ISBN 9781928433071
Pages 54
Dimensions 198x129 mm
Published 2022
Publisher Modjaji Books, South Africa
Format Paperback

Thicker Than Sorrow

by Khadija Tracey Carmelita Heeger

In Thicker than Sorrow, Khadija focuses on appreciating and honouring her roots and unearthing her history. Rummaging through the drawers and closets of her blood family and the family she has chosen, she discovers inspiration and beauty in the most ordinary places: a bowl of rice, a kitchen, a daisy chain, a sunflower garden, a galvanised bath. The poems reveal a poet who is, "falling in love with my roots and me, life. And it's just the beginning. I am a multitude of voyages."

A powerful meditation on identity and belonging. Stylistically fluid, the work ranges from visceral lyrical explorations of personal and collective memory, to political protest to exuberant praise poetry. Heeger celebrates her mixed ancestry and her rootedness in African soil through the interplay of standard English and Afrikaans, as well as dialect and indigenous languages. By turns melancholy, angry and joyful, the collection is an emotional whirlwind that carries the reader from the Overberg and the Cape Peninsula all the way up the African continent and back into the intimate world of the poet

- Annel Pieterse, University of Stellenbosch

Heeger's words are a rallying cry, a praise poem and a soothing ballad. Rooted firml) inside her bloodline, her culture, and her land, she writes for us. The most powerful kind of Love: one chosen over and over again, through trauma, and inter-generational pain, through ancestral erasure and the continued silencing and impoverishment of an entire community, by today's political, social & economic realities. Her voice is that of the griot, and the sage. And through it all, the soft caress of a Cape wind blows, saying: and still we are here, and still we love.

- Toni Stuart, poet

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About the Author

Khadija Tracey Carmelita Heeger

Khadija Tracey Carmelita Heeger was born Cape Town,. She was raised on the Cape Flats in the township of Hanover Park. She started performing when she was nine years old, her dream was to be an actress, but at 15, she started writing seriously and this is how she expresses herself now. She is a well-known and popular performance poet. In 2007 she was commissioned to write a multidisciplinary theatrical poetry piece in collaboration with indigenous soundscape artists, Khoikonnexion, for the Spier Poetry Festival in 2008. These performances were greeted with standing ovations. This piece was later taken to Grahamstown Festival in 2009 (funded by the National Arts Council of South Africa). Beyond the Delivery Room is the first part in a trilogy called Separation Anxiety. She is currently writing the second, Blood Words, following the crooked lines of DNA. She has also performed in Amherst in the USA, as part of an artist’s exchange programme. Beyond the Delivery Room is her first collection of poems.