20 May 2020

Teeth, a poem by Rethabile Masilo

This set of teeth
ate the centuries
that kept inside
what ought not
to leave a mouth,
to hurt or cripple
people with words.
One day when
I am not careful,
In the midst of life,
The words I carry
Will leave my body,
Past the white-clad
Sentries at the gate
And into the world.
God, what fuckery
Is this that made
This man president
Of a country that
Already was out
To get us all—hell—
Balls of fire. Shit!
Motherfucking shit!
How could anyone
Let this happen?
Over a boneyard
A bridge slumps
Under the weight
Of traffic. Beneath
The motherfucking
Bridge people
Struggle to find
Their veins, stick
Needles into them
And inject anti-
Fucking misery
Medication into
Them. The fuck!
People gnashing
Teeth in the winter
Of America. Shit.
I have swallowed
Centuries and you
Can’t ever touch
Me and my black
Ass, motherfucker!

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