A late-night user
of the local library
and I catch up

I tell him
of an 11-year-old’s
at the local

how the audience wide-eyed
listened attentively
to the exploits of Amr Salie
a non -11-year-old 11-year-old

The late-night user
enquires of me
in typical South African

is he black
is he white
is he coloured
is he Indian

I tell the fellow
that Amr is a human being
just like the likes of us
no tail or horns-on-head

That’s the right answer
he replies smilingly
not offended
(but probably taken aback)

by my un-South Africanness
by my non-normal non-everyday
tongue-in-cheek response

Not the norm
the stereotype
(as per our official
forms we meekly fill in)

which is the norm
for far too often