Correspondence with Zazah


27 Oxford House
Gillespie Street


Heinrich told me the sad story of how you “surrendered.” It broke my heart. Tomorrow I’ll be going to Bloemfontein, and there is a gap because we never really said good-bye, and I’m really concerned about your welfare, and hope that you have the strength to continue with your book. The good news is that Grahame found the missing parts of the book, and I re-installed it.

When  I’m back I’ll give Pume some quality attention: That should be sometime mid-November.

I remember you as a beautiful and proud person: please don’t loose it. There is a great life waiting for you when you come out. That last night at Mikanos and afterwards would always stand out for me as one of the amazing events in my life.




Westville Female Prison
Private Bag x01
3630 Durban

Hi Johan

Thanx for the letter. I am glad that finally your book is gonna be published. I am trying to much to be strong. But I guess prison is more like death. Its always unusual. But I am fine and everything is normal. I will be happy if you look out for Mpume. I missed him so much.

Unfortunately the novel that I’ve been writing is finished and I had 172  pages. It has been keeping my mind busy at night and now that its finished I am getting really bored. I don’t even have books to read. If you happen to come please bring me some novels to read. At the moment I have started on another small exercise book writing some short stories. But I am glad that my novel is finished and I …..up with the few titles for the book. Life here is (sos) which means same old shit. Work, eat and sleep. And I pray everyday to God that I might get release soon on parole. I wish you all the luck on your book. I also hope that your parents are doing fine. I am only allowed four visits per month. I was not expecting any letter but I received it on Friday the 17th November. Say hi to Heinrich if you see him and I am looking forward to see you soon. In November I had only one visits left. The worse is I can only phone on weekends only. Keep well and take care. There is lot that I want to say but I wish I can talk to you in person. If I stay here long I wish you to phone my college but I will only explain things when I see you.

Goodbye I missed you a lot




27 Oxford House
Gillespie Street

Beautiful Zaza

Your letter was a great surprise and also brought sadness to me. I’ve been back for about a week, but my wife went to Cape Town and Jo’burg so that I could not give attention to the things that really matter. I did speak to Heinrich, but he did not come back to me again. This Saturday I will bring Mbali and Pume.

It is good to hear about your book. Did you also write about your pregnancy, and the problems with the doctor, etc.

You have had such a terrible lawyer. The only way I can think of him is as a crook and a thief.

My life is still as confusing as ever: I want to break up with Zinhle, but do not have the heart.

There are so many things to say, but read my mind.

Missing you



Westville Female Prison
Bag xo1 – c1 Medium

Hi! Johan

I hope and wish everything is well outside there. On my side I am fine and looking forward to come out of this prison. They have told  me I might be going out on December and I pray to God that I will be released before Christmas.

I miss everybody especially Mpume, you and Sergio. You are three people that somehow have managed to give meaning to my life and to make me hold on and don’t give up. I am glad that I have you on my side. And another friend that I wont like to forget is Mbali. She has been so good to me in a very strange way. And at least I know that I am not alone. It is very boring to be here cause life is somehow stationary. Its work, eat, sleep, but the worse is 15 hours you are being locked up with no food, no music, just a tiny cell. But days are going and I am counting. I am getting fat here. Maybe the diet they have is not for me. But I do go to gym in the day to exercise, cause I hate to gain too much weight. I have been writing a lot, but now I am getting sick and tired of doing one and same things everyday. I wish I had books to read to keep my mind going. Most of the time I have restless nights.

I hardly sleep at night and I wish days could fly. I am a little bit happy that I have finished my novel and I cant wait to come out and let you read it. And I have been killing time by writing short stories. I had about six of them. But then I am tired of thinking and writing. Anyway the good news is being here has changed my life as well. I have made such decision that I never thought I could have courage to make them. I feel very strong though being in prison is a painful period but I thank  God cause my life is moving from one level to another. Guess I’ve been talking too much. Don’t worry I am just bored.

Have to say goodbye.

From Zazah (Miss you a lot).


Westville Prison
6 December 2000

Hi! Out there Johan

Its me again as usual. I am still hanging on and I am counting each day. But I miss you. Especially that last night at Mykonos we had a great talk for couple of hours and I really had a great night thanks to you. Again thanks for being there for me.

That Saturday you came to see me with Mbali I had a bad dream but to my surprise you were also in that stupid dream. I dream of my dad chasing me and trying to abuse me which is familiar but something new was that I ran to you and entering your place, looking for a place to sleep and you were there like comforting me but all of a sudden was Zinhle and her relatives but it was only young people and you had to apologize asking me to leave and my heart was broken. I didn’t understand the dream. Cause for a long time I’ve had nightmares about my father but you are never involved. But I don’t believe in dreams so much. The book by Alex la Guma I only finished reading it in two days, but that book Freud I can’t read it cause it bores me to death. And I’m not interested. But I really enjoy  The fog of the season’s end. It’s a great book. And please if you happen to come again you can bring some other good novels and an empty exercise to write what ever cross my mind. Cause there is a lot of time to sit in bed and think if you not sleeping here but most of all I missed you and I don’t know why I am writing so much letters to you. Maybe my life is still in desperate need for you cause you are always on my mind maybe its that I can always talk to you freely about anything.

I can always be who I am. That means a  lot. They have told me that you gave my son a great holiday. I hope that he was a good boy and that you had a nice spending time with him. I miss him like crazy and everyday I spent some time crying and longing to hold him in my arms and never let go. And the worse is now my book is finished long ago and I can’t really carry on write about what really on my mind while I am still inside. So life is now really stationary for me but I just had to hang on even tighter than ever cause I don’t want to break. I hope you enjoy the festive season and I wish all the best with your book and everything. Take care + keep well.

Love ya


What is a Friend (Just a poem for you)


Someone who always brings fulfillment
And hope in our lives
Someone who gives me inspiration and
Determination to reach for my goals
Someone who stood by me when days
Turns into nights and the road looks too
Much steep and rough to walk ahead
Someone who believes in me and give
Me confident that I can make it.
Someone who tells me never to give up
But be a shoulder to cry on
Someone who doesn’t stood by me
When I am wrong but helps me to
Bring out the goodness out of me
Someone who never cares what
The people say or think about me
But remain standing by me
Someone who is not perfect or rich
But who become an angel during
Our dark periods
Someone whose dreams is to see
Me succeeding and not failing
For God will never send his angels
From heaven for us, but he uses
Ordinary people to be there for us
But most of all everybody need
That someone. Thank you again
For easing my pain. You succeeded
To lighten my burden. I guess you
Will always be part of me and
I love you Johan most of all I need you

By Zkhuzwayo many kisses

Have a happy Christmas and a happy New Year


27 Oxford House
Gillespie Street

Dear Zaza

As I am sitting here to write to you I’m exhausted. My brother and his children are here. Dennis Brutus, on a visit from USA, is also here and taking up a lot of my time and Pume is here. I picked him up yesterday. He had two good days I think, swimming with my brother’s children. I got him some new clothes, because the clothes he had on was completely wet. The shirt I got him is much too big for him, so he looks funny in it.

I’m no longer with Zinhle, but a Sphilile moved in with me. She is nice. Not as beautiful as you or Zinhle, but she is working carefully with money, keeps my place clean, and I have regular sex. About your dream: You know I will always love and care for you.

I don’t know why you are still in prison. I will come with Pume and Mbali on Christmas day.

It’s getting very hot and I’m not looking forward to going back to work. My wife and children are moving to Cape Town.

Heinrich says he has got some job for you, and my brother might be able to contact someone about your case.




27 Oxford House
Gillespie Street

Dear Zaza

It is Christmas day. I wanted to come and see you, but Mbali said it is impossible, as you are not allowed any visitors at the moment, and Pume is going to your family for the day. To tell you the truth I’m heart broken, because somehow I feel Mbali wants to protect you from me, and that I suppose is right as I am a monster and a bastard and a what else. Except I don’t how you are feeling or Pume. Maybe you need me, and he also needs warmth and love.

Zaza although you are with Serge, and I’m with somebody else, my feelings for you will never change and I will always be your friend and I will always care for you.

Please send me your case number and identity number. My brother might do something to help you.

Thanks for your letters. I really appreciate them.

I went with friends of mine to Lido’s the other night. It is still the same old shitty place, with the fat man shouting at two naked oil wrestlers.

I felt distinctly old and could not pick up anybody for the night.

I suppose everybody knows I’m a bastard by now.

My wife and children are moving to Cape Town in two weeks time.

My parents are here. I’ll be having lunch with them. I’ll keep the chocolates I bought for you and pume until you are out of prison.

Zaza I’m feeling terrible today. I can feel how we are holding hands, maybe somewhere on a dune and looking at the nothingness on the horizons. Please be strong, my baby, as people love you and care for you.



Hi Johan

It’s the 11th of January. I miss my mom and sis. I wish for a big hug.

I’m am sitting here In my cell just before 10 o’clock in the night. Tears are running down my cheeks. I wish I could talk to someone but only you can understand me fully. And I can talk almost about anything with you. I just finished writing a letter to Sergio telling him we need to break up cause I feel so much insecured with him. And I think I don’t deserve him. Another reason is I don’t want to have and to loose again  cause I have lost my sis, my mom and others that meant the most even my father’s love I never had before or now. And I think I really need to be alone and start my life all over again alone though it breaks my heart to break up with Sergio cause I am still in love with him. But I don’t want to wait for the circumstances to break us up. So I prefer to take the pain now than later. I don’t know if I am doing the right thing but I strongly feel that our relationship with Sergio wont last, cause our lives are too different.

And I also think I am not ready for a commitment. He deserves better than what I can offer. One thing I need now is to work on improving my life and to raise my son. And I am also glad I have a friend like you to talk to as I am writing this letter to you, I feel better already cause I know you are going to understand me. Maybe you had become my father and my psychiatrist. And also I cant wait to come out of here and work on my book and to prepare for the exams that are coming on March. Sorry my pen is running out of ink. But P.L.S. take care of yourself and I hope I will see you soon. Sorry I have no writing pads. Bye Bye.

From Zazah (Forgot I have received you letter. Thank you.)