Featured Poets

~~~~~~~~~~~~ MARCH 2016 ~~~~~~~~~~~~

I want to write a poem about the moon

I want to write a poem about the moon
in all her glowy glory
I want to talk about the sun
without calling it a ball or a disc that fries my eyes
I want to describe green growing things
and breezes fluttering through wind chimes
I want you to taste the bitterness on my tongue
And picture each frown upon my character's face
but this page is blank as my stilled hand
and once I can face and discard its white lie
I realise I'm not that kind of author
I couldn't smooth talk my way to a free drink if I tried
I'd just stand there and smile because the moment
I open my mouth you'd run from my tirades and discussions
of death and god and my appalling lack of manners
but what good is 'how are you?'
when you answer in monosyllables when I want thunderstorms
I want to feel your passion, understand your ire
break down the walls you built for a reason I can't yet discern
but until you're willing to let down your gate
I can either stand there and smile
or whip out my ineloquence
and hope you stick along for the ride.

Zaynab Asmal
(Matriculated 2013)

Zaynab Asmal was a student at Ladysmith High School from 2009 - 2013. In her matric year, Zaynab scooped all the top English prizes: Promotion of English Language and Culture, Achievement in the English Olympiad (placed in Top 50), Best Essay in English as Home Language, Honours for Speech and Drama and the subject prize for Highest Achievement in English as Home Language. Zaynab went on to achieve the highest mark ever recorded at LHS for English HL (98%) in the National Senior Certificate examinations. She is currently studying for her B.A. Degree in English and History at UCT.

As an educator, I am always gratified when a gifted student chooses to nurture her talent, and to make her passion her life's work. 

For other examples of Zaynab's work, follow the links below:

~~~~~~~~~~ FEBRUARY 2016 ~~~~~~~~~~


Look at that Bird, watch it fly:
Move the earth beneath it as time goes by.
Look at FREEDOM, spread it's wings
Touch your heaven as it sings...

Fly away birdy, take what was yours...
Break those chains as you break our laws!

Glide through the air: Beauty and pride,
Fly up higher from the rock you denied.
SHOW them your Plumage: make them wonder...
why the hell, they did blunder
to put a bullet in your heart
and take away your special part..

SHOW them,
peacemaker... Fly away!
Bring back heaven upon this day!

Naadir Vorajee
(Matriculated 2013)

Naadir Vorajee was a student at Ladysmith High School from 2009 - 2013 and Head Boy in his matric year. Whenever I think of Naadir, this quote from To Kill a Mockingbird comes to mind:

"Thus we came to know Dill as a pocket Merlin, whose head teemed with eccentric plans, strange longings, and quaint fancies."

Naadir arrived at high school as one of a multi-talented Grade 8 class, the first upon which I unleashed my plan to take over the world, one poem at a time. Every poem he wrote was memorable and now that he has left school to pursue his studies in a highly technical scientific degree (sorry, my brain switches off at such times), I am proud to say, I won the war since he continues to write poetry and share it with his Alma Mater.

However, I would like to challenge Naadir's classmates of the class of 2013 to reveal to us whether they too still write poetry. Email me!! 

For other examples of Naadir's work, follow the links below:

~~~~~~~~~~ FEBRUARY 2015 ~~~~~~~~~~~~

Because there is so much pain in the world...

Because we're sick of waiting...

Because the silence is too loud...

Because gold rusts...

Because we're all disappointed idealists...

Because we were taught, way back
        when we were little, that one may never
                 start a sentence with 'because'.

Celine Hatting
(Matriculated 2014)

Celine Hatting was a student at Ladysmith High School from 2010 - 2014. She had always had a love for English, but had not seriously considered writing poetry until I challenged her Grade 11 class to participate in the NaPoWri Mo Challenge of 2013.

"I still recall our first NaPoWriMo challenge and how I laughed at the notion of being able to write a poem. I mean, I wasn't in love, I didn't hate anyone, I wasn't experiencing 'complexities' and my life was altogether boring."

When the class complained that they had nothing to write about, I told them to make it up. "Shakespeare had never been to Verona, Italy, and he managed to write a play wherein he killed off more than three people in less than a week!" Thus, Celine found her inspiration to write through her imagination: "I've pretended to be a lot of different people as I wrote these poems - Nick Carraway, never being able to love; Ralph, too young to understand the war that is life... I pretended to be Daisy writing to Gatsby...I have tried to make sense of fairy tales by getting Wonderland to grow up and mature..."

Celine shared a collection of 28 poems she has written, entitled All The Reasons, challenging me to read a poem a day in February. Poems are not only about writing; they are also about reading, so I am sharing a selection of them on our school poetry blog. Because I am very proud of Celine, and all students (past and present) of LHS who pick up their pens to write poetry.

LHS Blog Editor
K.L. Clark