Spoken Word Poem By Aiysha Alli

By Erica Raimondi

On 15th November 2021
This poem called Spoken Word was written by Aiysha Alli from our Youth Leadership Team. A poem about growing up as a Black Muslim Girl.

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Growing up black,
I hated my dark skin
I saw it as a curse,
A punishment
And naively thought if I was good enough it would come off When that didn’t work
I would try and scrub the colour off
I would Scrub and scrub and scrub
Scrub hoping that the colour would go.
I was only 5 when I accepted myself fully for who I am.

And that is why I am proud to say that I am black. I am black
I am a black Muslim
I am a black Muslim girl

in fact.
I am a black Muslim girl and I am human.
And with my new found self confidence I have decided to re-write my narrative starting with

DEAR BLACK GIRL,
You are not a hashtag to be used to attract likes and followers
You are not an exotic sex symbol where features such as your thick thighs, Thick lips and curly hair can be used and abused
You are not a quota to be filled in a workplace
You are a queen.
You are the Nubian goddess
The main character
You are strong, beautiful and everlasting

We are warriors – where our soul can not be crushed,dismantled or trampled on
We are warriors – who have transcended those barriers that have been in place for too long We are warriors – who speak up when we are told we are too much
We are warriors – who fight the everlasting war

Now when I think about this day and age,
I look at the society we now live in
Where black skin is put up against light skin And to that I say stop

It is our duty to remind each other that every shade of chocolate is elegant, divine and fine With our big hips, thick thighs, melanin skin and more

And to the society I say
BLACK GIRL MAGIC IS MORE THAN A HASHTAG
It is a community that supports our past, present and future.
It is a community that educates us, celebrates us and supports us

It’s the ruby bridges story for me
It’s the Rosa parks story for me
It’s your story for me
It is our story

As Dave once said “black is beautiful, black is excellent
Black is pain, black is joy, black is evident
It’s workin’ twice as hard as the people you know you’re better than.

But did you know that it goes deeper than that.
Did you know that when white is against black it is used to symbolise the purity, While black symbolises the darkness despair
So can it be said that there is something deeper, embedded, engrained??

The fight is no longer to make ourselves known The fight is to truly accept ourselves

And like I said at the beginning
I was only 5 when I accepted myself fully for who I am.

But even now as new adult I repeatedly have to rethink, reprogramme, assure myself We are used to laughing through our pain and smiling through our despair
But when the time comes
And we eventually succumb to our inner feelings

Will society still class us as still having black girl magic
Will society still class as being a Nubian a godess
Will we/ you still class yourself as being the main character

And now I quote Candace Nicholas- lippman
“ to all my sister as we continue the process of loving our skin, Start with this.
Look at yourself in the mirror
This is me”
The Nubian goddess
The main character.

No.
In fact
Dear Black girl, You are everything

By Aiysha Alli

Written by Erica Raimondi

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