African Communion by Tom Simpson

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They came concealed in ceremonial robes:


White robes, beautifully bright robes:

Behold, your new God!

But this new God was a jealous God,

And righteous was his jealousy;

He was pure, White,




He would suffer no toleration of black gods,

Impure gods,

Gods of darkness and not of light. 

 light was shone

in the darkness,

And the black gods were sent to a black, ashy death.

Around the African body was draped the new robe;

A skin, white, 

Stripped from the man they called their God. 

A skin stripped from the man they sacrificed to their selves

But the skin bore a parasite, 

And it ate of the African body 

As white eats of black, 

As white eats of Christ's black death, 

To hide the guilt of their sin, 

To begin the ceremony of the communion

Which was their division. 

"Take you and eat of this, for this is my body."

The unleaven wafer was taken and eaten, 

And it nourished the Saviours who had brought 

Africa its Salvation.

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  1. Thank you so much for making this available.

    Do you mind providing an analysis of the poem?

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