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For I have learned to be content by Bernadette Richards

Bernadette Richards | December 12th, 2017 | poetry | No Comments

Poem

I am cut from opposing shapes
From St. Helena to the army defector
From the teacher to the old-time gangster
Even legend-ended grandparents
who are often subject to the figurative avalanche

I am cut from a people
Who knows long labour and humbling context
Who put their dreams to a guillotine
Who knows what it is to sacrifice self-worth for jam on bread
Tempting as it is to want to canonise the gone
the chorus reads:
‘I am no saint, burn the pedestal, but good Lord I know discipline and hard graft’

I am cut from a heritage
Which contains every magnificent colour, taste, feel and sound imaginable
But also a heritage which sometimes forgets to breathe
A heritage which scourges itself by swallowing dastardly stereotypes
A heritage reminiscent of Philippians 4, verse 11*

(“Not that I speak from need, for I have learned to be content, regardless of my circumstance”) *

Poet Bio

Bernadette Richards is from Cape Town. She is inspired by diverse forms of art and believes that creativity is one of the best forms of therapy

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