He lived
a writer says
about Hugh Masekela
a true legend
and not one
whose tainted history
is now re-written into
flowery-speak like
too many quislings
tribalist collaborators
their histories Disney-fied
praises sung in high key
getting state send-offs

Apparently the apartheid regime
once tried to invite him
back from exile to perform
as an honorary white
(many locals performed
in opera houses and other
places of ill-repute set up
for separate development)

He lived
an apartheid childhood
global fame in exile
an apartheid-activist
warts and all
self-proclaimed former Romeo
a battle with addiction
and a relationship with music
described by the writer
as borderline religious

He lived
did Hugh Masekela
a musicologist remarks like
a Huckleberry Finn character
the person who goes to school
pursuing music in defiance
of what was expected
He lived