Jaki Seroke by Siobhan Dowd

Siobhan Dowd

Jaki Seroke


‘I wrote you letters, in July soon after landing on the island and before that in June from Johannesburg and I have not had a word from you,’ wrote Jaki Seroke recently from his cell in the Maximum Security Prison of Robben Island, just off Cape Town. ‘My status as a political prisoner has not changed and I suppose letters from family and friends can still reach me here without hindrance. I’m allowed twenty incoming letters a month. I’ve been worried by the loud silence and am beginning to feel left out of the world at large - especially now that so much is happening in Eastern Europe. You need to digest such historic events, turn them around in your mind and perhaps store them for future reference, in order to learn more about the eventual surge of humanity from intolerance ...’

‘The loud silence’ indicated that letters from PEN members around the world have been delayed or have gone astray for there has certainly been no Jack of people willing to write to Jaki Seroke. A young and gifted black publisher and poet from Johannesburg, Seroke is a popular and internationally

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