Mr. Big Man by Jameelah Medina

Jameelah Medina

This past week, I have discussed with college students the time I was wrongly arrested and harassed by an Islamophobic Sheriff Deputy several years ago, which led to a successful court case against my county spearheaded by the ACLU. I opened up the discussion with the following religiously feminist spoken word piece I wrote:


Mr. Big Man

You told me what to write, word for word for word for word in my statement,

To get me caught up in your trickery is what you meant,
Acting like you were my friend,
Just so that you could win,

Me over and dictate the stroke of my pen,

But then

You had questions like: Why do you cover? Why would you choose Islam?
I told you that into this din I was born and I hold fast to it by my own choosing,
The disgust in your pores oozing,
As you berated me with your hatred,
Not realizing that my mission is sacred,
Much like the oath to which you’ve sworn,
In that khaki and green uniform,
Like a mix of dust and dreams gone torn,
Against the wings of a butterfly hijab with which I was adorned.
Your eyes so full of uncontained hate,
That your tongue can’t help but re-create,

The lies you have chosen to believe

Helping to achieve

Your sense of supremacy

Without regard for decency

Or even pretending to

be a real man, Mr. Big Man.
Yeah, in those moments you abused your power
Sending me through a locked down tower
Not foreseeing the final hour,

In which you’d be called to answer,

For the cancer,

Living inside your mind causing you

to trample on my religious right,

Conjuring my ancestors up for the fight,

For the battle that would ensue,

As the court document was served upon you, Mr.

Big Man.
Thinking you can,
Do as you please,

With ease,

Then trying to hide,

Then escape the tide,

And the ride,

You took me on thinking I’d cry and let it slide.

Mr. Big Man
I didn’t shoot the sheriff or the deputy,
And I wanna thank you for helping me

Fulfill one of my destinies

To change the county’s policies

And be able to see,

That other women remain free,

To let their hijabs flow,

Faces infused with a natural glow,

And not uncover

In front of another

No, this will not happen to another,

Like me,

So, I thank you Mr. Big Man, Mr. Deputy.


Jameelah X. Medina, Ph.D., is an educator, author, and orator. Her latest book, ABCs of Living a Good Life: 26 Things I’ve Learned along the Way, is available for free on her She is also the owner and operator of Dr. J’s Apothecary where she makes all-natural products for health and wellness.

Categories: Abuse of Power, Activism, General, Justice, Poetry, religion, Women's Agency, Women's Rights

Tags: , , ,

3 replies

  1. Hooray for the ACLU. I’m glad you got their help to deal with this jerk the way he deserved.


  2. Powerful poem. Must be amazing spoken.


  3. I could hear the words as I read them. Magnificent. Simply magnificent. We have poetry jams here from time to time. I do so wish you could present this poem — it would be well received.


Please familiarize yourself with our Comment Policy before posting.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: