Empty vessels make the most noise
What it is about black lives your freedom destroys?
No ignorant man is beyond retribution,
his ignorance, unearthed by way of live execution.
‘no but not me’,
I say yes, it’s a system, colonial imperialism, resisting criticism.
‘no but not me, that was all in the past’,
I say yes, but you too, we have not yet surpassed.
Because when you hear our voices and the words we say,
they are heard for the first time,
there’s no day like today.
I haven’t breathed, for four hundred years,
ignored by slavers and their auctioneers.
I know one thing from another, and I know they see sin,
when I wear a black hoodie, over my black skin.
Racism is the sickness which hides in every closet,
and just like a sickness we have to wretch so we vomit.
Racism is a curse, which can’t remain hidden,
‘we’re not as bad as America, us here in Britain’.
It’s words like this that make us scowl, a
retelling of history, without Enoch Powell.
A white hood or a St. Georges flag,
a corrupted democracy and bombs in Baghdad,
a Stephen Lawrence, a Belly Mujinga, a Christopher Ulder,
poor blacks remain poor while rich whites get richer.
I remain calm, as I’m told to speak calmly,
you say not calm enough and tone-police to disarm me.
‘for a black man, you speak so well’,
but since when did calm silence fascist EDL?
London, New York, Sydney and Toronto,
reliant on minerals mined in the Congo.
Congo, child labour and your electric car
all tell the sad reality, we have not come so far.
Ignorant to the sweat shops in Indonesia,
ignorant to the legacy of former Rhodesia.
Ignorant to reality, and ignorance is bliss,
ignorant that pandemic is not the only crisis.
Ignorance is only blissful when it serves as a veil,
and once it’s revealed, there’s a devil in the detail.