TS (11/01/86 / harare, zimbabwe)

The Crowd In The Street

They came out of their houses
screaming, whistling and jumping
most of the women wore only dirty blouses
but that couldnt stop them coming

they stopped at the end of the street
and said to one another in excited whispers
'i told that right here tonight they'd meet'
quite proud to be the worst rumour keepers

wife, husband and someone's lover
clawed away and cursed with no break
the wife fell, blood flowing from her like lava
but she raged on, till someone broke her neck

all assembled were untrained dramatists
they feigned horror and half shutr their eyes
a little boy shouted'what mighty fists'
a little girl fumed, but no one heard her cries

'she's dead'came a murmur from the back
like a wounded lion the husband roared
this was more excitement than he could take
so old Martin stroked and away he crawed

'she's dead' became the general cry
though she wasnt as the doctor saw at once
to be dissapointed, no one wanted to try
so on the husband, they all did pounce

the police stood aside
and the doctor grew pale
a journalilst scribbled with pride
'my editor tomorrow will just love this tale'

'hes dead'they shouted as they ran away
screaming, whistling and jumping
the police shot at them with bullets of clay
but that really couldnt stop them running

by tinashe severa

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