooth skin of a man blister as he burns a live, then I am a foreigner.
For that skin was an infant’s once, caressed by a mother’s marvelling hand.
That skins is a man’s, and a lover’s hand passed over it, marvelling at its smoothness. That skin is a father’s, reached for in the night by a child afraid of the dark.
That burning skin was a man’s and if being a South African means I cannot feel that skin as my own
Then I am a foreigner.


Margie Orford (21st May 2008 blog entry)

Click here to view her blog


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About Me

  • eishman
    Cape Town, Western Cape, ZA

    I am just a normal Joe Shmo sharing my views, web travels, experiences and gems I have found with you all. Of course the focus is on the Motherland, South Africa, with a bit of bias towards Cape Town, from time to time.
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