The poems in Arja Salafranca's collection Beyond Touch reveal an interest in the observed world and the experience of others. Although the collection can be read as a unified poetic voice in the 'confessional mode', the focus is not so much on an estranged individual experience, as on a reaching towards an understanding of others and a continual questioning and readjustment of the speaker's own perceptions and sense of distance.
Edited by Mandi Vundla and Allan Kolski Horwitz, Home is where the mic is offers a broad selection of some of South Africa's most prominent young performance poets and spoken word artists, and includes several spoken word performers from other countries as well. It follows in the footsteps of many previous Botsotso publications, which have sought to bridge a divide between many dichotomies and terms that permeate many critical interpretations. Terms that loosely fill the poetic/ South African landscape with clichés - popular/populist art, form versus content, relevance, protest poetry, poetry free of pressure to be political, and so on.
Nazim Hikmet's 'Autobiography' is a poem that is often used in writing workshops to encourage poets to engage and frame their personal histories in an associative way. It uses time - but not in a way that is melancholic or nostalgic - more as an index to move and change and leap from one experience to another. It is robust in its straightforward lines and clarity of energy. It allows movement, and chronicle, but in a way that repeats the necessity of a socially engaged "I" in the present. It is political, too, of course, and it is modernist - part of its directness. It was also written at a time of great brutality and horror, and the poet's own exile and imprisonment from his motherland, Turkey.