A deep rural single mother keeps on keeping on. Loses husband, loses livelihood. Keeps on keeping on.
TAXI SAYS: WHEN DAYS ARE DARK FRIENDS ARE FEW
Working girl, cornered by a baby on her back. An African sun blazes down. She flashes her shocking pink studded business card at backstreet motorists.
TAXI SAYS: YOU’RE SIMPLY THE BEST BABY & LOVERS TOURS
A boy bounces to and fro’ between bullies behind school bars and Sleeping Beauty at home. He learns to fit in nowhere and anywhere.
TAXI SAYS: MOTLAUNG TOURS UNLIMITED PROHIBITED BY OCEANS ONLY. WHY NOT.
Dark madonna and bright brown-eyed baby work the sandstone corner, Zastron street. They want exactly two Rand ten. I open my hand for seven blue sweets.
TAXI SAYS: WHAT GO SURROUND COME SURROUND
Moon-faced adolescent. Dusty streets. Walks past barefoot boys’ coloured kites that fly to the blue, into the scorching sun of her misery …
TAXI SAYS: LET THE TRUTH BE TOLD YES GOD IS GOOD
… “The library is too far,” her mother says. “I’ll keep her in the dark.” Later – during broad daylight – Ms Moon sells her smile from shack to shack. Wilting after every trick.
“I wish my wallet would rise as much as my belly.” Yearning ‘til her last youthful breath for all the love she will never give.
TAXI SAYS: OUR LAND IS IN PIECES VOTE FOR PEACE
Sandwich Man walks thirteen kilometers, every day of his momentary life, to sustain his name and collect some stuff. If he is lucky in the dead of winter – scalding comfort of leftover minestrone.
TAXI SAYS: THE HUNTER BECAME THE HUNTED
A clown without a circus lies down every day at a quarter past noon on a single bed with a leafy window. Anxious arousal from his journey into dreams where he begged for canvas patches for his wobbly marquee.
TAXI SAYS: DON’T MISS ME BABY AND BEHOLD THY CREATOR … BOOTIFULLY
An average office worker, drooling cyber troll downloads profile pics of strangers. Erecting monuments as he mourns her and all she cannot give to him.
TAXI SAYS: I LEARNED TO DRIVE ON MY PLAYSTATION
A modern day dark Huck Finn disappears into black rivers, daily. Diving in, searching for himself, I think. Finding something smoky and threatening. Transferred to a home with more structure where, for a moment, he is out of his depth.
TAXI SAYS: DON’T MISS ME, ANGEL TIME … OH SO CUTILICIOUS
Two recycling travelers park their chock-full trolleys halfway down a hill. Middle class tarred fields today produced a healthy yield of aluminium can and plastic PET. Friends, colleagues, marathon men. Admiring the trashy view, sharing yesterday’s pap.
TAXI SAYS: SERVICED BY QUANTUM MECHANICS
Paintings by Thandi Sliepen: Thandi Sliepen | Facebook
Photos: Steward Masweneng on Unsplash, Marc St on Unsplash, Leo Moko on Unsplash
Driving in Johannesburg video, by PM Drive: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCC4AG-IONWEP5MaInTPbWAw
Orchestra Roberto Delgado – Wimoweh (The Lion sleeps Tonight) https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfW6wrJY9yXe-baCBZbf8nA