I Am Different Yet Just The Same

I was different yet just the same

But I was hunted down like game

I stood out like an ant in a sugar bowl

But hoped no-one would notice me at all


I smiled at everyone who came near

But all I could feel was their inner fear

I faced each day with impending dread

Was this the day I would be dead?


Each night I was tired with exhaustion

From looking over my shoulder with caution

My parents would warn me to be careful

“Don’t try to think you can beat the devil”



I was different yet just the same

My white haters could never be tame

It goes back to so long ago

When plantation masters ran the show


At first they broke my body down

My face portrayed a defeated frown

'Twas not 'til they stole my soul away

That the blues came into my heart to stay


The farm dogs were always well fed and bold

Whilst I was born to be bought and sold

Destined to labour for those without heart

A slave to white masters wrong from the start


I dream my children grow to live better days

Tho' my memory of hardship may never fade

The feet of men and women of darker shade

Will one day march in a victorious parade.


I AM different yet just the same....


© Copyright Maria D'Alessandro 2012. All Rights Reserved.

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Comments 18 comments

xstatic profile image

xstatic 4 years ago from Eugene, Oregon

Unfortunately that "difference" continues to be used against too many people, even in voting rules. This is a too true Hub. Up/awesome!


Laurinzo Scott profile image

Laurinzo Scott 4 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

scrittobene I must say that this is an incredible poem. The words flowed with meaning, depth, and brought forth strong emotions.

Emotions that as an African American I know all too well.

The most amazing thing about this hub is that it would certainly seem that an African American (modern day) or even that a live slave may have composed it.

The fact that you captured that expression means that you are indeed ..."different yet just the same". It means you are what WE all should be is... MORE HUMAN...

Bravo!!!!!


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois

Oh this was so difficult to read..Brought tears..The struggles, the fears, you conveyed them so well. A very sad time in America's history. When i read about slavery, it brings shame. Your poetry is beautiful, your words flowed beautifully. Thank you, Least we forget.....Cheers


Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

Gypsy Rose Lee 4 years ago from Riga, Latvia

Voted up and awesome. Maria you expressed the pain of slaves and their destiny so well. I agree with always exploring it did bring tears. So glad slavery is a thing of the past. Just wish everyone would accept others because of themselves and not their color. Passing this on.


scrittobene profile image

scrittobene 4 years ago from Melbourne Australia Author

@ xstatic - thanks kind sir for dropping by once more

@ Laurinzo - your personal comment here means a lot to me. I set out to hopefully honor well the memory of those African Americans in history who suffered at the hands of the powerful in a time of ignorance and prejudice and wrongful morality. It is our good fortune that nothing in life (neither good or bad) stays the same forever. Thankfully even slavery eventually came to an end. Although in modern times, the inalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness together with the values of equality and respect for African Americans may not yet be quite on par with those enjoyed by white Americans, the struggle for these ideals has come a long way since the days of being owned like property on a typical American plantation.


scrittobene profile image

scrittobene 4 years ago from Melbourne Australia Author

@always exploring - thanks so much for reading this. I am honoured that you were moved by my character's account of his plight as a slave.


epigramman profile image

epigramman 4 years ago

...you are so different from the rest of us mere mortals when you write and it's always the same too - brilliant words to make us think and feel but I am afraid Ms. Scrittobene there will be two people left on this earth and they will still be fighting over their differences; when it comes to people, generally speaking, I am not apathetic just realistic and you can't change the very nature of the beast.

Cain slew Abel all of those years ago .....and he will do it again.

Skin color, race, creed, religion, politics ...... it doesen't matter - differences are differences to some silly people when really the differences between people should be a beautiful and receptive thing where we can explore and share with each other ....... lake erie time 12:33pm gotta hang my head down in shame and cry about this one - and heck where is the VM man these days - how come he doesen't leave me any rave reviews anymore 'in your comment space' - where him go - what him do?


Tom Balunis 4 years ago

Voted awesome. Your depiction of slavery and racial descrimination are right on point.


bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 4 years ago from Central Florida

It disgusts me to know how we treated people of color. Slavery is something I really cannot fathom. It pains my heart to think how each soul must have felt. So unfair. So unjust. For what? We are all people. We all breathe air and have blood flowing thru our veins.

Our differences is what makes life interesting. What would we talk about if everyone was the same and lived the same lifestyle? Our differences should be embraced and celebrated, not punished!

Very nicely written poem, despite the history!


epigramman profile image

epigramman 4 years ago

...and speaking of questions questions questions ....where you is?

where you be?

Me wondering what de heck is goin' on here?

Oh I get it ...... you've gone off and joined Bobbie D on his never ending world tour .........nice.


marcello 4 years ago

respect !


QudsiaP1 profile image

QudsiaP1 4 years ago

Such a powerful message, worded brilliantly.


scrittobene profile image

scrittobene 4 years ago from Melbourne Australia Author

@ Epi - Thanks Colin for your rave review. You are absolutely right, differences in people whether it be in race, creed or writing style :) LOL should be celebrated and seen as a beautiful diversity which enriches us all. And you dear Colin, are the most different person I know - Thank God for that.


Sueswan 4 years ago

Hi scrittobene,

"I dream my children grow to live better days

Tho' my memory of hardship may never fade

The feet of men and women of darker shade

Will one day march in a victorious parade."

I pray for the day when we all can march together in unity and peace.

Voted up and away

Take care :)


rahul0324 profile image

rahul0324 4 years ago from Gurgaon, India

Respect for my Lady,,,

What a shame on man,, to treat his brothers disrespectfully on the basis of color and creed

When will we learn

Great piece Maria


shruti sheshadri profile image

shruti sheshadri 4 years ago from Bangalore, India

A great line' I am different, but just the same'

truly thought provoking :) But things are seeming to improve now isnt it? Hoping for the best!

voted up, and shared :)


Vincent Moore 4 years ago

Slavery has been around since the dawn of mankind. Sadly it continued to move through the 18th century and still to present day. The color of a persons skin has greatly affected his survival. There will always be racists in the shadows and some very outspoken and demonstrative in crowds or gangs. Man has been a power hungry, selfish, greedy, war monger, slayer, killer, destructive and deadly species since the first day they appeared on earth. Utopia on earth will only be revealed at the end times and nobody knows when that time will come.

I trust and pray that mankind will come to its senses before doomsday. We sing and talk about LOVE LOVE LOVE yet very few know its true meaning or practice it. We are all slaves to the societies we live in and slaves to our governments. Maria, this piece was very well written. I felt the pulse behind your pen. Bravo....btw Colin I still think you are a raving writer and so do a 1,000 or more of your loyal and dedicated fans.


scrittobene profile image

scrittobene 4 years ago from Melbourne Australia Author

@Vincent - your precious time is always valued by me whenever you leave a comment on any of my poems. I am especially glad that you feel the pulse in my writing. It is something I try very hard to convey to my readers. Many thanks again.

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