beyond the green: collective of middlebury voices

a student-run publication that seeks to provide space for voices that are not being heard on our campus. we are grounded by politics that are radical, anti-racist, anti-sexist, anti-classist, anti-homophobic, anti-ableist, and anti-transphobic (against all forms of oppression) and that reject the structural neo-liberal paradigm that characterizes middlebury college and its official publications

Dear Writers, Listeners, and Writers who do not Listen in Middlebury (and other privileged places)

By: Diku R.

@dikoolaid

 

Dear Writers, Listeners, and Writers who do not Listen

My poetry makes you uncomfortable

My stories do not make sense to you

My characters are not “relatable”

So, like many have said before me,

Please take several seats.

 

Your privilege will not show up on my pages.

It is not my fault that the reality of my reality

Is a universe you can never imagine

The sh*t that goes down for me

Goes right over your head

You search through my words

Like they are broken mirrors

Looking for some resemblance of yourself

You will not find yourself here.

You will not find yourself in the dropping of my “g’s”

Or my metaphors of city streets and Caribbean eats

You will not find yourself

In my similes of browns and blacks

You will not find yourself

In my harsh tone

I have no atonement

For your inability to empathize.

 

Stop trying to gentrify my stories

They do not need more characters YOU can relate to.

They do not need more characters that look like you.

Go look in your English classes, History textbooks, dining halls and dormitories.

I will not twist my words to appease you.

My characters are already oppressed by the pages they are confined to.

Every narrative does not have your voice. Deal with it.

 

How quick you are to praise

The story of a “typical” college kid

But notice how quick you judge

The microaggressions faced by a little black girl.

As I type this a red line appears under the word “microagression”

I mean Microsoft Word doesn’t even know what the f*ck I’m talking about.

 

Dear Writers, Listeners, Writers who do not listen

You wanna kick it with Raymond Carver but can’t take Audre Lorde out on a date.

You’re afraid to sit with James Baldwin at lunch but you run to stand in line next to Bukowski.

 

Writers, Listeners, Writers who do not listen

You amaze me

Tell me what it’s like

To pick up your pen

And not have it bleed to death

With ink that’s black like me

Now before you tell me how hard it’d be

To write with a white pen

Have you ever heard of invisible ink?

It’s written all over your face

Signed on all your credit card receipts

It’s used in court rooms

And classrooms

Which are sometimes the same thing

Because while you cast judgement

I am tired of being trialed

I am tired of shining

My black light on your invisible writing

Trying to make you see the words

You don’t have to say

 

Your privilege will not show up on my pages.

And I am trying to get published

So realize you will not find yourself in my words.

Cause I had to realize- a long time ago- that I wasn’t going to find mine in yours.

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This entry was posted on May 5, 2014 by in Uncategorized.
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