Monday, 22 January 2018

A poem by Antony Owen


I swam in a green sea with black and white people
some claim these waters have healing properties
but only if you talk of them to drowning children.

I once drew my brothers in black Crayola holding hands
back then I never captured their character or colour right,
and yet I did, it was only a colour I chose to see them in.

I once melted like ghee in the arms of a girl from India
we danced to Careless Whisper in the disco borealis
I trod on her toes too many times and left alone that night.

I unfriended a man I never knew who as a boy scored an own goal,
I remember it well, he never accepted responsibility for it
all of us lost that day and walked home tired and heavy.

I unfriended a man I never knew who posts beautiful photos of his son
they hold hands and teach each other things that will move or stop the world.
Tell me please that this is an important time to talk to our children of racism.

Tell me to not be prejudiced if I see men with innocent children 'like' fascists.
tell me this is only Facebook, tell me it is not the innocent boy turned man.

Tell me please to go back to the sea and surface clean, wait for me at the shore,
wrap a fluffy towel across my shoulders as I shiver goose-bumps to be smooth.
Tell me this is only real life, tell me it is an important time to talk of racism.

Tell me to stop shivering, and in return I will be nothing but honest with you
it was not because of the warm water why I felt so cold and tremored.

Antony Owen writes about issues largely unrepresented in poetry and his latest collection with V. Press The Nagasaki Elder is a timely reminder of the affects of nuclear weapons. He and his wife live in Warwickshire with their masters - two cats.

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