I Used to Like Tomatoes by Dambudzo Marechera

Dambudzo Marechera

Getting to know the work of Zimbabwean poets, and of course I have to start with the late Dambudzo Marechera, the most influential poet for the current generation. Here’s one for you:

I Used to Like Tomatoes

I get tired of the blood
and the coughing
and more blood
I get out of that flat real fast
to some cool quarrelling bar
and talk big to bigger comrades
washing down the blood with Castle an’ Label
shaking hands about Tsitsi bombed to heaven
trying to forget I don’t like cooking in dead people’s
pots and pans
I don’t like wearing and looking smart-arse in dead
people’s shirts an’ pants
(They said yoh mama an’ bra been for you
said these are your inheritance)
I’m soon tight as a drum can’t drink no more
It’s back at the flat on my back
swallowing it all red back hard down
I woke up too tired to break out so bright red a bubble.

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