Only a half
a bread’s money
is asked for

local Afrikaans prefaced
with the English equivalent
of this-time-of-the-year-speak
that shops use to capture you

back from a visit am I
to children’s author Martin Mfunya
the ICT Whizz Centre
and the Moses Mabhida Library

(an interesting chat unfolded
in the quiet of the Whizz Centre
as I tease a grade 12 learner
about the great life beyond)

there is busyness outside
on Govan Mbeki Road
that end-of-the-year feel
when public libraries
go silent and eerily empty

(as is the library where there is
no sight of the chess youngsters
who I looked out for recently
at Rylands Library’s Chess Slam)

Only ‘n halwe
brood se geld
is asked for
by a fellow aged
it seems by (his) life

I cringe grimace
grit my lingering teeth
slinking sheepishly past
down Lansdowne Road
(the great divide that is
still with us one and all)

Only ‘n halwe
brood se geld
is asked for

Would you