Poems of Protest, Resistance, and Empowerment (3)

We'll be publishing poetry regularly on the No-one Left Behind blog. This week, "I will tell you a story...", by Athi Silevu Athi Silevu  |  Sat Jan 23 2021
"Morning again" by Nathalie Caleyron (2002)
I will tell you a story....

Of how crippled my soul has become
How ripped my heart has been
How abandoned my children have been feeling
How aggravated the assault on my mental health is
By a system so deliberately hostile
A system designed to bring indignity
To transform me from in-control
To desperation
To be reduced to a charity case
Yet with all limbs intact
My soul yearns to be restored to self-reliance
Self-actualisation
Self-sufficiency
How these invisible prison walls constrict
With each passing day no arrival of the brown envelope
I roam around this abode hollow head spinning
Heart pumping
stabbing anxiety
No solacing words are antidotes
Heavy laden I go to sleep
With a prayer not to wake
For everyday is the same
Nothing has changed
My master sees me not
I beg for him to release me
With every attempt a failed decision
Can he not see I'm already dead
What's left of me is a breathing corpse.

Athi Silevu is an IT professional, mother, daughter and poet currently living in Belfast for the past 3 years and stuck in the asylum system. Athi is an active member of both the Housing4All and Lift the Ban asylum rights campaigns.