Wednesday, 1 August 2018


Boy On A Swing by Oswald Mtshali is a poem that reminds the readers of the common Yoruba proverbs that says: "When a boy is given a sword, he would ask his mother about the kind of death that killed his father."


According to the poem, a boy was placed on a swing enjoying its to and fro, with the assistance of his mother. The act of swinging heightened the boy's delight, it placed the boy in a pure pleasant picture of the world.

The boy began to wonder why they lacked things including the presence of his father, he wondered about the source of his own origin, he also wondered h
ow long it would take him to measure up with those wearing trousers.

According the last stanza of the poem, the boy posed three thoughtful questions:
Where did I come from?
When will I wear long trousers?
Why was my father jailed?"


Boy On A Swing by Oswald Mtshali is a four stanza poem void of end rhyme scheme, it has a very simple word usage. All the beauties of the poem is compressed into one with the aid of rhetorical questions and by so doing, the theme of childhood innocence and bewilderment, the theme of complexity in human lives and living, the theme of effects of delight, etc; became evident in the poem. 

Samuel C. Enunwa aka samueldpoetry
(the Leo with wings flying)


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