Nelson Mandela


there in the southern tip
known as the cape
only part of a country
that travelers rested
during long journeys
to other lands
trading wears
eating new foods
learning customs
foreign from everyday fare
they liked it so much
they declared
we will rule these
uneducated, uncivilized people
they need our ways
and we need this port
this cape, this country
as our own so we
can travel free
while charging those who follow

years of governed supremacy
making proclamations
if you live in a hut
if your skin color is different
you are not one of us
your social interactions, your job,
your ability to have money
everything about you
shall be segregated, separate
as you were not born
my fellow citizen

years passed
showed how once
happy people
were forced
to live in a world
that has taken their
land, their relatives,
their entire world
while the privileges
of others based on
their origins
regarded these people
as trash, unwanted nuisances
until a man
intelligent, revered
gathered information, people
to show they had rights,
they were people
constructed of
similar DNA

deciding things were unjust
increasing support
of others just like them
protesting conditions,
unacceptable differences
within living environments
for leading others
towards a combined
empathic society

he was jailed
all were deemed motions
against an elitist government
defending these actions
became no match for
separatists standards
imprisoned he waited
always staying positive
continuing to reiterate
all are equal, the same
eventually regimes fell
releasing a man
who stood for a cause

soon afterwards the people
gave this man authority
they wanted him to lead them
in a newly formed government
as it was his ways, his ideas
passed through generations
that brought down
misguided ideas, thoughts
bringing a country
once divided

we remember him
for bringing a country
governed out of
disgust of others
to be ruled
by the collective
enabling, enhancement
of skills of all
residing within
these newly built
accepting borders
leaders of today
remember his words,
rather than his fists
his gentle attitude
we remember
a ruler, a friend to all
knowing he is the same
as all those that
called him their leader
their representative
their friend
Nelson Mandela

-Jennie Nawrocki

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