Things My Mother Left Me


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“I hear them climb onto my roof, the men, they have given up all negotiations with the door. But the roof is no good either, it’s too hot up there, the corrugated iron that covers my home is quick to gather and boast of the heat. That iron roof makes life uncomfortable, it bakes and heaves with the heat, playing musical chairs, making us unwelcome visitors in our own home. That roof is cruel, and now it is burning the soles of the men who are trying to save our lives.”

Things My Mother Left Me is a debut offering that traces the lives of women in varied contexts, women who refuse to be erased by the circumstances that render them invisible. Women who, insist that they not only want to stay alive but to do so on their own terms.

Mpondo challenges the reader to think deeply about the consequences of growing up in the other South Africa, where one is constantly met with the harsh realities caused by inequality, poverty, broken homes, and the inevitable empty promises made every fourth quarter.

With its lyrical prose, Things My Mother Left Me will break then gather the pieces of the reader’s heart. A reminder that a mother’s prayers do not go unheard nor her tears unseen…