South Africa continues to endure a rape crisis with the level of documented sexual abuse cases standing at 147 per day (according to 2015 SAPS statistics). This is of course believed to be a conservative number considering that most cases of sexual abuse go unreported. No matter the numbers though, it is unacceptable that anyone will be subjected to rape or any other form of sexual abuse.
We therefore worked with South African poet - Puno Selesho - to visually and lyrically address this issue. Puno's dynamic voice carries a message of change and challenges South Africa to man up!
Through this poem titled MY LADY, Puno calls on women not to allow their pain hold them down but to let their glorious presence to be unfurled. And to the men, she says: Don't be known for the way you use your waist and your fists. But be known for the way you kiss her scars with your lips. Every line is deliberate and very powerful!
Puno is a Law student at the University of Pretoria. She is the Founder of the Cherry Blossom Project - a charity initiative aimed at empowering young girls and improving their sense of self worth. She is also the curator of The Park Exchange - a monthly meeting that brings together brilliant minds to debate around issues facing South Africa. Puno is passionate about Africa and is no doubt a voice to look out for! Check her out on Instagram: @punopolis and Twitter: @poooono
The video for this poem was shot in Pretoria, South Africa for White Code Centre and had Adebayo Okeowo and Yolandi Hefer both working behind the scenes.