Donna's Blog

Discovery

Posted by donnadawson on January 13, 2016 at 9:20 AM

(copyright 2015) Donna Fawcett

 

I walked through the silence of my parents' secrets.

We cannot tell, they say

The children will suffer

And so I travel through the halls of youth

Lost. Confused. Unknowing of who I am.

 

My mother will say only so much.

He is your grandfather

She is your grandmother

Your great grandfather

And then she stops.

My great grandmother?

Who can say? She averts her gaze.

She doesn't know either

 

My father will say nothing.

He is from the east.

That is all.

I grow up not knowing the names of my grandparents

Only a vague mental picture of

Two people I've never met.

 

Why is my brother dark?

Why does my father have blue eyes in a swarthy face?

Why is my mother's hair walnut brown

Yet her skin is the colour of ivory?

 

Through the passing of years I study the diversity of my siblings

And I know there is something different.

My queries go unanswered.

Who am I?

Canadian? What does that mean?

 

Age and time whittle away at my childhood and my parents' resolve.

Social acceptance changes.

I persist.

Who am I?

As I step into adulthood the truth unwinds itself

Like a carefully coiled strand.

Cautious words are whispered.

We didn't want you children to suffer.

We wanted you to have a normal childhood.

What is normal when you don't know who you are?

 

And then it comes.

Mi'ikmaq. Oneida.

Scottish. French.

I discover I am a mixed bag.

A blending of old and new world.

A melding of people groups divided by an ocean.

 

And something clicks within my heart.

A knowing as though I have always known.

I look in the mirror.

The darkish hair.

The faint olive hue to the skin

The nut brown eyes with a hint of lift at the corners.

I can see it then.

Why did I not see it before?

 

I realize that I am home in the heart of my people.

The Metis.

And I am content.

 

 

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2 Comments

Reply Elder John Gervais
11:17 AM on January 13, 2016 
Hi Donna
Grand Chief Mary Lou Parker shared this touching poem with me. You know this could be my story as well, as my father, like me, had blue eyes and my mother is Mi'kmaq. There is English and German in there as well. I too love to write, as it is a wonderful way for one to express and articulate what they are feeling as spoken words always aren't so easily conveyed. I love your work. Would you mind if I posted a link to your poem on our Facebook page? I am quite sure others will find it as touching and as inspirational as I did. May the Creator bless you and always look after you. You truly do have a gift in your writing......Elder John Gervais, Eastern Woodland Métis Nation Nova Scotia
Reply donnadawson
3:14 AM on February 11, 2016 
Thank you for your kind words.
Hi Donna
Grand Chief Mary Lou Parker shared this touching poem with me. You know this could be my story as well, as my father, like me, had blue eyes and my mother is Mi'kmaq. There is English and German in there as well. I too love to write, as it is a wonderful way for one to express and articulate what they are feeling as spoken words always aren't so easily conveyed. I love your work. Would you mind if I posted a link to your poem on our Facebook page? I am quite sure others will find it as touching and as inspirational as I did. May the Creator bless you and always look after you. You truly do have a gift in your writing......Elder John Gervais, Eastern Woodland Métis Nation Nova Scotia
[/Elder John Gervais]