Friday, 27 January 2012

dit is soos dit is

A week ago, I cycled through the main road of Hogsback and down the Hogsback pass, in the nude.
4 people wanted to lay charges against me for indecent exposure/public indecency. Thanks to the village's Police Forum the charges were withdrawn. I got phonecalls from various journalists over the past week to hear my side of the story. As far as I know the story featured on the front page of Die Burger, News 24, Die Volksblad and The Weekend Post. I never thought this brief and rather innocent and impulsive moment of fun would cause such a stir. More than criticism I have had support and a real show of interest.
I can write so much on why I do what I do, but I think this poem that I wrote 2 years ago and performed in the nude must speak for me (an English translation follows at the end).

dit is soos dit is

- hierdie gedig kom tot sy reg as dit in die naakte liggaam voorgedra word -

dit is soos dit is
in die vlees van my siel
is dit waar die woorde broei
en wat lug soek in die eter van die
naakte siele soos wat hulle saam uit die velle
van mense gebore word

ek kan
nòg meer vel
nòg meer vlees wees
veel meer
as wat ek hier voorgee

dit is soos dit is
die vlees in die naakte warmte van sweet
wat deur skadu van kostuum in 'n hel van klugspel
bedek word
word verwring tot 'n ongenaakbare
banale maskerade

wat is dit wat ek wil bedek met
die weefselkleed van die skaamte
wat die skone vel van sonsoen en
reënval wil weerhou
wil weerhou van die wonderwêreld van sensasie
wat so direk tot die sielshuid spreek?

dit is die waarheid
 die naakte waarheid 
waarin ek vasgevang word om my self uit te druk
soos net die naakte waarheid kan

in die holte van my selfheid
klou ek vas aan die wande van my vel
slegs aan my vel
hang ek vir my lewe

this is how it is

- this poem comes truly to life when it is performed in the nude –

this is how it is
in the flesh of my soul
is where the words breed
where it searches for air in the ether of the
naked souls as they are born together
from the skin of people

i can
be more skin
more flesh
much more
than you are seeing

this is how it is
the flesh in the naked warmth of sweat
that's covered
by shadow of costume in a hell of deceit
becomes contorted in a merciless
banal masquerade

what is it that i want to cover with
the cloth of shame
that shields pure skin
from sun-kiss and rainfall
that shields pulsing skin from the wonder-world of sensation
that speaks so directly so the soul-skin?

it is the truth
the naked truth
in which i am enclosed to express myself
as only the naked truth can
in the hollow of my selfhood
do i cling onto the edges of my skin
only from my skin
do i hang for my life

(The Afrikaans version was published in Ecca 2011 and the South African Literary Journal, New Contrast, 2010)

3 comments:

  1. I honour your courage and honesty, Lara! Don't ever conform to the norm...being "normal" is SO yesterday!!

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  2. Party mense ken maar net nie van leef en laat leef nie, maar ek sien die samelewing kom stadig by. Moet nooit ophou om grense te verskuif nie.

    Waar het jy die gedig voorgedra en hoe was die ondervinding om dit naak te doen?

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    Replies
    1. hi Andrew,

      dankie vir jou boodskap! bly jy het hierop afgekom..jip, ek het dit al vir etlike mense voorgedra in die naakte liggaam. en wow, dit was elke keer so 'n wonderlike "cathartic" en bevrydende ervaring - ek dink vir beide my en my toeskouers.

      dit is 'n mylpaal vir 'n woordkunstenaar as die woord so na aan die werklikheid kom.. want woorde bly maar net 'n medium om waarheid en realiteit uit te druk; woorde kom nooit eintlik naby genoeg daaraan nie.. so met hierdie gedig is dit so eerlik, so gestroop (mits mens dit in die naakte vel doen) dat die woorde nie anders kan as om te gloei met 'n rou en opregte oortuiging nie..

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