‘I’m 16 years old, raised on the Barn of the Crumlin Road’

Fighting Words 2020: Me, by Sean Machingure, ‘Young black boy, Crumlin, no accent’

File photograph: iStock

File photograph: iStock


Name: Sean Machingure 
Age: 17 
School: Rosary College Crumlin, Dublin 12 


Sean Machingure
Sean Machingure

Who am I?

Well, I’m 16 years old, raised on the Barn of the Crumlin Road.

Young black boy, Crumlin, no accent.

Only Black Boy in all of my life’s classes.

Only coloured boy, I wish I wasn’t alone...

had friends to help at school, but not at home.

‘Weirdo’ ‘Psycho’ ‘Muppet’ ‘Tick’...

All the crap names that my bullies would pick, even worse names like ‘N****r’ which would make me sick,

Pushed me on the ground and gave me a slap,

And I’m the one in trouble if I ever push back.

I wish I could turn time and start over again,

but you can’t fast forward, rewind or pause, just press play.

My mam was always there, my dad disappeared.

Friends come and go but family are still there.

People always laugh at me and think that they can win through,

but I hate when they judge me no knowing what I’ve been through.

I smile while I’m hurting, I laugh while I’m crying

When I’m sad or alone I keep an optimistic mind

And when I’m threatened and hurt I still stand my ground.

An African boy, “in a crate he was found”,

An irreverent way to bring my self-esteem down.

But I digress, my mother comes from there...

With her light brown skin and her curly hair.

Came with nothing, had to work from scratch

From village to city but not just like that (click)

From mad colour coated fabrics to dull black and white

From joined brothers and sisters to stinging stereotypes

So again my name is Sean and I hope you’ll stick around

So who Am I? Well I’m Crumlin and I’m Irish, Sound!!