For My Sisters And Brothers Of Colour

I know I have no right to stand here

and attempt to speak for my sisters

and brothers of colour.

I stand here in awe to applaud

their strength and their courage,

their patience in the face of 

relentless abuse.

 

As a child I was picked on,

excluded, abused;

I was ginger with freckles.

But now I am grown,

I doubt I’ve been ever

turned down for a job

or a house,

OK, maybe a date or two,

for my colour.

 

I have had but a peep, a wee hint,

just a glimpse

of the blindness of ignorant fools,

the hurt and the horror,

the terror of being the one

who is different

but really the same.

 

I know I have no right to stand here

and attempt to speak for my sisters

and brothers of colour.

I stand here in awe to applaud

their strength and their courage,

their patience in the face of 

relentless abuse.

 

My dear fellow humans.

Were we all not born

as tender and fragile,

as needing of love, to be held?

Now we stand for what we believe, 

and I stand for solidarity.

I stand with my sisters

and brothers of colour,

not to speak over, or for,

those who speak for themselves.

I stand to applaud.

These words are my standing ovation.

 

© Janey Colbourne 2018

 

#fightracism#inequality#prejudice#spokenwordPoets & Performance Poetry

◄ Real Life

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Comments

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Janey Colbourne

Mon 2nd Jul 2018 06:05

Thank you AM Cash!

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AM Cash

Sun 1st Jul 2018 19:44

I think this is a lovely poem and I get it straight away. The exact context is not needed for a poem that resonates across the planet to so many cultures x

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Janey Colbourne

Fri 1st Jun 2018 21:52

Just to clarify, I am in the UK and this is written about people of colour experiencing prejudice from the white majority. As a child I was picked on for being ginger by other white kids, which is where my glimpse of the experience comes from, but I recognise it is just that-a mere glimpse. The poem was inspired by fellow poet Fatima Umar who wrote a poem ‘Islamophobia’ in response to racial abuse she received online as part of the aborrhent ‘punish a Muslim day’. She inspired me with her grace and positivity in the face of such abuse. Fatima has read my poem and liked it very much. I don’t see anybody playing the victim card, but getting on with their lives with as much dignity and joy as anyone. That is the point of my poem-that we don’t always see how much racial abuse people endure as a ‘normal’ part of their lives, and I applaud them for their patience, courage and tolerance.
Hazel thanks for the message of support ?
David, I certainly intend to read Akala’s book. He is a wise and eloquent man.

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Hazel ettridge

Wed 30th May 2018 08:18

????????????????
I wanted to send you some support, Janey, but realise that these 'thumbs up' emoticons actually look like a row of willies! Apologies.

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M.C. Newberry

Tue 29th May 2018 16:12

Abuse and alienation need to be addressed but it doesn't
help if the victim card is endlessly played despite the best
efforts to adjust society to the various demands from
assorted origins who have chosen to enter this post-imperial
colonial nation despite those much derided and despised historical references. Take as you find - and fight to
retain what has made this country a green and
pleasant land worth sacrificing so much for over the
centuries...the strength of character of its people and a
code of conduct that is imitated across the modern world
to the benefit of many who might otherwise be "without a voice".

<Deleted User> (18980)

Tue 29th May 2018 14:39

I know what you are trying to do Janey but you probably need to specify exactly who you are supporting. For example 174 million Nigerians and 45 Million Kenyans would be surprised to hear they've been downtrodden and discriminated against on the grounds of their colour.

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