The word boer is the South African translation or reference to farmer and is used by some cultures as a derogatory term in referring to white South Africans. It also hints on the traditional song Dubul’ ibhunu (kill the boer).
At night as the boer’s door closes and an orchestra of night time melodies commence, it is death’s cheerful dance that accompanies the bitter sweet symphony of tragedy.
South Africa – descendants of the land of Milk and Honey, with evergreen trees and colourful blossoms, which serves only as a gravestone to our dark, deadly secrets.
You see, by day South Africa is a land of beauty – if you’re able to avoid university campuses and any of our roads where you could be killed for only a pair of sunglasses that is. South Africa’s song still consists of different languages while staring from the Voortrekker Monument down at apparent peace and tranquility below.
But as the blood-red sun bids our crops on the farmland adieu and predators come out to hunt, the reality of South Africa strikes. If it was only a lion lurking outside your house, it would be merciful. Inside, behind the boer’s door is enough ammunition to support an army. Outside the boer’s door prowls a loaded gun.
Outside the boer’s door they stand, their plan has begun. The plan for the farmer’s 13 year old daughter to be raped and then her sweet innocent throat slashed like that of a goat. Outside the boer’s door they imagine his house stained with markings of his bloody struggle. They contemplate gouging both his eyes with a screwdriver he earlier used to fasten screws in the kitchen cupboard for his loving wife. Outside they gaggle at the shrieking sounds they know his wife will make, like music to their ears. Outside they stand, demanding your life. Outside they stand contemplating slicing up the son while feeling his heartbeat slowly fading away. Outside they stand, the hands which had been fed by the same boer for generations before. Outside they stand, the dark children Africa bore.
You see, Africa is beautiful if we are blinded by what we call “hope”. The African sunset plays with your heart until one day you recognise the sound of anarchy. Africa is only a land of beauty if you’re working in a bank and living in a secured estate.
Behind the boer’s door we helplessly watch as Zuma destroys our country, the country we all fought for. Behind the boer’s door we stand in acceptance, oblivious to the blood covering the hands of Africa’s child. Behind the boer’s door we proudly sing “We for you South Africa” while one by one we’re are executed with our own riches.
Africa, enchanting Africa, with your Jacaranda streets and rich cultures. Today I dedicate this essay to you and all the boers who need to fight daily to stay alive. This includes my dad, who loves you so dearly.
And to you who have etched death onto each boer’s forehead. You who have planned my death too.
The above essay was written by the 18-year-old Roelien Faber of Midstream for a school assignment.
For the prescribed theme “the night has eyes”, Faber decided to write about farm murders. “One of my family members were killed on a farm last year, and I saw how it affected my young niece and nephew and it was despicable to me.
I see every day how farmers are killed and no one does anything. The government covers-up and write it off as nothing.
We ourselves have a game farm and my parents had to take drastic steps to make sure we are safe when we left the city for the farm. My whole family are farmers, and I know that when my father’s phone rang and it was one of my nephews or nieces who call him, everyone’s blood froze in fear that it is something that happened on the farm.”
By Roelien Faber. Assisted with translation from Afrikaans by Danelle Du Preez.
See also: ANC have declared all white farms war-zones. White families are targets – BBC July 1987