2020 – Age 19+ Years: Runner Up

Kagiso Bilal Tlagae (42)

Theme –  Rising for Justice

Judges’ comments: A true poem in every sense, _Authentic Truth_ took on and spoke with the voice of Justice (literally!) and did a fantastic job of it.  We were challenged, mocked and then reprimanded.  But we came out better for it.

Authentic Truth

My truth is authentic against spiritual hosts of wickedness

It shelters the oppressed

It is molded into reason by objective minds

Choking oppression almost to its death


Owing its frailty to cowardice

Harbored by men brave enough to kill time

Giving tyranny kisses of life

And giving birth to starving orphans, only to drive them away


Still I rise

Still I ask

Do we die before we live

Or we stop living before we die


Orphans have the right to dignity, we read

Do not give it to the corrupt, they plead

Do not give them, they are obese with massive vice

When the innocent only need a grain of rice


I took ten steps to cloud nine

Crossing the almost flooded ocean in eight minutes

Attempting to build, create and design a language with seven words

Justice and six other words


My truth is authentic

Justice is poetic

Bravery is a coward hiding behind rhetoric

Breading orphans parented by weapons of mass destruction


Still I rise against despotic powers and oppressive rulers

I stand up for what is right even when it is hard

Granted, you recite my truth like poetry

When it is authentic truth commanding justice


You read my words starving comprehension

Molding my words into justifications for your devotion rides on expired conviction

Live, breath, die, leave, and live again

Read…justice is the soul of your religion


And still….I rise for justice for my truth is authentic against oppression


Forgotten Password?