RIP Dennis Brutus (1924-2009)

I admit, I wasnt really aware of Dennis Brutus' work, but I'm fascinated the more I learn. Dennis Brutus was a South African poet and activist against the Apartheid Government of South Africa in the 1960s and fought for social justice throughout his life. Read more about him here

Here is one of his poems. Purchase a collection of his works here


(by Dennis Brutus)

Their guilt

is not so very different from ours:

—who has not joyed in the arbitrary exercise of


or grasped for himself what might have been


and who has not used superior force in the

moment when he could,

(and who of us has not been tempted to these


so, in their guilt,

the bare ferocity of teeth,

chest-thumping challenge and defiance,

the deafening clamor of their prayers

to a deity made in the image of their prejudice

which drowns the voice of conscience,

is mirrored our predicament

but on a social, massive, organized scale

which magnifies enormously

as the private dehabille of love

becomes obscene in orgies.

© Dennis Brutus


  1. thought you & your readers might be interested in a new documentary, Fair Play, which tells the story of the anti-apartheid movement sports boycotts Brutus played such a key role in. Here’s a trailer:


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