"...the African American book review of record."-Martin Arnold, New York Times culture critic

News Flash - Books & Authors

Blog: Blog

"Of Course He Said Nigger"


Award-winning poet, essayist and novelist Alice Walker is the author of The Color Purple (1982), for which she won the National Book Award for hardcover fiction, and the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Here's a recent drop... 

"Of Course He Said Nigger"

copyright 2018 by Alice Walker

Of course he said nigger
You would too
If you hung out with the niggers
He surrounds himself with
When you’re not looking,
In all their gold chains
Wristwatches
And teeth. That’s how
they talk.
Grow up.
Stop talking
About “the N word”
As if it is more important
Than the countries
He bombs
Or the children
He starves.

Nigger has a meaning
You would have to live
Lifetimes
To comprehend.

It would never submit
To the phony “N word”;
So current among those who
Wish to “do the right thing”
By covering up America:
An effort that makes you
Culpable and dishonest
Every time you do it.

We might as well call a Spade
A Spade or should we say
“the ‘S’ word”?

Didn’t know about that one,
Did you?

Niggers have at least one
Honorable tradition,
No matter how many
Gold nooses, chains, and shackles
They wear.
They have never endangered a planet
Or even destroyed part of one.
Most still respect children.
Why not simper as you say:
“The N.N. (Non Nigger) word”
And go off in that fruitful direction
Of who not to offend:
Then we might all
Sleep better
At night.

Ms. Walker has published a new selection of poems titled “Taking the Arrow Out of the Heart”, her first bilingual poetry book. Read a review of her new book here...


© 2019 The Black Book Review Online. All Rights Reserved. Website by Efinitytech.