Poetry: And I Knew Him

March 02, 2009
Amitabh Mitra



I knew him
The black man playing a recorder
At a Boksburg street junction.
Every day
He played the tale of sun set blood

Of the fear of white rain gods
Of a hope of the train from Soweto
Might stop
Running over him ever since he was born
He never asked for money
Only the landscape that
Once belonged to him.
One day
He never came back.
His place trampled
By a new founded

Photograph - Apartheid Museum, National Archives, Pretoria

Poem by Amitabh Mitra 


An orthopaedic surgeon in a busy hospital in East London, South Africa, I actually belong to Gwalior, Madhya Pradesh, its long summers and hectic politics. I edit a print poetry journal called 'A Hudson View' and a journal on African arts called 'Inyathi' and dream of going back to Gwalior.
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