Beyond Prejudice


Image: Shirren Lim, Flickr

I refuse to see myself
through your eyes
to let your lens
become my disguise.
I won’t give in
to its stereotype.
I won’t become your lie.
My wish for freedom
will not die.

You strip me back
to my bones
classify me
by skin tones.
I am more than my skin;
If you look deeper
you could be kin.
I cut you adrift
deflect the hurt
you sought to give
so I can simply live.

After I have healed
from your slight
I send out a light
to shade us both.

I won’t become your lie.
My wish for freedom
will not die.

(c) June Perkins


Kite Girl


She looks at the kite small and bright

She wonders if she can make herself light

For the air and for the possibility of flight

She checks out the string and the physics of things

She follows the plastic rainbow streamers that will make it work

And she dreams of what life seems in the centre of rings

She is the kite girl who has found her inner bling

She will dance and take the breath out of the wasps sting

She is the kite and the kite is her.

At least that’s what she thinks as the world blinks.

(c) June Perkins

[Time to start making some poetry films I think – putting video, poetry, photography and performance together.]

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Rain Bird

Rain Bird – June Perkins

I am rain bird
Dressed in black
Singing happy back
Into this sleepy town
Where cassowary give renown.

Here people seldom weep
And secrets never keep
They’re blown around in storms
They’re tossed up in the gossip.

I am rain bird
Dressed in brown
I see the gumboot crown
On the Princess in the grounds.

I am rain bird
Dressed in black
Not a cuckoo without tact
I don’t deal in simple facts.

I am rain bird
In a technicolour coat
I will sing the people strong
Tell them – ‘you can belong.’

By June Perkins

New in Town

identity boots 2- self portrait flag and feet
More than my Birth Flag- June Perkins

Being new
means you can reinvent
who you were
if you wish

If you wish
to be free of definitions
that were given with birth &
at school

At school
where people may have defined you
in terms of your family
class, colour, country & skin

Class, colour, country & skin
what are these things really
but external ways
some choose to decide who you are & determine
your opportunity?

Your opportunity
to be decided by history, chance, fate?
But maybe not now
you can be new in
time, place, space

Time, place, space
to reinvent to say, ‘look beyond my place of birth &
my face’

Your face
with so much more beneath
jaws bones just like any others
eyes all your own that tap into

to reinvent, move freely,
& become something
you really want to be

You really want to be
unconstrained by stereotypes
limitations & hatreds
that oppress
the human spirit

The human spirit
is more than simple definitions
You are more than
country, class, skin

By June Perkins

identity boots 1- being me?
Identity Boots? – June Perkins