The Ugly Hearted people

Living in a country where safety is scarce.
Knives, guns, corruption, and gangs, All the ugly people.
This is all she knew, Braai with her Khulu.
Walking the reserve,
Surrounded by a beautiful green jungle.
Ugly hearted people were the reason she had to leave.

She packed up,
Leaving her house and the treasures of childhood.
Moving and travelling, her life crowded into boxes,
Never staying in one place long.
The only constant things in her life are her parents and her twin brother.
All she wanted was to come to Australia, the lucky country.
Her childhood escapes her,
Stolen by the ugly hearted people.

Memories fade of anxiety filled days.
Her culture flees on the winds of change;
The accent she cherished is slowing disappearing.
Afrikaans has become her secret, used to avoid prying ears.
The grass isn’t soft, the trees aren’t towering.
This dry, red country.
It will never compare to South Africa.
But, slowly, slowly her anger thins as the years stretch.
She is nationless, but for her future,
She perseveres.
She will not bow to the ugly hearted people.

~Elizabeth, Year 8, St Aloysius College

Provence landscape, Isabel le Roux, 2011, oil on canvas (60 x 80cm)