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Thread: Homeland, A Rhodesian Poem

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    Homeland, A Rhodesian Poem

    May I put this poem up by an Rhodesian lady now living in Scotland.
    Weereens verskoon my Engelse spelling as ek verkeerd pik. (Twee finger)
    'n Vriendin van ons Afrikaners in Amerika het dit vir my aangestuur.

    Homeland
    Michelle Frost

    Within my soul, within my mind,
    There lies a place I cannot find
    Home of my heart. Land of my birth.
    Smoke-coloured stone and flame-coloured earth.
    Electric skies. Shivering heat.
    Blood-red clay beneath my feet.

    At night when finally alone.
    I close my eyes - and I am home.
    I kneel and touch the blood-warm sand
    And feel the pulse beneath my hand
    Of an ancient life too old to name,
    In an ancient land too wild to tame.

    How can I show what I feel?
    How can I make this essence real?
    I search for words in dumb frustration
    To try and form some explanation,
    But how can heart and soul be caught
    In one-dimensional written thought?

    If love and longing are a "fire"
    And man "consumed" by his desire,
    Then this love is no simple flame
    That mortal thought can hold or tame
    As deep within the earth's own core
    The love of home burns evermore.

    But what is home? I hear them say,
    This never was yours anyway.
    You have no birthright to this place,
    Descendant from another race.
    An immigrant? A pioneer?
    You are no longer welcome here.

    Whoever said that love made sense?
    "I love" is an "imperfect" tense.
    To love in vain has been man's fate
    From history to present date.
    I have no grounds for dispensation,
    I know I have no home or nation.

    For just one moment in the night
    I am complete, my soul takes flight.
    For just one moment.... then it's gone
    and I am once again undone.
    Never complete. Never whole.
    White skin and African soul.

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    I googled the poetess and found a collection of poems about Rhodesia (on a Rhodesians Worldwide website), amongst which can also be found the above poem by Frost: http://www.rhodesia.com/docs/poems/poetry.htm

    I thought the following to indicate a commonality between the mindsets of Afrikaners and Rhodesians:

    I have no grounds for dispensation,
    I know I have no home or nation.
    Apart from the fact that it appears to be acceptance of, and buying into, the rhetoric that they haven't the right to think of themselves as the diaspora of a Rhodesian nation, it reminded me rather of the characteristically Afrikaner lament that, with SA removed from the picture, we'd be essentially homeless as a nation as well.

    White skin and African soul.
    Sorry to say it, but I believe it's quite clear Frost's viewpoint is skewed to the detriment of ethnocentrism: in her soul, where it matters, she identifies as "African", while she's only "white on the outside" (except if I'm reading too much into her choice of words here... never was very good at analyzing poems).

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    "I thought the following to indicate a commonality between the mindsets of Afrikaners and Rhodesians:"
    I read that poem in that sense.

    "With SA removed from the picture, we'd be essentially homeless as a nation as well."
    We are homeless if we allow ourself to be, that is all that I can say about that. We never had support, so it is up to us in any way.
    Also in her "soul" she is true from my viewpoint, because we in essense are not souls of any place but Africa anymore. I myself will only be at home near or on my farm where I feel one with, and the land talk to me. A city dweller will never understand that, I think. There is no poetry in that, it just is simple fact. So do I carry my black name, Mabulala, given in wisdom to me by a old black as a lesson in life. BUT I do also understand that they can kill with no mercy and with total enjoyment, with an excuse that can be fiction or fact, it does not matter. That is not part of our souls.

    What I try to say is that that poem can be read by different people from different viewpoints probably.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grazy
    because we in essense are not souls of any place but Africa anymore.
    I don't believe the spiritual connection to our Northern European origins could ever be removed to such an extent, at least not irrecoverably so. However, the premise under which I can accept this sentiment stabilizing in our folk consciousness is that the Southern African setting and location has played a defining role in our diversification from earlier/other Germanic civilization. What I reject is when it is implied that indigenous Africans have played a part in this diversification (other than providing a particularly hostile environment), or that there has been acculturation to African culture. An African identification, if needed, can be supported singularly in terms of our own story playing out in Africa.

    Quote Originally Posted by Grazy
    So do I carry my black name, Mabulala, given in wisdom to me by a old black as a lesson in life. BUT I do also understand that they can kill with no mercy and with total enjoyment [...] That is not part of our souls.
    It ought to be an immediate, obvious and basic assumption that no part of the Bantu world could ever have anything to do with our souls, at least not while it is our intention (and sacred duty) to guide the development of our people in an unequivocally Germanic direction.

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    I don't believe the spiritual connection to our Northern European origins could ever be removed to such an extent, at least not irrecoverably so.
    It to me boils down to level of civilisation. It is not posible to fall back, only to go forward. Therefore we will ALWAYS retain where we came from,and then build from there.
    However, the premise under which I can accept this sentiment stabilizing in our folk consciousness is that the Southern African setting and location has played a defining role in our diversification from earlier/other Germanic civilization.
    True, in my veiw. AS the Americans did have some small things rubbed of on them from the Indians, so we have our outlook or veiw been ENRICHED by the blacks, in the sense of retaining what is usefull and positive hopefully. That is NOT to say that we will EVER become them or like them.
    What I reject is when it is implied that indigenous Africans have played a part in this diversification (other than providing a particularly hostile environment), or that there has been acculturation to African culture.
    Acculturation can not truly happen, that I'm sure of. Too many examples of that around. Ask the highly liberal white "ladies" who married blacks and then got the shock of their lives when they wake up.
    It ought to be an immediate, obvious and basic assumption that no part of the Bantu world could ever have anything to do with our souls, at least not while it is our intention (and sacred duty) to guide the development of our people in an unequivocally Germanic direction.
    OK, thinking about it yes. What I'm revering too can be canseled out maybe by that we have lost from our Germanic background, but we have gained again something out of our African existance. To clear this up from my side is that I go from the believe that we live to learn and will be judged according to our improvement and hopefully given a next and higher task. Now I'm getting onto dangerous ground, so let us leave it at that.
    Fact is you can not force 6000 years of evolution into 300 years. You can train and give guidance, that is all, nothing more. Mutual respect is the only insurance, but you can only give respect if it goes both ways. And do not tell me that the Afrikaner did not in general respect the bantu and his Positive ways. That was effective use of propaganda, and those who came and shook the blacks hands that promote that image. I do not say that there was those that did not adhere to that, but so can I say that in the last 15 years alone that was and daily get topped if I only think of farm murders. Never was a living 2 month old black baby burned to death, or a youg black woman raped with a sharpened broomstick till it exits her neck to name two examples. If we look at a homeland, may I ask the question, what have they developed in their homelands with all the support and money we as Afrikaners pushed in there? The whole world is so brainwashed that they will cry to high heaven when a snoty nose black child is seen on TV, but they will not even see the ten snoty nosed white Germanic children in their own countries that is worse off. To be snoty nosed and begging is black African culture, so what, we understand that.

    Maybe I said too much, but prove me wrong.

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