[With Mahlubandile Jr Ntabeni]

as the fiery sun bakes mother earth
and the asphalt streets rise up in anger
as patched throats risk running more drier
and the rumbling in our bellies cries out
as the scornful glares pounce upon us
and some pious eyes say we should supplicate
as we know very well broer
there’s everything for us
under the bluegum tree

it could have been the ultimate end
one fateful day in the eastern cape
along with ol’ comrade mangqangwana
on the dark and deadly road
streched long like a python
when its messenger of death
with ugly stumps of shorn horns
and a tail to match
came hoping to take our lives
but we happened to see
its sickening mirth at the miss
that could have been the end of us

under the peace of the bluegum tree
and the sanctuary for freedom of the birds
the rustle of falling leaves
and barks piecing off by inches
renewing and regenerating themselves
to grow back again
into the bluegum family

we breath again / healing ourselves
take charge again / talking and laughing
breaking bread again / eating heartily
from the same bowl
together today and tomorrow
under the bluegum tree

we live to face life again broer
and to try once more
again and again
in camaraderie
until victory
under the bluegum tree

Jaki Seroke