Saturday, September 30, 2006

poetry selections

selected poetry and responses by critics
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provocation-CRIME in Trinidad & Tobago


beads of perspiration
anticipating exhalation, harbouring
incessant cramps. Pervading rancid
aroma of rotting cabbage
curdling calabash enthrals. So
minister protest price of flour
racist hairstyle exclusion, induced
weather patterns wreck my islands. Please
arrest this provocation

Mechanised imported wigs unable to protect
robbed and beaten retired heads of states, impounded
BE- oh-ac/dc leased planes, airport bomb threats, frozen
bank accounts, criminal deportees, luxury flats,
wire-tapping. Charges, arrests
and more charges. Please
arrest this provocation

stew sour tamarind innocence banished
leh go beast on the loose
school boys running like mad from police
untreated violent behaviour, feeding trauma
stranger, unfamiliar faced passenger
friend or maxi taxi driver
victim to a high-tech villain
without identification. Please
arrest this provocation

murders, gang-warfare, common assault
of prisoners or mps . Violent pop
concerts linked to aggressive
behaviour shot up by police. Testing
entrance examinations. Forgotten
communities where fear reigns. Please
arrest this provocation

government officials pray with feuding gang-leaders
robberies, drive-by shootings, kidnapping,
slain police officers families at funerals
blazing road blocks rubbished. Terrified
shot up bystanders as
as if escaped from saint anns
with messages. Please
arrest this provocation

venerable small business proprietors
their kidnapped siblings
chorale beseeching prime security minister
for gun licences. Ongoing arguments over constitution,
extraditions, regulations , crime legislations. Assassinations
acquisitions, accusations. Please
arrest this provocation

cabildo without spanish expatriates
disrespected douglas, afrikans an' east indians,
legal appointments, consultants, foreign archbishop,
voter padding, ransom payments, hustling q-cees,
drugs washed ashore, victims of crime
innocent without redress. Please
arrest this provocation

gun running syndicates, another olympian
promised an accommodation. Stolen chalice
of communion, daylight police shooting
civilians an' bandits, coup rumours
missing army hardware, stolen uniforms
uzis ablaze mayhem, terror senseless
parrying with death. Please
arrest this provocation

insinuations of criminals in
almost every home. Venal politicians,
sellers of cloth exposed. Faulty nuts
causing caroni explosions. Please
arrest this provocation

Friday, September 29, 2006

a warning from mother earth


rainbows as promised
after the storm

How many will accept that
tact an’ diplomacy with patience
are the keys to our social progress ?


with official acknowledgement
for the selfless efforts of our predecessors

(including those of the first nations)

excerpt from as long as

Thursday, September 28, 2006

guarding the botanic

guarding botanic gardens

Grey haired Ali worked hard
as a police, not a real one- an estate warden
attached to the Ministry of Agriculture
Land and Fisheries. Guarding adjacent
Governor General’s stone house
the Botanic Gardens. Here on Sundays

Supt. Fitzroy Prospect since
graduating in England conducted
the police band. Classic renditions
in Victorian bandstand. Shadowed
by Ali, in his worn but neatly pressed
khaki uniform. Propping up the old
iron gate, his trousers was long
unlike normal police, his hat like a captain
a strange badge with the queen’s
crown. Polite was he

pleasant disposition.

Never knew at an early age,
his Arabic name meant
“ of high station” so we teased
his sons at our school. Jeering
poverty of their home. Two jobs

selling us curry and guarding
botanic gardens astride
Government’s Raleigh bicycle…
Only in adulthood understanding
he was a widower an’ single father
to seven