Dear Diaspora Child

Cicely Belle Blain

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it's okay if you only learned about your culture from Google

 

it's okay if you only read your language at the public library

 

it's okay if you need books to know your ancestral recipes

 

it's okay if you've never even set foot on the soil of your people

 

it's okay if your hips don't sway to those rhythms

 

it's okay if the food is too bitter for your tongue

 

it's okay if English is the only language that flows freely from your mouth

 

it's okay if your wardrobe is just jeans and Ts

 

it's okay if you only know Shakespeare

 

it's okay if spice brings you fear instead of joy

 

it's okay if you understand but can't reply

 

it's okay if you dread the disappointed stares of aunties

 

it's okay if small words like Salaam alaykum fall from your tongue like broken bones

 

it's okay if you spent your whole life shunning it all, only to now want it back

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

you are no less worthy

it is no less home

 

Love always,

CB

Cicely Belle Blain, "Dear Diaspora Child" from BURNING SUGAR. Copyright © 2020 by Cicely Belle Blain. Reprinted by permission of the publisher.

 

Source: BURNING SUGAR (Cicely Belle Blain / VS. Books an imprint of ARSENAL PULP PRESS, 2020)