Economics, Literature and Scepticism

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I am a PhD student in Economics. I am originally from South Africa and plan to return there after my PhD. I completed my M. Comm in Economics and my MA In Creative Writing (Poetry) at the University of Cape Town, where I worked as a lecturer before starting my PhD.

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Wednesday, February 15, 2006

A Poetry Update

Posted by Simon Halliday | Wednesday, February 15, 2006 | Category: |

misremembered passages 06.02.06


the wind was

colour-burst alive

standing there

clad in the naked

darkness as I was


blown around me

were colours I had

forgotten to forget

in the abuse from

which you delivered me


shadow time purged

from me by wind

and words carried

on it from innocent

voices in restoration


the wet hair that clung

to my skull lightened

my child-blondness

and giggling a blessed

departure from memory


Delayed 06.02.06


It was her intent that morning

to be at work on time

until he caught her

at the bus stop


He told her there was something

important he needed to

talk to her about as

he closed the door


It was as important as him pulling

down his pants and tearing

her clothes off of her as

she cried futile Hayikona


She had a job in the city working

to save money so that she

could sell Bibles to feed

her family


Her employers did not understand

her taciturn silence or why she

now came late for work though

it was to avoid him


They also thought her irresponsible

when they found out she was

pregnant 'at such a young age'

and possibly sick


But that happens to black people

and it happens to women

the treasured virgin

in curing innocence


South African Streets 06.02.06


I walk down a pot-holed

street with a burden of

shame seeping from

my pockets


there it seeps past

my fingers, my inability

to keep my anger locked

away that root of the sin of


those who fuck children

and rape women whose

only dream is to save money

and care for sick sisters


And my anger makes me as

worthy of shame, I have

no power over them and

the powerlessness


is the root and the growing

rot of it crumbling certainty

of our compliance and our

growing acceptance


Dorian's Grey 10.02.06


Inside me there is a painting

that, although it could be ageing,

absorbs and emotes the living

the passing moments I'm engaging


it grows larger in my bellicosity

and shrinks in the occasions of my

emotional paucity, but the overriding,

the dominant message is the showing


I can see the reds in my face light

up in rages, while the colours of delight

range across my body in their desire

and the flaming grimaces of my ire


each momentary and feeling trace

that could cross my body my face

left abandoned to the painting

that inhabits the greyness of my living


the capture 06.02.06


easier to be caught

between polarities

the aurora of dawn

not as beautiful

as that of the sunset

their signal of some

end some beginning


linear opposed in

some real existence

independent free

but eternally caught by

the other the paradox

unspoken acquiescence

north-south bound


my attempts to float

in freedom are tied up

tied down to not-me

to women to the body

of the other and my age

is only relative to young

and the old in their living


I wish to be untied

to do so requires complete

loss no me no sex

no age no place

no memory of what

makes real real

no no no polarity


The issue of descent 12.02.06


I was once fearful of my descent into woman

of my movements into and through her, the

myriad ways that I could penetrate her and

feel myself held by her, gripped and fed

by our joinings, our mutuality.


It was the end of isolation which inspired

my fears so, which penetrated the depths

of my careless mind and caught my cringing

in some ineffable way, the shadowed places

of my spirit held me there.


That was until I began to understand that my

acts are not so detrimental to my loneliness

that I could not retreat were it necessary, but

that I could celebrate our fractious becomings

our passing creating of moments.


It is those moments when I am both alone

and together with you, when I am isolated

and intimate and unable to define when the

one becomes the other, when I have let go

but maintain my ultimate control.


These moments which make the loving of

you – woman – the more miraculous, the

moments of too much noise in my head

accompanied by a symphony of silences,

your breath in my hair.



Sense of 13.02.06


I am caught up in the smell of change rooms

clinging to the depths of my thoughtful nostrils

deep-tied to memory: the awkwardness of

growth, shaved head adolescence shy.


I smell the ones I've come out of barefoot

my feet cold slapping the plaster, the tiles

and nailed tight to the tar in an assurance

of acceptance of shared pain awareness


I remind the pinning up against walls and

pushing my way out striding and swearing

punching label-laden lockers, gay-boy, afro,

weird kid, with me brokenback stronger now.


I walk in and through them now with clichés

tumbling from my tired head my fists silent

but aiding recollection by pushing back my hair

in reminiscence-borne commands, I am not


that which I once was tired and lying back

against blue locker doors, screaming to get

away, to leave and be unburdened. But I

remained and so I shall, eternal resilience.

Currently have 2 comments:

  1. Loved reading these. :)

  2. Hi Simon, I have enjoyed reading your work, particularly the Issue of Descent. Your website was recommended to me a few months ago by Les. It has spurred a re-visit to my long-neglected website, www.geocities.com/seajay101 where I too delved into the secluded world of words…