The pale winter sun caresses my skin
Glistening harshly on the puddles
Already evaporating, being absorbed
Into the rich dark soft mud
Where birds feed, pecking gingerly as they chirp
Evergreen leaves and bare branches
Swaying imperceptibly in the slight breeze
And beyond in the crisp blue sky
Wispy white clouds drift lazily
Beneath the all seeing mountains’ arms.

Surrounded by such sobering splendour
I am a part of the beauty of nature
Just another organism in the mud and mulch
A speck in the sky, on the breeze, through the trees
Just another isolated part of the majesty
That exists with and without me
Just another creature, another living thing
Neither possessing nor possessed
No different and quite un-unique.

With no make-up or brand names
No fashionable attire to which I aspire
No preconceived attitude and no material desire
I am naked and am thus able to feel
Stilled and silent I am able to perceive
The ghastly nature of your beauty
All painted and plastered with mirthless smiles in passing
Unseeing, untouched and unrelieved
Not in tune with your surrounds
Convinced that your will can subdue your environment
But what you imagine to be your beauty
Is nothing more than a vacuous ugliness
Hastily decorated and utterly exposed
Revealing the cracks in the grotesque façade
That you try so hard to conceal.

I prefer the still beauty of nature
Majestic, splendorous and perfectly flawed:
I detest the revolting nature of beauty
With its deceptive and fatal allure.

South Africa

Mikey D Wentworth's picture

I am Michael Wentworth, a South African writer and cultural activist. ‘A Love Letter for the Epoch’ is a new collection of my poems written over the past two decades., In primary school in the 1970’s I wrote a composition for the June examination that was read to the assembled school by the principal on the day that we returned after the holidays. As I listened I realised that I had written it and I began to notice the reactions of my peers. At that moment I knew that this was what I was meant to do., Since then I have honed my craft on the streets and in the gutters; in the ghetto and the ghetto hotels; with passion and certifiable insanity. One of my first short stories won a competition in a daily newspaper while I was still at school and my poetry has been published in various compilations and anthologies as well as the African arts and culture magazine Rootz., I have been writing professionally for theatre since 1996 when I was commissioned to write a children’s play for the North West Cultural Calabash Festival. My first feature play was the only South African entrant to be short-listed for the 1997 British Council International New Playwright Competition. I have since worked as a writer on various documentaries and stage productions including an original adaptation of Can Themba’s short story ‘The Suit’, as well as the pop-opera ‘Torong – A place to dream’ which I wrote, composed and directed. My theatre credits include writing and co-directing the musical ‘Maloba – Memoirs of a Nation’, ‘Waiting’ which I also produced and which premiered at the National Arts Festival in 2008, ‘Live rAGE’ which was a birthday tribute to the poet and writer James Matthews and ‘Progres’ inspired by the life and work of Ken Saro-Wiwa., Most recently my play Just Another Friday Night which was first performed at the Volksblad Kunstevees in 2009 was performed in May this year at the Windybrow Community Festival. The play was directed by Danny Moleko., I have written for television and radio as well as various South African newspapers and magazines and I am currently working on my debut novel entitled ‘A Tale of Extra-Ordinary Madness’ while co-ordinating an arts project at an underprivileged primary school in the Eastern Cape.

Last updated July 14, 2015