*Wedding Band: The orchestra whose harmony is the sound of my cries..

**Kagiso A. Maphalle

I Do.. Do.. Do.. Do.. Do..

I heard the song play

Sweet sound of the soprano melody

Its pitch so high

Higher than my screams

As I reach out to cover my face

His fists slamming into me

Do.. Do.. Do..


I hear cheering

Laughter, as they clap their hands

Elated at this new union forming

Now their echoes are mirrored by the crashing of glass on the floor Cling.. Cling.. Clap.. Clap



Bated breaths as I walk down the aisle

Air held in… In awe

Today, I lie here hearing the silence

Waiting… Wondering..

Am I dead yet?





*Author’s Note: This poem is about a bride’s reflection – contrasting the joy of her wedding day with the physical abuse she experiences at the hands of her husband.

**Kagiso Maphalle, an Advocate of the High Court of South Africa, is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Private Law under the Chair in Customary Law, Indigenous Values and Human Rights at the University of Cape Town.


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