Exhaustion 30/30 Poem#6

I have been on five different continents and lived in five different countries.
I have indulged myself in the culture, traditions and society of each one.
This was not always fun, there is no avoiding the remnants of colonization.
Every country has its own system, so complex and exclusive of those who are too dark, poor, hair is not straight enough, mind is not robotic enough.
I’m black in one country then I’m white in another, I’m fair skinned in this one, but my hair is to curly, not straight enough, not skinny enough, eye color is to dark, lips are to big, “your behind is big like your people”, “you look Muslim”, “you look african”, “what is the language you speak”, “you are not black my dear”, “is your mother white”, “is your father black”, “can you show me how fair your grandparents are”, “how did you come out so fair”, “don’t forget your hat you don’t want to get to black”, “you have a Muslim face”, “your skin is yellow”, “perm your hair straight”, “marry a white man”, ” don’t ruin your race”………..
All these words and ideas trying to be bleached onto my identity.
Every where I go, I see the same whitening cream adds, the same skin toned people on television, the same type of people in power, the same people in poverty, the same weapons being used against women’s rights.
This obsession with whiteness is so exhausting.
I wonder if the colonizers ever expected to be masters for this long.


2 thoughts on “Exhaustion 30/30 Poem#6

  1. Wow, what a remarkable peace. People who have never traveled outside of their native land don’t realize how isolating you can feel when traveling from one country to the next. Whether your in the US, Africa, Europe or the Caribbean you are stigmatized based on what someone (usually a child or woman) has to say about who you are not and who/what you should be. Traveling is amazing just be ready for the emotional and identity roller coaster you will experience.

    • Yes, that is exactly how it is. Especially when the people that you meet have never seen anyone that “looks” like you.

      I now aproach it with curiosity. Before leaving for another country I wonder how people will view me and what words they will use to describe me.

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