I Am Cursed!

Definition of Nubian:  a member of one of the group of dark-skinned peoples that formed a powerful empire between Egypt and Ethiopia from the 6th to the 14th centuries.
Definition of Nubian:
a member of one of the group of dark-skinned peoples that formed a powerful empire between Egypt and Ethiopia from the 6th to the 14th centuries.
I don't mind being Black as long as it is only for a holiday. Wouldn't want it be for a lifetime, now would we?
I don’t mind being Black as long as it is only for a holiday. Wouldn’t want it be for a lifetime, now would we?

Confused yet?

Confused yet?

I bleach my skin to make it light!

This Black must come off! I want to be white!


I hate myself because I am hated!

Why is my skin so underrated?


My complexion is on trial, I object to my skin!

I am Black and degraded. I was born not to win.


Take this dark pigmentation that so destroys me!

Every tear that I shed is a heart wrenching plea!


I look at your skin; so white and so pure.

Give it to me! Find me a cure.


I am cursed with such shame that I am black.

My skin is a nightmare and that is a fact.


How many whites have ever loved my race?

I am the one who should paint my face.


 You with your filthy, black stained brush,

and you with that brilliant, red colored blush.


You lie in the sun and bake until you’re brown,

and when you’re Zwarte Piete, you’re a ‘black face’ clown.


Give me your ‘face’ and I will give you mine.

If black is so beautiful, why am I last in line?


Stand next to me, we’ll be black together.

You’ll know what I know; hate and anguish forever.


Written by,

Shelby I. Courtland

© 2013 Shelby I. Courtland

What a dilemma! We have those who because of the dictates of society, have found themselves to actually hate their dark complexion to the point where they will use skin bleaching crèmes and lotions to lighten or ‘whiten’ up. When I was in college, I chose an assignment relating to this issue and when I was giving my presentation on my findings. A ‘Black’ student raised her hand and said to me, “Shelby, of course you can speak against skin lightening crèmes because you are ‘light’. A friend of mine bleached her skin and now she is as ‘light’ as you.” I must say that I felt quite the fool because I never considered what hellish nightmare Black people are living each and every day when someone can look at me and state that their friend, strove to have my complexion when in grade school, I was considered one of the ‘darkies’ and thus relegated to the ‘b(l)ack’ row in the choir and for plays and dances. My mother threw hellish fits when she saw the performances for the PTA that she attended. She knew what was what. I had been innocently unaware of anything untoward. It was only after she stormed through the school that I was made aware that I had been considered too many shades too dark for the first and second row.

We ‘humans’ are sick and depraved when we can make people hate themselves over something that they have absolutely NO control over whatsoever!

On the other hand, we have people, who because of some holiday in the Netherlands, deliberately paint themselves ‘jet’ black to ridicule and make fun of ‘Black’ people and then have the nerve to think that no one should get offended when we already have people who because their skin is dark are affected by racism, bigotry, prejudice and hatred to the point where they are desperate to do ANYTHING to fit in. What a fucking fucked up world we have created! And people have the audacity to tell me that there is hope for this shit. Really? On THAT, we will agree to disagree!

And finally, to those of you whose skin complexion is not to your liking, lightening it or attempting to ‘whiten’ it will not make you feel any better about yourself. Love what you see when you look in that mirror. Make every effort that you can to not buy into the bullshit that is shoved down our throat, day in and day out. I realize that ‘beauty’ is not portrayed as the ‘dark’ skin but why do you think that so many so-called ‘whites’ will lie in the sun for hours risking skin cancer to get what you were born with? Do not let them make you hate yourself, you are too beautiful for that. Love that gorgeous face and body that you were blessed with, believe me, it is envied by those who have you hating that which is what they desire!! Believe me! I know!





21 thoughts on “I Am Cursed!

    1. Wow Robert! That is very moving and touching and I thank you so very much for it and for the reblog! I can always count on my friends here to ‘pick up the torch and ‘join’ me’!

      Thank you again, from the bottom of my heart!!!


  1. Another perfectly written and staggeringly powerful poem.

    Please forgive me, but my overdeveloped sense of justice presses me to add this note: it is NOT your skin colour that “curses” you, Shelby. Look at the blessed and celebrated Oprah or Obama, for instance, and the countless celebrities in Hollywood they have the same skin colour as yours. Meanwhile look at the many millions of the palest whites – all over the world – are just as “cursed” as you are.

    When I used to study in the US, I was openly despised and discriminated against just by my birth origin. Trust me the way they treated me there was the worst nightmare one can imagine. First these opportunist hyenas were gathering around me, picturing me as a future celebrity by my looks and fashionable outfits, then they immediately dropped me like a brick and turned their back when my accent revealed my foreign origin, especially when it turned out I was from eastern Europe, rather than from a European Kingdom they revere.

    I can only wish more would hear me out on this point in this thoroughly divided and conquered world.

    In this fascist system, all who dare to have been born at the wrong place at the wrong time get the “nigger” label. There is only ONE “cursed” category, to be the unprivileged one. Even in the second world war: while the rich Jews were saved and their ass was brought to the US and Switzerland, the mass-killing of the poor Jews went on “happily”.

    On a higher level, however, it is NOT you – or us – who is cursed; it is those who make the unprivileged feel that way.
    I am telling you Shelby, the time of justice is near and these privileged s.o.b’s will reap – both in this world and in the one beyond – what they sow.


    1. Sky, it is not I who feel cursed. I am speaking of those who use crèmes or creams and lotions and bleach to ‘lighten’ their skin because when they take a look around, all that is glorified and revered is the ‘palest white skin’. Black people are buying into the bullshit that it is in their best interest to look as pale as they can by any means necessary. Skin bleaching crèmes are selling and selling big time.

      Many ‘Black’ celebrities pictures have been digitally edited or ‘air brushed’ to make them seem lighter. If you initiate a search for skin bleaching, you will find many pictures of Black singers and actors and actresses and their many different shades of ‘black’ in a before and after context.

      This was not about negating the fact that ‘palest whites’ have issues too. This poem and essay is about the self-hate that many Black people have because in Black communities, Black people are believing themselves to be ‘nothing’ simply because they are deemed too ‘Black’. There are ‘lighter’ skinned Black people who look down on darker skinned Black people because they feel superior to them due to their ‘lighter’ skin tone. Like I stated in my post, I have delved into this in depth when I was in college and I have run across quite a few people who believe, religiously, in skin bleaching crèmes. This is about self hate that has been perpetrated on a race of people by a society that denigrates them and through every media outlet, drums it into them that ‘Black’ is ugly, ‘white’ is beautiful. I have a problem with that because many Black people are again, buying into the bullshit, literally!

      I understand that you are upset about the ‘pale’ whites being issued up, the world over, but the palest whites are still NOT as cursed as the lightest ‘Blacks’ and that is not what this was about!

      Chris Rock said it best:
      “Chris Rock, one of the most successful comedians in America, suggests in his routine that no white person would ever trade places with him.

      “None of you would change places with me and I’m rich! That’s how good it is to be white!” he said.”

      As for the ‘divide and conquer’ strategy, that was put in play long before I was born. We can believe all day long and into the night, that we can overcome our differences and come together against those who plot the downfall of us all, but the time has passed to do anything about that. You have only to look around. We blog about it. We talk about it and yet, we are still conditioned to look at one another and see, an enemy.
      There IS such a thing as ‘white privilege’ that even the palest ‘cursed’ whites enjoy!

      Tim Wise lectures at schools, universities and other organizations about the problem of white privilege.

      “Whiteness allows those of us who have it, and the privileges that come from it, of not knowing black and brown truth,” he said. “It’s having one less thing to sweat [about] when you go in for that job interview.”

      Wise’s lectures are in big demand; he has more than 80 speaking engagements a year. He recently wrote about white privilege in his book “White Like Me.”

      He says discrimination has held black Americans back, and this has privileged whites.

      “If certain folks historically have been elevated above others, their children, their grandchildren are going to be starting out, one, two, five, 10 steps ahead,” he said. “Meritocracy is as close to a lie as you can come.”


      1. Thank you for your thoughtful reply explaining this to me.

        You are probably right, and I am the hard-headed individual because
        I am convinced that all miseries are equally difficult to bear and I think it is a gross mistake to believe that these miseries can be compared.

        One of the major unnerving factors the narcissists routinely apply to navigate their victims is this kind of misleading comparisons.

        My narcissistic mother always made sure that I would feel “loved and lucky” when she was kindly explaining to me that she didn’t want me to be born, but how great and loving mother she was because she didn’t put me into a basket and out in the street. Because some mothers do that, she added.

        On a grand narcissistic scale the same BS is going on in society. People evicted from their homes are “comforted” by the news that there are some far worse miseries than theirs – for instance, they are not children being raped in Africa and get HIV infected. This is the kind of “comfort” flooding each day from all channels, in order to make us feel cosy while either a big chunk or a tiny bit of life is taken away from us.

        No, I don’t feel any more fortunate and better off because I am white.
        I have always treated everyone with respect, fairness and kindness regardless of their skin colour, but guess what – in the US I was mistreated and discriminated against by the non-whites anyway.
        I was nice, respectful and kind, so they concluded I was an easy target.
        So whatever mistreatment they received from the racists they paid back to me – based on my skin colour.
        This experience is another reason why I don’t fall for the division along the racist line. Someone is either a decent, fair, honest, good willing, etc being or not, regardless of his race or whatever.

        No, I don’t feel any blessed just because I don’t need to bleach my skin to be more acceptable. I am unacceptable regardless of my skin-colour. If you want to compare, then my case is even more “cursed”, isn’t it?

        I feel probably the lousiest on earth because mankind – the vast majority of it – is as good as trash and I see no place on earth among so many evil liars, and their enabler opportunists, from all races and all nations. Recently on Twitter I saw a profile saying: “the more I learn about humans the more I love dogs”. I can definitely second that.


  2. Black is definitely no longer considered beautiful in the world marketed to us by corporate media. The Black aesthetic has been Barbied out of the marketplace. For example, “Implants, probable skin lightening, colored contacts, and blonde hair have rendered” songstress “Minaj, physically, into another woman entirely.”


  3. Sky, I do not intend for this to become a ‘slinging’ match. However, I have written, again, in depth about the plight of people the world over. My poems cover a myriad of issues relating to ALL people. With this essay, I am singling out a particular issue that I take issue with. It has nothing to do with negating the suffering of others; yours or anybody else’s. I speak on issues from MY perspective. It may not always coincide with yours, but there you have it. No one is bullshitting me with their narcissistic behavior. I know very well what is going on, but I am still going to write on topics of importance to me and I do not ask nor do I require that anyone has to like it or agree with it.

    I sympathize with you in regards to your family issues and your mother’s narcissistic behavior. Many of us have been subjected to horrible upbringings. That is why there is no dearth of patients languishing on a psychiatric couch if they can afford the fees.

    You have your own blog and if what you find on this one, you take exception to then I can’t help that. And unless ‘dogs’ start blogging, you’ll just have to put up with ‘human’ bloggers with all of the accompanying flaws, shortcomings and failings. If that does not suit you, then I am sure that you will figure something out. I, on the other hand, am off to walk my pet snake, that I am attempting to train to blog.

    Good day!


    1. Thank you AGAIN! The really sad thing is that someone from Ethiopia just found my blog by typing in ‘city lights skin lightener’. As beautiful as the dark skin is why in unholy hell do we have people buying into the bullshit of trying to lighten their already beautiful skin? It just pains me to see so many beautiful Black women, not only here in America, but also over in places like Ethiopia, searching for skin bleaching creams. This is just heartbreakingly sad that so many are into what amounts to ‘self-hatred’ due to the dictates of a fucked up society! For the love of ……!!!!!!!!


      1. Self hatred and anti-blackness is all throughout our community. We need to shed this sickness from our consciousness. It’s all the residue of slavery and we’ve carried it with us all this time. We need to embrace all the beautiful shades of blackness. And know we are a great and beautiful people. There is nothing to be ashamed of. It’s a great think to be melanin rich! Don’t let anyone tell you different.


  4. Great Poem!

    I recently came across a classic lecture by Laila Afrika discussing Melanin. I learned so much more than I used to know. Melanin is more than a superficial aspect of skin, Melanin facilitates brain activity among other things. When we are ignorant of this, we fail to realize that our dark skin is a badge of better internal systems. That said, it’s no surprise skin hatred can be taught to the people with the best skin.


    1. Thank you!

      Part of the problem is when people do not educate themselves ABOUT themselves, but would rather be defined by some magazine or by something that has been projected at them as to what they should strive to look like to be considered, acceptably ‘beautiful’. No one has to tell me what ‘beauty’ is. No magazine will shout to me that their front page cover is what I should attempt to emulate. Again, it just saddens me that so many ‘Black’ people are buying into, that ‘Black’ skin is ugly and, therefore, should be ‘lightened’.

      The next time that I am out shopping, I am going to go into a store and to customer service and loudly ask for their section of ‘skin darkening creams and lotions’, as I am not dark enough to suit me! I can’t wait for the reaction.

      Again, thank you so much for stopping in!


  5. I always have clever things to say, but they escape me now because close to home has been hit.

    I feel the hurt and shame of this entire piece, and I lived it as well. I would like to think that I’m over it, but we know the only thing that’ll get us over it is the undertaker.

    I feel for all my people that live in a world where vision is relative to what’s popular, and Black ain’t never been. Just our carrying on and our shucks and jives. I don’t wanna live in a world where I have get myself prepared to leave the house like a boxer getting ready to enter the ring. But that’s what we have.

    Thank you sis for this painful piece. I don’t know why I’m not getting your post in my inbox. I shall go and correct that at once lest I not miss out.

    Again thank you very kindly.


    1. Bless your sweet heart HLJ! I am so sorry that this one resonates so deeply with you. It is shameful what has been done and is still being done to those of us who were, indeed, blessed with our complexion and yet those who hate us have turned our own skin against us even as they try and emulate us in every way. I remember years ago, the whites used to try and shame Black people saying that we have ‘thick lips’ and now they are using everything from ‘lip plumping’ to surgical methods to get what they call, ‘fuller lips’. The ‘whites’ would state that Black people had the ‘bubble butt’ and then what did they do?, turn right around and pad their ass to try and get what they considered to be ‘our’ look. They tan themselves to death and yet, they are still able to make us ‘hate’ ourselves when we stand in front of the mirror.

      It is painful to know that the beautiful Black race is confused, hurting, hating and lost and feeling ‘cursed’. We have got to find our way back to loving ourselves despite and in spite of what is shoved down our throat to the contrary. I refuse to let them win. I refuse to accept defeat. Please, you must find strength. I know that it is hard when you’ve been beaten down your whole entire life. Do not think that I am not affected by what is shoved down my throat. I shove back and I give it back to them with everything that I have.

      If you only had some idea of the hell I give those(the whites)who cross my path, then you would know that I give better than I’ve ever gotten from them, godless fucks that they are. Pardon my French, but it disturbs me to no end to see the effects on us that their hatred of us has achieved. Yes, we were once a strong race of people, but we have endured much. Slavery and servitude, racism, bigotry, you name it and they have thrown it at us. That is too much for anyone to take and not be affected by it.

      The only thing that I can say is to try and stay strong and know who YOU are despite the fact that they(the whites)are hell bent on making you into someone that you hate! Don’t let them win! Try to tune them out and spit them out! Do not let them in!

      And above all, take care of YOU, my brother!

      Much love!


  6. Hey Shelby – I love all colors. I love all faces. I believe whites are diluted and deluded. This time round, we were made from the earth, beautiful browns all. I weep at the hatred, regardless of who is targeted.

    Shalom to you, dear one.


    1. Ahh, Sam! Thank you! What a precious comment! It is heart shattering to know that people can be made to hate the color of their own skin to the point of trying to ‘lighten’ it.

      The ‘whites’ rage at us because they have no sense of who they are. Why burn yourself to death if you are happy with who you are? Why get injections to plump up your lips if you are happy with who you are? Why get implants if you are happy with who you are? So, if they are not happy with who they are, it stands to reason that those whom they emulate, they will stop at nothing to make them hate what it is they so desire. It is all so senseless, this back and forth emulation and for what? With all that is wrong in this world, superficiality has no place in the grand scheme of things. Of course, I cannot make a person love themselves, I can only point out how senseless it all is to wish to copy the ‘look’ of another in order to make you feel good about yourself. Sigh…! We ‘humans’ must always cause ourselves more pain and suffering over mere trivialities when there are so many other things that we should be doing to mitigate the suffering caused by poverty, hunger, homelessness and lack of health care.

      Again thank you for your comment.

      Peace to you!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s