Saturday, February 16, 2019

Mbizo Chirasha writes


dear commissar
my poetry is
political baboons puffing wind of vendetta
splashes of sweet flowing buttock valleys of payless city laborers
rough crackling red clay of sanctions smashing poverty corrupted face of my village
presidential t shirt tearing across bellies of street hustlers
mute bitter laughter of political forests after the falling of political lemon trees

dear commissar
my poetry is
foot signatures of struggle mothers and green horns
bewitched by one party state cocaine
new slogan hustlers boozing promises after herbal tea of change rhetoric
street nostrils dripping stink and garbage
tears chiseling rocky breasts of mothers who lost wombs
in the charcoal of recount

dear commissar
my poetry is
rhythm of peasant drums dancing the new gimmick
political jugglers eating voter drumsticks after another ballot loot.
 Image result for political baboon paintings
Nuts to Crack --  John Tenniel


  1. John Tenniel is best known for his 92 illustrations for Lewis Carroll's "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There," but from 1861 he was the chief political cartoonist for the weekly "Punch" satirical magazine until his retirement in 1901. "Nuts to Crack" was published in the 11 February 1882 edition, the day before the Charles Darwin's 73rd birthday. Tenniel was commenting on the 31 January to 2 February attempts by Irish nationalists to disrupt parliamentary procedure and prime minister William Ewart Gladstone's attempts to move a series of rules to bring debate to a close. In the center Gladstone is holding a nut marked "Cloture" as he sits on a fallen tree marked "Obstruction." To Gladstone's left, hugging a nut marked "Egypt," is Granville George Leveson-Gower, 2nd Earl Granville (referencing the issue of control over the Suez Canal), while the opposition leader Robert Arthur Talbot Gascoyne-Cecil, 3rd marquess of Salisbury, tries to wrest it from him. Above Salisbury, Lord Randolph Churchill rides on the shoulders of Sir Stafford Northcote, and the under secretary of state for foreign affairs Sir Charles Dilke, 2nd baronet, crouches below him holding a "French Treaty" nut. In the shadow behind Gladstone the secretary of state for India, Spencer Compton Cavendish "Lord Hartington," holds an "India" nut. To Gladstone's right Sir William George Granville Venables Vernon Harcourt, secretary of state for home affairs, cradles a "London Reform" nut, and secretary of state for war Hugh Culling Eardley Childers grasps the "Army" nut. Below him Charles Stewart Parnell tries to break his "Land League" nut on a rock. Parnell, who was the president of Irish National Land League as well as MP from Cork, was the leader of the obstructionists but, at the time of Tenniel's cartoon, he was in Kilmainham Gaol in Dublin, imprisoned under a proclaimed Coercion Act
    for "sabotaging" the Land Act of 1881.

  2. "Commissar" is being used sarcastically by Mbizo. The word is the English translation of the Russian word for "commissary," a title in use since the 17th century but specifically applied to Soviet administrative officials to replace "minister."


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