Inside My Zulu Hut

July 4, 2008

Inside My Zulu Hut

It is a hive
without any bees
to build the walls
with golden bricks of honey.
A cave cluttered
with a millstone,
calabashes of sour milk
claypots of foaming beer
sleeping grass mats

wooden head rests
tanned goat skins
tied with riempies
to wattle rafters
blackened by the smoke
of kneaded cow dung
burning under
the three-legged pot
on the earthen floor
to cook my porridge.

Oswald Mbuyiseni Mtshali

Mtshali gives a highly visual and personal description of the inside of his Zulu hut. His concern with its interior immediately sets up a contrast with the usual reductive picture of the African home as seen from the outside. Far from being spartan and primitive, this hut is full of possessions, stylish customisations, and transformations that follow naturally from being lived. It speaks of its occupant’s daily duties, sense of aesthetics, influence from traditional culture, and practical solutions. It shows the various ways the human interacts with his surroundings as well as how nature provides for his self-preserving, intellectual, and creative impulses. It surely attests to both the simplicity and the complexity that help to create any person’s feeling of homeliness.

Gwee Li Sui

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20 Responses to “Inside My Zulu Hut”


  1. Pleas i have a homework so can u pleas give me the answers for inside my zulu hut?
    Can i name that questions pleas

    1,why do you thnk the poet describes his hut as ‘a hive without any bees’?what do a beehive and a hut have in common
    2,find another metaphor that the poet uses to describe his hut.
    3,Name some of the household objects inside the hut.What is the effect of giving us this detailed list?
    4,poetry often appeals to our senses of sight,hearing,taste,smell and feeling.What senses does this poem appeal to?
    5,in your own words,say what you think the poet’s attitude is towards his hut.How does he feel when he is in it?

  2. Gweek Says:

    Hello, your teacher wouldn’t like me doing your homework.

  3. Adrian Tan Says:

    Brilliant!


  4. Happy to help an earlier poster…

    1,why do you thnk the poet describes his hut as ‘a hive without any bees’?what do a beehive and a hut have in common
    Answer: They are both wireless.

    2,find another metaphor that the poet uses to describe his hut.
    Answer: I did. Its in the poem! There!

    3,Name some of the household objects inside the hut.What is the effect of giving us this detailed list?
    Answer: I named all of them “Dave”. The effect is a list of Daves which forms a nice visual pattern! Pretty!

    4,poetry often appeals to our senses of sight,hearing,taste,smell and feeling.What senses does this poem appeal to?
    Answer: Sense of disco!

    5,in your own words,say what you think the poet’s attitude is towards his hut.How does he feel when he is in it?
    Answers: Kwaijonz hawrk a louie (you did say “in my own words” right?)

  5. VT Says:

    Good work!
    Brilliant stuff!
    Thanks for sharing! 😀

  6. Gift Says:

    I poped in my pants

  7. Gift Says:

    I mean i pooped in my pants

  8. Londy Says:

    Matlatse dat poem iz quite easy n fun…
    Hive n hut both are made up of natural. Material, and a lot of activities take place inside them.
    He also calls his hut a cave.
    Ull name da object… They emphasise the originality and their usage, thus also suggesting that itz @ da homelands or rural place ect.
    Appeals to sight sense.
    The poet has a positive attitude about hiz hut, it makes him feel @ home

  9. Ukazxibq Says:

    Where do you live?

  10. Pcyltcez Says:

    Have you got any qualifications?

  11. Gijxxkjm Says:

    Have you got any qualifications?


  12. I believe this web page holds quite wonderful composed subject matter blog posts.


  13. All the guys killed it this year. Definite coin toss between Madars and Pfanner.

  14. Gabriella Says:

    A few months


  15. […] Inside My Zulu Hut | Gweek Culture: World of Terrifying … – Jul 04, 2008 · Inside My Zulu Hut. It is a hive without any bees to build the walls with golden bricks of honey. A cave cluttered with a millstone, calabashes of sour milk… […]

  16. Mubarak A Alhassan Says:

    I like poetry.This is the fact.

  17. Sifiso Says:

    Why is the woman leaning against the tree

  18. Sifiso Says:

    What are the blows


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