Jul.

18

Robben Island in South Africa

mandela-ritts

Your HERO. Think about that for a moment. Do you have one?

Webster’s defines a hero as a person noted for feats of courage or nobility of purpose.

One of my heroes was prisoner 466/64 at Robben Island in South Africa.

In 1994, NELSON ROLIHLAHLA MANDELA became South Africa’s first democratically elected President and his name became synonymous with the quest for freedom. Mr. Mandela’s humanity shined brightly for all the world to see, allowing those under the glare of his spotlight to thrive…to succeed.

Once when asked how he survived an unjust imprisonment for 27 years of his life, Mr. Mandela¬†said simply that he realized during the worst of times:¬†“there is no easy walk to freedom anywhere, and many of us will have to pass through the valley of the shadow of death again and again before we reach the mountain tops of our desires.”

robben-island-table2

That straight walk from the
prison to the gate–
that walk the world saw, and
which changed the world-
it led you through to life from
life withheld,
from broken stones with your
unbroken heart.

robben-island-reception

To life which you imagined
and then lived
which once we shared in your
imagining
but soon shared in the
present that you shaped:

robben-island-d-section

the life which gave each
human hope its chance
of turning into truth and
staying true;

robben-island-hallway

the life which understood
what changing takes;
the life which showed us we
become ourselves
in part by watching you
becoming you.

robben-island-the-cell

Photos: Herb Ritts/Zavvi Rodaine

Travel 1 Comment


One Response to “Robben Island in South Africa

  1. 1
    Sherry says:
    July 22, 2010 at 8:03 pm

    Wow, just looking at these picture send chills.