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Nkateko Masinga: a poem


it is simpler to haul myself into grief than out of it. what is to excavate when others remain underground? what is to extricate when others remain bound? what is to escape if others remain?

in a dream i see you again, alive. it is simple maths: i count backwards & you're here, saying your last words; an accretion of apologies that i accept – we wake up in a new world

unsullied by afterthought. your script, written in breath, a dirge for your soul to hum along to in eternal slumber. a composition of perfect posthumous relief, a howl not confined to a throat.

Nkateko Masinga is a South African poet. She is the author of a digital chapbook titled the heart is a caged animal, published by Praxis Magazine. Her latest chapbook, psalm for chrysanthemums, has been selected by the African Poetry Book Fund and Akashic Books to be published in the 2020 New Generation African Poets box set. She can be found at


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