An abandoned bundle - Mbuyiseni Oswald Mtshali The morning mist and chimney smoke of White City Jabavu flowed thick yellow as pus oozing from a gigantic sore. It smothered our little houses like fish caught in a net. Scavenging dogs draped in red bandanas of blood fought fiercely for a squirming bundle.
I threw a brick they bared fangs flicked velvet tongues of scarlet and scurried away, leaving a mutilated corpse- an infant dumped on a rubbish heap- 'Oh! Baby in the Manger sleep well on human dung.' Its mother had melted into the rays of the rising sun, her face glittering with innocence her heart as pure as untrampled dew.
1. Provide a suitable dictionary definition for any words that you are unfamiliar with.* 2. What is the poet referring to when stating the White City Jabavu? 3. Why doe she refer to it as a gigantic sore? 4. What image is created by the words ‘oozing pus’? 5. How do you know the bundle is alive? 6. Comment on the use of ‘velvety tongues’. 7. Discuss the imagery of a ‘baby in a manger’. 8. In what way are the people caught in a net? 9. What does the mother feel about leaving her baby on the heap of dung? 10. Does this poem resonate with you in any way? Explain in full. There is very little known about the poet other than his work and that he was an aditor of ‘The Sowetan’ for a time - http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/395682/Oswald-Mbuyiseni-Mtshali * It is very important to build up your vocabulary, this will allow you to comprehend and understand any reading tasks you are given, it is therefore very important to look up any words you do not know and to write its meaning onto the piece you are studying. WORDS ARE POWER!