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Jacana

@ Sunday Times Books LIVE

Read an Excerpt from McIntosh Polela’s My Father, My Monster

My Father, My MonsterPolice spokesperson McIntosh Polela’s mother disappeared when he was just a child. In his biographical book, My Father, My Monster, released this month, he describes his search for the truth about his father’s involvement in her disappearance. Read an extract from the book, published in City Press, in which Polela’s aunt finally reveals that it was his father who murdered his mother:

One day, two older boys and I yoked the family oxen and set off with them to fetch sand from the river bank. As usual, I held the rope and led the oxen. We spent the entire morning digging and loading the sand into bags. On our way back, the animals were temperamental. They were hungry and stubborn from the lack of proper grazing. They kept reaching for the grass as I led them back home. No amount of pulling would help.

I was getting frustrated, while my two older cousins fumed at the lack of pace. We were all ravenous and keen to get home to fill our stomachs. They turned on me, blaming me for failing to control the oxen. I tried my best to tug the animals from the grass, but they shook their heads so hard they just yanked me right back.I was too small to be a match for the brute power of the cattle.They simply swung me back and almost tossed me onto my side.

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