Who I Am — Poems from Swazi Students
“I feel depressed about hatred, poverty, and prostitution.”
-Celane, male, age 14
I Am Poem from Thulile, age 15:
“I was a young girl looking for purpose in life.
I am a young girl who knows what life is…it’s too difficult, but people don’t know what is life, they keep doing wrong things.
I feel love when I see young girls fight for their life.
I become angry when I see young girls become pregnant.
I become sad when they throw away the key they have for their future.
I become worried about myself when I see young girls pregnant.
I feel depressed about them because they don’t know what they’re doing in their life.
I seem happiest when they know the Lord God is for everyone who needs him. I am sorry for everyone who has a big problem, but let me tell you that you be the hero to yourself and kind to your opponent. Forget about what people are saying but know that the Lord will be with you forever.
Sometimes we depend on our friends but they tell us bad things, that is why some get pregnant, but girls, let me tell you that money cannot buy love but happiness and peace can buy love forever.”
I Am Poem from Zamokuhle, age 12:
“I was a young girl.
I am looking for a purpose in life.
I feel loved when my mother buys me school shoes.
I become angry when people do not hug me.
I appear sad when my friends don’t play with me.
I taste success when I can eat ice-cream.
I feel depressed about my classmates.
I become worried when my teacher Ms. Kate don’t come to school for one week.
I appear confident when I passed English.
I seem frustrated when people die of HIV and AIDS.
I look forward to my future because I want to help people.”
Poem from Wandile, age 12:
I am a boy.
I feel loved when I have money.
I become angry when my mother is beating me.
I appear sad when I fail at school.
I seem happiest when I’m eating.
I taste success in sweets.
I feel depressed when I’m fighting.
I become worried when my friends are fighting.
I appear confident when we are writing a test.
I seem frustrated when I’m angry.
I look forward to the future because I want to be a doctor.
Poem from Celane, age 14:
I was born in Swaziland.
I am a boy.
I become angry when [soccer] players miss the ball.
I seem happiest when the poem was describing a soccer game.
I taste success whenever I write a soccer composition.
I feel depressed about hatred, poverty, and prostitution.
I hate when I can’t solve the problems of the people.