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Always I Scream at the Seaside by Harshad Keval

Sunshine and blue skies makes it all nice,

So the goodness in me can persist,

can resist,

the hard stares you give me,

Cold as ice…cream…

…on the inside, sweet, sunny and hits the spot,

But a temporal thing,

Like the kidney sweet spot,

You hit, time and again at the school gates,

Ignored by the teacher, paki gets his fate.

Years on now,

You walk and I watch,

You shout, I listen,

You breathe in, I breathe out,

Adapting’s my way,

The pavements, doorways, walkways and spaces

You and whiteness own,

I can see, like a matrix made from blacks and whites

There’s no space for me, my kind

No country for coloured folk,

But plenty of.. I scream on the inside at the seaside.

The good life I built,

Like a whisper spoken too loud,

Means my blackness has disrupted, interrupted,

Your dreams of fulfilling your vanquished wishes

Of whiteness alone.

But you can't see,

Your whiplash tongue carries poison for me,

While I prepare to fight,

Again, and again, and again.

Your brutal whiteness hides in plain sight,

Even from you,

But the sunshine and blue skies make it nice.

my kids my people, know your ways,

our fights are buried,

histories overlaid,

with oppressions,

silent confessions,

histories untold,

people without souls.

You can't begin to know

The wonders of being who I am,

Like a cyborg

Travelling through time,

I have seen, heard, felt the sublime

Love of difference,

So your matrix of falsity

Can't do shit to me,

Except feed us the ice cream while I scream at the seaside.

And yet here we are, whiteness and what?

How can we answer when the question can’t be got?

How can we struggle when the war isn’t waged?

How can your whiteness be uncovered,

when my blackness remains at fade,

a shadow unknown as your kids stare,

“brown people at the seaside Mum?”

“Yeah, its not fair. To stare. They might take it,

The wrong way.

Always Ice cream at the seaside.

Harshad Keval is a writer, educator and senior lecturer in Race, postcolonial and decolonial theory at Canterbury Christ Church University in Kent. He explores the enduring and shifting meanings of race, racialised being and the nature of knowledge as a field of power. He makes no distinction between academic, intellectual, emotional or spiritual life, and tries to act and narrate connections between mind, body and, spirit – the internal arts and their much needed manifestation in material life. @HarshadKeval

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