© Avril van der Merwe
Africa cradled my first infant cry that rent the canopy
Of African sky, braced my toddler steps that chased
Through African soil, stained and blistered my soles,
Ingrained my soul with African dust
Compelled my vision to shift and lift until it must
Lust after African vistas, African stars, African dreams.
No matter how far it seems I wander my being
Is seamed with scent of wild African thunder rain
Ears trained to timbre of wild African surf pounding African turf
In proud timpani sent deep into the heart of me
Always a part of me grounding me in lush African bush
And cadence of African sun rises and sets: Africa’s golden seal on me.
My African roots grow deeper, draw strength that flows from
African earth that birthed me, grew me, led me to explore
Anew the power, the core, the flower of African experience,
The length of African resilience
The breadth of African grace that holds space for all the panoply
Of diversity that is Africa.
Africa conjures the songs my heart sings
Weaves the spellbound words that take flight, share the light
That is all Africa.
It is Africa’s heat that stirs my blood, my heart beats for Africa
Beats heat, stirs my heart, Africa’s blood my blood
Heart heat, for Africa.
What offering have I to lay down now
That African calypso thrills me
Spills through every filament of me
Captivates every fiber of me
Permeates the seams of all my waking dreams
But this poem. For Africa.