Through Vangi-tinted glasses

Perspectives from an African


Earlier this month, I was fortunate enough to join some of my favourite poets in the country in lending a voice to the Art for Humanity project – The Art of Human Rights


In the spirit of celebrating the Bill of Rights, I was tasked with writing up to 14 lines speaking to section 18:  Freedom of Association.

When I mentioned this to a friend of mine, she told me that this particular section reminded her of the quote:  “Go where you are celebrated, not where you are tolerated.” (Author Unknown).  This became my inspiration for the following piece.


Tell her to go where she is celebrated


Tell the child to go where she is celebrated.

Watch her play on merry-go-rounds

with shells and pearls

woven into an exquisite necklace.

Tell her this fellowship deserves her.

Tell her she is the stone and the clasp

that many skies wept for,

that freedom is more than tolerance.

Tell her she is most brilliant

when she chooses to bead herself

alongside shells and pearls

connected by merry-go-rounds.

Tell her!


It is always her choice.


This poem appears on the Art for Humanity website, alongside a beautiful image by the very talented Judy Woodborne.  To see this image and all the other contributions, please visit the website and support this wonderful initiative.



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