Tuesday, January 01, 2013


This is the portfolio of poems I submitted for the first creative writing poetry class I ever did with Dr. Jennifer Rahim in UWI. Much of it is only slightly interesting, trite, embarrassing, rushed to submit at the deadline,  partially ripped off from a Black Sabbath / Ozzy Osbourne song...pretty much typical of any 1st undergraduate creative writing class. Fear of Flying was published in Dr. Rahim's compilation for the class Heart-to-Verse: Wordlines. I enjoyed the class just like I did the short story writing class with Dr. Merle Hodge, but these were the only two creative writing courses in the whole English Literature syllabus. Creative writing for whatever reason never had a priority at UWI.

Write A Poem On...
Write a poem on writing.
What, a sonnet on love?
Or a psalm to battle evil,
With a prayer for God above.

A ballad on bacchanal.
 A quaint portrait of home.
 A haiku on existence?
For those souls suffering alone.

An ode to beauty.
An epistle on war.
A sonata on moonlight...
But above all else, write.
For what we write,
Is nothing less than life.

The ‘Just Friends’ Ballad
Now when first you saw that letter
And you asked me who it’s for
I looked into your blank black eyes
And marvelled at what I saw.

You looked so cool and casual
Like Sunday afternoon
I could only jerk my head down
I felt like such a fool

I would have loved to skip this interlude
But my feelings were just a little bit too strong.

Just a little bit too strong.

Unstoppable prose
Pause in anticipation.
Hurry laggard eye
Here impatient respite stands:
Pay grammar’s toll and run again.

Daisy and Jay 
Good morning, good morning.

The soldiers are marching
The war’s over today.

The top is down
On our silly great car
The wind blows my scarf
And we hear them say:

Good morning, good morning

The lovers are driving
Feel how the past slips away.
Ten thousand miles of longing
Ten million miles of doubting
In their car they’ve covered today.

The past no longer holds fast.
The fantasies no longer chain.

Good morning, good morning

We still believe in happy endings
Where the soldiers are
That’s where we’re going.

Six-Year-Old Sitting on the Red Steps – A Portrait
All I have are my lunch-kit and my bag.
Shoes laced up tight, a kiss and a Alright…
Eat your lunch eh, don’t throw it away,
Listen to teacher, don’t skylark whole day.

I am innocent, ignorant of good or evil,
Ugly or beautiful,
All children my equal.
A pure smile of welcome for all my chums.
A light empty heart with malice for no one.

But soon they will come,
With their daggers of judgement.
Herd us, segregate us, popularity is the currency.
Our sneaker brands, hair-cuts, eligible for mockery.

Fear of Flying
So then, nine thousand kilometres.
Twice that to go and back.
One hundred and eighty thousand tons of JET-A-1;
Light the candle at two hundred and ten degrees and we’re off.
Three kilometres of tarmac
To barrel down.
4 times the earth’s gravity
As we bend upwards.
With wheels up, flaps down, rudder centre, bank left, VSI rising...
They’ve done this hundreds of times right?
Two hundred thousand pounds of thrust
Blast us through space;
At Mach oh-point-eight – altitude forty thousand meters...
That’s a long way down...
For four hundred aunts, uncles, cousins, and comedians,
Serial killers, murderers, rapists and robbers.
5% incidence rate reported among general population
Of Agoraphobia, schizophrenia, dementia, paranoia.
Deported, divorce, laid-off, no breakfast, four hour delay, another Scotch, 
Turbofans, turbulence, fuse short-circuits.
Autopilot, radar, ILS malfunctions.
Emergency, black box, NTSB investigates.

Safer than driving right?

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