You People

by Derek Morrison

You tell ‘your people’ to slow down
He turned to see her wrinkled frown
What ‘people’? He somewhat fazed
You ‘people’ her face now blazed
Her eyes had scanned his attire
It was this that had set the fire
His uniform was of the hated ‘others’
No individuals, just bands of brothers
No logic here could be applied
Her ears were deaf when he tried
Like one car driver who holds the crown
Who can tell ‘her people’ to slow down.

[To listen to this verse select below]

Commentary

This rhyme reflects a not uncommon experience of what it is like to be ‘the other’, i.e. a member of a perceived minority who are perceived as troublesome, or at least inconvenient. It is based on the recent experience of one of the group of cyclists I was with at our refreshment stop Brockweir Cafe and Farm Shop just outside Tintern in the UK. As he was waiting in the queue to pay for his refreshments an elderly lady seeing his cycling attire decided to issue her message about cyclists in her neighbourhood.  She actually used the words ‘your people’ and seemed totally immune to the illogic of her protestations. A few weeks later, passing through Tintern, a male car driver again having mechanical trouble communicated through his wound down window about ‘you people’ to our little group of fellow travellers.  Something to ponder about being in a minority – particularly a growing one?

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