Dear Maha,

This poem makes me ask how much energy we invest in “not being angry” at those who purport to know us without listening to us, to understand us without interrogating their own privilege. We become the ‘anti-inflammatories’ in spaces which call forth demonstrations of expertise often at the expense of sensitivity and bias-checking. And when we stop performing this service of peace keeping and face saving — what happens then?

Each of us has work to do on checking our biases and recognizing our sources & benefits of privilege, yet many (often those with loads of privilege) bypass or ignore this work. Your poem reminds me that I don’t need to consistently take the role of ‘anti-inflammatory’. Sometimes it’s necessary to allow the anger, the frustration to manifest and take the floor. Thank you for this bravery boost by example.

Leadership Coach, Educator, Workshop presenter & facilitator, avid reader & writer @ home on the edge of the alps. Publisher of "Identity, Education and Power"

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