Self Definition

I am the daughter of revolutions
I am the daughter of people who lived with racist institutions
And for whom communism wasn’t Cuba’s glorious revolution

I am the daughter of the colonized black and the colonized white
I am the daughter of the language barrier, can’t read and can’t write
I am the daughter of accents and of “sorry no English”

I am the daughter of branded racism
Tied to the backs of hotel cleaners and factory workers
I am the daughter of the midnight oil burners just to make it here in Canada.

I am the daughter of race-integrated relationships,
Born in a racist era replicating past years
Never accepted so I hated this shit
Bi racial shit
Which sometimes made me the daughter of self-hater ship

I am the daughter of roots that weren’t supposed to mix but somehow did
And now my personal politics are mixed
Like my nicey nicey hair and my naps in the back which break my picks
Mixed like my emotions, caught between black power and white without the typical supremacy.

I am the daughter of immigration open door policy
That let in the sweet tastes of perogies and roti
Dhal curry and golombki
Mixed in the same city to create and feed me

I am the daughter of long standing traditions, between steel pans and steel workers inciting revolutions
Between Eric Williams and trumpeter heroes in Krakow
And the Kings they protected

I am the daughter of the holocaust victims who weren’t Jewish
Just Polish nationalists
The daughter of jungle fighters against a Caribbean government who sold resources to the devil and never looked back on it

I am the daughter of the black activists
Off Brazilian shores fisherman trying to make the last leg of the journey through the States into Canada sadly never to look back again yet still carrying the accent a bit

I am the daughter of lack of self-confidence
Because the writing skills are never good enough to move the doubt of job security far from the back of minds

I am the daughter of farmers selling home growns in the cobble-stoned market places

The daughter of white washed walls and up in de savannah soccer spaces

I am the daughter of Polka, Soca and Calypso music
I am the daughter of both black and white immigrants who came with little privilege

I am the daughter of grandmothers strong in storytelling
I am the daughter of two religions both which I rejected
I am the daughter of the strongest mother, most self-giving father and all the generations, which led to their construction.

I am the daughter of salt mines, tar pits, beaches and mountain ranges slipped with pristine lakes
The daughter of Aushwitz and of Soca fetes
I am the daughter of cricket matches and soccer games
I am the daughter of Trini names and names, which have letters, not found in the English alphabet

I am the daughter of sun, sand, malt, and Port-of Spain
The daughter of the Odra, Wroclaw and green rolling country plains

I am the daughter of Vodka and Rum
The daughter of slaves who tried to run
The daughter of those who stood in the street shadows
Statues of Lenin blocking their sun

I am the daughter of family unity and family brokenness
The daughter of abuse and the daughter of the 28 years of lovingness
The daughter of hurt, pain and struggle and the daughter of the deep rootedness

I am the daughter who will not succumb to black racism nor ever apologize for my so-called whiteness
I am the daughter of past roots that run right past the Underground Railroad, straight to the salt water and all its Caribbeaness

I am the daughter of the Tatry Mountains and Zakopane
I am the daughter of self-determination and so I fight with this never apologizing for my history only fighting to defend my heritage in order to survive in this mixed up world where they got us blinded in the eyes with this

I am the daughter of more than just black white European slave colonizer shit
I am the daughter of the most high
So don’t let your assumptions misguide
And try to label me with your closed eye
Because this is a self definition

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