Two Poems by Jemima Meyer

senseless

my eyes
fingertips
nose and tongue
grow numb as ears
listen for your whisper
numberless light years away. it seems
only bass beats and Macufe’s mumblings
can reach and pierce through ears. at least
something tingles skin and cheeks. sometimes
if I try to reach deeper I feel your soft drops
drizzling from my own mind. in time
sounds of touching pour
from clouds. they sigh
I shouldn’t numb
my head.

insomniac

I

she feels most at home

when her eyelids stick to the ceiling looking down on the day passed
when thoughts throb unravelling thin threads that needle her
when limbs won’t be pinned down and burning eyes stay bare in lightless air
clothed only with edgy energy as they fence against foreign dreams

II

the day’s waste
multiplies overnight
in eyes, sags
down as black bags
above cheeks
obstructing views

III

when sleep won’t please her, she curses
coffee, cocoa, tea, eating early,
being hungry, too full, feeling
gloomy, starry-eyed, exposed
to bright lights, computer screens,
rowdy crowds next door, the mumbling
floor, puncturing earplugs

IV

when she goes to sleep each night at three
he starts to shift in his room
his bed creaks
timing it perfectly as if they keep watch
over their matchless
restlessness

V

morning splits human
and pillow mourning
synthetic deaths

only deep sheets
will revive
superficial lives

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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