South Africa, My Country - Poem by Gert Strydom
Could I play like you, like a lion cub,
spending my days inviolate with the world,
when you were innocent, intact
had tried to touch butterflies with deadly paws,
you would have stayed forever in my heart
and I would have found acquiescence in you constantly.
Still your paws had become big, deadly
your jaws had become snapping, had mightily showered blood
when your growth went to maturity,
you did even amaze the biggest, most deadly cats
and from your compulsory service I wasn’t free,
fought for survival in your hunt
but now you are wounded far too badly, too serious,
I cannot stop the destruction anymore,
where you now want to kill your own cubs
and my brothers flee far away from you
while you do not want to know them anymore,
are infatuated by bloodlust, are infatuated to win the fight.
Still I love you far too much
to now want to see your nemesis,
I still try to heal your most serious wounds,
I still try to share my mangled life with you
and I can now smell your breath deadly,
while you use my life selfishly.
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