Through the poem the author expresses how people suffer in these terrible and unfair conditions,
Opressed by poverty and lack of resources, Zulus have to work "in the sun" where "the hot red acres smounlder". They struggle for their lives in a terrible condition that they could do nothing to oppose it.
On the other hand, through the feeding between the mother and the son, which symbolises the passing down of history to generations, we can learn that young people in the tribe, even babies, are oppressed by the extreme national consciousness in their tribe. The pain and sadness of history passes from the mother to the baby undesirably,"like a broad river sighing through its reeds." People have great expectations on generations, which are stmbolised "villages" of the country, hoping they'll "bear the coming harvest" to the tribe. However, these expectations may bring young people pressure and hardships.
At the same time,the origin of national consciousness actually comes from the wars between the Zulus and the British.
The Zulus are oppressed by those ambitious invaders. Because of the unreasonable wars, people suffer innocently in a even poorer condition. This favours nationalism, another oppression brought by the wars.