johannesburg city library

go south, go all the way south,
south as you can, till the sun shine

low; escape the whole idea of a horizon,
find the fragrant evil city full of stolen hoards

find the quiet streets of that place,
the listless dying leaves of rows of winter trees

strike upon that place and sign your name—
bastard city in the sky and leave

your heart there, where the devil can drown
it in a hundred years of skokiaan and Nik Naks

and keep it safe.

beauty is so much like the ocean;
Johannesburg is very far away.

(but out beyond the Protectorate
far beyond the dorsland

walk in the opposite direction
of beauty and good sense

for as long as you can)
then you waken once:

look, the boxy buildings and
the corpse of the highveld:

look and be seduced.


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