I watch my past spin and spin, sickened
by my body’s blunt refusal to lunge at it.
I lack the enthusiasm required to grab
what is mine and admit that it is mine.
Who, when meeting again what has wanted
them dead, says to it, “Come home with me”
and who, when shown a gun, unbuttons
their shirt and marks an X on their chest?
Our love is alive, ablaze and pirouetting
towards me; a firefly on a conveyor belt.
Nkateko Masinga is an award-winning South African writer whose poetry has been translated into French, Bengali and Tamil. Her next poetry book, ‘Daughter Wound’, will be published by Hazel Press in 2024.