Seeing Colour: a poetry and photography series

Qezz uses poetry and conceptual photography to discuss why it’s not okay to say you ‘don’t see colour’

This poem and photography series, Seeing Colour, comes from a place of anger.  My frustration arises from hearing privileged people state they ‘don’t see colour’ – basically, saying they don’t acknowledge my heritage or who I am – even in important societal institutions such as schools and in the workplace. This ‘colourblind’ statement disregards identities, and reinforces oppression of all minorities.  In response to this, I have taken a series of photos, and written a poem that reflect people of colour as they should be seen. Real change will happen when individuals can see each others differences and not let it affect opportunities.

Seeing Colour 

Acknowledge my presence

Breathe in this essence

Before you become a thieving vulture

Come thank my culture and break this systemic structure

Doors stay closed in the words you propose

Erase this colour-blind narrative you disclose

For all the years of my repose

Grieve not from my shadows but my woes

Here I stand in a room full of dimension

In which I feel your sudden apprehension

Justice isn’t the same as amnesia

Kicking away my heritage as a form of euthanasia

Let’s remind you the Kings & Queens of Africa and Asia

Mirrors and their reflections show your modern age of oppression

No, you will not call me your twin

No, you will not erase my skin

Open your eyes to my colour ‘fore it needs attention

Privilege desperately needs your confrontation

Quotas of colours don’t make us the same

Rough-cut diamonds in the dirt, we will rise again.

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