outside a sea of posters, placards and banners made throughout the night
by my fearless young neighbours.
awake all night, angered by relentless reign of brutality, the murder of George Floyd.
one more fatality.
inside my heart quakes at the injustice, black or brown,
you are somehow prone
to murder, death and disease.
no accident that Covid 19 and coloniality connect
inside my mind and my body tremors like
the benin bronzes dying to leave our museum.
but the ‘papers, they won’t tell about the violence of links and legacies.
that remains inside our bones, and outside our homes.
dining room/watching news
(inside) the room is my bare soul
i scream a hole
in my heart
different parts of me disintegrating like wet tissue paper it was
when i was a kid when reality did not hit me in the face when the weight of the world did not sit like a tonne of bricks on my back when racist media attacks and discriminatory ‘facts’ did not run laps in my mind.
inside my room it is silent
eid decorations lying lonely, presents lost
in the post, breakfast is plain toast.
the tv spits words into your sunday roast,
consume and regurgitate
tell your mates it was fair
tell them it wasn’t that late
tell them it was the brown kids’ fate.
‘Muslim celebrations cancelled one night in advance’
take one glance at the headline
ink dances before your eyes
‘but not a chance
that christmas won’t happen’ — right?
no energy left to fight.
outside Christmas goes ahead,
despite the rise in cases.
a smaller celebration they said,
but a celebration nonetheless.
‘Three households can meet on five days’ they say,
how quickly they have forgotten other holidays.
so people gather at the train station, social distancing impossible,
no sense of isolation.
crammed onto busy trains
christmas is different, they exclaim.
waiting room/just waiting
for some, the lockdowns were the perfectly timed, perfectly fit jigsaw piece
for others, the lockdowns were the worst timed, imperfectly fit jigsaw piece
the end of an era-high school for me
not sitting my GCSEs, results awarded unfairly
postcode dependant, yet another form of discrimination within education
social isolation- nothing sounded more perfect to me
revelling in loneliness & content with silence
beginning of pandemic,
of 25 years (some not counting)
contact with toxic family members
middle of pandemic,
of a year (and counting)
cut off contact with toxic family members
Home Office/working, not deporting
inside the room i am safe,
from virus, violence and existing everyday.
inside the room i am free,
to close the door on outside vulnerabilities
outside the room i feel unprotected
the lack of masks laugh at the infected
corrupt contracts clap cunningly
for those who risk their lives for me, my friends and family
outside the room I have to return
to a life we never really ‘unlearned’
because living with covid means ignoring it
and all things left unheard
the outside world distorts me
and turns me inside out
channels fish with clickbait and return bad refugees to rwandan rivers
whilst corporate companies pray for ukraine
and ‘fast for a day’
but i know better than to accept
an equality which is merely feigned
now inside the room I cannot breathe
and working from home no longer serves me
constant capitalism, gratification is only a distraction
from nature and quiet reflection
instead, the outside world has consumed me
and only created low grade anxiety
but I acknowledge for my own sanity
that maybe the inside room is not really the inside
it is not a representation of what is inside me.
deliberation room in the courtroom/ vandalising
I don’t sit inside the borders of your weak imagination
I lie outside of your frame of reference
you lied to yourself when you said you weren’t afraid
inside your hateful gaze, I am monster
the process of monstering a demonstration
(one demonstrably safer than your demonic monolith)
is a process of elimination
eliminate, eradicate, deport, depress
tell the press that in these unprecedented times
the pressure we apply is not self-preservation
but pathetic pessimism
when our noise fell inside the bounds of law, the law shrunk
the inner circle tightening like lawful strangulation
ten years for a statue
none for a human torn from their home
those who write laws so often place themselves outside of judgement
so often hide behind false reverence and distraction
but those of us who sit inside of love can see
their borders are mere fabrication
those of us who dream outside of this corrupt sarcophagus of gold and solitude
can feel the solidarity sitting inside our hearts
and can transform the outside world
into a place which recognises us
as a vital
and natural part
words, phrases, speeches and announcements, enveloping our tv screens.
engulfing the daily news.
the virus, the virus, the virus.
equality, diversity and inclusion, or inequality, uniformity and exclusion.
let’s’ stand together against the virus and lets get back to normal,
normal; conforming to a standard, usual, typical or expected.
whose normal and whose news.
A marmot review, but is this new?
ethnic minorities disproportionately treated and impacted by the virus.
it’s old news.
take a look at the criminal justice system, stop and search, exclusion rates,
COVID -19 isn’t a first.
our nurses on the front line, but where is the equilibrium line.
let’s stand together in line for the vaccine.
but someone’s missing from this line.
our brothers, our sisters, our fathers, our mothers.
equality, diversity, inclusion and inequality, uniformity, and exclusion.
battlefield/ not winning
Order of the British Empire
soil your name
rub shoulders with regret
set your faith alight
not knowing if you’ve ever known contentment
the blessed land has forgotten its bastard sons
the ground shakes
Trees begin to wilt
Mountains turn to dust
The child of
hospital birthing room/hoping
desperate in our cries and exhausted at the continued disparities we face,
we fight for change but stay in the same unwavering place
the whole world came to a standstill, forcing quiet upon us
and yet ceasing to be silent was the blaring presence of racism,
at most our struggles became a trend and muted by fake activism
we are forced to watch our voices burn to the floor
and with it our optimism slowly withers away,
but our unity is the one shining glimmer of hope and here,
in this ruthless fight, we must stay
although true change has been long awaited,
it is our resilience that will bring along the dying embers of hatred