When Giants Die
(For Ian Boyne, Lester Spaulding, Dr. Claude Packer, and more)
When giants die
The wind folds its winnowing fan
and feeds on silence.
Birds in mid-song stutter-
And their notes fall to pieces like ashes
on the grey back of a grief-stricken morning.
The sun covers its face with sheets
of dark clouds, and the rain begins
We stroll around listless.
unable to answer mind-numbing questions.
And a strange chasm divides peace from rest
in our hearts, and nights are merciless tunnels.
When giants die
A chapter of heaven is snatched from earth,
like prized love.
The world takes on a solemn shade of grey
and languishes for acts of goodwill, beauty
When giants die,
The mirror of life mirrors mortal frailty
so it can search its soul for ills and do penance.
When giants die,
Angels fold their wings,
place aside their harps, sit still on
Heaven's balcony with bowed heads
in a poignant tribute to greatness.
The clock alarms Sunday afternoon
From my nap I'm wide-awake
Another episode of Profile
To appreciate and partake
For almost thirty years
I've received great inspiration
From this my favourite show
On national television
My mother and I shared
This wonderful affinity
For this regular dose
Of Jamaican positivity
The guests are different
In gender, age, passions and ability
Sharing struggles and successes
Victory and vulnerability
Ian Boyne, the host
Articulate journalist, avid reader
A well-researched, gracious
Yet inquisitive information weeder
Profile provides real-life education
-.A mini arts and science degree
Religion, sports, and motivation
Add to its depth and variety
International guests, investors and innovators
Athletes, actors and authors
Some controversial, some famous
Many focused determined overcomes
Spirituality and family values
Respect, reading and resilience
Are reinforced along with those of
Industry, integrity, and interdependence.
I've had the pleasure of watching
Many a relative and friend
And anticipate sharing with others
About the book I have penned
I was watching Profile two Sundays ago
When I heard he wasn't well
We joined with many for him in prayer
Rejoiced when we heard that he was on the repair.
On Monday last,
While watching a Profile rebroadcast,
My husband the sad news me did tell.
"Fake news" I said, "let's get the facts".
"It wasn't announced on TV".
One click on Twitter told me all
As I noted the number one trend
Jamaica has lost a gentle giant
Who feels like everyone's friend.
Ian's gifts took kings to him
And him to King's House
"Photo op" with Prime Ministers five
What a loss! What shock!
Can't believe he's no longer alive!
Farewell to you Mega-journalist.
It's a gross understatement to say you'll be missed.
God is gracious
Mi Monday spoil!
Mi profile dim
Mi neva bawl so from mi bawn!
All now mi kyaa believe it
Di fack dat Ian gawn!
Is Sunday night mi look pon im ina picture fawm
Den, Monday mawning, mi sit down
An hear seh Ian gawn!
Mi know im neva come fi live forever
An mi kyaa seh "Gone too soon"
All mi know is dat di sunshine suddenly lef di room!
Some seh dem gwine miss im special laugh
An im fantastic knowledge pool
Im deportment, depth, an candidness
An how im always cool.
Ian neva fraid fi stan up fi wat im did believe
Im did know jus wah fi seh
Fi motivate an lead.
Who going to tackle former tief pon
Who going to 'Profile' scholars who crawl from mud
Fi turn stalwarts?
Mi kyaa even tink bout Christmas
To how mi feel space-out.
Mi fren dat Ian interview
Tan up, open mout!
Wi all have "Issues" but no "Answers".
We deh ya now
Nex day wi gone
Das why wi fi live to uplift
Instead of doing harm.
Well, according to H. Wadsworth Longfellow
In his A Psalm of Life:
"Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime
And, departing, leave behind us
Footprints on the sands of time."
So long Ian!
Erica Brown Marriott