Fátima, Fado e Futebol

By Nadiyah Fisher


The favelas are like dominoes 

All the same color but some are more tainted than others 

We all fall together 

One on top of the other 

The closeness is stifling but we cannot help but fall together 


Why is my home so replaceable? 

Are the inhabitants of any value? 

The men in the orange hats point at my windows  

I saw what happened next door. 


Why does it have to be hosted here?  

There are hundreds of countries, but you chose mine. 


I grew to have a love for the place I was sanctioned into 

Why would the gringos want to come to this side of town 

They have football, is that not enough? 

Futebol too? 

I have never been to a stadium. They have one in every state. 

You want my scraps too? 

The hut they pushed us in. 

Where we all look the same as the houses 


Where did this money come from? 

You’ve built for weeks but your people are suffering 

Walk past beggars with their hands out  

While you use yours to tear their houses down 

Is it a crime? 


The PPU does not come to save us any other time. 

Why are they here today? 

The gringos are coming; that’s why 

The land of Fatima, Fado, and Futebol but Fatima wouldn’t approve of this 

The displacement of her people  

The lack of community  

And the myth of harmony 

The Lies of a racial democracy 

Class used as a blanket over the issue 


How can the majority be hidden? 

Our history runs deeper than any well  


Who do I call when my item is stolen? 

Who can get it back for me? 

We call but you do not answer our cries 

Our cries are like fado to your ears 

Our melancholy used for your consumption  

Saudade is only a lyric for you 

While my longing never stops 

You try to control a place that you have never been 

My hut needs a makeover now  

The gringos are coming 

Our living conditions are painted over by Orfeu Negro  

Exotic, enticing, and diverse  

You attracted the gringos to a place that is not real 

Don’t paint the favelas now that the gringos are here 

This is not like movies. The travel agencies lied. 



não haverá copa! 

não haverá copa! 

não haverá copa! 



But you have earplugs in 

While I am bruised with rubber bullets and restrained 

Is fighting for shelter a crime? 

Is fighting for mine a crime? 

Scraps don’t require security 

Stop watching me 

This is the first time you have done 

You turn a blind eye to the crime  

But the Copa has your eyes wide 


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