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Life among the dead

John Robinson

Life among the dead. Words and images by John Robinson.
2008 Pietermaritzburg KwaZulu-Natal South Africa.


The flowered field has called once again, �come and return to the slopes of the dead once again.� Come and see if things are as they were on that day you last laid down the dead.

Clouds lie low over the place as if protecting this field of the dead, Mountain Rise Cemetery in Pietermaritzburg South Africa is a place where rows of wood and stone stand testament to their final claims. Nothing moves here at first glance, this is of course the place of the dead.

Come and see the place of the dead, the place where there is life too, the life that is among the dead, movement in this place of final rest.

Bread cutters are rugged brush cutters operated by men and woman dressed in black, they are fitted with mask and gloves and scythe their way through the grass that over grows the grave markers and stones. They are followed by others who patch the raw stumps of trees and brush with pink poison. The very trees that tempt to upturn the grave stones of this place.

The brush cutting crew section off the grave yard and bring back to sight the wooden crosses almost consumed by the grasses that once owned this place. They work for a day here then may be seen on the side of the city's roads the next. They cut the grass for the council and should they do...

FOR THE FULL STORY OF 1237 WORDS CONTACT pictures@africamediaonline.com

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