namely poetic (for Amiri Baraka & kindred peeps)

my name

no not the name i was branded
to remind me of who i wasn’t
(a Welshmen
what i didn’t have
(the pride my mothas mothas mothas mothas mothas… might have carried)
what i will never be
(no one’s slave)
how i refuse to be defined
(my body is not an accessory)
how i got here
(towing the underbelly)
why i don’t belong.


not that one
this ONE
this name
that kisses me when i share it with someone
and basks in sunshine,
it spoke to me
in the way that a devoted parent looks into a child’s eyes
and says “i love you”,
that’s what it said
i love you.
it called me like my ancestors’ do when i am afraid to stand strong,
holds me at night when all seems alone.
and while it may never be mine “original”
it is original.
original as the roots that seep into the souls of all those who are still searching to be found again.

so for those of you who ask me to repeat it
redirect it’s accent to something more familiar
question its realness
find cause to demand its truth,
find stillness instead
and hear me say it to you
the way it wants to be said –
with the undercurrents
of a love supreme

share your colors. #BlackIsBold #28DaysOfBlackHistory


Author: Barak adé Soleil

contemporary artist, independent consultant and curator. working within community.

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