Barriers to Belonging

1 June 2015

This poem is influenced by the style of Emily Dickinson.

It is a response to the current issues for asylum seekers

who flee their countries by boat.


The moon      partly    invisible

silenced        by its       absence.

Deny what is not   yet    full

Do   not     give    hope    a    licence.


Self-hatred- and- Bigotry –

Ignoring each other-

connected- invisibly-

An – infinite – tether –


Crumbling margins: of the coast:

Reached after timeless days: at sea:

Power: turning back each faltering boat:

Shame: scorning every: refugee:

Shelley Tracey ©

23rd May 2015

Meet Bigotry.

He has a swagger and a waddle and a self-important belly.

He is a little deaf, and his sideburns grow right down to the edge of his jaw.

His nose always points northwards.

Bigotry’s voice is nasal and blaring, like a trumpet colonised by a curious beginner, lacking finesse.

Bigotry has forceful shoulders and arms, and even his feet are oversized and adamant. You can always hear him coming. He is portentous without being important, certain and sure without any sure knowledge. He never ever reads between the lines,

Bigotry chooses his company carefully, but he cannot be called discerning, because his choices are all made in terms of resemblance. The more like him someone is, the more he appeals to Bigotry, They made comfortable discomfiting company.

Bigotry only knows one tune, and he plays it repetitively, on a big old drum with a dominant beat.

Shelley Tracey ©

How do you see Bigotry, or his friend Prejudice? Or their arch-enemy, Tolerance?



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