A poem by Emily-Rose Njonde
Posted on August 6, 2021
This poem contains descriptions of anti-Black racism
I hate the system.
And I say that with my whole heart.
Those who revel in seeing people of color depart,
Towards lives of nothingness and misery,
Stripping them of all human quality.
Never were the rainbow people.
Anything darker than ivory,
Can get charged with a felony,
With nothing substantiating these claims,
But the profile ingrained in their brains.
To serve the white man and nothing but.
They are quick to target brown skin,
When the victim is deficient in melanin.
White people will never know,
The feeling of seeing people that share their complexion, incarcerated
Just for doing so.
That indescribable type of pain,
Seeing people who like you lose their lives in vain.
When a Black person looks confident,
When they look proud,
When they know their rights and refuse to bow down,
We are a threat,
We are resisting arrest,
We drive stolen cars
Because there’s no way they could be ours.
When we are poor, we are abhorred.
Gang bangers, thugs.
People undeserving of any love.
We are thrown in prisons and jails
And stay there for years cause we cannot make bail.
If the system fails one it fails us all.
We are being beaten on the curbs
By the ones meant to protect and serve.
They do not value Black life.
No matter our state we are a constant threat
Whether it be in the burbs or the projects.
We are never enough.
We can escape poverty,
Go to the best schools,
Live in the biggest homes,
And yet we will never escape our skin,
Being Black in North America is my biggest sin.
They do not value Black life,
Every day is a constant fight
To prove we are worthy of Human rights.
Life is not a white privilege.
I should not have to justify,
Why my life means as much as Sally or Mike’s.
I should not have to explain
Why seeing my people murdered makes me cry tears of pain.
I should not have to tell you
Why it doesn’t matter if I’m a drug dealer or a waitress or a lawyer or a doctor
My life is as important as your white son and daughters.
I matter too.
I deserve the chance at a life without fear.
I deserve a life where my outcome is not determined by the colour of my skin.
I deserve a life without micro aggressions, and shady looks, and clutched purses, and crossed streets.
Black people in North America were never free.
It was an illusion,
Designed to appease us.
To keep us oppressed.
To keep the wool over our eyes, while they took the breath out of our mouths.
I am Black.
And that is a fact that cannot be denied or dismissed,
Even though some refuse to acknowledge this.
Racial equality does not exist.
The “colorblind” still benefit from systems that stay relevant
Keeping them protected and safe, while the mosaic breaks.
Depriving the founders of water, while their children are found slaughtered.
“It’s a part of our dark past” while the same hardships last
We are a broken people.
This cannot be fixed by holding hands or taking a knee.
Singing kumbaya will not eradicate police brutality.
To fix this problem you must understand first,
That in North America, being Black is to be guilty from birth.