Ellen Shaw

Ellen Shaw Poems

What do I know?
I am but a mixed race child
They say I must be confused
Mustn't know who

In the desert sand lifts
And swirls
A violent storm
Forming my name

You broke my heart
the moment I saw tyres
flying over your sharp
soft sand dunes.

The letters on the doormat glowed
blue in the darkness
and were cold under soft soled bare feet
I became a dragon in the hallway

Flown away
and made this no ordinary day
a family in pieces
with no way to make sense of this.

If you are going to leave me
Don't stay one kiss


Today I knocked on water
to see if she would let me in
hoping she would send the weeds up to shake my hand
and wrap my wrists

Star studded dark blue sky
A place to get lost
Or a place to stand out.
Winter's wind dancing by

Satin and ribbons
Come loose, unwind
Tongue unknots
Can't stop.

Wind swirls
Footsteps disappear
Walk across the desert
Full to the brim


A hot coal burning red
sits neatly on your fleshy tongue
Kiss me
with all of your anger

With the sand beneath my feet
I stand
Set free

Blue skies painted red

If I caught you
At just the right moment
You'd be ready and waiting for me
If I could catch you

Footsteps fall
along the path laid out
Eyes glaze over and spirit dulled.

Halo sits on your head
angel hair atop
you glow
words spill out jumbled and rushing

lay me down
at the foot of a tree
on cold cold earth
lay me

Walk on
and don't look back
break free


Swimming, drowning, gasping, grasping
wanting, falling into
black pools of anger, rage and hurt
push me further

Not who you want
Not who you see
Not how you think
I ought to be

In six seconds
you had said all you wanted
to say,
in one breath

The Best Poem Of Ellen Shaw

I Am But A Mixed Race Child

What do I know?
I am but a mixed race child
They say I must be confused
Mustn't know who
I am
They say I have wild ideas
Believing I can be black and white
At the same time
Never, they say can it be both day and night
They call me coconut
Say that my skin is the colour of Jamaica's mud
But inside I am white
That I think I am better than them
With all of my airs and graces

How can I be both?
When one half of me
Enslaved the other
They say I don't know my history
That my mother land
Covered my father land in tears
They say I am but a tool
A pawn to weaken the blood of the race
Weakened features to change to face
Of my people
I am just another way to oppress them
Fight against it, they say
Stay true to your roots

What do I know?
This mixed race child
I could teach many a thing or two
My heart beats a reggae rhythm
And my feet walk proudly on England's earth
Made from love despite
The past battles and fights
I see the best in both people
I feel pride for both countries
Because they combine in me
I am a complete person
I am not confused
I am not two halves that don't
Fit together
I am a mixed race child
And I know who I am

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