* * * * *

Wilton Mkwayi (with love to Irene Khumalo)*


human being
on robbens island prison
lived feeding pigeons there
for over 20 years,
holding the moon in his pocket
and angering fellow prisoners
because of the droppings.
the Spearhead of the Resistance
he was know when free,
now but a prisoner
sharing his meager rations,
with pigeons,
arguing with fellow political prisoners,
not about sacrifice
but pigeon poop,
petitioning the warders,
for his pardon and their grace
denied by all but the birds
who gave him hope
and kept him sane
who cooed 
and fed him more
than he ever fed them


*Wilton Mkwayi lived over 20 yrs with Nelson Mandela on Robbens Island Prison.  Each year he petitioned the authorities to be allowed to marry his sweetheart, Irene Khumalo, and each year he was denied.  In his 21st year of imprisonment his petition was allowed for the following year.  Irene died of cancer six months later.  Wilton was still in prison.