Pina Ea Batšosi
Mohapeloa wrote ‘Pina ea Batšosi’ in the early 1930s, publishing it in Morija in 1935 as song No. 12 of 32 in his first song collection, Meloli le Lithallere tsa Afrika. It seems to echo the pastoral mood of pieces like Schumann’s ‘Song of the Reaper’, bearing in mind that ‘scarecrows’ in Lesotho are not life-size dolls but people, whose unenviable job it is to spend hours in the fields (in all weathers) chasing birds away with a clay switch (‘tsoibila’). In other songs – ‘Linonyana’ (Birds) or ‘Leeba’ (The Dove) – Mohapeloa’s representation of birds is appreciative and positive; here in Pina ea Batšosi he portrays them as being in competition with man. The birds mentioned are common to southern Africa’s farmlands.