Meet Manal Younus, two-time Australian Poetry Slam National finalist.
For Manal Younus, poetry has been an outlet that let her express things she couldn’t always say. From her first spoken-word performance as a 15-year-old, Younus has since shared her poetry in venues all around the world.
A new poem, Ashy Knees, contributed to an anthology Growing up African in Australia, explores self-love as an Australian person of color. She spoke to The Pin on the meaning behind her piece.
“Through just a few key moments it explores this reinforced idea that blackness and being black is bad. Moments that keep coming back and reminding us ‘Don’t kneel, or crawl, or your knees will go black,’” she says.
“It’s important for us to recognize that these experiences…have a direct impact on how we treat and value our bodies. You can still be empowered and still preach self-acceptance, but hate what you see in the mirror.”