Societally branded a half-caste bastard you always were however and forever will be my beloved child!

By Stanley Collymore

You weren’t planned it’s true and your mother as is well known
to you was white and your father Black; your mum was also
an engaged woman. However, her personal status wasn’t
self-evident initially as she never told me any of this
and I knowingly through fear of losing her chose
not to ask or check it out even though I did
suspect from occasional and inexplicable
acts of her personal behaviour that
obligatorily she was linked, to
put it mildly, to someone
else matrimonially.

But even so I willingly dismissed that as being of no
consequence to me as this suspected other man
involved, I told myself, was a complete
mystery to me and, furthermore,
I earnestly wished to keep
it that way as I hadn’t
met him, didn’t know who he was, had similarly
and firmly embedded it in my receptive mind
and thus staunchly convinced myself that
it was also highly likely that whoever
he might be he was likewise
and absolutely in the
dark about me.

So why, I deliberately persuaded myself, should I
then in those given circumstances unnecessarily
or even unreasonably either for his sake or
my own intentionally open up a can of
worms or, mixing metaphors, a
Pandora’s Box of uncertainties
that could either seriously
or, at its worst, irreparably undermine or
even cause inevitable harm to the then
existing status quo of what he and
I, put bluntly, were genuinely
unmindful of, pretended
didn’t exist or simply
and categorically
didn’t want
to know.

And against that delusional backdrop I purposely and at the
same time self-centredly, I now quite willingly admit,
chose not to stop the pleasurably sexual and deeply
emotional relationship I was having with the
woman that totally unplanned, both on
her part as well as my own, became your mum;
telling and thoroughly convincing myself as
every like-minded person who has ever
been profoundly smitten by love will
do, that I too in the case of your
mother was heads over heels
in love with her anyway
and consequently what
we were consciously
doing didn’t only
feel good but
was equally
perfectly
okay.

Nineteen years old both of us and at a time when the
legal age to independently get married without
having parental consent was twenty one we
very soon realized that while my family
generally and both of my parents
specifically had no objections
to us doing so if of our own
free volition it was what
we actually wanted to do and
similarly like the two of us – your mum and me –
were diametrically opposed to your pregnant
mother killing her foetus, in other words
you her unborn daughter, by having
an abortion, the same humane and
distinctly moral attitudes were
markedly lacking however
when it came to most of
your mum’s family members as well as
several of her closest friends in the
nursing profession that she like
me had happily taken on as
her preferred career, and
who individually, as
well as collectively
now relentlessly
pressurized her
to abort her
pregnancy.

Principally among these callous disparagers and adamant
naysayers was your own maternal grandfather who not
only explicitly voiced his racist objections about me
and your mum’s continuing relationship, cruelly
claiming that it was destined to go nowhere
if he had anything to do with it, but also
rigidly insisted and doubly made sure that as far
as he was concerned any anticipated marriage
between your mother and me would quite
relentlessly be thwarted by him, and
furthermore for the time being was
definitely out of the question as
he would uncompromisingly
and legally prohibit it by
refusing his necessary
parental permission.
And that’s exactly
what happened!

Meanwhile, as a strict condition of easing your mum’s
utterly compromised but all the same still accepted
athough clearly stressfully tolerated presence
within her own family she was told that
she would have to agree to visibly
disguise her pregnancy for as
long as she possibly could to presumably, of course, stop
herself in her present condition from occasioning her
family assumed and predictable societal disgrace
if her unfortunate condition became generally
known within the community, thereafter to
sensibly and secretly decamp to a home
for unmarried mothers far away from
the vicinity of her own community
and ruefully remain there until
inauspiciously she had given birth to
what her critics: not only those on
the outside but equally too in her family and
most ironically and rather risibly as well
inside that unmarried mothers’ home
pitilessly perceived as and nastily
denigrated – whenever they
condescended to make any
reference to you – as
your nigger-loving
mum’s bastard
and unwanted
half-caste
baby.

I was promptly notified of your entry into our world and
allowed by the very empathetic and Black matron of
the North Riding maternity hospital where your
mum gave birth to you. to joyously see you
the day after you were born and most
thankfully on an unimpeded basis
afterwards permitted to carry
on doing so during your
mum’s stay there. But
this arrangement
came to an abrupt end however on the transfer back to
the unmarried mothers’ home where your mother
and you would stay until arrangements had
been finalized and you were taken into
care: a strict prerequisite for your
mum being fully accepted back
into the bosom of her family
once you were finally out
of the way. Meanwhile, I was permitted just the
one visit, as this transition rapidly moved to
its fruition, by the female warden at this
unmarried mothers’ institution whose
unhelpful and bigoted opinions on
Black-White relationships and
all offspring stemming from
them she condescendingly
somewhat superciliously,
singularly, and most
offensively made
unambiguously
evident to me.

I wanted to adopt you and with my parents and entire family
wholly supportive of me in this specific design of mine
I made a formal request to do so that was summarily
turned down; for although there was not a crumb
of doubt in anyone’s mind that I was indeed
your biological father, devotedly loved
you and additionally had from the
very beginning voluntarily and
wholeheartedly accepted full responsibility for all
my several paternal obligations, even being the
one who in mutual collaboration with your
mum had given you your Christian and
also my Surname proudly placed on
your birth certificate when at the
local registry office I proudly
registered your birth. But clearly alas none of this
didn’t matter one iota, nor the fact that all of my
relatives both saw and totally regarded you as
family as they welcomingly looked forward
to formally inducting you into our familial
ranks, thanks to those whose decision it
was to make in relation to my adoption
application and who in their outright
delusional, white supremacist and
sick frame of mind unbelievably
reasoned that having you grow
up in care organized by white
and economically motivated
strangers was much better
than having you entrusted
to the tender and loving
care of your own Black
and biological family.

Thinking that they had a better nature to which I could
logically appeal and in that sense throwing caution
to the wind in my earnest and optimistic zeal to
win them over, I pleaded vainly with them to
rescind their most unhelpful decision or at
least to allow me the humane chance of,
unconstrained, having a close paternal
relationship with my own daughter. But alas this private
request was similarly dismissed with the pathetically
lame and wholly unconvincing explanation that it
was “in the child’s best interest” for her not to
be confused; and moreover growing up with
and surrounded exclusively by whites, as
she was, the entire basis of her cultural
orientation as well as her unassailably
having in her mind a preset British
European and a white Caucasian
cultural identification would in
their opinion, they resolutely
construed, be sorely diluted
and even acutely damaged
by the pointless injection
into my daughter’s life
of a far-reaching and
primarily unknown
Black component.

To all intents and purposes then they’d not only won but
had equally taken observable satisfaction both in their
victory, as well as them rubbing salt into my gaping
wound; but, even so, I was steadfastly determined
not to be arbitrarily or soul-destroyingly undone
by these ferally-disposed, racially entrenched,
delusional and white supremacist mindset
Caucasians. And that while in their eyes
what human rights I may have had
in relation to you my daughter was the uninfringeable
lawful compulsion of maintenance payments to you,
which incidentally from the very beginning I had
wholeheartedly, consistently, would steadfastly
keep on doing and all this most willingly too;
I studiously pledged to myself that having
remorselessly been shut out of your life
in the way I was that in spite of how
long it took, and if necessarily too
totally into your adulthood, you
would ultimately know from
me that I had not forsaken
you and that now as then
I shall eternally carry
on being your loyal
and profoundly
adoring Dad!

© Stanley V. Collymore
3 November 2015.
Author’s Comments:
The absolutely brilliant, exceedingly principled, thoroughly well-informed, thrillingly entertaining, spellbindingly communicative; a comprehensively superb human being and the most unforgettable, regrettably late and profoundly missed British historian, writer and renowned Africanist Professor Basil Davidson in his universally acclaimed, and quite deservingly so, Africa documentary series captivatingly, meticulously and impeccably truthfully outlined the history of human habitation across the British Isles and most specifically so, and from the perspective of this commentary of mine, our island home Britain prior and subsequent to its detachment from mainland Europe; and doing so thankfully without an intimation of the customary, conceitedly embellished, fabricated and downright lying versions of British, and other histories too, arrogantly and demonstrably portrayed and so characteristic of the writings of many other white Caucasian, and particularly, British historians and most especially so where Africa and its Diaspora are concerned – as it simply wasn’t Professor Davidson’s style or inclination.

I don’t need to add anything either in terms of providing confirmatory information in relation to what Professor Davidson has written or for that matter in respect of any supposed elucidation of any of his works; for how dare one, even with the best of intentions in mind, seek to or could seriously think that something that was already brilliantly outstanding in every respect, a par above excellence and, furthermore, constituted the explicit genius of Professor Davidson needed improvement of any kind?

Personally, I wouldn’t dream of ever embarking on such a task since it would be a monumental and unrewarding quest and quite literally be tantamount to trying to teach one’s granny how to suck eggs. But for the express benefit of the legions of ill-informed, downright ignorant, patently stupid or brain-dead, self-absorbed, risibly delusional, intellectually challenged and the largely white Caucasian populace of the British Isles with their fanciful and deeply ingrained notions of what for them the word indigenous absurdly means and additionally who the first inhabitants of the British Isles were and where they actually came from; who subsequently followed them there; how long they stayed independently and culturally apart from or otherwise chose for whatever reason(s) to merge with other communities; when all of this happened and what meaningful contributions or otherwise this continuum of migration to Britain and its outlying islands over several millennia to the present day made to what the United Kingdom is today, that you our supposed “indigenous” white breed in 2015 advisedly should acquaint yourselves with the instructive writings, films, historical documentaries and the other excellent and detailed works of Professor Basil Davidson.

That detailed and vital introduction was to slam on the head and dispel the manufactured and preposterous myth that Britain always was and as such uncompromisingly, methodically and non-deviatingly must promptly revert to being the rightful bastion of all-white exclusivity that it previously was. Far be it from me to tell you morons out there who revel in this nonsensical kind of stuff how to get your personal kicks. But I’ve news for you, and frankly must tell you all that you’re incontestably barmy, for Britain, except in your vividly unrealistic imaginations, was never such a place. And barring a hypothetical or possibly even an actual ethnic cleansing holocaust of the sort which those of your sick mindset like to fantasize about and that would be globally resisted and vigorously defeated, such a scenario is unlikely ever to happen. But what the hell? If you pillocks like living in your fanciful virtual reality world entirely divorced from the actual realities of daily life and it’s how you essentially manage to get your rocks off – then dream on is all I have to say in response to you.

This poem I’ve calculatedly written is factually based on an actual occurrence which, at the time and previously, wasn’t by any means a unique situation. Since for most of the 20th Century this is precisely how the offspring of Black-White relationships were treated. And prior to the 1960s it was distinctly commonplace for a white mother in a relationship with a Black man, whether she was married to him or not and how stable or otherwise that personal relationship was, who became pregnant to have her baby statutorily and minus all consultation with the couple involved taken away from her, placed into care or else be exclusively palmed out to white foster parents, never loving Black families while the child’s mother was medically sectioned, no matter how absolutely unwarrantedly in every conceivable respect: medically as well as conscionably, that action was. But, of course, to absolutely sick white minds that white woman had to have had something psychologically wrong with her to have voluntarily gotten involved with a Black man in the first place; and thus this hapless mother was invariably and usually permanently confined to a “lunatic” hospital, while everything humanly possible and additionally compounded by zealous official backing was studiously and psychologically done by all these persons and agencies involved to calculatingly and socially engineer that child to reject its black identity and instead absorb for the sake of “whitening” itself, mentally and in terms of its own later procreation – the intentional breeding out of its blackness in other words – involuntarily submit to the identical practices as were carried out with Aborigine children in “civilized” Australia.

Ironically, the hospital where the child in this poem was conceived and was established in 1847 on the outskirts of the City of York as a lunatic asylum and over the decades had mushroomed not only into a huge but also a comprehensively sustainable mental hospital lavishly fitted out with everything from its own farm, enormous and perfectly well-manicured grounds, cricket playing field and pavilion, streamlined walkways, laundry facility, commercial shop, church and even a former burial ground and had itself been the longstanding “home” to some of those aforementioned white women who’d been medically sectioned there, was also the place where the parents of this child first met and both worked as psychiatric nurses. I honestly wish that I could say the rearing and youthful upbringing of this child was a satisfactory one; but it wasn’t. And predictably in those given circumstances most of what happened to her clearly wasn’t her fault. However, she did eventually turn her life around, found someone that loved her for who and what she is and reciprocally fell in love with him. They eventually got married, have been living together contentedly for years now and have a family of their own. All of which she has pleasurably and gratefully been able to share with her biological father who never gave up on her, and with whom just after her 21st birthday mutual contact between them was again made.

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