I know nothing about countries.
I know nothing about nations.
But I know the soil,
Or is it easier to say the soil knows me,
the soil knows us.
I know nothing of being a stranger.
Well, I thought I knew until a girl pointed at my skin and said to her mother:
But I am in the northern air capsule.
Am I in the Northern plane?
The Northern Hemisphere?
I speak with the Northern waves on my lips.
The global south has forgotten me,
Me and my soil and my skin but not my blood.
I fear the polarising landmass that floats on water.
Venice, you are an indifferent mother.
Your children are cold.
You brag and boast about your crops.,
Your children are like snow.
You brag about the economy on your television.
But they are free to roam the streets at night.
They look at me—skin like a burn, skin like dirt.
I never forgot the word and how she said it…
A word for my thoughts: I felt like the soil.
by Valentia Khumalo
Valentia is an aspiring writer and poet who loves sharing and immersing myself in the different worlds people build. She enjoys using everyday situations and ordinary moments to highlight moments of significance.