Here’s something we can all agree on: It’s nice to see good things happen to good people.
And anybody who knows Justice knows what I’m talking about.
Justice Shamba is one of my favorite people that I encounter during my frequent outings in the town of Stellenbosch, where I live. Earlier this year, I used to see him nearly every morning after class at my favorite local yoga studio on Andringa Street. He worked next door, serving up Hazz coffee behind a neighboring retail shop window.
When I woke this morning, I heard you fighting across the street with Cleopatra in the vacant lot that you both regularly inhabit. A Wednesday morning turf war.
We started calling her Cleopatra when we moved in last year. Every night I would hear her from the vacant lot, screaming the most pearl-clutching Afrikaans profanities at phantom companions. I would count the number of times she would shriek “Jou ma se….####!” until I could finally fall asleep.
I sensed your tragedy before I even realized what had befallen you. You, an acacia tree older than my country. Me? A humble witness to your inevitable downfall. You, baring your branches high on a bluff next to the Emmarentia Dam, innocent and ignorant to the dangers of natural electricity. When I found you it looked as if a giant had pulled you apart like a head of broccoli, splitting your trunk and throwing your remains, with the slightest clues of charred wood now permanently burned upon you. Continue reading “For A Fallen Tree”→