Tag Archives: poets

Extract from a Letter to an Old Friend

“[…] Oh Happiness, I miss you. I haven’t seen you since 2012. Every day it feels like if I am sleepwalking into Death, I want her to be my new best friend. My current friend is Apathy, which might be even more dangerous than Death. She makes me act like a ghost lost in the living world, not wanting to be found or seen, hiding behind the scenes. I no longer want to live, I don’t want to be here. I’m just trying to survive, work hard to get by. I wish Hope never left me, but she deceived me too many times. I shouldn’t have scared her away, but Reality told me to do so. I still think it was the right thing to do, yet sometimes I resent Reality for being so cruel. At least I learnt that being kind and submissive was a waste of time. I’m glad I got absolved from the death sentence that Hope and you imposed on me. However, when both of you left, you took Confidence with you. With Confidence gone, Insecurity took over my mind. So many illusions and dreams remain caged in my heart, but I can’t set them free because Insecurity took the cage’s key and threw it into a dark sea. I can’t recover it because I never learnt to swim, I never thought I would need to swim to save my life. I always saw myself as a free butterfly, not as a fish in a tank with a scratch. What will I do when the tank breaks and I fall to the cold ground with millions of crystals? Probably lay there and let out my last few breaths while hoping to cause a good impression on Death, my new best friend. […]”

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Poem: Just a Number II

“You touched the sand with tears in your eyes

Grateful that you made it alive

You gave thanks for the new chance

Faith made you the warrior you are now

You looked around examining your peers

Some faces from the beginning are no longer there

You looked ahead thinking of the future

Leaving your lifejacket on the ground together with your fears

The beach is two-faced

It hosts both funerals and celebrations

The land is inviting

Disguises its dangers with uncertainty

The sky is grey

Has witnessed as much life as death

You walked miles with nothing but hope

Just to settle in a place that resembles hell

You endured storms and threats

Waiting months for a change of heart

You constructed a new community from the scratch

Some months later, half of it was destructed

You protested and sought justice

Threading your voice in an act of defiance

The plants are stunted

Representing life that can no longer grow

The rain is heavy

A mix of with tears and blood

The fire is unpredictable

It comes, erases, hurts and leaves

You showed me your church

Shared your beliefs and sorrows with me

You asked me for socks and shoes

With your innocent young heart that is too demonized

You talked to me about your ambitions

Privilege and injustice never became so palpable

You invited me to your house for tea

Yet I can’t invite you to mine”

 

-Written inspired by my volunteering experiences in the refugee camps in France (you can read about them here: https://findingmyselfinsideme.com/2016/04/02/trip-to-calais-dunkirk-part-3-working-in-the-refugee-camps/)

Link for “Just A Number” Part 1: https://findingmyselfinsideme.com/2015/08/25/new-poem-just-a-number/

By Emilie H. Featherington

All Rights Reserved © 2016

Poem: Erroneous Honesty

“It will get better

A short promise

Which has never materialised

 

It is full of power and hope

Which do nothing but deceive

And anger a hurt soul

 

Why is no one frank?

I wish the revealed truth wasn’t subjective

Naivety is to blame for my heart’s death

 

Suddenly nothing matters anymore

Apathy is my new invisible friend

Silent, but as toxic as its predecessor

 

Everything I loved

I craved and even fought for

Has become everything I hate and want far away

 

When did my favourite days of the year became the least favourite ones?

My birth and the birth of Christ

Days of sorrow rather than joy now

 

All because of lies

Nobody likes to be played

And without apologies, the game doesn’t end

 

At least I’m not a wishful thinker anymore

Too familiar with arrogance to expect anything better

Just wish people thought before acting and hurting others

 

As if growing up in care, black, poor, and a woman wasn’t enough

I can’t lie, I try to love my identity, but it sucks

To be sane, I have to pretend these handicaps aren’t real

 

I don’t enlighten myself to seem smart

I don’t want to be an activist for praise

In my life these aren’t options, it is either do them or die

 

Struggles don’t make me strong

They just make me wish I was never born

While weakening my mind, unleashing my dark side

 

They say scars make you perfect

But, what if they don’t heal?

Infections like mine kill

 

Gratitude is so important

Still, it won’t tame the pain I have endured

Nor the silent calls for explanations

 

I cherish my professional career

My studies, my grades

And the few friendships I have

 

My friends are the biggest gifts life could have ever given me

Not many, I can count them with my hands’ fingers

Yet, invaluable, life-saving and matchless

 

 

However, I can’t stand

Who I am, who I am surrounded by

When I didn’t choose our ties and I can’t left them behind

 

They influence my life too much

Burning my neurons, altering my hormones

Clotting my vessels, asphyxiating my lungs

 

Also, attractiveness remains my most unattainable goal

Love for me is a dangerous fairy tale

And I’m not a princess who thrives in chaos

 

So much ache that can’t be spoken about

And can barely be written about

Repression becomes the only option

 

I used to be optimistic

I believed in the possibility of change

I thought good times were coming

 

But…

After twenty years of seeing a cycle that never ends

I buried my confidence and did a funeral for it

 

What did I do to deserve this curse?

I’m starting to believe in all the stories about magic

This bad luck is supernatural

 

I guess, not everyone is born to live

Some are just born to survive

Be productive for the world and die

 

Facing reality may have saved my mind

I no longer poison myself with denial

My mind is clearer now that my illusions evaporated

 

Everything might stay the same, probably will worsen as always

At least I won’t waste time wishing anymore, since now I know

It won’t get better”

 

-Written with the motive of my 20th birthday.

 

By Emilie H. Featherington

All Rights Reserved © 2016

Poem: Keywords

“Reclaim

What was lost

What was stolen

What was hated

What was misinterpreted

 

Knowledge

The silenced words

The burned scripts

The enslaved souls

The destroyed science

 

Spaces

Which aren’t open for you

Which systematically exclude you

Which you still enter

Which you, against the odds, conquer

 

Language

That upholds supremacies

That reinforces stereotypes

That deconstructs binaries

That frees the oppressed

 

Experiences

When fears meet the present

When hate becomes more than mistrust

When hope resurrects the past

When lies can’t be left behind

 

Intersectionality

The ignored formula

The uncomfortable necessity

The sought goal

The ultimate achievement

 

Love

Who suppressed it and hid from it?

Who found it and suffered because of it?

Who gives it and owns it?

Who practices it and self-applies it?

 

Empowerment

That breaks oxidised chains

That alters unfair imbalances

That strengthens free minds

That recovers the voice of some

 

Land

Where traditions were buried with no funeral

Where the dispossessed laid dead, waiting for an uncertain end

Where naive settlers became privileged

Where battles are still being fought for the unknown

 

Freedom

The cruelest game

The deadliest desire

The end of the tunnel

The most honourable sacrifice

 

Pluriversality

How it challenges the mainstream

How it contradicts misguided narratives

How it offers alternatives

How it nurtures difference

That makes us less indifferent”

 

-Written after being inspired by the #DecoloniseSussex week events, particularly the conference on Monday the 11th of April (Decolonizing Education: Towards Academic Freedom In Pluriversality) and the talks & performances by poet Asma Elbadawi and rapper Akala on Wednesday the 13th of April.

By Emilie H. Featherington

All Rights Reserved © 2016

 

Poem: Parallel Teenage Lives

“Lights on
The day kicks off
You leave your comfy bed
Moaning about how you can’t wait to go back in there

You take a shower
Smiling between bubbles and hot water
You brush your teeth
And spend minutes moisturizing your skin

You open your wardrobe
And choose some new clothes you have never worn
You can’t repeat outfits
Nor be less trendy neither classy

“Nothing I like here”
You think as you look in the full fridge
“I will buy something at college”
You decide grabbing some pocket money

The weather outside is horrible
You release a sigh as you get in your car
The traffic makes you tired
And to drive, you just don’t feel inspired

Time to go into college
You head to those lessons that make you bored
One year till you are free
And you will be able to go to uni and get a degree

12 hours later
On the same planet
In the same continent
In the same country

The day has ended
You finished your full-time shift that was over-extended
Time to leave your workplace
Your tiredness is reflected on your whole face

The weather outside couldn’t be worse
You walk to the bus stop containing a curse
Waiting for the bus makes you tired
And to walk twenty minutes home afterwards, you just don’t feel inspired

“Not much in here”
You think as you look in the empty fridge
“I will have to wait till tomorrow to eat again”
You can’t spend your money, you have to pay the house rent

You open your wardrobe
And look at all your clothes that are over-worn
Your outfits are full of holes
Or are too small to even be worn

You have a shower
Shivering between the bubbles and icy water
Your brush your teeth
And feel too knackered to moisture your skin

You enter your small bed
Trying to not wake up your young brother, who is also in there
You don’t even have a light to switch off
So it is all darkness till a few hours, when the next day kicks off”

-Written for the “Swing The Vote” campaign, as one of the top 10 issues young people care about the most in UK (Inequality: the gap between the rich and the poor)

By Emilie H. Featherington

All Rights Registered © 2015