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Blog - Richard Downes

Declaration 15 – What is nationality?


I guess we are all looking into our identities nowadays deciding which labels we choose to wear. This was written for a local campaign i was supporting in darkest Hornsey at a time when a national question engaged us all. The strategy I adopt in the campaign is to focus on the Universal Declaration of Hum Rights. The 15th declaration of which reads

1. Everyone has the right to a nationality.
2. No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality.

Declaration 15 – What is nationality?

My black country roots
Have been exceeded by the bark
Of my Crouch End Life
Though the accent
The team remain
This is my life
My time
My village
A place belonging happened
Friendship, known faces
A time to be included
Unlike other labels cast aside
English, British,
So what does nationality bestow
The right to speak for the village
The right to oppose unwanted change
The right not to be silenced by power
Not to be outvoted by right wing fascists
Racists voting on anti-immigration tickets
The need to be welcoming
As I was when I moved
When I myself became
Welcome in Crouch End

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Ann Young
10 months ago

Beautiful poem, Richard. Reading it made my heart swell. 🙂

richard downes
10 months ago
Reply to  Ann Young

thank you Ann

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