I owe no apology for my black skin;
I am what I am
But most of all, I am a proud creation of a wise and just creator.
I owe no apology.

I owe no apology for a skin that illuminates
in the sun.
That blends with the darkness of the night,
That distinguishes me from others,
Though much suffering and pain has been heaped
upon me because of it.
I will not bow to humiliation – I owe no apology.

Thorns and thistles have been placed in my bed
to prevent my rest.
Broken glass in my path to impede, even stop
my progress.
But broken in spirit I am not, for right is on
my side.
I owe no apology.
I am proud of these black hands for they have
carved an empire.
This body for it has endured much;
A mind that refuses to be twisted by an adversary
who defames me with every accusation.

Every blame he has laid at my door,
Every conceivable name he has called me –
Even likened me to a craven animal.
My adversary did not forget to employ every means
to brow beat me into submission
That I might acknowledge his superiority and my inferiority.

But like a flower I smile, while he frowns,
Shoulders erect, head high, never looking back
lest I fall knowing that I owe no apology
For the same God created us all.