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Imagine walking into a space where you automatically feel out of place because nobody’s face is identifiable with your race and

Imagine walking into a store and being watched like a hawk, or getting pulled over by the cops for simply wanting to “talk” and

Can you imagine having the ambition to apply for a job position, only to later find out that your surname is under suspicion?


Imagine being called a racist name, all because your pigmentation isn’t the same, and when you finally get the courage to go to a teacher to explain, you’re the one who is blamed and

Imagine having a waste dump in your backyard or feeling anxious every time you see a security guard, or how about being suspended for having too much “attitude” on the school yard

To be Black in Nova Scotia means to work twice as hard, because no matter where you are, you’ll be wearing your identity card.

(From Understorey Magazine, Issue 12, 2017)

About René Boudreau

René Boudreau writes: I am an African Nova Scotian woman on a journey to learning more, loving more and laughing more. I enjoy travelling because it gives me the opportunity to learn more about myself, expand my thinking and give new perspective on life. I also love spending time with my family and friends. In 2015, I graduated from Dalhousie University with a major in Sociology and a minor in Law and Society, and I currently work as a Program Coordinator at a family resource centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
I’ve been writing since a young age, using poetry as an outlet for healing and self-expression. I usually don’t share my poems, but as I’m getting older and growing more confident in my gifts and abilities, I’m realizing the importance of contributing my voice and lived experiences. The focus of my poetry is primarily on the topics of self-love, relationships, race and gender.
“Imagine” is my first poem to be submitted and published. This poem captures the realness of racism in Nova Scotia, using both personal experiences and experiences shared by others.
I am in the process of writing my first poetry book which will be published in the near future.

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