1. THE BEGINNING



    I will take you to the source
    Of the terrible past:
    Sun begat moon Moon begat ocean
    Ocean twisted its configuration
    Into paper which begat
    Countless stories splashed on sand.

    Out of sand, the graven image.
    The moon shone on it.
    The wind whipped past its ankles.
    Twenty-eight miles tall,
    It grew and grew.

    Shadows fell from it,
    Making night into more night.
    Out of the darkness flew Papa Bois
    And he dipped his finger
    Into the Atlantic ocean
    And so begat whirlwinds,
    Staircases of water that twisted skywards –
    And some of it fell into the wells
    That pierced the flatlands
    And out of them came the creatures
    Whose hearts pumped eternal night,
    And their shapes were diabolic.

    Through towns and villages
    The great shadow crossed
    And rain followed it
    Swept along the current of its black cloak,
    Flinging itself hard as channa to the Earth,
    And splintering.


    That was when Lagahoo awoke
    And rubbed his eyes, muttering
    “This crap must stop”.


    And he crawled thirteen miles
    To the foot of the monstrous image
    And on its toe
    Wrote his name with an oar.

    So it was that earth devoured sand
    And light, the darkness,
    And Lagahoo, unimpressed,
    Built a great bonfire
    And combed his hair
    While Papa Bois and his children wept.

    Fire begat heat
    And heat, the frenzy of dancers
    Free at last to dance at night,
    And Lagahoo said to them:

    This fire and this heat
    will never be divided.

    And evening came
    And moonbeams begat lovers
    And lovers spoke in whispers,
    Soothing the island to sleep.


    James Aboud

     

  2. easy skanking

    all saturday evenings
    should be like this, caressing
    your thigh while reading neruda
    with his odes to matilde’s arms,
    breasts, hair – everything about her
    that made him
    a part of this bountiful earth –
    lilies, onions, avocadoes – that fed
    his poetry the way 
    rain washes the dumb cane with desire
    or banyans break through asphalt. 
    this is the nirvana that the buddha 
    with his bald monks and tiresome sutras 
    never knew – or else he’d never have left 
    his palace and longing bride –
    the supple feel of your leg in my hands
    for which i’d spin the wheel of karma
    a thousand lifetimes, more


    - Geoffrey Philp



     

  3. #72. FRAGMENTS.

    Fragments of houses, 
    fragments of dreams, 
    birds not caring who throws seeds. 
    Everywhere, 
    thoughts are scattered 
    like broken leaves. 
    Behind windows 
    remnants of sentences dwell 
    as we sit in fragments of houses 
    in our fragments of dreams.

    - Stanley Greaves

     

  4. fluttering-slips:

    And Yet Again

    Tonight I want to offer you
    this moonlight cupped in a purple
    flower; this chorus of crickets
    holding no grudge against the day’s
    dying. I want to lift the cool sweetness
    of sour-grass under the night wind
    and soothe the tautness in your face.
    I want to tempt you away from your heroic
    silence for joy that is free and foolish.
    I want to weave these early stars
    like a rope for you to hold
    and make your way past your old
    hurts, faiths crumbling like dust.
    This wanting is not a nebulous thing;
    it is the soul desiring its other self
    where need knows no hindrance of words.

    Now, only this longing, this reaching
    yet again – in spite of.
     

    Esther Phillips
    from The Stone Gatherer,Leeds: Peepal Tree Press, 2009.

     

  5. "The reality is that the most powerful players who are resident in Trinidad (& Tobago) in the illicit drug trade, have then the need to purchase impunity from the state.  

    They have to be political financiers, and that is what drives the endemic corruption of the society. When people speak of corruption in society all they look at is the most visible means, the lower level ones, the ones who get caught taking a bribe and things like that.

    The traffickers who live in Trinidad and Tobago, they wield power to the extent that nobody in the state structure can bring them down.

    They are in fact untouchable.”