Poems by Vera Mihailovich-Dickman

City Buzz


becoming a truly African city –

which it has been, but not for all

and perhaps not African in the eyes of many

not African in lifestyle, even if in Africa



Bursting with curiosity, the urge to discover

what it doesn’t yet know

the urge to be on a par

with Lagos, Dar es Salam, Addis Ababa

not really Cairo but perhaps Casablanca

Jozi-Alex-Soweto – beyond Casablanca!



A destiny quite distinct from that of Cape Town

more urgent

taking more risks

steppin’ out

daring to show and share






Do I have to betray my father to love you?

Or are there no betrayals in love?


Perhaps he loved you just as much

Without knowing you as I do


Under the Southern Cross
4th Sept 2016, BA flight JHB-London


I leave

by crescent moon
lights below reflecting the high life
while absence of light may reflect the low life

The country is almost 22
a youth

attempting to find its way

Within it

those who have had it all (despite exceptions)
those still dreaming

those who can participate in the dialogue:
the artists
the business people
the entrepreneurs
the office holders
the workers
the students
the teachers

There is a desire to live in a new, changed country

There is mistrust of the time it takes

I come from the Old Guard

the Protected

my father thought that change would be for foreign power
an invasion he would fight

Yet I feel hope
I feel proud

There are Voices

I would like to be one of them.

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Myesha Jenkins – Tribute

Botsotso would like to pay homage to Myesha Jenkins, the poet and promoter of poetry who died on Saturday, 05 September 2020. Myesha was a founder member of Feelah Sistah, the all-woman poetry group that in its time made such an impact. Thereafter, she was indefatigable in organising and strengthening poetry platforms on radio and for live performance/readings. Myesha’s work was included in two Botsotso productions – the anthology Isis X and the recording Roots and Branches. Her spirit as a politically conscious, jazz-loving artist lives on and is well expressed in her seminal poem Autobiography which was included in both these projects.

Click here to read Autobiography, a poem by Myesha Jenkins.

A Call for Submissions: Johannesburg in Poetry