Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Sisterhood/Dancing With Angels

Gabisile Nkosi

Compiled by Njabulo Ngobese

The spirit of womanhood continues its reign as we embrace the women who have dedicated their arts and crafts to the fight for children's rights.

Durban based artist Gabisile Nkosi, has been a participant in community educational projects and is interested in the therapeutic effects of art making. She has contributed to Art for Humanity's Break the Silence HIV/AIDS Billboard and Portfolio Project. Her work has been seen in several group and solo exhibitions in South Africa and abroad. Gabisile is also part of the permanent collection of the Durban Art Gallery. She's currently at the Caversham Press in KwaZulu-Natal Midlands.


Dancing with Angels
Mavis Smallberg
she is singing new lullabies, jumping in new dreams
dancing with angels so her child becomes whole
under her feet is the debris of pain
beauty defaced, dead trampled dreams
all anchor her spirit
deprive her of hope
there’s a rustling of angel wings swift in the air
up to her knees are memories of sorrow
ribbons and bones tattered and broken
her relics of tears
his violations of trust
there’s a landing of angel feet soft in the air
she is dive-bombed by devils
they poison her head
ride on her back
shake up her heart
there’s a sounding of spirit war stirring the air
then she hears angelsong inside her heart
she starts learning the lesson, opens her eyes
unchains her feet
unties her soul
there’s a whispering of angel voices always in air
and she is singing new lullabies, jumping in new dreams
dancing with angels so her child becomes whole

Dans met Engele
Afrikaans translation of poem extract: Marí Peté
verstrengel in herinnering van smart,
beendere gebreek en klere geskeur,
haar oorblyfsels van liefde
sy skending van vertroue
maar engelvoete land sag in die lug
en in haar hart hoor sy hul sing -
sy begin te leer, haar oë gaan oop,
ontketen haar voete
bevry haar siel

A Brief Biography of Mavis Smallberg

Mavis Smallberg has been writing and performing poetry since the early 1980s and currently works at the Robben Island Museum. Mavis has been involved in various cultural collectives such as a COSAW, Vakalisa, Red Rituals and WEAVE. She has taken part in many group and individual poetry performances and readings. Her work has been published in several national and international anthologies.

The most recent ones are Women on War: An international Anthology of Writing from Antiquity to the Present (Ed. Daniela Gioseffi), Feminist Press (City University of New York, New York 2003), Women Writing Africa (Wits University Press, Johannesburg 2003).

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