Poetry Corner: My Bajun Papa

Sometimes events happen that none of us should let go without question. In this instance it’s The Windrush Generation and my question, “Why not us”?



Photo credit Wikipedia

My Bajun Papa

They came from all over

To help us re-build

Our houses, our roadworks,

And jobs needed filled

They gave of their blood

their sweat and their tears

Their home they called Britain

for most of their years


Yet sadly they’ve found out

Through no fault of their own

This country they’ve lived in

Is no longer their home.


How could this have happened

I hear you all ask,

Whoever’s responsible

Must be taken to task.


Yet the day’s they go by

And still nothing is clear

Are they allowed to reside….

In their Country so dear,


When our friends and our Neighbours

Are treated this way

We must pile on the pressure

To help them to stay.


My Papa was Bajun

He called Britain his home

A passport was given

So freely he’d roam


Not once was it questioned

This travel he did

For his Great British bosses

He did as was bid


At customs they’d nod

And then wave him through

The might of his passport

All covered in Blue



Has this horror touched us,

And what is our plight,

So far of course not,

but then….we are white!!

By Helen Armet

24 April 2018

4 replies »

  1. Exactly, Helen – that is something which always gets me. It’s so easy, to point a finger when the bigots can see that someone is ‘different’. After one generation, Irish, East European – anyone ‘white’, the accent is gone, and they can’t tell the difference. Well, in fact, you can, if you know lots of people from different nations – it’s easy to recognize national characteristics, but it’s an awful lot easier to see a colour.
    For that matter, even without an accent, different nations have different ways of talking – different ways of expressing themselves – and a good thing too – makes language more interesting. The bigots are usually too limited in their experience and outlook, to notice that, either.
    I am trying to restrain myself from going off on one, as I have done so many times before.
    Britain is made up of so many different peoples, through time – waves and waves – some can be easily recognized, some not.
    And….now….this feckin’ government are, oh so graciously, saying to the West Indian folk, that they can have citizenship !!!!!!!! How can they give them, what they already had? The government took it from them, but, before that – they had it already!
    Ok, I’ll stop now.
    Good one, Helen. I hope a lot of folk get to read this, in TON.

    • Thank you Bernie, like you I have been angered by what is happening but because of my circumstances I have been also confused. My Papa’s brother was Knighted for services to the UK government and unless I am misremembering you need to be British to receive a Knighthood he wasborn n Barbados making him a British Bajun. My heart is breaking at what we are doing. H

  2. It’s another part of the whole load of non-sense which is Britain today. I’m hoping that there will be a vote of No Confidence in Monster May, an election ( I know, we had enough of elections at one time, but ‘needs must…..’). Then, hopefully we get a new, more human, humane leader, who will pull the plug on Brexit and as many other divisive pieces of legislation as possible. I am hopeful.

    Meanwhile, Helen, please try not to let it break your dear heart – this particular non-sense is being sorted, and might even serve as an indicator of how much we need to pay attention to these rules when they are introduced in the first place. Not many folk (including myself) paid attention when Monster May changed the rules in her previous ……..manifestation.
    Please don’t be too distressed – it is being sorted and might help to clear things up for the future.

    What non-sense, though – hurtful non-sense, too.

    And, as you say at the beginning of your poem, many of these people came to Britain, to help to re-build after the war!!!!!!! And did so – played their part.
    I risk going onandonandon, so I’ll stop ….for now!

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