Do you?

Do you ever, when you meet someone new,
Fear that they are racist?

Do you studying them quietly,
Subtly tensing when they open their mouths to talk?

Do you know what to say
If your new acquaintance said something untoward?

Would you pull the person up straight away,
Or would you take a gentler approach?

Would you, scared of confrontation,
Laugh awkwardly and immediately change the subject?

Or, would you join in,
Laughing at the expense of another because of the colour of their skin?

Are you constantly on edge, aware of everyone around you,
worrying about being verbally or physically abused in the street?

Do you notice the way the everyone
Looks that black man up and down?

Do you notice how they side-eye the girl
Wearing the hijab?

Do you feel lost in a white-noise sea?
Do you?

Raelee Lancaster


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