When I was little a hand used to
touch me
And I couldn’t run

I grew up afraid of the dark
Scared of being alone
But I was fragile and little
And I couldn’t run

My uncle used to visit us
He hugged me and took me away
from mum
He cut dry banana leaves and asked
me to lie down
And I couldn’t run

I was afraid of my uncle
I didn’t want to sleep with him
And I never spoke to anyone
And I couldn’t run

At school, I was a shy and lonely child
I was afraid of the teachers
And bigger boys in my class
And I couldn’t run

I never saw my uncle again
Then I started to run
I ran free in my dreams
And I learnt to run away from my life

At last I knew how to run
But I couldn’t run away from my past

I am now again afraid, alone and fragile like a child
I am now inside a cell where it is forbidden to run
I am now paying the price for losing
a race
Trying to get away from the touching
hand.

by Carlos Gutierrez

 

Poem taken from issue 14 of theRecord.

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