Performance poet Piers Harrison-Reid in Norwich, England, on June 19
My Black Life Matters
01:02 - Source: CNN

We’re not saying our Black lives matter more than you.

We’re saying our Black lives matter too.

Part of me wants to plead, beg to be respected – say my life matters because I’m a nurse or an artist, a taxpayer, family man – as though these are things to be bartered with, justified. But no, my life matters because I am human. I breathe, I get scared sometimes, I make mistakes. I appreciate the sunsets, I smile at the kids hiding behind their parent’s legs, I wake late. I love endlessly.

My Black life matters because I live.

And if we aren’t heard with a knee, or with a raised fist, how else can we resist?

I think the greatest trick racism ever pulled, was convincing England it doesn’t exist.

Piers Harrison-Reid, a nurse and performance poet based in the east of England, wrote “My Black Life Matters” to coincide with the release of CNN’s extensive new polling on racial inequality in Britain published on Windrush Day, 2020.