Pretty Mcetywa, one of the Her Voice ladies, wrote this poem and performed it at our fundraiser…
The truth told to a deaf man
Shall be heard more loudly than the words
Of a wise man who has seen it all
And yet considers life as simple as breathing.
She sang to the wind coming from the North
Hoping it would carry the message of life forth.
She thought herself capable,
She believed herself able
To do what she knew to be her destiny.
She sang about her dreams.
Her hopes, her goals,
Her vision, her plans.
All her fears and doubts were insignificant.
This was her chance.
Little did she know
That the echoes of her vibrant aspirations
Had bounced off the rusty shacks of Kayamandi,
That her sweet melody of peace and joy
Had caught the ears of jealousy.
As the evening fog rolled in
An unfamiliar tune rested upon it,
Revealing to her naked heart
That her songs of passion couldn’t penetrate
The walls rising around her.
Control surrendered to panic
She didn’t recognize that the hole she was digging
Was not for her flowers, but for the death of her voice.
Her twisting stomach – it was only hunger,
Her heavy chest – her heart was swollen
Her blurred vision – tears held back by shame.
She faked a smile through cracking lips.
Light seeped through a fracture in concrete,
Reminding her of promise lost. She listened.
The growing warmth filled her
With notes she knew by heart
Until they reached the tip of her tongue.
The deepest breath sent her song air-born once again,
Turning walls to dust,
Setting free her clouded mind.
Listen to her now, because she has found voice.
photos | Odwa Nomavuka