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Never Been Colonised

I’ve written a poem on a feeling that I’ve been trying to pull apart and piece together for a while now. Being in Ethiopia is amazing! Being black in Ethiopia is an education. Having worked with young disengaged people of colour and my own experiences of growing up in England, I can’t deny the differences I see. The difference between a country that has never been colonised and one that has is remarkable to me. So I put it in verse.

Never been colonised, what does that mean?
More identity than I’ve ever seen.
The lost and found or just lost look I see,
Searching for ownership of identity.
Never forced to believe their way is wrong,
Never had to march to an alien song,
Never stripped till the memory is a blur,
Though there are internal bumps, I concur.
They’re their bumps to own, not whipped from abroad,
They’ll whip themselves with their umbilical cord.
Stubborn and proud, means valued and free.
Black pride here really isn’t necessary.
There’s nothing to prove, the battle was won.
Their year, their time, their rules, nothing has gone.
I miss this, it’s something missing in me.
I grew up begging for diversity.
Displaced, misplaced, some gone without a trace,
Family, history of an entire race.
Now hanging somewhere where everything’s changed.
Where fitting in has to be arranged.
Never been colonised, what does that mean?
So much more in the faces that I’ve seen.
Never been colonised, what does that mean? So much more in the faces that I’ve seen. Click To Tweet
Mama Grace

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Published inPoem for the Day

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  1. MMT MMT

    A beautiful and thought provoking poem – thank you so much for sharing with #coolmumclub

    Have a wonderful Christmas

  2. I loved your poem! I grew up in England and South Africa but now live in Ireland and it’s funny how I can identify the similarities between SA and Ireland, both having been colonised by the UK! It’s so valuable and important that people get to experience the differences as I believe it teaches us to be more tolerant and compassionate. #Blogstravaganza

    • bardsforbabes bardsforbabes

      Thank you. I’ve never been to Ireland, north or south. Which is silly really. I hope to holiday there and drive through and visit several places. Thanks for reading.

  3. What an incredible poem?! What an incredible place?! I’ve heard lots of good things in Ethiopia but what you have describe has a very local feels. There was no tourist involved in the scene and it does make a difference when the local doesn’t see you as tourist money pot. Very interesting. Thank you very much for linking up with us on #FabFridayPost

    • bardsforbabes bardsforbabes

      Thank you. It is an incredible place. I’m so grateful to be here and have a chance to witness it.

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Bards for Babes by Mama Grace