I wish I didn’t have to write this post – the hardest story of them all. The story that shouldn’t be.

I received an email while in Germany in January of last year. I had rushed there because my dad had suddenly passed away. The email informed me of the sudden passing of this girl, well, woman rather. She had died in a tragic car accident. She had travelled to KwaZulu-Natal with friends for their wedding. She had been asked to be the bridesmaid.

The wedding never happened. They never got there.

When we were working on this project together she had told me that she did not want her photographs published, her name to be known together with her life story. A story of pain, suffering and loss.

I respect that.

However, I HAVE to write about her, reserve a spot for her, she had been such a vital part in Ikageng and had played such an important role in the lives of countless people. In this too short a time she had she touched so many lives and will be remembered for the bright light she was and beautiful soul she is.

Life is so short and can be over in a flash and even though we should know better we take it for granted.

She had helped me so much during the project which now finally comes to life by me writing these stories and publishing my images. She did not get the chance to read and see which up until now had only lived in my head.

She did not get to see her images.

I don’t think I will be able to forgive myself.

She wrote a poem which is too poignant not to publish. I do so with a good conscience and in order to honour her, her life, her work and what she believed in.

 

May you rest in peace, beautiful soul.

 

Most people have someone to look up to
I also have someone
Myself
Nobody, and I mean nobody is like me
I do things uniquely and I believe that I am my own role model or champion rather
The best thing that happened to me is being born
given this life that I cherish every day
being proof that you can go through many horrible thing and still stand on both legs
I stand against all rains, winds and storms firmly on my feet
I would change nothing in my life because this is how great it was meant to be
I have people I call ornaments of my heart – they bring smiles and joy to my world
Life to me is a gift that you cherish forever

She also contributed a moving piece on “The African Man” which is published here as well.

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