I am white

I wish I were of native American descend
to weep and wail over crushed hopes
the disease and killing of our brothers and sisters
to sing and dance on the soil that belonged to my fathers
but I am carrying the white man’s burden

I wish I were of Jewish descend
to weep and wail over past and present
balancing the whole world’s sins on my shoulders
to sing the psalms from the time of my fathers
but I am carrying the white man’s burden

I wish I were living in a time of war
to fight and be strong in the face of peril
giving up my life for a future in liberty
to sing as to keep strong body and mind
but I am carrying the white man’s burden

I wish I could face a visible enemy
to fight and unite and act and be strong
giving up my life as righteousness demands
singing songs of truth and splendor
but I am carrying the white man’s burden

I live in a world where I am successful by birth
white, female, European, highly educated
never will I find myself to be black, yellow or brown
I have to face that if I fight for someone else
I will still be carrying the white man’s burden

I live in a world made by people like me
at the expense of people who are not like me
I am to blame for none of it, as history has passed
yet all I do and like is a product of domination
I am carrying the white man’s burden

I live in a world in which I can change my perspective
I can defend the weak and the strong
I am free to choose the life I feel is worth
yet while I’m doing good and showering harmony
I will still be carrying the white man’s burden

I live and my skin colour is white
I live and my thoughts are green
I live and my feet are brown
I live and my eyes are red
I will carry humanity’s burden to care

Nicole des Bouvrie
26 October 2010

Author: Nobyeni

Freelance Philosopher (PhD). Writer. Thinker. Interested in radical change and human being. Playwright. Dutch World citizen. Lover of books, language, art and coffee.

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