Myself, the Racist

Black ManFrom the Poetic Asides blog:

For today’s prompt, take the phrase “My (blank), the (blank),” replace the blanks with a word or phrase, make the new phrase the title of your poem, and then, write your poem. Possible titles include: “My Dentist, the Torture Expert,” “My Lunch, the Thing I Got Out of the Vending Machine,” “My Father, the Comedian,” or “My Life, the Punchline.”

Myself, the Racist

This morning as I opened the garage
I noticed a young black man walk past.
Like an idiot I worried that he’d run inside
as I’m pulling out before the door closed.

My racism is deeply embedded
like the head of a tick
whose obvious bloated body has been plucked
but the teeth remain gnawing under the skin.

From the privilege of growing up white,
all I can do now is raise my hand,
notice the prejudices as they arise
and try not to act upon them.

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About Bartholomew Barker

Bartholomew Barker was born and raised in Ohio, studied in Chicago, worked in Connecticut for nearly twenty years before moving to Hillsborough, North Carolina where he makes money as a computer programmer to fund his poetry habit.
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7 Responses to Myself, the Racist

  1. Sabiscuit says:

    I’ve read your poem and wonder if there an element of truth to it? Usually, my poetry is either completely fictional of completely truthful. It’s hard for the reader to tell what’s going on, which is part of the game. Be well x

    • It’s all true and this one is truer than most.

      • Sabiscuit says:

        May I extend my best wishes for your safety and well being? Be well x

      • Thank you but my safety and well being are not in doubt. I’m a straight, white male in the U.S.A. My country has been configured to make my life safe and easy.

      • Sabiscuit says:

        It’s obvious that I’m dark skinned. I’m also straight and live all around the world. I configure my world to have safety and ease. Having a pristine education and compassion for my fellow person allows me these comforts. Perhaps not having everything handed to me made me determined to go out and have some wonderful and exciting adventures. We might see things differently but we can get along and that is what I believe it means to be civilised. If you’re not comfortable with my comments, you may delete them. I will not be offended. Thank you for your attention. Be well x

      • I welcome your comments. They are not offensive in any way. Thank you for reading my poetry and I hope you’ll continue to comment. I need more dark skinned friends.

      • Sabiscuit says:

        Thank you for the invitation. I do prefer being called dark skinned, incidentally. So thanks for that. Will see you soon. x

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