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the people by Rg Gregory
tangwena says
this is our land
soiled by the blood
of black centuries

smith says
the white tongue
goes bang bang
black must learn
words of a new march

tangwena says
every tree here
is made in the image
of a black ghost

smith says
the white tongue
goes bang bang
you must make your ghosts
in the image of new trees

tangwena says
i am a root too deep
for the white man's
knife and fork

smith says
the white tongue
goes bang bang
roots must take up
their beds and walk

tangwena says
tangwena tangwena

smith says
white is right
corn cropped
from the old dead
belongs in the pockets
of the powerful
what is progress
tangwena laughs
the mountains catch
his laughter
and turn it
into streams

the white tongue
goes bang bang
the streams glide
into african mists

tangwena laughs
till it hurts

smith is afraid
of the laughter
the white tongue
goes bang bang
speaking in blisters

with great pain
tangwena goes on laughing
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