21 Days/21 Poems: The Bridge Between by Rethabile Masilo

An elegy for today’s 21 Days/21 Poems.

The Bridge Between

Some of us think the strong will not leave
And that Armageddon will never come;
That is what we think. When we get home
And you are not there we start to disbelieve
The story we imagined, how if no one may see
Souls on their freeway out of here, which
Einstein predicted, they don’t go. The bridge
Between worlds. A figure on a solitary quay.
Either way, there’s a hole where your body was.
Then of course there are rituals: eyelids to close
After the season; dogs to feed and find homes for;
A single tomb to dig or a room to build with four
Strong pillars at the corners. Coming from the crypt,
Your granddaughter nestled in my arms, and slept.

The poem says it all and it covers a lot of ground. Public/private, and the practical aspects of death and funerals against the personal anguish that death brings.

The poet, Rethabile Masilo, lives in Paris.  He teaches English.  He also teaches Sesotho.  He blogs poetry at the wonderful and Africa-inspired Poéfrika.

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3 comments

  1. I follow him on blogspot and I have read some of his interesting poems. This is a beautiful piece. I like the first two lines the most. If we all think that we would leave, either strong or weak, most of the atrocities in the world might not occur. It is our sense of invincibility that misleads us to commit heinous crimes. I watched Fouday Sanko and Augusto Pinoche, and several others… in their old age and I asked, were they the ones?

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