Rhodes University Logo
Rhodes > School of Languages > Competition

Rhodes University Multilingual Poetry Competition

Date Released: Wed, 9 May 2012 10:42 +0200

The Rhodes University Language Committee is engaged in a project to raise
awareness about multilingualism in higher education in South Africa. As part of
this project a colloquium will take place on 15 May 2012 in Eden Grove Red at
6pm. All are welcome to attend and participate.

Also as part of this project, a multilingual poetry competition was
organised. Entrants were asked to write a short poem in two or more of the
official languages of the province (English, IsiXhosa, Afrikaans and Sesotho).
Entries have been flooding in, showing the creative linguistic talents of Rhodes
students. After some deliberation the adjudicators decided on Simthembile
Matyobeni’s poem ‘On the path of Izimvi’ as the winner of the R500.00
cash prize.  Simthembile is a third year BA student and he will attend the
colloquium on 15 May to receive his prize from the Vice-Chancellor, Dr Saleem

Simthembile will also be interviewed on RMR and will have the opportunity to
broadcast his winning poem:

On the path of Izimvi
Phonoshono neNtaba

I saw long, gray broom-hair and scour-brush
sweeping filth off the minds of abakhwetha,
Izimvi zihlwayela
kumlimandlela wemilondekhaya.

Life rhythms flow from the hand of Ingcibi;
terrified and scarified to ward off
Oonomathotholo. Across the river
Unkcwe evil spirits dwell.

Somagwaza ubugwala bubalekile! The song goes;
Burning incense,
goat’s blood boiling, fire and incantations;
Husky voices, sonorous songs and
humming and whistling;
Red-ochred, pain dead; spiritual dialogue is
Abayelenqi bafudukile abanxamnye nelemilondekhaya.

Aheziya! Aheziya! Aheziya!!
New seeds are cocooned in the earth’s
Namhlanje amadoda abuyile, ishenxile imishologu!
Ngenani mlisela
ningancathami, namkelekile!

A further ten poems were selected for display at the colloquium. You are
invited to view these wonderful multilingual creations outside Eden Grove Red on
the evening of 15 May.

For further information please contact:
Dr Sam Naidu (s.naidu@ru.ac.za)
Prof Russell Kaschula
(Chair, RU Language Committee)

Last Modified: Fri, 31 Mar 2017 09:09:40 SAST