Today a new colleague asked me : “Where are you from?”
and she told me that I don’t look Indian.
She shrugged off my reply and said: “What about your parents then?”
I told her: “From Bradford, second generation.”
An old colleague confuses me with the last Asian face
Alma’s been on maternity leave for nearly a year and my name is too hard to remember.
When I correct him he struggles to say Selina
and jokes that my name could be easier.
Forgive me –I broke the law,
But if you had walked in my shoes and saw what I saw,
You’d know my motives,
So my children can live,
a better life, and too, their kids.
A Mexican working hard in the US to support families,
south of the border, with no peace of mind – whether she’s been shot, by an Arizona ranger – whether he’s been jailed, by Operation Gatekeeper.
Lost across the Imperial Desert or over the mountains north of Tecate.
Mexicans drown in canals and rivers. While the army militarize the border…
A 30 hour coach journey, in the faith of living better.
Only to die of dehydration, hypothermia or xenophobia.
Busloads of Polish people, skilled in many trades,
make the journey from Warsaw to the land of opportunity, the UK.
Better healthcare, better pay, this is the European Union
Only to find themselves taken advantage of and spit upon for taking the jobs natives can’t or refuse to work in.
Was this the freedom envisaged?
Working 7 days a week, paid cheap for their keep.
Laws let goods and money freely cross borders, yet impose a form of class warfare against when it comes to workers.
Not free to move with changing economic conditions in the same manner that businesses can move their capital.
This is the perfect poem for me to kick off my #NaPoWriMo contribution with, as I wrote Requiem after a long long period of writer’s block. The inspiration behind it was something so simple, yet created this out pour which I was not in control of:-
Raindrops on the train glass window,
fall effortlessly like the pain you give and claim to not know.
Epitomising the demising friendship I was desiring, to step into; fantasising,
where it could go.
Oh they fall, so small,
But build up to a size,
uncontrollable to hold back anymore.
Like the tears in my eyes,
concealed by a smile;
hard to not eventually show at all.
They fall south despite being blown; forced in the other direction.
I wish I had somewhere to hide – a distraction,
from the cold slap of spite, like sudden frostbite
from the warm sunny flirts of your affection.
I wish I had some protection from the gust that stings my eyes,
And the whistling wind voicing my silent cries.
I was crazy for you.
Now I abhor you.
I guess I had to write a requiem for you.
Soon the storm will pass,
After a lightning flash making sense of the past;
To wash old rivers away,
Drown out the sorrow, for tomorrow may still be cold but will be a brighter day.
Shouldn’t let a bad experience diminish my spirit,