I refuse to stay silent

I will not stand by
and let this great nation
drop down to its racist
roots and become less
than it’s great aspiration
to be the land of the fair-go.

I will not be silent when
the trolls and ‘warriors’
put civiI debate in chains
and see their right to free
speech as their permission
to engender hurt and
make people feel unsafe.

I refuse to be a dupe and
stay silent when bullies are
at play in their dirty sandpits
and throwing the sand in
the eyes of our first peoples
and all who want to take a
stand on issues we all share.

I affirm the right to opinion
and presenting a point of view,
but I stand arm-in-arm with those
who want to see a society
of respect, a society of care,
a place of welcome where
old and new can enter
conversations without
feeling afraid.


For Stan Grant