Mon | Dec 5, 2022

Poetry (2)

Published:Sunday | May 20, 2012 | 12:00 AM

Poem of the Week

Your child needs ...

Always listen to the child

Loudness is as resonant as a gong

Boundaries may become barriers

Be attentive to his complaints/distress/grouse

Be wary of silence before it becomes deafening ...

Sing a song of civic pride

It may control his destiny

Create the ambience with white noises

And discover the peaceful path ...

Develop self-worth/esteem

Utilise all the stressors

But in negative stress turn away

Caregiver, educator, facilitator, protector, provider

Love is the icing on the cake ...

- Elaine Fay Lewis

Just a mother away

Just a mother away

I think of my Grandmother Aunt Jemima Smith

who I never knew

in the flesh

but lived and learned all she knew about the health-care system

and how she triumphed to reshape reality

I think of my Grand Aunt Lena Turner

who turned things around in the family

collecting rent, buying property

buying apples in the Coronation Market

how she did without a visit to the "eye" doctor at the new

University College Hospital

used the tram fare

to buy my mother socks for school inspection


she made it to Coke Chapel for communion

I cannot turn back from being a Christian

The mothers on the Continuum

My own mother, woman in the first battalion of women soldiers, Royal Corps

one founder of the University MONASA ...

fighting for women's rights

Mother of mothers


as all my mothers

making me ... mother

- Helen-Ann Wilkinson

Calabar mother

For my son, Andrew

Love me not with flowers

today or any other day

Love me by loving yourself

Doing the best for yourself

Doing what is right!

No matter what they tell you, child

"Short cut draw blood!"

So walk the straight and narrow

Do Good

Save some

Give to those who are needy

Justice is in your own hands

my child, love me sure

But love me by loving yourself

Achieving "The Utmost for the Highest"!

- Helen-Ann Wilkinson

Mama's love

Mama mi promise yuh seh mi ago mek yuh proud

Mi neva use to listen to yuh always a follow di crowd

Until seet deh, now mi shame a miself

an yuh suppose fi shame a mi to

But yet yuh smile, kiss an hug mi an seh "chile mi love yuh"

How can yuh still love mi after all di trouble an pain mi cause

Because a mi yuh haffi struggle an put yuh own life pan a pauses,

Mi will neva understan a mother's love

it jus look like it surpass every other gift dat God gives from above

Dem suffer all a di trials and tribulation

An dem neva yet seek retribution

Mama, a hope yuh undastan

Seh a yuh a my Jamaican queen my greatest champion

Mi a fi yuh number-one fan

Mama, mi seh mi ago mek yuh proud

yuh love is everlasting, so surreal but true

Mama Joy, I love you.

- Shereda Morgan


(Voices of all the children who were, and are still being sexually abused)

How could they have said such a thing?

How could they have said I lied?

How could they have said it was just a fling?

When that day, my innocence died.

How could he have punished me

In the most unbearable way?

If it was right, why did he hide it from eyes to see

And touched me, day after day?

You ask," Why am I now so bitter"

Why am I now so sad?

Never will I trust a sitter

Yes, the sitter was my dad.

- Jonah-lee Brown

To our teachers, we salute you

Tinga linga ling

School bell a ring

Yes! Mi ago learn new sinting

Wedda a maths, science or reading

Mi always excited fi tek in mi teacha teaching.

Nowadays, wi nuh respec' wi teacha dem anymore

Teacha a get lick fi six an four

Memba back den wen teacha use to beat wi till wi soar

Wi cud'n even consida fi tell wi parents, cause pan tappa dat, wi wudda get even more.

Nowadays, wi get so revengeful and hardcore

Wi a get di opportunity fi learn an is like wi a shut di door.

Teachas are like wi second parents,

Di classrooms suppose fi be a stressfree, learning environment

But, instead, it get suh tense

Is like a war a gwaan between teachas an students.

Respec need fi show to all a di teacha dem

Yes, mi understan seh sometime dem wi mek wi screw an ben,

But a who really ago benefit inna di end?

Again, respect due!

And to all our teachers, we salute you!

- Shereda Morgan


Children must not play wid matches

Now 'CRICKET', dem bun up de grass

Cause yuh, yuh livelihood

How fast can yuh fly?

Disguise yuhself

wig or whatever

earth to ozone


Fire brigade de smoke ah choke wi

Yuh gwine have to tek kotch

In anoda 'tratosphere'

For dis ketch 'galaxial' portions

However, I did warn dem bout Sabrina

When she pickney doan't win

She beat he, de umpire, de coach

Now wi

is what dem ave to do wid wi?

Ova, Ova


Ave mercy, take cova



Is who sey dat? Must be an 'overseas' spectator

Sorry sorry

Wrong wud

Is just a silly slip

Ouch, ah mean silly mid off

Do, stap throw rack stone

Use a ball


Me neva know Sabrina

Have so much pickney

Dem ah come fi wi





I see sea, stars

Regulations changing

Dats why I doan like to

Play in dat place

Dey so obsess wid de



'Weather' is heads or


Same coin … ouch, no batta board wi

Call a truce

Sir Anthony …

While children must be seen and heard

Who does not hear

Will feel, whoa!

Look fellows, best yuh oil yuh bat, line up

Like 'Mrs Bhakcu in V.S. Naipaul's Miguel Street

... I feel the land sliding

It look like another

Whipping …

- Helen-Ann Wilkinson


Speeding past your mileage of forlorn simplicity

Devouring with graceless ardour

Your erstwhile comparative replications

Of falsifications

Moral standards and discipline a totally

Forgotten issue

Uprooted through the depths of evil

Your uncertified obligations

Child of the heathen ... wake up

View the whitewashed sepulcher

Moral obligations and common decency

Your triumph of righteousness

Child of the 'Universe' bereft with disappointment

Tomorrow we shall wave the banners

High with great anticipation

Trump card of facetious triumph and

Splendour ...

- Elaine Fay Lewis

A salute to the Jamaican flag

Join in a salute to the Jamaican flag,

A symbol of our ideals, creativity, and nationalism

Making our work the standard of our progress;

Always supporting one another, and aiming for the best,

in all things remembering, we are from the dust,

Coming through struggles, but passing ahead,

Alone, sometimes in darkness, but seeing the light for -

Nothing defeats us if we strive for the right;

Fighting adversity, poverty, and 'slavery of the mind',

Leaving us depressed, confused, and divided

Along the fearful and dangerous road of life but -

Going forward in hope for a better and brighter future

The Jamaican flag! Oh flag of Jamaica!

We salute you with respect and loyalty

Emblem of our nation for urgent fulfilment,

Out of many, one people. One people!

- Lindsay P. Moncrieffe

Dying to live

She sits

In silence

Waiting for her day

Hands folded neatly

In her lap


Into the distance

Looking for life?

Looking for hope?

She sits

On an old wooden bench

In an eerie quiet

In a vacuum of time

Spine arched

In silent surrender

Feet firmly planted

On the ground of disappointment

Bare feet

Dry, cracked heels

Resting on soft, dark-brown earth

Muddying the hem

Of a long, flowing skirt

She sits

And looks

And deliberates

The life to which

She has resigned


Slowly rises

Re-enters the monotone

Leaving space

For another soul

To come

And sit

And contemplate

- Ruth Howard