If I had to wear to Black

If I had to wear black it wouldn’t be for Zuma. He disqualified himself long ago.

If I had to wear black it would be for Tafelberg.

For the mothers on the Cape Flats

It would be for Marikana

For Napolean Webster

If I had to wear black it would be for Free decolonial education

I would wear black to mourn the death of a thousand dreams of young ones that will never see that matric certificate.

If I had to wear black it would be for East London, and pot holes and bad service delivery

I would wear black for Buffalo Flats, joblessness, and gangsterism.

If I had to wear black it would be for the heartless perpetuation of a neo-colonial system that continues to oppress the most vulnerable in our society.

For Esidimeni

I would wear black for the landless masses

I would wear it for my coloured people, who still don’t know whether there is space for them in South Africa.

I would wear black to cry for those who think we should get over it

I would wear black only if it meant that we understood our president is merely a brief and periodic symptom of a centuries-old disease.

If I did wear black it would be for many other reasons, not for Zuma.

And before I wear black, I will remember my brothers and sisters who wear it on their skin everyday. I will remember what that means for them when they apply for jobs, and school. What it means on the trains in the townships and in the workplace.

Lord have mercy on me if I ever wear black and did nothing else to act toward making good the destruction and terrorism wrought on the people of this country. Lord help me turn this keyboard courage into action that costs me more than putting on another colour t-shirt for the day.