White Walls of Black History, poetry by Aurora Kastanias at Spillwords.com

White Walls of Black History

White Walls of Black History

written by: Aurora Kastanias


Miss Ashanti ‘36, a mulatto beauty, the fruit
Of white men’s pleasure, taken in black damsels’ arms.

Her guardian her uncle, on the Gold Coast she grew
To become a queen by white men courted and pursued.

Jealousy stabbed her firstborn to death afore her eyes,
Whilst passion led her into white men’s arms thrice.

Murder, love letters, wedlock, abandonment composed
The story of her life, a mulatto beauty, Miss Ashanti ‘36.

I never met my grandmother, Charlotte, yet I visited her home,
By the sea, in the village of Elmina, amidst motley canoes.

The myriad kaleidoscopic colours is what I remember most,
A joyful polychromatic scenery only broken by the grandness

Of an imposing white castle dating back to 1482, and concealing
A door which became known as the ‘Door of No Return’.

White walls ensconcing the darkness of Black History.

Auctioned in markets by merchants, branded
With incandescent iron like cattle black humans

Were traded and shackled in chains.

And as buyers would count the male captives’ teeth,
Whip them to see, how high they jumped, how strong they could be,

Females were bought to breed, ensure a return on investment
A future workforce, a slave to produce another, for free.

Imprisoned in dungeons for days or months awaiting a ship
“just surviving to get on board was a victory of the human spirit.”

When finally the day arrived to load the human cargo
Through tunnels and the Door of No Return

To the hull below the deck, across the Atlantic to the New World,
Just a few were left behind, raped females called the “lucky ones”,

Impregnated by commanders seeking companionship
To birth the mulatto child, sent to school and “treated well”.

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