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Phillippa Yaa de Villiers

@ Sunday Times Books LIVE

Lehloa: how snow feels up close

playing in snow

tasting snow

The images of Africans playing in unfamiliar snow have been beamed all over the planet,
and yes,
it was beautiful to see how that crust of white crystal unified our shattered city:
a continuous blanket of beauty, making even garbage poetic, photogenic.
Hands, tongues, faces turned upward to receive the blessing
of a brandnew sensation
without paying a cent for an air ticket, or a Schengen visa or a green card,
no, we all had white cards yesterday,
innocent, reborn, pure like a new moment, infinite potential,
and freedom will be
when we can celebrate snow
without the shadow of
how it aches when your hands are cold,
how bones shiver in bodies, fragile shacks that can’t warm
what lives within,
no matter how beautiful this layer of white makes them.

homeless person

Now we know how snow feels up close.

But oh! It was amazing to see Africa’s totems
Tau, Kwena and Tlou, standing strong in the snow!

lion in snow

 

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