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Best Poems Written by Stafish Olor

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My hair

My hair has always 
had a mind of its own
Stays doing whatever
it wants whenever 
it pleases
Just never bothers to do 
any of it, at my convenience
Will take its sweet time 
to grow 
When I'm most keen to 
own a 'fro
Loves to split into these little 
bushy clusters 
Kept in their place by tiny lines
of bare skin, 
They crop up unevenly 
to cover my scalp
 just like the scattered shrubs 
that grace the plains of semi arid Nhabe 
I love my hair the most when its short 
that's when it gathers into ridges 
that rest in little patterned furrows across my head, 
They resemble the beautiful ridged 
sand dunes I used to scale in Tsabong
When it feels neglected my hair 
tangles up and literally cracks up
into woolen clusters in protest!
I often end up having to trim off the 
tangled bits
reminds me of the mud cracks
at makgadikgadi salt pans 
when it does that
Sometimes I coax it into braids
and traditional threading styles 
But if not skilfully done 
my hair slips out of its confines
and sticks out in open defiance 
On a good day it can easily 
steal the spotlight 
Showing off its coils and gloss
as it coyly curls around 
the neat rows of plaits
My hair couldn’t care less 
about being defined by length 
as is the current trend 
Unless its lovingly crocheted
into dreads, it prefers to either 
curl into tight little coils that hug my scalp like a knitted hat
Or billow out into a huge irregular
shaped halo of kinks and curls 
similar to the cotton puffs harvested 
from mbuya's farm in Chitomborwizi
That has to be lovingly tamed with
special butters and oils
Flowers and beads compliment 
its unique beauty and texture well 
I lovingly wrap my hair in turbans 
and headscarves to protect it 
during its treatment and conditioning 
Or just to rock my traditional headdress style
My afro swishes, hisses or whistles melodiously
as the wind rushes through it depending on its mood at the time
Sometimes I catch it mimicking the thickset tree tops of the African jungle, causing my heart to ache with instant nostalgia
With its bushy top, that has kinks and knots for branches 
sticking out to blatantly defy gravity 
At times I style my hair into spikes and moulds just like the tsodilo hills
I even twist it into Bantu knots to honour my ancestors on occasion 
When humidity rises my coils and knots
suck in all the moisture and shrink back to my scalp 
snapping quickly into survival mode without warning 
Saving all the moisture like we are still in the kgalagadi desert 
My efforts to be stylish immediately rendered null and void
just like that 
I never take any of my hair's antics to heart though 
I love and accept my crowning as it is 
It's a proud display of my heritage and my origin 
An interesting conversation starter 
A unique and under appreciated work of art 
It’s a one of a kind crown of glory 
That I’m honoured to carry and pass on to my descendants 
A precious traditional sacrificial gift rich in tribal essence 
that I burn as offering to connect me to my ancestors instantly 
Resilient and wild, it’s as untameable as my Mother Aferika 

Copyright © Stafish Olor | Year Posted 2021

Details | Stafish Olor Poem

Just be

Why can I not just be
Be at ease with being me
Ease myself into an easy flow 
Jeez, is that part of me a flaw
My bloom is way past its glow
All motion now rendered slow 
Mixed emotions bout to blow
And my mood doomed to waffle 
I'm fearful life is foredoomed to be awful 
Maybe its best to cut loose the old self
Set my aura aside to rest on a shelf 
Shake loose my cells till they unform
to dally around freely without form 
So I can be as one with the norm
Let all fear step back now with a bow
As I take a chance to step up and wow
It's about time I cease being reactive 
Seize the day, vibrate on positive 
And still strive to be progressive 
Even while I live in active procrastination 
Remaining passive in my participation 
I wait till I receive a valid sign of progress 
It's since proved to be a very useful process 
That filters my mind of excess stress 
It lightens my thoughts so they run clear and free 
Freed my guilt and shame too, I did see them flee 
Now I intend to be a lot more cautious 
I can't keep up with feeling overly anxious 
Not over a few missed milestones 
My neck won't tote any hefty millstones 
If I do concede to this new slow pace
Will I find a space to fit in, in this place 
So as to face my inner self in peace 
Maybe then I can at last just be
Finally at ease with being me

Copyright © Stafish Olor | Year Posted 2021

Details | Stafish Olor Poem

The angry black woman

She stood with her back turned to me
Leaning slightly towards where the light tapered off into darkness
Her faced buried deep inside her cupped hands 
Her own shadow towered over her seemingly at odds with her as well
I wanted to see if her face bore the telltale signs of the inherent aggression she was infamous for 
Though I had no desire to replace her as the recipient of centuries of scorn and ridicule, I was curious about her nature 
She haunts the dreams of all black women, myself included, leaving us tongue tied and paralyzed with fear, in case of guilt by association 
Most take delight in her crucifixion even her own kind will gladly lend a hand on the day of her public stoning 
The black men step over her worn out carcass that they suckled dry and turn a blind eye to her pain, adding on to her humiliation 
They are often first in line, jostling to rip off her glorious crown from her head to lay it at the foot of another 
I raised my voice to her and said "do you ever do anything else aside from being a servant carrying heavy loads on your head, with fatherless babies tied to your back latching onto your breast, that nourished kings and queens who now spit at the mention of your name and tarnish your honour with slander?
Have you no pride angry black woman?
Why can't you be delicate, delightful and carry a sweet disposition with you like a fancy pocket book, angry black woman?"
Her lack of response spurred me on so I went on to add "you led shame into our midst with your hollering and lashing out
Not forgetting your crass voice that no one cares to hear "
I was on a roll so I got cheeky enough to ask "will you not turn around and face the day of your reckoning now that its finally here, angry black woman?"
And that's when she slowly turned around to face me, as I readied myself to rain my unbridled disapproval on her
That's when I noticed how her shoulders were slumped forward while her head hang low
she looked worn out as she stood there before me her face still cradled in her hands 
Her gnarled hands slipped off her face slowly and dangled limply by her sides in defeat
Thus revealing eyes sunken and glassy from years of piled on unconsoled grief 
Sorrow had left its mark on her precious face over the years
It was a face well known to me and dearest to my heart that was before me, as my jaw hit the floor in shock 
She wore the face of all the mothers, great grandmothers, grandmothers, sisters, cousins, aunties and nieces that I've ever had, in my lifetime 
Women who represented the divine feminine in my eyes 
I fell to the ground on my knees, regret choking me as I began to remember, my head weighed down by shame 
Her anger has never been more than anyone else's really, come to think of it
This I knew because I've witnessed different scenarios unfold where she'd had to bite her tongue back near enough to choke on it
At times she's needed anger's flame as a means of defense and even to assert healthy boundaries 
She has generously given her best to a world where her worth is never seen
And donated part of her soul when she had nothing left to give
Her sacrifices often go unnoticed and are rarely ever appreciated 
Her kindness is often mistaken for weakness and her silence is taken as consent
She has become the designated villain for all the ills and dysfunctions of the black family 
She wore a crown of dignity instead of pride because she is divine of spirit, I thought to myself 
I lifted my head up to apologise to her but to my surprise she now had my likeness for a face 
I was immediately engulfed by the all familiar shame I'm often expected to feel whenever I react to provocation with anger as I saw myself reflected in her
Bile rushed up my throat to fill my mouth leaving a soury bitter taste on my tongue, as my eyes brimmed up with tears and painful memories flooded my mind
The angry black woman looked deep into my eyes with compassion 
 and rested her gentle gaze on my soul warming it up with her 
 unconditional love 
Her radiance surpassing her battered flesh and eroded self confidence as her true nature shone through illuminating her striking poise, beauty and strength 
Her dark eyes were deep pools of wisdom that glowed with a fire that I knew could never be put out
She straightened her back, squared her shoulders and stood tall 
It dawned on me then that she was the brave warrior no tales of glory were ever told of
The unsung heroine born into servitude and repaid with contempt 
The black woman had to wear anger for an amour to raise kingdoms with her bare hands, only to have her glory awarded to others time and time again 
Yet she carried on being an indiscriminate nurturer and a lover
She was trusted with the master's precious offspring who later on she had to call master, as they thanked her with either indifference or mockery, but she held her head high and stayed on her path 
Always quick to grab the sharpened side of the blade with her bare hands to protect her brood
Conditioned to put others before herself and want little in return 
She has to learn self love the hard way if she ever does at all
She is a fierce mama bear who protects even the Judas in her tribe
Even as she is expected to adorn her oppressors with songs of adulation like she is a medieval minstrel, she never wavers in her stance
Why is it taboo for her to blow off steam when those less burdened fly off the handle for far less
I admire her strength for she shoulders the heat of fire, Mme Lobopo 's magic that births passion in the creation of life
She that carries the flaming sword of Gaia on her tongue 
has eyes that turn to pools of scalding hot lava as a mark of her fervour for life 
Your crown is welded on o bearer of the flame! it just needs adjusting occasionally 
The angry black woman in you is a goddess warrior of fire, have no doubt my dear sister 
Learn to harness her power to stand strong in your might 

Copyright © Stafish Olor | Year Posted 2021

Details | Stafish Olor Poem

Her Soul

That gilded cage
with its…
heavy quilted,
ironclad armour 
is Home 
to her soul

She's been busy
racking up layers
while her soul burrows 
and deeper 

yielding to the cage's allure

as it whirls through
timeless wormholes 
birthed by life's orbit

Her soul carries on 
swimming through 
Sands of eternity 
to the obvious realities 

that cage is a Shield 

though at times 
it obscures the view
in its cleft, a haven is found 

by a soul 
yearning for silence 
and nursing a craving 
for stillness 

This chest feels empty at times

the emptiness speak volumes 
it’s the kind 
that never ever lets up
it’s loudly echoed 
by the heart's throb 
as it obediently irrigates a life
a duty 
that will not be deprived 

This prison is a Safe house 

entry is denied to most
it’s limited to a selected few
and that 
after meticulous scrutiny 
exits are but a fantasy 
and thus glisten 
with the appeal
of the unattainable 

One fateful day 
her soul 
in a trance 
teleported into an abyss 
of quickened desire 

where a glimmer 
of unfounded hope 
sparked a wisp of courage 

Her soul rose 
to the occasion 
and offered its fears 
for a sacramental sacrifice 

as its terrors rose 
to the surface, she 
cradled it in her arms 
to soothe it 
with gentle crooning 

Her song a mantra of rebirth 

Of a buried seed 
that in time sprouts 
and shoots past its confines 

When it finally matures,
it will sow it’s seed 
to the wind
while its fluff takes to the skies 
and beyond 

its roots will nourish 
the womb of the mother 

Her lullaby purified the sacrifice 

as darkness fell
upon the cage
turning it into a cozy 

While her soul 
in patience 
stood sentinel 
armed with love

to keep the terrors at bay
as nature sows it’s wild oats

This heart is a Fortress 

that serves her soul
while it mans the post
It will remain 
on ice

Copyright © Stafish Olor | Year Posted 2021

Details | Stafish Olor Poem


She endured the tide as it rose
arose on wings inured to strain by fate
the reign of hate, she defies to win a wish 
a lavish treat and yet a utile present
that set ablaze, hope's waning embers
then renders her fit for a quest
as it adds zest and zeal, to her bounce 
once they gel, she will stand tall on it
to withstand the test of time once again 

Copyright © Stafish Olor | Year Posted 2021

Details | Stafish Olor Poem

She's here: Spring

Her intoxicating fragrance 
Heavily pregnant
With thinly veiled 
Promises of seduction 
Stepped into attendance with stealth 
to herald her arrival 
A stimulus that suddenly 
heightened our intrigue 
Rousing the body's senses to action 
She enthralls when she finally 
glides in
The mist at dawn her chariot 
Magic wand at hand
Diffusing glistening beads
of dew about 
To clease away seasonal
change's debris 
Coaxing listless souls
out of stupor 
Moistening  and reviving 
shrivelled parts 
Dried out by winter's purge 
She gifts all effete terrain with rebirth 
At her prime she'll lay bare in fullness 
The glory of her splendour afore us
An indulgent feast for the eye
Sends skin tingling euphoria 
Rushing through the veins 
Languid steps that she bolstered 
to a spry leap into a frantic 
trance dance of worship 
The forbidden wilderness lambada 
That raises the dust as earth awakens
In tune with a song from nature's own heart 
Delivered with infectious 
gleeful abandon 
A song ever so delicately woven 
Rhythmic chirping, bubbling
and even buzzing 
On occasion timely punctuated 
By drumming, pecking and whistling 
United by love and a lust for life
nature's beings lay out at her feet
An endless carpet of song
in her honor 
Spring is finally in our midst!
We shall rejoice in her deeds!

Copyright © Stafish Olor | Year Posted 2021

Details | Stafish Olor Poem

Least We Forget

They will not forget 
to this they swear
neither will we ever 
get near the end of 
hearing of it all, I fear
So it's with the dedication
Of a sinner to prayer 
that they dole out their
perceived just deserts
Fists thrust up to the skies
feet stomping in defiance 
they honour their grief
Indulging their right to privilege
Least we forget we are 
just the supporting cast
And so we fall back dutifully 
biting our tongues back
An unwilling audience
As they rant and rave
in outraged entitlement
The echo of our silence 
rings loud and clear to 
announce our cheerful 
endorsement, drowning out 
the flimsy whispers of protests 
rousing from the depths of 
our down trodden souls
Where our own grief lies 
in a state of woeful neglect
Forgotten like the 
fabled black poppies
Prised my clenched teeth apart
then dumped a spoonful of it 
straight into my heart, like it was 
a much needed life saving tincture
While I continued to scour the dirt 
for sustenance, barely keeping afloat
in that huge sea of disparity
Grief a luxury I could never afford
Rammed down our throats
As if they held proprietary rights 
over grief, while the rest of us 
only serve as a backdrop
To validate their fragile egos
Till night falls and with stealth 
We steal away, souls finally unyoke
Under the safety of the dark 
we turn inward to lick our wounds
Look onto the source for restoration
give a bow to the ones who swirl eternally 
in the dark belly of the bottomless seas
 entangled in the seaweeds, 
chained limbs and all, now forgotten 
the ones whose blood watered 
foreign lands just for another's pillage 
and plunder, unsung heroes, footprints 
long swept away by the winds of time
Their spirits have since been denied 
the tribal rites of passage home
Their names are only whispered 
by the howling gales and the 
ferocious typhoons, even then 
only when the storm peaks
Was it not your souls that 
put this fire in our bellies?
Are you not the root of our resilience?
You that are our source of hope   
Though I have no worldly 
banners to hoist nor a gavel 
to crack in your honour
My heart remains your monument
Engraved with the sweet offering 
of your self sacrifice back then
Everytime I breathe you are alive
Your blood inflames my veins
Your strength powers my loins
Bone marrow to my bones
Your wisdom guides my feet
As I dance to the master's false tune
Your gentle spirit soothes my aching soul
I now know you need no validation
And that is enough to see me through
the rise and fall of my chest 
a trusty reminder, least I forget

Copyright © Stafish Olor | Year Posted 2020

Details | Stafish Olor Poem

I refuse

My dignity MUST remain intact 
while i conceal my lack of tact
i will still trust my instinct
to give up my “pleaser” stint

So in this particular instance
i CHOOSE to stay firm in my stance 
against all this negging going on 
Just give over with the egging on

I simply refuse to oblige 
Your offer to indulge 
in the tussle and rumble
inside a mud pen rife in grumble 

I'll have to turn down for now
I  just cannot afford, to allow
you, to nudge me into reacting.
From the way you keep on acting 

i can tell you are really itching 
to rip off all the stitching
where my heart was lacerated
the heat from your hatred 

Is rather daunting for me
your words to this day, haunting me
Yet I refuse to be deterred 
from my path, I won't be deferred 

I'm intent on being true to my nature 
i won’t hand you the aperture 
to have me for your scapegoat 
I won’t let you lay the base coat

to better showcase my unraveling 
Your actions are rather revealing.
they clearly show ill intention 
I refuse to give that any attention 

I'd sooner revel in my newfound peace  
build back my resilience by the piece 
Soon, i will find a home for my presence 
worthy of my energy and essence 

I CHOOSE to align with values, that reflect 
the importance of compassion and respect 

Copyright © Stafish Olor | Year Posted 2021

Details | Stafish Olor Poem

Blind loyalty

The worst kind of loyalty, is often 
meted out blindly 
It’s an entrapment, and it always
ends badly 
I once thought to try it on for size
But I couldn’t afford its high price 
I found it made a rather merciless 
and relentlessly evil master
Pushes its ardent fans, with all the strength it can muster 
Under its spell they are suddenly rendered senseless 
It appears they deem common sense as rather useless
Happy to replace it with a pair of blinkers in the end 
Soon tunnel vision sets in, to mess with the head
Goes ahead and trades in all logic for herd mentality
That stubbornly refuses to face reality
Pretends to honour patriotic duty with such fake regality 
Yet another crafty way to justify injustice 
And satisfy the lust for collective prejudice 
In the end it's bound to kill a nation's rich heritage  
as moral decay spreads down each lineage 
A fruitful legacy lost just to appease entitlement 
And blissful ignorance relished as divertissement 
Such a waste and a steep decline to self sabotage
It's a tragedy within a mixed media collage 
A strange reality where biased perceptions are well renowned 
In a world where critical thinking has long since been renounced

Copyright © Stafish Olor | Year Posted 2021

Details | Stafish Olor Poem


My umbilical scar is hollowed out
Now it's like a tiny wormhole on my belly 
Its a cherished remnant of the coil that nourished me into existence 
I still feel a little tug through my bell button at times 
A reminder that its my lifeline even outside the womb
As it now anchors me to the belly of my mama Ubuntu 
keeps me tightly tethered to her long teat for grounding 
Just like it used to tether me to my mortal mother's warm womb
My cord never ever got to fall off, by the way 
Too busy hang gliding off my navel on the sly
Couldn't even bother to dry up on time 
Stayed moist and chose to germinate instead 
My umbilical cord sprouted a long spine
then took rest between my thighs, phallic 
Its been rather busy of late, generously sowing 
its unwanted seed all over 
It grew and surpassed its intended borders to dutifully trail my legs, my empennage 
I never lay question upon its course, I'm happy to have it tag along 
We've just always been on the same path 
since the very beginning of our being
We were paired up by fate in a shared destiny 
It's the only place I choose to fully lay my trust
its where my truth often holidays, out there it gets to sunbathe in the nude
My new tail is wired to the centre of the world 
Keeps us both aligned and connected to the source
We both feed off the core of the mother
two tiny morula nuts nestled in the same naris 
Always been too deeply grounded in the mother that's our curse, I guess 
My soles been embedded in her inner core for so long that they grew roots 
I've been too long tethered to the land, feeding my soul off its essence 
and learning to walk true to my authentic self
I don't need to be moulded or made into something else 
I bear no desire to be either discovered, conquered or colonised 
My ancestors already took one for the team in that regard 
I was created with an intact identity already in place, don't get it twisted
Been dragging it along all my life to be honest 
And all the while its been tagging me straight to the source 
I might, at my convenience indulge my foreign curiosities
Its a well deserved privilege prepaid with interest 
That was way before the eve of my conception 
My mother's invasion and defilement was never in vain 
Shame and anguish was all she ever had left to nourish and strengthen this golden marrow, that now tunnels my bones 
Just look how soft and supple it made my back, 
that you'll have arched for the sheer comfort of your precious feet 
It's my compliance that thickened my skin in the end 
It has never been your intolerance at all
My obedience has awarded me with spores
and then tiled me up with studded scutes 
Look, I'm just too wild a beast for you to demand for a pet
Even in my death I shall multiply and continue to breathe beneath the grave, 
My worth, that you constantly like to question can only ever be matched by a single grain from a specific type 
of fiery red soil, the one that builds mud huts and termite hills 
those my dearest, are spirit houses
It's that same soil that you greedily burst open and pried apart 
to rip out my mother's entrails
Her blood filled up the rivers and streams of the world at large and they cried it into the oceans 
I don't expect someone like you to understand anything like that 
but I will not dull my shine anymore 
To help validate your superiority complex 
Life runs deeper than human skin and material gain 
that's your lesson to learn, not mine
Meanwhile I'm content to remain coconed in this shroud of fear
you so generous gifted me
I' ll wait for you to catch up
While I remain tethered to the land

Copyright © Stafish Olor | Year Posted 2021