Sharing a couple old pieces


Nobody does starve in dis place

This morning as I woke up I hear…
“Boy what you doin dey dis early morning?” The old lady from across the road in she nightie hobbling across by the big house with the huge golden apple – that the children always stonning, and the breadfruit tree in the yard, on she walking stick.
“Ah pickin a breadfruit dey”, the young man answered, calm and cool. No “why you doh mine you damn business woman or shut you so and so mouth or why you do hawl you mudder so and so or any profanity of the sort. He just standing in the Government road, as we say and he jookin he ting…he jookin something up in the branches hanging over the road.
“So who tell you you could jus come and pick de people breadfruit now eh? Leave de people damn breadfruit alone.” She taking purchase on she stick and she under the breadfruit tree now….fuming, knocking she stick on the ground as she talking. And the breadfruit tree is not even hers…is the same way she does cuss and chase the youths when they pickin the golden-apples. She prefer they just fall and rot on the ground! Is this a Caribbean ting?
Anyway, partners en saying nottin..he just aiming straighter and jookin harder..and she standing up there with she cotton hair making her look like she supposed to be a nice ole lady- watching and I looking through me window (machoing?) thinking he must be real desperate for ah oil down because although is true, the tree take a real good load for the season, all I could see is little baby breadfruits that have a good time to go still..but this young man still jookin!! And I thinking maybe he seeing something we en seeing…maybe it have one that was busy busy to mature, leaving the rest behind…and I thinking good for you boy. Jook with all you might. Because man must eat! And once breadfruit around, nobody starves in this place. Oil down on the beach later…I limin dat!….And a big big shout out…with sincere thanks to Captian Bligh!!


Boy we like to direc’ traffic!

Road works in full swing so people could make a little panquai for the Christmas….when you see road works you know Christmas coming..just like the cool breeze we getting  on evenings now, and parang playing on the radio…anyway…since before 5am the gang out, because I hearing cutlass slicing  bush, the pling pling of cutlass hitting  stones…( I heard someone say this area is known as The Stones…). And this man busy because I sure he have another day work to go and make when he finish here…so he getting on with it. He en talking, he en pausing for nothing. There are four of them…one other woman serious too..she band she belly and she ready for hard work. She raking up the bush and gathering them for gang member number 3. Now number 3 en ready for that kind of work at all. She in she skinny jeans and  ballet pumps, and she holey vest  exhibiting  all she bosom and she  bulges  and them..but the weaver well protected under she scarf. I bet she finger nails and them long long too….and she doing all she can not to have to pick up them bundle of grass with she pretty nails!  And then number 4 is the overseer..the leader. Now you could tell that she is a woman you don’t mess about with. She skinny like a rake and look as tough and strong as an old mahogany trunk…she holding a rake but for her it’s minimal work..she is the ‘Foreman’ – that’s the word I was looking for…Foreman. So she just monitoring things…so when the car coming down meet up with the one going up the hill….on that narrow narrow road and we know one has to do something to give way to the other…she take charge right away…

“Man just go back nuh! You en see she cyan pass. Jus pull out yourself from the damn drain and trow youself on the side dey”. Pointing to the muddy side road that all man afraid of…because unless you have 4wheel drive, you know you well stuck!

“Man jus throw youself on the side nuh man let the lady pass!”  And you know why she saying the lady and not the woman eh!  All you know?  Anyway…Driver reverses now,…cautiously…looking very nervous.. just far enough so the lady could squeeze pass.

“Yea man. Down the road lady!”

All’s well again. The little crowd gathered to watch this little scenario disperses now…school, work, lime, fishing…wherever.

Grenadians like to direct traffic. A car just has to make a mistake and stop for a second, and someone ready to give directions!

And me… I like listening to all that juicy stuff going on outside my window! A little maccoing never hurt nobody yet!  Or has it? You know when I used to live in a little village out in the sticks ..not long ago…I wrote a piece called “ Nothing Happens on Primrose Close” Might share one of these days.

But talking about maccoing…last night it was a young lady and she boyfriend…sounded like he apprehended her mobile phone! Drama!! For another time though. Somebody jooking breadfruit outside again and I going and see if they go jook one for me too!

Me this stone

 stone 03You see me this stone

You see how I just sit down here
Kinda round and kinda flat on the top, just so
You see where I position meself – right as you bend the corner after the first back-breaking hill, and just before the next killer hill. You see it up there
You see how ah settle meself right here, so the sun could bathe me through the breadfruit leaves, and then the skinnup could shade me when ah get too hot.
And I position meself right here where people could rest their tired bamsie on me
So I does hear all kinds a thing
And I know them voices and them good good now
The one that does drag he slippers going down the road, he jersey (T-shirt) reaching below he short pants. Sac on he back. Cap on head. Cigarette in hand. He voice husky and deep deep as if it coming out from quite down inside a barrel
And you see that lady across the road there, that look like she supposed to be a nice old lady with she cotton hair, sitting on she veranda? Well all she doing is maccoing the breadfruit tree. Shouting every time she hear a branch move or see a shadow
“Aye! Aye! Who dey in the breadfruit dey
Who you ask for breadfruit? Breadfruit tree is all you own?”
And the damn breadfruit tree is not even hers
The breadfruit and them just falling and making mess in the road
And all the youth man want is a breadfruit, maybe two if he lucky
To put down a likkle pot ah oil down, maybe share with he brethrens
Wash it down with a likkle lime juice. Because times hard. Is a survival

Then the fisherman going down, bucket a bait and fishing line
Telling the school children “mine how you go eh. Walk on the side nuh man.
What! You looking nice today oui!”
And I real like that; how he have time for them children
Later he going up, barracuda, bonita,.a slimy squid- dinner for the family
But it have a woman down the hill there, down in Bluggoe Hallow
Every morning she shouting, Rashooonn! Rashawn! Boy come and sweep the damn yard nuh bwoy. And I didn’t know it still have children who does sweep yard nuh
“Boy you doh going and tie out de blasted sheep.” Then later me neighbour calling hi. “Boy come and move the poor suffering sheep from there nuh. You end see it en getting nottin to eat there!”
And is the same youth man the lady across there had to put in he place the other day, because he too dam fresh up with heself. Seeping and calling her baby, as if them is companion or something. But ah was shock when she tell him how she have children twice he age oui! She en looking so at all!
Now Smallhead by she gate calling, ‘upstairs, upstairs!’ The other day, early early morning, he banging on she window with he broomstick when she didn’t answer him. And ah see he does pass in the back and walk round by the kitchen, and I know the lady doh like that because sometimes she does be walking round just as she born. But he does only charge a dollar a bag, to take garbage down to the bin. Every man have to make a dollar.
But you see how I just sit down here, so I does see all kinds a thing too
And so all kinds a bamsie does sit down on me
You see when them old ladies and them coming up from the beach early early morning, after they make it up Campesh Hill, and they bracing theyself, catching their hell to catch their breath, before they tackle Breakback Hill? Well they does take a likkle break by me here too. And one of them must rest she bamsie down on me
And ah does watch how those youths and them does speed up their car. Pretending they en hear them old ladies begging for a “pull up the hill nuh.”
You think I doesn’t hear all you saying how all you can’t handle these old people and them! But remember, is go they going, but is come all you coming!
And when Broko staggering up from the rum shop, where he had rum for tea, breakfast and dinner, the spirits seeping out from all he pores and them, just before he knock knee knock him down – and I don’t know how he does know when he reach me – but ah does just feel he bony bamsie hit me. Braps! And all I does think is, you better don’t fall and hit you blasted head on me, because ah en want no police come and ask me no question
But hear nuh, the other day when Susan bounce up with Natty, she just spread she big bamsie on me, so ah can’t even breath, much less see. And they start talking about the Church minister who have he wife and children but he still interfering with people girl children. How he too damn nasty for a big man! How he must make a damn jail. And ah know who they talking about good good, because a certain young girl does rest she bamsie on me and wait for a particular CRV to cruise down Breakback Hill. Heh!
And talking about CRV, I thought they say the country hard, how things dread. But I never see so much big brand new shiny cars passing on this road like now. And I wondering where people getting money to buy these cars and them!
And I even see that damn stuipdee ripping down the girl clothes in the road, the other night. Telling her to just give him back he damn clothes! Just because she take a likkle dance with somebody . Boy ah wonder what else he take back when they reach home
Yea man. I does hear and see all kinds a thing
Watch, I does surf the net and all, where you see ah sit down here, watch movie with them youth man and them, when they come and sit down on me to get connection
But you see that damn voice that interfering with me everyday
Telling me why ah doh stop me idleness there
Why ah doh go and get work to do
But ah does listen to the other voice too
It does tell me doh study it. It too damn fass
So I listenening
I still listening