Sometimes in April
When the rain pours
And makes mud of the earth.
I think of Brenda Fassie’s “Too Late For Mama”
Lingering on my sister’s vibrato
An attempt to forget that,
A family member had lent us their back.
My three sisters and I huddled,
Under the night sky,
A mild prayer to keep us from shivering.
A ‘let us find the mercy of a couch”
But it rained hard.
We used our limbs as umbrellas.
Laughed loud and sloppily
To hide our shame
Sometimes in April.
I think about the wet ground
How it felt against our feet.
How poverty turned into homeless.
Into “don’t cry, we’ll be okay soon”
Into my mother being a beggar
And us, just open mouths.
Wrestling with the pitiless relatives
Who call us out of our shared last names.
Haven’t we lost enough
Haven’t we known an empty hand
Haven’t we despaired enough.
No shelter to speak of
Just a song to keep us warm
And the rain does not care. (Neither do the people)