Unbuckling whiteness

Is tricky business.Because it takes a whileTo recognize the thingsThat you always considered ‘normal’To really just be white.Unlearning a strange form of self-policingThat finds many of the non-whiteThings about yourselfSomehow problematic.And doing all thisWithout hating yourselfOr your white neighbour,Because loving bothIsn’t always easy.Unbuckling whitenessIs not about resentmentOr censureBut about coming to rest comfortablyIn a non-white […]

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The business panacea

In a world of ever increasingSocial ills,The promise of entrepreneurshipGradually inflates in size and scopeUntil it becomes the only way forwardWe imagine possible.In a milieu of poor alternativesThe private businessHas become the magic bullet,The pure blade,The weapon of choiceTo slay our giantsAnd make us whole.But how can we expect businessTo solve the problems the StateHas […]

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African hands

Have been in high demandFor centuries.Hands that build empires for othersFists to fight the wars of othersPalms outstretched to the goodwill of othersFingers to grasp the fruits of the trees of others.We know well what Africans can doWith their hands,Indeed they have held many a society together.But what of African heads?What of the thought leadership […]

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Father’s bread

Fed me well. I grew up on the stuff, It taught my tongue  How good food tastes Gave my belly an appreciation  For wholeness  And sustained me in my youth.  So much of what I am today Is only possible because of it.  Coming home is more than seeing Familiar places  And missing old faces […]

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Stuck in the mud

Sometimes we get interruptedOn our way,Thrown together by fate for a whileWith people we thoughtWe’d only be with temporarily.United by strange circumstancesAnd inconvenienceAll trying to make sense of the momentAnd find the best way out of it.Yet what we found is thatThe mud did more than stick our feetTo the ground,It also bound our hearts […]

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Uncapped dreams

Some of us are living lives today  That were impossible  Not so long ago. Race and geography, Though still a ways to go,  Are not as definitively limiting  As they once were. And so some of us  Are becoming privileged insiders Of worlds that didn’t have us in mind  At their inception.  The question now […]

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Throwing Money

Is easier  Than having a meaningful conversation About change.  Our failures  To make something significant  For the least amongst us Don’t stem from a lack of resources As much as they do From a lack of intentionality. Our lack of motivation to apply Disciplined imagination  To solve the social problems  That plague us Nudges us […]

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Afro-pessimism

There is nothing sophisticatedAbout expecting little from Africans.Nothing particularly imaginativeAbout reinforcing the worst stereotypesIt is great folly to imagine you’re getting any largerWhen you’re really just making others smaller.Afro-pessimismIs the phenomenon of associating blacknessWith inherent inferiority,Almost gleefully grasping at the tiniestBits of evidence to supportA damning story line.Furthermore,Such defamation can be perpetratedBy anyoneIncluding Africans themselves-Indeed […]

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Wrong Signal

Being a black bodyIn places of affluenceAnd convenienceDemandsThat one presents oneselfIn distinctive ways-Distinct from the riff-raffAnd the common criminalLest you find yourselfOn the wrong end ofPetty justice.To give off the wrong signal-A sweaty browAn ill fitting shirtLeisurely walking in a mallwithout a strongAn agenda-All these seemingly innocent thingsCan turn the most mundane of tasksInto a […]

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