Susan Hunter Downer: There’s No Easy Way to Say This

We are delighted to share with you, There’s No Easy Way to Say This. An amazing poem by Susan Hunter Downer about power, beauty, and struggles of being a black woman. Susan is currently attending Connected Worlds' The Way I Flourish course.


Susan Hunter Downer was born in Birmingham to Jamaican parents and has lived in Sheffield for 20 years. She had her first short story published in a Creative Future anthology in 2019. This is her first poem.

There’s No Easy Way to Say This
by Susan Hunter Downer

No-one told me I was Black
The colour of infinity
They attacked me with it from behind
Spat it in my face
Uttered a curse about interesting times
How was I to know
Straight up
I could stand on two legs
Speak and be heard
Without shame
No-one told me I was as beautiful as the blanket thrown over the sky
They sat me down with clasped hands and cracked lips and said,
‘You have to prepare for the worst.’
A song in she-flat
My skin, war paint
A declaration of violence
Not same enough
To live among open faces
How was I to know
They lied.

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