Tshililo Thomas Radzilani

Rookie (South Africa, Phiphidi village in Limpopo Province)

WHOM AM I Poem by Tshililo Thomas Radzilani


Can any describe me?
Am I what you see or perceive?
What constitute who I am?

Is it my continent that describes me?
Possibly my genes in me
Heredity comes very close to me

Did the colony define me?
History of 1652 found me
Homelands found me

It is my culture that define who I am
My clan
My belief,
My community
My continent

I have evolved
Is it because of knowing good and bad - so called sin?
Is it due to education and globalisation?
I am not what I was yesterday

Where are the debris of my being?
Not everything I did or believed was sinful or bad
Some were means of survival
While some were just soiled but working

Why west challenged my skills and civilization?
Why west claimed to have discovered me?
How do you discover the indigenous?
Why everything I named was renamed?

My God is called Nwali
You can call him Modimo, Xikwebu, Uzimu, Nkulunkulu, Here, uThixo or Jah
He is more than what we confine Her to be

My job could not change me
The Codes are the means to manage our diversity
My culture is not means of life, but life
It filters all for my ethics, values and morals

Celebrate what I am makes me proud
Respect on who I am makes me to respect who you are
Not all animals in the zoo are the like
I am who I am through you - Muthu ndi muthu nga vhathu!

Submitted: Sunday, February 26, 2012
Edited: Thursday, March 20, 2014

Topic of this poem: Identity


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Poet's Notes about The Poem

The poem is about self identity. Coming from colonial error as an african one had to focus on diversity management while not forgeting whom am I. While there are many mirrows with different view of defining one, one have to see self image without deception and acknowledge those around you sho shape one for the better.

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