04 February 2009

Wordless Wednesday -- Bassey Ikpi "Homeward"

Awesome poem by Bassey Ikpi -- "Homeward".

This is how I often feel as a Nigerian American.


  1. I realize this association is slightly loose, but I have to express it to you anyway.(By the way, I think this woman is absolutely, stunningly beautiful, in mind as well as body.)
    When the media began to pick on Mrs. Obama for her comment about finally being able to feel proud of America, I wanted to smack them all in the mouths for being such hypocrites.
    The Jesuits say "give me a child til he's seven, and I'll have him for life", so, they got me. And they taught me that Jesus loves everyone equally, and so should we.There is no one He wouldn't invite to the feast. And then you're a kid growing up in the 50's and the 60"s and you begin to think....hey what's wrong with this picture. I came of age during the civil rights movement, But the moment of crystalization truly took place for me when I watched a documentary on pbs...quite a while ago, in the early seventies i guess. The film recorded the stories of the black american soldiers who so willingly signed up to serve in the armed forces in WW1, how bravely they comported themselves and what an enormous contribution they made to the winning of that war. Then they came home to american soil to once again be treated like dirt. And I felt ashamed.
    Then, almost unbelievably, shortly before Mrs's O's comment was made, another documentary aired on pbs. It was actually pretty interesting because it detailed the building of the Alaska Highway, and how crucial it was because the Japanese were actully on one of the Aleutian islands( the only time they were ever on American soil during WW2).
    This will blow your mind. The white soldiers were given bulldozers and trucks; the black soldier were given hammers and hand saws, because they were deemed incapable of learning to use the power equipment. Nevertheless, the black soldiers built by hand in horrific weather one of the most crucial bridges along the Alaska highway, entirely by felling trees with hand tools and using shovels to dig holes for the support pillars that would be needed. They built that bridge with nothing but courage, and the same thing happened to them when they returned to the lower 48. They got bad jobs and insulting treatment. How could anyone with a brain possibly not undertand what Mrs. Obama was saying?
    I hope so much that I'm alive in the year 2050, just so I can see how it's all turned out!
    I was intending to take a trip to see that highway, but I think I've seen enough of Alaska since I got aquainted with Sarah Palin.

  2. She is beautiful in many ways.

    It is interesting that in my classroom this week and next week I am teaching about African Americans who were involved in WWI and the ones who were still in the United States during the war. I am teaching of the horrific treatment, the lack of desire to have them in combat (except for the French who let the "Hell Fighters" see combat honorably), the Jim Crow laws, etc.

    The kids are shocked to hear of all this and to understand that it was not too long ago.

    I am sorry to say that I have not heard of the bridge. But I am not shocked that I have not heard of it considering who teaches history and that I have not really been interested in learning about that war. But I will definitely look more into that.

    I too have been a bit turned off by the state of Alaska since learning some about the person they chose to lead their state.

  3. And I too hope people can understand why First Lady Obama said what she said. It only made/makes sense.

    It will be nice to see what people say in the future about this time period.


I share my thoughts and would love to read your thoughts, too.