Sam Broussard
Sam Broussard
Image courtesy of
Daniel Affolter



On etait punis pour parler en francais

but we spoke French on the playground



Roosevelt decreed

that we would all be

les Americains

One nation in English

not in Cajun French

or Mexican


So Poppa sent me

said "public school, it's free

learn to read and write

'Cause T-Neg don't be

no Cajun farmer like me

who cuss and fight

on a Saturday night"


She whipped me 'til I could pray

in their damn anglais

and read and write

I said, 'Miz Breaux tu parles Cadjin

exactement comme moi'

she said, 'You're right'

but I quit, I won't be no low-class coonass

farmer's daughter serving up

the rice and gravy

And I'll be married soon as I can

to some black-boot Houston oil man

I pray

Now get out of my way


And, T-Neg, if that's your name

to me that's such a shame

And it ain't no uptown girl

who's gonna marry you, T-Neg'


The coloreds and the white

tenant farming side by side

on hands and knees

We all lived right next door

ten, twelve children maybe more

Us Catholics breed


Until I went to school most people

that I knew were coffee-colored brown

We'd have fell apart if we'd moved to town

in fear and hate we'd put each other down

Better stay out of town


And T-Neg, that's my name

to me it ain't no shame

And it ain't no uptown girl

who married ol' T-Neg

Je m'appelle T-Neg

ca veut dire 'little friend'

Et toi, t'es mon neg'

ca veut dire 'my dear' pour toujours

ma negress

Copyright © 2007, Sam Broussard. All Rights Reserved. Site by rowgully.