Asem deur Jan Vermeulen | Chapter 1 | English Summary


Asem deur Jan Vermeulen | Chapter 1 | English Summary

Asem deur Jan Vermeulen

Chapter 1 Summary (EEN)

Time: Barries’ Birthday | Place: Aunt Vera’s house, Houghton

Barries wants to give his dad rat poison because he was a terrible person — he abandoned Barries 11 years ago, used to beat him with a belt (when Barries was 5) and was an alcoholic. His dad has been calling regularly for the last month and invited Barries to visit him on one of the years. His mom is adamant on giving his dad a second chance but Barries has other ideas. He says that he will only be happy when he sees Paul Barnard (his dad) writhing in pain and, only then, can he return home.

Barries’ life is in a bad state — his marks are bad, he’s been dropped from first team cricket and he seems to be addicted to marijuana. However, he does have a good relationship with his girlfriend, Lizette. They have a very sexually intense connection and, in this chapter, Lizette promises to have sex with Barries. He also has a healthy connection with his gorgeous mother, Aunt Vera.

Theo and Floris are two other characters which we see in this chapter. Barries refers to them as “The Blond Brothers” with Theo being the legal and attractive one. Theo is really good with the ladies and Barries fears that he will seduce his mother and his girlfriend.

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Sterrekyker - Franci Greling - Sterrekyker


Sterrekyker - Franci Greling - Sterrekyker

Poem and translation

1 Ek skryf 'n brief aan die man op die maan-

2 bladsye en bladsye vol.

3 Ek rol dit in 'n koker op,

4 bind dit aan 'n pyl,

5 en skiet dit met 'n wilgerboog

6 dat dit hoog die lug inseil.

7 Ek sien hoe dit deur die sterre trek

8 en om die maan gaan draai

9 en al verder deur die donker lug 

10 'n duisend briewe saai.

11 Nou wonder ek

12 -en wonder jy?-

13 het hy ooit sy pos gekry,

14 of sou daar iemand anders wees

15 wat al die briewe dalk nou lees

I write a message to the man on the moon

pages and pages full.

I roll into a quiver,

bind it to an arrow

and shoot it with a willow bow

that it sails high into the sky.

I see how it flies through the stars

and goes and turns around the moon

and even further through the dark sky

a thousand letters sows.

Now I wonder

- and maybe you do as well -

did he ever get his post,

or could there be someone else

who reads all these letters now


1 Ek skryf 'n brief aan die man op die maan-

2 bladsye en bladsye vol.

3 Ek rol dit in 'n koker op,

4 bind dit aan 'n pyl,

5 en skiet dit met 'n wilgerboog

6 dat dit hoog die lug inseil.

7 Ek sien hoe dit deur die sterre trek

8 en om die maan gaan draai

9 en al verder deur die donker lug 

10 'n duisend briewe saai.

11 Nou wonder ek

12 -en wonder jy?-

13 het hy ooit sy pos gekry,

14 of sou daar iemand anders wees

15 wat al die briewe dalk nou lees

Someone on the moon is possibly someone figurative - they don’t actually exist. Writing letters is a personal process, so the speaker might be confiding in someone.

Pages and pages means that this letter is long - there is a lot to say, a complicated topic.

Lines 3 -6 indicate how the writer packaged the letter. The speaker sends the letter by use of a bow and arrow. This then brings old-age imagery to the poem - imagery reminiscent of mystical times.

Lines 7-10 describe how the letter looks in the air. The speaker says that there are a thousand letters (hyperbole) that fly through the air. The speaker also indicates that these letters are sown together, indicating the immensity of the letter sent.

In these lines, the speaker indicates that they are unsure about something. The echoing rhetoric of “and wonder you” (line 12) shows this.

In lines 13-15, the reader sees that the speaker is unsure if the man on the moon receives his letters - the speaker indicates that someone else might have read the letters.


Talle Tonge deur Mathews Phosa


Talle Tonge deur Mathews Phosa

Poem and Translation of "Talle Tonge"


Talle tonge het ek

een tong op 'n gegewe oomblik


'n heuningtong

'n bitter tong

'n tong stomp

genoeg om te swyg


my skerp tong klap

klap soos 'n sweep

en keep diep en laat bloei


my suur tong brand

brand soos asyn

en laat krimp inmekaar en skend


Talle tonge het ek

een tong op 'n gegewe oomblik

'n tong om te sny

'n tong om te salf

Ek het talle tonge




Many tongues have I

one tongue at a given moment


a honey tongue

a bitter tongue

a tongue stump

enough to stay silent


my sharp tongue cracks

cracks like a whip

and cuts deep and draws blood


my sour tongue burns

burns like vinegar

and will make shame and deface you


Many tongues have I

one tongue at a given moment

a tongue to cut 

a tongue to heal (ointment is direct trans.)

I have many tongues




Lydende Vorm - Passive Voice in Afrikaans

Lydende vorm is passive voice in Afrikaans. When using this new form in the language, a few things in sentence structure need to change, specifically STOMPI. 

Here you can see the basic framework of lydende vorm.

However, you almost always need to add "word" and other words to make the sentence make sense. Here is a basic view on how to do this in different tenses and sentence types.

Auxiliary Verbs

Verb 1: the helping verb (kan/moet/wil)

Verb 2: ge+verb and "word"

Example: Connor kan die bal skop. --> Die bal kan deur Connor geskop word.


Present Tense // Teenwoordige Tyd

Verb 1: "word"

Verb 2: ge+verb

Example: Keelan skryf vandag 'n maklike toets.. --> 'n Maklike toets word vandag deur Keelan geskryf.


Past Tense // Verlede Tyd

Verb 1: "is"

Verb 2: ge+verb

Example: Dango het op Valentines 'n mooi soen gekry. --> 'n Mooi soen is op Valentines deur Dango gekry.


Future Tense // Toekomende Tyd

Verb 1: "sal"

Verb 2: ge+verb and "word"

Example: SK sal 'n wiskunde toets skryf. --> 'n Wiskunde toets sal deur SK geskryf word.


Instruction Sentences // Bevelsin

Teenwoordige tyd/present tense: sentence + moet + verb+  word

Skop die bal! --> Die bal moet geskop word.

Verlede Tyd/past tense: sentence + moes + verb + word

Toekomende tyd/future tense: sentence + moet word


Question sentence // Vraagsin

Teenwoordige tyd/present tense: question word + "word" + sentence + verb

Verlede Tyd/past tense: question word + "is" + sentence + verb

Toekomende tyd/future tense: question word + "sal" + sentence + verb + "word"





Nog iemand via pynappel op pizza? - Short story analysis and translation // Kort Verhaal


Nog iemand via pynappel op pizza? - Short story analysis and translation // Kort Verhaal

English Translation

Tiaan pushed his chair back and quickly stood up.

"I don't want to be here, mum! That's what!"

He swung around and headed for the door. He didn't want to see his mother's anxious eyes. He doesn't want to explain to her that he doesn't want to start a new life from scratch. At the front door, he was struggling with the security lock. 

"Flippit!" You can't even slam the door when you are angry in this country! By the time all the locks opened and shut again, he wasn't angry anymore. Tiaan then just stood on the step. He thought he should just go and borrow the science book, seeing that he is already outside. 

He reached into his pants for the piece of paper Suzanne gave him at school. "It's my address," she said, "come any time this afternoon or tomorrow." Welgelegenstraat 105. He doesn't even know the town, how would know where it is? But when he turned the paper around he saw a map on the back with street names and arrows from his home to her house. He frowned. He does she know where he lives? Maybe he told her and couldn't remember. He shrugged and started walking. The conversation last night with his mother carried on playing in his head. 

"Is it not a bit soon to decide that you don't fit in, Tiaan? You haven't even been at the school for a week yet."

"Four days is enough, mum. The children here are…weird.” That was the best word he could think of to describe them.

He found the street and turned right, up the hill. The house got bigger the further he went. He thought of Suzanne - blonde hair in a braid, glasses, neat and precise and super clever. Welgelegenstraat 105 is the last house on the street and the biggest at that. 

He rang the bell and waited. He felt uncomfortable. What if her mother opens? What would he say to her? Hello, Auntie, I’m the new kid in school that is so behind in science that I need Suzanne’s work?

The gate opened, and Tiaan stands there, uncertain. Does this mean he should go in?

“Of course, you monkey!” He scolded himself. The garden path winds up to a large front door, but when he lifted his hand to knock, it swung wide open.

“Hey, Tiaan. Good to see you.”

He swallowed before he got a word out.

“Um…hey, Suzanne.” His voice sounded strange in his ears.

“Come in,” she said. She then turned around.

The girl who stood before him was no the Suzanne of the school. This one has long blonde hair and big blue eyes and bare feet with pink toenails and large earrings. 

“Riami, bring another glass, Tiaan is here!” She called out to a door at the top of the stairs. 

Who is Riami? The name sounds familiar. There is a person in his class, but he can’t remember her clearly. Maybe it’s the girl with the terribly short hair?

He walked behind Suzanne and noticed that his hands were trembling. He tried to think of something to say, but his mind was blank. 

“My father was busy setting up the bookshelves, so it’s a little messy. Move the boxes aside; then you can just sit on the bed,” said Suzanne as they walked into her room. 

A little messy? Tiaan smiles and relaxes. This mess is not because of the new bookshelf. It has been weeks since Suzanne last cleaned. 


While she rummaged through her bag for the science book, he saw a CD. The Four Seasons by Joshua Bell. His tongue comes loose. “When did you get this?” Can we play it? I cannot wait to listen to how it sounds!”

“My aunt sent it from New York.” She then gives the science book to Tiaan and with her other hand she moves a bunch of stuff out the way to get to the buttons of the CD player.

While the music played, they don’t talk. Tiaan’s head changes into high gear. He is such a monkey! How could he be so stupid yo get so excited about a guy who plays the violin?

“Oh please, not another concerto fan!”

Tiaan’s mouth was wide open. 

Riami stands at the door with a bottle of Coke under her arm and four glasses on a tray. It is the girl that he knows, but she also looks different at school. Her short hair stands straight up on her head, and it is purple. 

“Don’t worry about Riami, Tiaan,” said Suzanne as she turned down the music. “She is hooked on rock and roll.”

“Please pour some Coke in, I couldn’t open the bottle,” said Riami as she puts the bottle in Tiaan’s hand - which no longer shake.

Riami sits crossed-legged on an arm chair atop a pile of clothes. She picks up a huge bundle of wool and begins to knit. 

“Can you swim? I am short a person for the relay team that is going to swim against the parents next week.” Tiaan saw that she suddenly looked at him and he steered his eyes away from the needles, with some difficulty.

“Yes. Yes, I can swim. I was in the swim team at my old school and…”

“Great. We practice on Monday afternoon. Can you be at the pool at 5? Suzanne, which colour should I use now? Orange or green?” She held two balls of wool in the air. 

Tiaan feels the knot in his stomach loosen because it is not the u15 champion that is going to swim it is just going to be him, regular Tiaan. Hy has to clench his mouth not to laugh. Wonderful. Tiaan is in the relay team with a girl that knits and has purple hair on the weekend. 

The doorbell starts ringing. 

“It can only be Richard. I’ll be right back.”

Riami gives the needles to Suzanne violently, and Tiaan has a chance to get to see what she looks like. She’s quite nice, purple hair and all.

“Tiaan do you know Richard? He’s in 9C. This is Tiaan; he’s new in the school.”

Tiaan knows Richard. He was on the stage on Monday for a sports award. Tall and full of muscle. Tiaan’s stomach knot comes right back. He must be careful what he says.

“Yes, Tiaan! Bad, huh? To be in a new school. I hate it. I was in a lot of schools. My dad and his friends could not decide where they wanted to stay and every time I had to move with them.” Hy pours Coke for himself, takes Tiaan’s glass and pours again without asking.

Tiaan listens while the other guys talk about things that he doesn’t know about. He suddenly remembers that he just came here to borrow a book and that he didn’t tell his mum where he was going. But he sits still and listens to the voices that come from far. 

His past life feels imaginary, far away as if he didn’t play the main character in the game. Swim, swim and more swimming so that he can get muscles like the other kids. So that he doesn’t stick out. Swim till the point where he can’t anymore so that everyone can think that Tiaan is a true sportsman. 

“I’m hungry, and you guys?” asks Suzanne as she packs the glasses back onto the tray. “Let’s go make pizza.”

Riami threw her knitting aside and stood up. “I hope you’re not as fussy as this guy,” she says as she motions to Richard. “He only eats sushi and Indian curry.”

“That is better than the rice and meat you love, Riami!”

While they are laughing down the stairs, Tiaan remembers what he told his mum: “The children are…weird.”

They are really weird - but not in the way he expected. In the kitchen, Suzanne gives him a grater and cheese. He begins, reluctantly, en looks at Richard. He nearly grazes his finger because Richard-with-the-muscles is busy chopping onions. 

“What do you want on your pizza, Tiaan? Mushrooms? Ham? Pineapple-?”

“Oh no, Suzanne,” Richard interrupts her, “surely not pineapple. Sweetness on a pizza - that’s out!”

She raised her eyebrows at Tiaan. “Richard believes he makes the best pizza in the world, but it’s just him in his rugby-friends who think that. Pineapple on pizza is nice, so what?”

“I better walk,” says Richard as he stomps out the door.

When the pizzas are done, Riami sticks them in the oven and runs the water to wash the dishes. Suzanne softly hums along with the tune of a piano that comes from somewhere. Tiaan stands with a towel in his hand. The song comes from The Lion King. 

“Who is playing the piano?” asks Suzanne. “Your mother?”

“Oh definitely not! She can only play tennis. It’s Richard.”

Richard. Richard-with-the-muscles plays the piano and makes pizza for his rugby-friends. 

“Come back here, Tiaan, I want to show you something. Riami, come as well?” asks Suzanne.

“No thanks, I have already seen it. Ten times. Enjoy,” she says as she picks up a newspaper and goes to sit by the table. 

Suzanne walks behind the backyard to a garage door.

“Nice, hey? Or what do you think?” she asks as she opens the door. 

In the middle of the floor stands a blood red motorbike. Bright and loud. Tiaan walks closer to it and becomes aware of the black leather seat. He walks around it two times before looking at Suzanne and smiling. 

“Wow! This is nice. Is it your dad’s or your brother’s?”

Suzanne laughs and taps on the handlebar.

“It is not my brothers or my dad’s. It’s mine, and I am counting down the days till I turn 16 - that you can be sure of!”

Tiaan stares at Suzanne. To normal - that's what he thought of her before. When they walked back into the kitchen, Riami was licking her fingers. Richard slid the pineapple pizza to Tiaan and Suzanne with a disapproving look. 

“How long have you been playing the piano? It sounded…amazing,” said Tiaan carefully. 

“How long? About seven years. No, eight,” said Richard between bites. “And you? Do you play as well?”

Tiaan put the piece of pizza in his hand and leant back comfortably.

“No,” he replied, and he looked Richard in the eyes. “I play the violin.”


Loop en Val - deur Louis Esterhuizen


Loop en Val - deur Louis Esterhuizen

The Poem // Die Gedig

Wie sou ooit kon dink
datdit só sou wees? Jy wat sóveel rondtes
om diebaan triomfantlik kon loop
ongemaklik, diekomiek van totale toewyding
sou ooit die afloop van jou laaste wedloop
voorsien? Jy wat eens die rekords
amper na willekeur kon verwerf: Neergeskiet
Molape onderweg na huis
wie het kon dink

op drie-en-veertig sou jy
met vier koeëls in
jou lyf roemloos
oor die wenstreep


Line by Line Translation

Wie sou ooit kon dink
dat dit só sou wees? Jy wat sóveel rondtes
om die baan triomfantlik kon loop
en val
ongemaklik, die komiek van totale toewyding-
Wie sou ooit die afloop van jou laaste wedloop
só voorsien? Jy wat eens die rekords
en medaljes
amper na willekeur kon verwerf: Neergeskiet
in Molape onderweg na huis
wie het kon dink

op drie-en-veertig sou jy
met vier koeëls in jou lyf roemloos
oor die wenstreep


Who would have thought that it would have to be this way? You who runs so many laps around the track, in the lane, can run,            and fall?                                                                             Uncomfortable, the comic of total commitment Who would have thought that it would be your last race? You who has the records                        and the medals                                                  who won them so easily it could be random: Shot down in Molape on the way home.                                   who would've guessed

 that at the age of 43 you will,                                                          with 4 standard bullets in your body,                    fall across the finish line

                                                                                 helplessly                                                                       crawl                                

Background of Matthew Motshwarateu

He died at the age of 43. He was an exceptional athlete with a unique (eienaardige) running style. He beat the champion of the 5000m race, Ewald Bonzet in the Cotzenburg stadium in 1978. He later returned to the stadium to break Bonzet's 10 000m record in 1979. He was offered an athletic scholarship at the University of Texas in 1980, In the same year, Matthew broke the record of a 10km NYC Street Race (completed in 28min, faster by 24sec).

He came back to South Africa when his athletic career was finished. He struggled to find work and landed up being a second-hand car dealer where he struggled to provide for his family (a wife and four children)




Klein Vrede - deur Antjie Krog


Klein Vrede - deur Antjie Krog

The poem // Die gedig

Vanmiddag wag sy vir hom in 'n klein hoėmuurhuisie
half toe-oog ingekruip agter 'n straatstoepie

5.12 hang hy sy hoed aan die haak
trek sy baadjie uit en sy gooi kookwater deur die koffiesak

vee haar hande aan die geblomde voorskoot en wag darem
dat hy haar eers teen hom vasdruk, so skuinserig met die een arm

voor sy hom die dag se nusies vertel
die gat in die heining, die hond, Anna-jannie het gebel

Na ete haal sy die Bybel uit die boonste laai
en hy lees vir hulle van Israel se afgode teen die berg Sinaļ

haar hande vou 'n stopskulp in syne as sy bid:
Onse Vader wat hoog bo die aarde in die hemel sit ...

Die maan rys soos 'n koringmeelbrood bokant die dak
sy was skottelgoed met lifebuoy en 'n omgesoomde meelsak

hy luister nuus op die treetjie by die agterdeur
oor dinge wat met ander mense in die wźreld gebeur

Later as die luggie begint trek
die windpomp klap-klap in die dam in lek

sit hy die sproeier af, maak die hoenderhokke toe
sit die kat uit en kom langsaam kamer toe.

In die na-nag as die wind uit die noorde begin
skuif die maan oor hul bed dieper die kamer in

tot op die woorde geraam in krulle:
My vrede gee Ek julle.

Line-by-line translation

Vanmiddag wag sy vir hom in 'n klein hoėmuurhuisie
half toe-oog ingekruip agter 'n straatstoepie

5.12 hang hy sy hoed aan die haak
trek sy baadjie uit en sy gooi kookwater deur die koffiesak

vee haar hande aan die geblomde voorskoot en wag darem
dat hy haar eers teen hom vasdruk, so skuinserig met die een arm

voor sy hom die dag se nusies vertel
die gat in die heining, die hond, Anna-jannie het gebel

Na ete haal sy die Bybel uit die boonste laai
en hy lees vir hulle van Israel se afgode teen die berg Sinaļ

haar hande vou 'n stopskulp in syne as sy bid:
Onse Vader wat hoog bo die aarde in die hemel sit ...

Die maan rys soos 'n koringmeelbrood bokant die dak
sy was skottelgoed met lifebuoy en 'n omgesoomde meelsak

hy luister nuus op die treetjie by die agterdeur
oor dinge wat met ander mense in die wêreld gebeur

Later as die luggie begint trek
die windpomp klap-klap in die dam in lek

sit hy die sproeier af, maak die hoenderhokke toe
sit die kat uit en kom langsaam kamer toe.

In die na-nag as die wind uit die noorde begin
skuif die maan oor hul bed dieper die kamer in

tot op die woorde geraam in krulle:
My vrede gee Ek julle.

This afternoon she waited for him in a little house surrounded by high walls. She waited with here eyes half shut on a small front step.

At five past twelve, he hangs his hat on a hook and pours boiling water on a small bag, which has coffee in it.

She wipes the flour of her hands and onto her apron and he awaits a hug from her. The hug was skew and was done with one arm.                    -

She then tells him the daily news - there is a hole in the fence, the dog and Anna-jannie had called.

After dinner she took the Bible out of the top drawer. He then reads about Israel's idols against the mountain of Sinal.

Her hands folded into a shell-shape for prayer: Our father who is high above the Earth, and in heaven.

The moon rises like wheat above the roof. She washes the dishes with lifebuoy (a type of soap) and a seemed flour bag.                                      -

He listens to the news that happened in other places around the world, on a small step (treetjie) in the back.

Later, as the wind starts to blow, the windmill starts to "klap-klap" and leaks into the dam.

He turns off the sprinkler, closes the chicken cages, takes the cat out of the room and then comes to the room.

Later, the wind from the North blows and the the moon slides deeper into their room.

The moon slides to the point where the framed, curled words can be seen:
My peace I give you.


Antjie Krog lived in the Free State and 50 years ago, the small towns were nothing more than a few shops, a post office, a City Hall, a church and maybe a hotel. This was the time before TVs, computers, email or smartphone. The radio was the source of enlightenment and maybe a newspaper or telephone as well (if you could afford it). There was a lot of silence and peace, and this is what this poem is trying to portray. 

The poem consists of 12 couplets which describe a day-in-the-life of a married couple. The couple has not much more than food and a roof over their heads and they don't need anything more. The poem supports their strong connection as two people which are in harmony (love). This is seen by the use of a couplet structure as well as rhyme scheme. They follow a strict day-by-day routine for 12 months of the year - this is indicated through the use of twelve stanzas.



The Infinitive - Die Infinitief

We use the infinitive, in Afrikaans to say when we want to do something - to run, to hide, to swim.

A basic example of the infinitive is:

I cannot wait to go.

Ek kan nie wag om te gaan nie. 


As you can see, the infinitive is very useful to language so here are the rules to using it:


1. The om + te always go together (besides exceptions)

Ek hou om krieket te speel.

Ek hou daarvan om te sing.

The way to use the infinitive comes with practice because there are many ways one thing can be said and me teaching you only one way isn't doing the way you speak justice.

Whenever you see these words you know that an infinitive is coming:

  1. Geniet dit (enjoy)
  2. Hou daarvan (like)
  3. Probeer (try)
  4. Verkies (choose)
  5. Is veronderstel (supposed)


2. The exceptions

  1. Behoort
  2. Hoef nie

When you see "Behoort" and "Hoef nie" you must know that there is no use of "om" with these words.


Jy behoort die motor te bestuur. (You should drive the car)

Jy hoef nie vir die westryd te kyk nie. (You don't have to watch the match)


3. Verbs that change

"is" always changes to "wees"

"het" always changes to "hê"


Die Kind - Ingrid Jonker


Die Kind - Ingrid Jonker

Die kind wat dood geskiet is deur soldate by Nyanga

Die kind is nie dood nie
die kind lig sy vuiste teen sy moeder
wat Afrika skreeu skreeu die geur van vryheid en heide
in die lokasies van die omsingelde hart
Die kind lig sy vuiste teen sy vader
in die optog van die generasies
wat Afrika skreeu skreeu die geur
van geregtigheid en bloed
in die strate van sy gewapende trots

Die kind is nie dood nie
nòg by Langa nòg by Nyanga
nòg by Orlando nòg by Sharpville
nòg by die polisiestasie in Philippi
waar hy lê met ‘n koeël deur sy kop
Die kind is die skaduwee van die soldate
op wag met gewere sarasene en knuppels
die kind is teenwoordig by alle vergaderings en wetgewings
die kind loer deur die vensters van huise en in die harte van moeders
die kind wat net wou speel in die son by Nyanga is orals
die kind wat ‘n man geword het trek deur die ganse Afrika
die kind wat ‘n reus geword het reis deur die hele wêreld
Sonder ‘n pas
Maart 1960

TRANSLATION: The child who was shot dead by soldiers at Nyanga

The child is not dead
The child lifts his fists against his mother
Who shouts Afrika ! shouts the breath
Of freedom and the veld
In the locations of the cordoned heart

The child lifts his fists against his father
in the march of the generations
who shouts Afrika ! shout the breath
of righteousness and blood
in the streets of his embattled pride

The child is not dead
not at Langa nor at Nyanga
not at Orlando nor at Sharpeville
nor at the police station at Philippi
where he lies with a bullet through his brain

The child is the dark shadow of the soldiers
on guard with rifles Saracens and batons
the child is present at all assemblies and law-givings
the child peers through the windows of houses and into the hearts of mothers
this child who just wanted to play in the sun at Nyanga is everywhere
the child grown to a man treks through all Africa
the child grown into a giant journeys through the whole world

Without a pass

(Uit: The South African Family Encyclopaedia, written and compiled by Peter Joyce; Struik Publishers 1989. Selected Poems, Ingrid Jonker; Jonathan Cape 1968.)



'n Vriendelike inkopie-Ervaring met KFM | Poem Translation and Analysis

English Translation 


The land is in big trouble  

Grab a trolley! 

Put away your revolver! 

The police station is being robbed! (was in the newspaper when the author was writing this poem)

Butter now costs R13 a block! 

Olè for margarine!  (Olè is also a brand of margarine)

A eighty year old women is cruely raped!

Cadbury, here we come! 

Doof! Doof! Doof! 

A bus plunged off a bridge! 

Sardiens are on a special special! 

Hip, hip, hooray! South Africa! 

Ten thousand is infected with AIDS! 

Yum-yum for deceased ham

Rolled up in Spekenam (spek en ham: which is tortoulogy)

The country is in the fire!

Rock and roll your trolleys!

Pack a box of wine without worry!

Love means to never say you are sorry! 

It's a K, it's a F, it's a M! 

It's KFM! 

There's a friendly Spar wherever you are! 



  •  Rollie: rewolwer
  • Worrie: Bekkomernis 


 Satierese gedig: The poem uses satire to point out the weakness in society 







Rooikappie - Philip de Vos | Poem Analysis


Rooikappie - Philip de Vos | Poem Analysis

This is an English translation and explanation of the poem - Rooikappie


 Afrikaans Version


"Klein Rooikappie stap na die woud

na Ouma toe, maar skrik haar koud,

en sy wou flou val, ja, gewis,

toe ‘n BMW haar net-net mis.


En by die stuurwiel, dik en vet,

vol Old Spice en ‘n sigaret

sit Hendrik Janse van der Colff,

bekend as padvark, én as wolf.


“Wil jy ‘n lift hê, liewe diertjie?

Dan gee ek jou ‘n koue biertjie.”

Maar darie goeie kind Rooikappie

dink aan woorde van haar pappie:


Pas tog op vir vreemdelinge,

met hul lollipops en dinge …

Gedagtig daaraan sê sy NEE!

en hoor net motorbande skree.


Maar toe sy by haar ouma kom,

was sy geskok en skoon verstom,

want naas haar in die dubbelbed

lê Hendrik Janse, breed en vet.


Haar ouma sug: “My nood was groot,

want Oupa is so lankal dood …”

Toe sluk die tweetjies aan ‘n Carling,

en sê die wolf: “Nou’s jy my Darling.”


Hier’s ‘n les: Wees nés Rooikappie.

Luister áltyd na jou pappie.

Maar beslis nie na jou ouma.

Anders wag verdriet en trouma …"


 - Philip de Vos




Toutologie: Tortolgy - To say the same thing twice  

Contrast: Contrast a she is an innocent, small deer and he is a large, fat, smoking man. 

Assonasie: The repetition of vowel sound 

Alliterasie: The religion of consonant sounds

Parrym: Rhyme pair (AABB CCDD EEFF)


English Translation 

Little red riding hood walks in the forest

On the way to her grandmother, but she got such a big fright, 

and she nearly fainted because BMW barely missed her.  


And behind the the steering wheel, fat, 

full of Old Spice and a cigeratte

sits Hendrik Janse van der Colff

known as road hog, and a wolf. 


"Do you want a lift, dear girl?

Then I can give you a cold beer" 

But this good child Red Riding Hood

thinks about the words from her dad: 


Beware of strangers,

with their lollipops and things... 

Thinking of this, she says, "No!" 

And she only hears car tires screaming.


But when she arrives at her Gradnmothers house,

she was shocked and astonished, 

because next to her grandmother, in the double bed,

lay Hendrik Janse, wide and fat.


Her grandmother sighs: "My yearning was great, 

because grandfather has been dead so long..." (She wants sex)

Then the two of them sip on a Carling ,

And the wolf says: "Now you are my Darling." (He is speaking to the grandmother)


Here is a lesson: Be just like Red Riding Hood.

Always listen to your dad. 

But definitely don't believe your grandmother (or be like her). 

Otherwise sorrow and trauma awaits you...



  • Woud: forest
  • Skrik: got a fright
  • Flou Val: fainted
  • Net-net: barely
  • Stuurwiel: steering wheel
  • Bankend: known
  • Padvark: Road hog
  • Darie: daardie
  • Waarskuwing: warning
  • Gedagtig: thinking of p
  • Motorbande: car tires
  • Verstom: Astonished
  • Naas: next to
  • Nood was groom: Great was my yearning
  • Sluk: swallow
  • Nes (net soos): just like
  • Beslis: Deninitely
  • Anders: otherwise
  • Verdriet: sorrow
  • Geleentheid: opportunity
  • Pedofiel/pervert: Pervert






Word Order (STOMPI)

Text Breakdown

STOMPI is a key element to understanding and improving your Afrikaans. STOMPI is a template for word order in Afrikaans, if you follow its rules, you will never have trouble writing a speech again! So lets dive in.


STOMPI stands for parts of speech and types of words. Here is the acronym STOMPI in its complete form. As you can see, there are verbs after the subject and after the place. Let me take you through STOMPI and explain to you each letter. But first you must understand that each letter stands for a word in a sentence and the word in the sentence will go in the same place as the letter (between other parts of speech). The S stands for Subject. The subject is the person or thing doing the action in the sentence. For example, ons, ek and hulle can be subject words. You must remember that context is very important!


The next letter is the silent v which stands for verb 1. There is a simple principle in Afrikaans sentences, and this is, whatever the sentence starts with, the verb comes next. The first verb in afrikaans sentences can be any verb, but if there is an auxiliary verb such as het or sal in the sentence, they will usually be in the verb 1 position.


T is the next letter in STOMPI and it stands for time. Time words will be placed after the first verb. You can usually tell time words apart from other words by them mentioning a time of day, or a number that indicates hours or minutes. Examples of time words can be huur, middag and môre.


The fourth letter in STOMPI is O and it stands for object. An object in a sentence is a noun and something that an action can be done to. For example you can play on a SOCCER FIELD. Examples of objects can be rekenaar, tafel and pad. 


The next letter is M which stands for manner. Manner is the way in which the verb is done. You can think of them as adverbs. For example stadig can be a manner word. In a sentence it would say Die seun hardloop vandag stadig.


The P is next and it stands for place. This is a pretty straight forward one. Basically if anything is a place or location it goes in the position of the “p”. Examples of place words are in die bedkamer, huis or klaskamer.


The second verb comes next. This is where all of your “GEs” in past tense will go and where the second verb in future tense will go. The second verb can also be any regular verb as well.


The final part of stompie is the infinitive. This is very distinguishable because an infinitive is where you have om te in the second part. An infinitive looks a lot like a sentence - here is an example: om crieket te speel.


Let me now give you a sentence and we can then identify the different sections of STOMPI!


Campbell sal krieket op die veld speel.


It is important to note that not every sentence has to have every part of STOMPI.

We can now see that Campbell is the subject, sal is v1, krieket is the object, op die veld is the place and speel is v2!


Time - Tyd


Time - Tyd

Tyd or Time in Afrikaans


The time in any language is key to speaking it and many everyday questions involve the time. To speak the time you must also know numbers. Here is a few definitions of the time that you need to know. 

  • Hours. The hours in Afrikaans are always written as one word. The only exception is that when there is a vowel at the end of a number, you add a hyphen then huur.

Here are the hours (12 Hour clock)

  1. Eenuur - one o’clock
  2. Twee-uur - two o’clock
  3. Drie-uur - three o’clock
  4. Vieruur - four ‘o clock
  5. Vyfuur - five ‘o clock
  6. Sesuur - six ‘o clock
  7. Sewe-uur - seven ‘o clock
  8. Agtuur - eight ‘o clock
  9. Nege - uur - nine ‘o clock
  10. Tienuur - ten ‘o clock
  11. Elfuur - eleven ‘o clock
  12. Twaalfuur - twelve ‘o clock

There are different ways things are said in Afrikaans. There are exceptions for three things when saying them.

  • To say anything that is related to science or if you want to say hours and years with a number, the measurement unit stays singular/

Eg. 100 liter, 100 kilogram

  • If you want to say how long something takes in hours, for example how long you spent in a airplane, you write it as two words not one.

Eg. Ek was in die vliegtuig vir elf uur.

  • For emphasis on the amount of time something took you use ure or jare.

Eg. Dit reën vir ses ure in Midrand

That concludes the section for time in Afrikaans.



Diminutives - Verkleining

Verkleining in Afrikaans


Verkleining in Afrikaans is used to describe words in 3 ways - An inferior way, a pitiful way and a small size way - The way that verkleining is used is dependant on the context of the sentence. To change words into verkleining what you must do is learn the groups that apply to certain words. Here they are...

1. Ending in -p, -k, -g, -s, -f, these words must have an "i.e." added on to them.

This can be remembered by Piet kry gou sy fietse.

Words with long vowels must have a vowel dropped from them and short, single syllable words must have the consonant doubled.


Pak - Pakkie

Kaas -Kasie

Duif - Duifie

Vark - Varkie

2. Ending in -r, -l, -n these words must have "tjie" added on to them (long sounding vowel)

This can be remembered by Rein lag nooit.

Here words with short sounding vowels must have the consonant doubled and "etjie" added on.


kar - karretjie

pan - pannetjie

vel - velletjie

kraan - kraantjie

soen - soentjie

tuin - tuintjie

3. Ending in -m with a long vowel you add "pie"

Here words with short sounding vowels must have the consonant doubled and have "etjie" added on to it.


boom - boompie

naam - naampie

dam - dammetjie

som - sommetjie

4. Words ending in -d, -t these words must have "jie" added to it 


hond - hondjie

kat - katjie

baard - baardjie

5. Words ending in -ng with a short vowel must have "etjie" added on to it.

Words ending in -ng but have 2 syllables must have "kie" 


ring - ringetjie

long - longetjie

ko-ning - koningkie

do-ring - doringkie

va-ring - varinkie

6. Words that have -eeu, -ie, -y, -ei, -ooi, -aai, -oei must have "tjie" added on to it


Kraai - Kraaitjie

By - Bytjie

Leeu - Leeutjie

7. Words that have an emphasis and end on -i, -o, -u, -á must have 'tjie added on to them


Skadu - Skadu'tjie

Foto - Foto'tjie



Prepositions - voorsetsels

Prepositions are key to the Afrikaans language. They help with everyday conversation and will help you to orally illustrate to people what you are talking about. The only thing that you can learn in this section is the vocabulary of propositions themselves. Here is an extensive list of them...


Conjunctions - Voegwoorde


Conjunctions - Voegwoorde

Voegwoorde in Afrikaans


Voegwoorde are conjunctions in Afrikaans. They help you to join two sentences together to form 1. This can be useful in sentences that need to flow in everyday conversation. 


To learn voegwoorde you must learn the three groups that form the structure for this section. Below are the three groups explained. 


Group 1 is the easiest group in this section here all you have to do is place the conjunction in and leave everything else the same. Here are the conjunctions that are in group 1...





Want                    - You can remember this by MEOW DOG





The blue groups are the simple conjunctions that you put in the middle of two sentences. 

Eg. Josh hou van rooi maar Susan hou van blou.

The bottom three are different, for these you must do this...

In a test they will give you the question like this- 

Coke is nie gesond nie. Fanta is nie gesond nie. (nog...nog)

To do the question you first identify the part of the sentence that is the same in both.

Coke is nie gesond nie. Fanta is nie gesond nie. 

Now what you must do is remove that part of the sentence. Once you have done that you put the first "nog" in front of your first word and the second "nog" before the second word.

Nog Coke nog Fanta

To finish you put the part of the sentence that was similar at the end.

Nog Coke nog Fanta is nie gesond nie.


Group 2 is the group where the verb in second sentence moves to right after the conjunction. Here are the conjunctions that use the rules for group 2...

















 - I usually remember this by process of elimination. If it is not a group one word then it is a group 3 or 2 word. If it doesn't have a "dat" in it then it isn't a group 3 word (there are exceptions). However if you want to learn it as an acronym then it would be 3D ADDING ANNTT.

To use a group 2 conjunction you must do the following...


In a test the question will look like this - 

Soggens staan ek vroeg op. Ek boorsel my tande baie goed. (daarna)


What you do now is put the conjunction between the sentenced then you have to identify your first verb in your second sentence. 

Soggens staan ek vroeg op daarna ek borsel my tande baie goed.


Once you have the verb identified move it to the conjunction.

Soggens staan ek vroeg op daarna borsel ek my tande baie goed.


Group 3 is a relatively simple group. All you have to do is move the verb to the end of the second sentence. The list of conjunctions that fall under group 3 are as follows…


  • dat
  • omdat
  • totdat
  • voordat
  • nadat
  • sodat
  • wat
  • wie
  • terwyl
  • alhoewel
  • toe
  • sodra
  • sedert
  • aangesien
  • as
  • of
  • mits
  • tensy
  • indien

The most common conjunctions in group 3 contain “dat” in them, making it easier for you to remember…



Pronouns - Voornaamwoorde

Pronouns (Voornaamwoorde)


Pronouns in Afrikaans are very simple to work with. In a test or exercise it will be laid out like this... 

Susan het 'n pa. _____ pa het 'n motor._____ hou van die motor. In die motor ______ praat met mekaar.

That is a very simple example of how it will be set out. You will simply have to fill in the blanks. To fill out the blanks you fill in the correct pronoun. To figure out the pronoun that will be used just look at the subject that the sentence says, so in the example above the subject is Susan and therefore all of our pronouns will be feminine.

Here is the list of pronouns you will have to memorise to answer questions. To successfully answer harder questions though you must increase your vocabulary of afrikaans to understand which form of a pronoun to use.



Negative Form - Ontkenning

Negative Form (Ontkenning)


Text Breakdown

There is one basic rule in negative form for Afrikaans, there are many variations of the rule but it is the same concept. The rule works like this...

You identify the first verb of the sentence then you put a "nie"after it. You then add a "nie" to the end of the sentence. You can remember this rule by knowing that you have two knees. 

Eg. Peter het 'n bal. -> Peter het nie 'n bal nie.

This is the basic setup for negative form. There are words that change when you want to change a sentence to negative, at the bottom is a list of the words that change. When you see a positive word that is in the list in a sentence you do the following...

Step 1: Change the verb that is changeable and DO NOT ADD NIE AFTER IT

Eg. Daar is iets in die kamer  ->  Daar is niks in die kamer 

Step 2: Add the second "nie" at the end.

Eg.  Daar is niks in die kamer nie.

How to answer a sentence with negative

To answer a sentence in negative is very simple. All you have to do is remember a few things...

1. Change the pronouns

2. Always start with "Nee..."

3. Continue the sentence as normal after the "nee"

Here is an example of this

Is daar iets in die kamer?  -> Daar is niks in die kamer nie.

How to change an instruction/request to negative 

A command/request is something we use everyday and it is important to know how to change it to a negative command. 

To change the command/request to negative, you have to do three things -

  1. Add “moenie” to the front of the sentence
  2. Move the verb to the end
  3. Add “nie” as you usually would to the end

However, if the sentence has “asseblief” you have to do the following - 

  1. Moenie changes to “moet…nie”
  2. Put asseblief between the “moet” and “nie”
  3. Add “nie” to the end of the sentence as normal


Staan op! -> Moenie staan op nie!

Koop asseblief hierdie kos vir my? -> Moet asseblief nie hierdie kos vir my koop nie.

Here is a list of the Verbs that change.



Past and Future Tense with a Conjunction

Past Tense and Future Tense with a Conjunction

Text Breakdown

- To change a sentence from present tense to past or future tense with a conjunction you first identify the conjunction in the sentence.

Eg. Die baba huil omdat hy honger is.

- Once you have identified it you now change the parts of the sentence on either side of the conjunction normally, but you must exclude the conjunction.

Eg. Die baba het gehuil omdat hy honger was. (Past Tense)


Eg. Die baba sal huil omdat hy honger is. (Future Tense)

In future tense the second part of the sentence doesn't change.

Here are the time words


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