afraid of my own name – a spoken word poem

you can listen to me reading the poem here:




Muslim, Muslim, Muslim/

The word causes panic throughout my whole body/

And no, it’s not just the way they pronounce the ‘s’ as a ‘zee’/


As a Muslim girl, that is the scariest word of all/

Because it makes me go from on top of the world to two feet tall/

Close your eyes and imagine you’re me for a minute/

There’s a group of people and suddenly, I’m in it/




And as the starts, I want to say:

Well if you really want to know, I was at home watching a documentary on Netflix/

And as for my sister, she was finishing her homework down in the office/

And as for my father, he was finishing up our taxes/

And as for my mother, she was certainly asleep the fastest/

And as for my grandmother, she was at her yoga classes/

And as for my grandfather, he was out with his friends so BLAST IT/

If you really want to know what the Muslims were doing last night, I can give you a long list of what every single Muslim I know was doing last night/

But that would take a while, so I don’t think you want to ask that damn question again/

But I don’t say that, I try to stay calm/

Because my Prophet taught me peace and salaam/


So instead I ask:

“Do you know what type of Muslim they were?”/

“No,” they reply. “What does it matter?”/

What does it matter? It matters because that is a generalization/

And it causes a new creation/

The creation of fear/

Fear in the hearts of every Muslim here/

And this fear makes me want to cower/

And this fear is in the back of mind at every hour/


And this same fear is in the Muslim kids, to my Catholic school they went/

“In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit” because they don’t want to act different/

And this fear is in my old school who wants to change their name/

Because it looks to much like ISIS, even though we were her before they came/

So now we’re dumbing ourselves down to your stupidity/

Because how else do we deal with your bigotry/


Ya Allah, I’m sorry/

I’m sorry this is happening to us/

Ya Allah, I’m sorry I’m putting up a fuss/

Ya Allah, I’m sorry they curse your name/

Ya Allah, I’m sorry I feel so ashamed/


Muslim, Muslim, Muslim/

Afraid of my own damn name/



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