SA POEM: “Why I Love South Africa” by Ian Macdonald

A poem written by the passionately South African former editor of SA Good News, Ian Macdonald, has been going viral this week as South Africans voted once more for the country they love, for hope, for a better future, for home…


I love her for the perfection of her days
The crisp Karoo morning
The Joburg winter noon
The late summer Cape Town sunset
The star-filled Free State night
I love her for her people
For our warm smiles
For our resilience
For our I-am-because-we-are
I love her because she delights my senses
Highveld thunderbolts
Jacarandas in bloom
Sunday braais
African sun
Icy sea
I love her raw power, her intensity, her strength
I love her because of how she makes me feel
Sometimes angry, sometimes joyous
Sometimes fearful, sometimes love-filled
Sometimes frustrated, sometimes hopeful
Always alive
I love her because she intrigues me
And challenges me
The Chinese have a curse: “May you live in interesting times”
I see it as a blessing
I love her because she helps me keep things in perspective
By reminding me how privileged I am
Every day
I love her for being a microcosm of the world
A world in one country
For what we can teach the world
About compromise
And sharing
And forgiveness
And tolerance
And hope
I love her because she’s imperfect
And full of opportunity
And potential unfulfilled
I love her because she has come so far
And has so much further to go
And whether we ever get there
Will all depend on us
I love her because she’s been so good to me
And she inspires me to return the favour
I love her because she’s my country
No matter what
I love her because she’s my home
And where my soul is at rest


The poem first appeared on Facebook in 2009. Tragically Ian McDonald died in a car crash in February 2018… but his beautiful words will live on forever in the hearts of South Africans everywhere.