Dear Allen.

I saw the best minds of my generation

Tearing pages out of Paradise Lost

To wipe their asses when they ran out of kak papier.

Rolling spliffs from the book of revelations.

Sticky taping colonial statues with black bags.

In the name of Azania

They flushed their faeces down oppressive altars

They sort to the altar the curriculum

And how they were not mirrored in it

How they were written out of it

And how it was all together irrelevant

Selective, and flawed.

I heard the best minds of my generation

Firing answers in 30 seconds in 20 seconds

Because pop culture was easier bubble-gum to chew on than reality

Because general knowledge was compulsory

Because reading was a dietary necessity for survival

And they survived alright.

Themselves. Above all else.

I noticed the best minds of my generation raise their eyebrows in confusion

When asked about the importance of Shakespeare

They drew spears in jest.

Sort to reclaim bourgeois galleries as a space to display lost and defamed lineage

At festivals they raised their middle finger at parliament in front of crowds

Who cheered and applauded in solidarity

The pages of African Lit were the bibles they swore by.

They waved its covers and bibliographies as weapons in the daytime,

Carved their own in the night time

And in the meantime, they were redeeming the meaning of freedom

They wrote poems for a living and called it art

Made art and called it a living

They wore their kink as a birth right not a fashion statement

They instructed whites who paraded in dashikis and dreadlocks

To piss on their own ancestors’ graves

They baked their peach dolls in ovens until they reflected

The truth

The gaze of blonde hair and blue eyes turned toward periphery

Their names were said in full.

Their names were practiced by foreign tongues

And only spoken to summon the audacity for further interaction

They had a complex about abbreviated names

And abbreviated heritage

They experienced massacres

They danced intoxicated on St James beach, on Long Street, in Constantia

Or wherever it made sense for them to exist

They romanticised about making Theatre

That reflected who they thought they were

They fantasised about bombing the colonial stench that is Company gardens

They loved,

God, they loved.

But no one would know that.

They don’t write such narratives about them

They best minds of my generation were filed in one dimensional profiles

They are profiled more often than they are seen.

I heard the best minds of my generation

Compose heaven from their mothertongues

Raised by single mothers and still deemed themselves complete

They were complete

In all their simplicity, and imperfections.

They were radical

They were nerds and potential

They died on 21st Birthdays

Lived as if they were invincible

They were treated as though they were invisible

But they were here

Burping Hashtags that were altering history as we had been fed it

How we starved from the white man’s version

I am starting to see myself

I am starting to see myself

Dear Allen

I am starting to see myself

P.S addressing you is more problematic,

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