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The White Privilege

A cherished childhood spent cocooned in my inward-looking community, Protected me from the indoctrination of a white-privileged history. But when I stepped into a world where brown was under-represented My identity…Was molested. My speech, skin, hair and dress, seemed to cause the white man stress. And brown was a tan on the white man’s skin, But brown on a brown man stirred anger from within. My thoughts and views were misaligned, with rooted, selective, historical lies. My identity…Was compromised. I was now paradoxically an exotic delight, a shameful pressure to apologise For the privilege of living in the civilised world, where white and West comfortably merge. My education spoke of no oppressive past, the Normans and Saxons, unequivocal facts. No mention of my ancestors, murdered. Indigenous peoples, exploited, slaughtered. Building privilege through the strength of tyranny, Calculated villainy. White privilege, invisible to the white, naked eye. Yet it lives in every coloured breath, In every silent cry. I have lived with an unseen claim, that white is right and everything else is to blame. But lessons in life inspired me to rise and pronounce myself with an internal pride. To name and shame the blood-stained colonialist, the callous, indifferent, imperialist. And from their murderous history, rose the modern man insecurity, The truth, the bloody, brutal, truth, that is the black man’s reality. Still evident today is a strong disclination, reflected in the ignorance of the nation To admit that their historical success, was moralistically, humanely, a bloody mess. But not all should hang their head in shame…it’s not you but your past that is to blame. Yet the consequences of those crimes, have won you privilege and power through time. And the legacy of the other: disadvantage, subjugation, intimidation, domination. And still they make subconscious judgements, of my backward, other, non-conformist views. A stubbornness in accepting and respecting the path that I decide to choose. Delve deep into your history, open up your subliminal mind, And ask the difficult questions, seek, unfeigned, with loosened pride.

Copyright © | Year Posted 2020




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Date: 7/2/2020 8:23:00 AM
Beautifully expressed feelings!
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Date: 6/30/2020 6:02:00 AM
White privilege, invisible to the white, naked eye. Yet it lives in every coloured breath, In every silent cry.......wow greatly expressed... most impressive writings
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sahera patel
Date: 7/1/2020 1:25:00 PM
Thank you
Date: 6/26/2020 4:51:00 PM
Brilliant first poem... Some people will never get it, especially the racists...Welcome to the soup..
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Date: 6/15/2020 10:27:00 AM
Thank you for stating this so eloquently. Being white does not entitle one to privileges that are denied to others based upon skin color. This is a good reminder. Congratulations for your top placement, please keep giving poetic expression to your voice, it needs to be heard ~ John
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sahera patel
Date: 6/15/2020 10:52:00 AM
Thank you John. I'm close to tears every time I read it out to an audience. There's a lot of pain there that many of us aren't even aware of as the discrimination is so much a part of the system...It is great to see how eyes are opening now though.
Date: 6/14/2020 10:33:00 AM
https://www.poetrysoup.com/poem/shattering_rose_coloured_glasses_1181209
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Date: 6/14/2020 10:32:00 AM
You had me from beginning to end. Thanks for submitting this moving piece. Congrats on you top placement in this contest. Blessings Rick.
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sahera patel
Date: 6/15/2020 10:55:00 AM
Thank you for your poem. It is good to see the white privilege from the other side. I have been brought up not so much to be ashamed of my culture, but to keep it separate from the Western way. As I've grown up, I've learned to be proud of heritage, my faith and my culture, but it's been a journey.
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Richard Lamoureux
Date: 6/14/2020 10:34:00 AM
See my poem above regarding White Privilege.