I’ve written a short poem, inspired by (plagiarised from) the amazing Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and her book Half of a Yellow Sun.
You can read a nice contextualised overview (with spoilers) here:
I’ve been thinking and rethinking how to make this point: I want to make it clear that I’m not giving an opinion here. I have no right to give an opinion on Nigeria or on any of the horrific things happening around the world when they aren’t happening to me. I’m trying to channel my reaction to them, and at least urge people to give a platform to those who do have really valid opinions, ie those who are experiencing these things. I can sit here with my hash tags and my unlimited unrestricted internet shouting about how free speech is best used to call out atrocities but I’m not the one who should be speaking about these atrocities, we should all be trying to hear what those who are experiencing them are trying to tell us.
One relevant one to Nigeria is here:
but there are so many for so many issues, and so many more that don’t have the same resources and are going unheard. And so my recurring theme of selective social media use continues.
I don’t feel I have the right to describe how bad the situation is without being there, but I do have the right to ask people to find out, and I also have the right to write a poem about it, though you very much have the right to tell me it’s crappy.
Essentially I’m trying to put all these things I write and think somewhere other than my notepad, so here goes.
The world was silent when we died
Nobody screamed, nobody cried
Nobody stood to protest the crimes
They keep their quiet to keep their lives
The river gushed, the trees creaked
The winds did howl and the black clouds weep
But when nature grieved, the world stood still
Frozen in time by a shivering chill
You cannot forget what you do not note
You cannot « share » what has been forsook
While the world stood silent and held its tongue
The war continued invisibly on