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Thursday, 15 October 2009


I've been keeping quiet... have you noticed? I started this comment in mid-October and only now, in November, have I posted... Why?

Well, after writing about a million half-poems for Black History Month in October, and deciding none of them put across what I wanted to say succintly enough, things just got a bit busy. And I'm still only 3 chapters into the novel, although I'm already worried about the dreaded s: structure.

Funny how, in October, apart from the odd Radio 4 programme, there wasn't much publicity about Black History Month. But there seemed to be a lot of stories about racism. The BNP got far more exposure than necessary with at least two prime-time programmes that I saw, and Bruce Forsyth decided to make a fool of himself defending a crass comment made by one of his Strictly Come Dancing trainers (I would normally never link to a Daily Mail article, but their slant on this is soo bad - including pictures of his Puerto Rican wife, which, of course, proves he doesn't have a racist/ignorant bone in his body). I varied between wanting to laugh and wanting to punch someone last month. So I kept quiet.

Anyway, I'm back to working in schools again, even as I await my 3rd Criminal Records check this year (I'm working in another borough, so I apparently need a new one before I can be trusted as a "non-con"). So I thought I'd share a section of a poem I started about Black History Month in schools. Maybe one day I'll finish it...

It's that time again

Teachers cut-and-paste words from Martin Luther King and staple-gun them to walls
They line up children to sing Kum-ba-yah to politely-clasped hands
Waiting for the assembly to end

Die-hards dust off their dashikis in solidarity with their African roots
If they could only grow dreadlocks around that bald patch
How they would bind us together!

Thursday, 1 October 2009

Pinch, Punch....

October... all over. October... all over. Oh yeah, I remember the rhyme now:

June, too soon
July, stand by
August, it must
September, remember
October, all over

We learnt it to predict hurricanes half a hemisphere away, while the dog-eared sign on the wall flapped in the wind: "It's not the longitude, nor the latitude, but the attitude".

We were not allowed to close the window or put our coats on. Or even breathe. But I still managed to sleep between cloud formations.

The rest of my memory is foggy.

Is it that time already?

Pardon me for being so quick.