The Danger of a Single Story

by Lise Day

Africa is not one huge dusty country
of rolling grasslands and herds of beasts,
populated by tall, thin, starving people
or sad babies with swollen bellies.

African’s cuisine of choice is not
monkey-brain, stuffed-snake-skin.
Every meal not hunted by packs of dogs
or naked tribesman with bow and arrow.

Africa’s health system does not comprise
only throwing of bones by witchdoctors.
It is not just a country rife with Aids and Ebola
genital mutilation and botched circumcisions.

Africa is not to be pitied, or dominated.
It is not merely a land of conflict and corruption.
We have pride and confidence and are not
longing to be saved by a kind white foreigner.

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