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Murdered by Suicide: For Ingrid Jonker

2009 February 10
by Cosmo Pieterse

                                                   (Jy’t my gekierang, Dolie)723038_young_african_girl_playing

                  I can’t remember, baby,
                  What colours were your eyes;
                  I never came so near to
                  You to realize
                  Their deep intricacies.

                                                           I met you once, remember,
                                                           And you mistook me for
                                                           Another–but I tremble
                                                           When I recall that your
Body looked so young for eyes of such deep loss, such deep remorse.

                  Remembering that meeting
                  And how your passion took
                  The breath from me, I know your bleeding
                  Death must be a dark mistake
                  Numb hands stole from a book.

                  Baby, bodies fumble
                  Through agonies of self
                  And others who dissemble
                  Life and identity: they halve
                  Our love. But can dead hatred help?

                                   You sang of a dead baby
                                   A simple lullaby.
                                   You sang to a small body
                                   Of life. How could you die?
                                   You told us to remember. Why?

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