BACKGROUND: Two little girls in old apartheid South Africa around mid 1960’s, playing on the banks of the Makhutsi River. Collecting Maroela nuts, shell them and eat till they're sick. Teaching each other their various games. Playing with each other's different types of hair.
Happy little girls, the world has no end, they can run free forever. They also fight but make up after being separated a while. They're enjoying their different skin colours. And they have the same colour blood, both pee in the same way in the same colour.
One finds out that her best friend does not have a school to go to and asks if her friend can go to her school, even living by her during school term.
They both learn a heartbreaking lesson that pale skin school is not allowed for those with darker pigmentation. They are separated and never see each other again. The pale skin grows up, sees what happens to darker skin kids (oh that terrible Sharpeville) and so much more once she's grown up.
The African child in South Africa suffered immensely during apartheid (even some pale skin ones who saw the world in full colour, not in black and white) This piece is packed with African rhythms I grew up with, remembering the drum messaging at night after we'd arrive at Grandpa's, and I'd sleep tight, knowing those drums were for Mmahidi and I.
I was working on Petals Vol.1 when this song came to me. At first I thought it would only have been the merriment we had together as kids…… but I ended up crying my eyes out of my head while working on it.
Today our grandchildren are allowed to any school – what a waste of years, of people, of lives.
I thought the adults were stupid.
This track is available from my album: "Bleached African" Vol. 1