The Miseducation of My Race

Location

When you look into my eyes

What does you see?

You see a pitiable disposition

Suffering

Pain

Poverty

From the beginning of time

I have been marked “thing”  or “animal”

 Three fifths of a person

Society has been blind to my feats of strength

It has bolstered itself on a pedestal of decided ignorance

Choosing to shrug its shoulders at the idea that I could actual be worth more

More  than 40 acres and a mule

More than a few cents a day

More than shallow concern

 

It neglects the fact that I am

Beautiful

Brilliant

Posses a mind of my own

It chooses to confine me to the vast continent “Africa”

Rather than acknowledge that I am eclectic

Stemming from the shores of Eygpt

And the beaches of Nigeria

I am not simply the “Feed the children” commercial

Nor do I  own a frayed body and bulging eyes

My story is weaved into the tales of

Wole Soyinka

Chinua Achebe

Ms. Adichie

And the blood that was shed in countless civil wars

Yet, you choose to see me through one lens

The lens that blurs my true potential

And sharpens your ego

 

Even if you attempt to smother my identity

It will remain

Because I am the spawn of Africa

My skin is deep brown like  pigmented earth

My heart beats  with determination and purpose

Strength and freedom course through my veins

 

I am not “Toby”

Nor am I a primitive booty scratcher

 I am not “The heart of darkness” as Joseph Conrad perceived

Rather the western world has been clouded with darkness

With scales covering its eyes

Blinding it to my true identity

Here is the truth

I am and always will be

 Africana

Not just the “nappy hair” or the chocolate colored skin

But the race that stands strong in adversity

Whose back is accustomed to bending backwards and  doing hard work

I am not just black

I am gold

Guide that inspired this poem: 

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