People are going to misunderstand you

And maybe its okayTo expect this.To not be offendedWhen they mispronounce your nameOr assume you like mayonnaiseAnd that its really notThe end of the worldIf they don’t like you.People will misundertand youBecause they don’t live in your worldThey have not tasted your painDrank of your joyNor heard your doubts constantly whirringIn the background.So what to […]

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On ‘acting white’

In many African languagesThe word for ‘white’Is often the same word usedColloquilly for ‘better’Or ‘superior’ or even‘Learned’.ChirunguSegoaIt is no wonder thenThat it seems that whenYou are in some postion ofGood fortuneHave good tasteProvide a quality serviceOr have some advantageThat has come your wayThen you can be said to ‘acting white’.Being good at something doesn’t mean‘Acting […]

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Thorns in the flesh

Accountability, done right,Hurts.People that have the courageTo call things outAre often portrayed as being So unnecessarySo contrarianSo unwilling to just let things beAnd let ‘our way of life’Go on.And yet there is nothing more constantTo mankind than change.And it is unlikely that change will happenWithout frictionWithout uncomfortable conversationsWithout pushing back on thingsWe’ve let ourselves overlook.The […]

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I don’t see colour

Is a way of hiding. How can you not see it? I don’t see how God could create so much diversity Only for us to close our eyes to it? If we are all made in the image of God, Yet we are not all alike It means we are several manifestations From a single […]

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The actual fight

The actual fight against racism Is not to get other people to accept us, Because that’s an approach steeped in insecurity And plays on a never ending struggle to seek the approval of others. No, the fight against racism is about justice. Not simply because we feel victimized And not because we feel guilty. But because […]

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Second opinion

Getting another perspective Is not an indication that you don’t trust your own But that you appreciate the benefit of another set of eyes and ears Looking at something that’s not so obvious to see And listening in on a conversation that we could have misunderstood. It becomes tricky when we believe that we that […]

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Price of participation

The price of participation in a meeting is that You will have multiple opportunities to make a fool of yourself or be misunderstood; For your honesty to be seen as foolishness Your passion perceived as aggression. There will be a a lot of leeway for you to misread the situation And more than enough room […]

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Shell of a man

I recently met a cool guy. He was smart. Smooth. Funny. Young people would say he had swag, The cool kids would let him sit with them. He was laid back, oozing confidence. He spoke without really moving his mouth And yet always knew just the right thing to say. A man’s man. A cool […]

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The twang

Its that particular way of speaking That draws a certain kind of attention And is perhaps one of the most polarizing things In modern black African culture. The way you speak. That idea of being ‘well spoken’ Being able to roll this English thing on your tongue As though it were your mother’s. It says […]

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Part of the problem

There is a peculiar kind of defensiveness That comes when someone suggests that you are a part of the problem. A sense of disbelief that anyone would think that lowly of you And would even hint at the fact That you are somehow participating in unsavory things like Systemic racism, inequality and sexism. Its a […]

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