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Will It Ever End? by Thapelo Pilusa

A poem on gender-based violence

Screaming lungs out in the room
Cornered and strapped in tides
Her voice slowly growing thin
With heavy breathing from broken ribs
Blinded by yesterday’s blue eyes
Tears turning bloody drop by drop
The Imbokodo turned a punching bag
The protector turned the predator
The warmth of a home in now a burning hell

Will it ever end?
Every night the vicious lashing persist
Administered by not a man but a fool
Ignorant to weeping’s from a defenceless woman
Nor the loud cries of kids he gave birth to
Poor lady feels no pain no more
Her mind filled with great fear
Of how bad will tomorrow get for her
Because surely there will be another episode

Will it ever end?
Is this life? Is this love?
Are the questions on her mind
Her children slapped around the house
Poor woman raped day and night
By a man who claims to love her
In a place thought to be a home
Then comes and blame it of a mere alcohol sip
And father figure issues
Only excuses from a brainless less of a man
The spineless so scared of change
A man the enemy of starting over
Who only deserves to be chained
And deserves no family at all

Will it ever stop?
Constant traumatic experiences of kids
Watching a horror unfold right before them
Only they wish it was just a movie
A series of violent nightmares
All creeped up under one roof they trusted
Robbed off the ability to think clearly
Normal life only seem a farfetched dream for them

Will we ever rest?
From climbing cases of assault
From cries of women and children
From being feared by our own sisters

Will we ever rest?
From terrifying our partners
From women carrying pepper sprays
From girls growing uncomfortable around us

Will we ever rest?
From reading about an uncle raping a niece
From boss harassing an employee
From nursing our sisters for trauma
From burying our beloved women killed by husbands

Will we ever rest?
From children turned into hobos
From innocent kids turned orphans
From pastors raping women for prayers
From teachers trialled for misconduct of learners

Will we ever rest?
From men are trash posts
From being called weak bastards
Are we really this damaged?

Will it ever end?
Man up you fool
Love and fear contradict
A beat up and discipline differ
A home and hell are not the same

Are we a mistake?
Should not be a frequent question from your children
Surely love is not evil
Man up and seek help
I need help is not weakness but acceptance
And acceptance leads to healing
Man up and heal brother
Be the ribs to your beloved
And warmth in lives of your family

Stand tall real men of the world
Brother up and help the fight
Fist up and stop the trend
Rub off the violence with real love
Build a home worth being called one
Dignify the words dad and uncle again
Say no to gender based violence
Eradicate women and children abuse
Divided we once fell
From the ashes let us rise

***

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