“When you think is peace and safety| A sudden destruction| Objective Security for Safety|
~Rat Race, Bob Marley
O’ sweet that ripe fruit.
Hanging, body-less, swaying to the rhythm of its peers and wind.
All ripe and grown; adjacent to the new life being birthed next door.
An old life ends and a new one is brought in.
“Isn’t she beauty? Mi luv yuh!”
Her mother wept.
The mother wept, out of despair, she has for her baby.
“This is the world this baby will grow,.
How will she ever know to live a full life?
O’ but in Jamaica, my baby will be strong just like the roots,
The roots on the mango trees.
That stand tall and proud, and continue to thrive”
Big dark brown curls surround her face.
Her skin smooth as can be.
The small of her head, rests in her mother’s palm.
Liquid chocolate; rich in taste and smooth in texture.
Ami looked up, cupping her mother’s finger
Barely able to grasp on the truth.
Her big brown eyes wide, and full of energy.
The world is a vast land full of mango trees.
Each sprout, with the strength of the previous.
Beautiful gradient colored fruit, grow from the veins.
Green to red, red to orange.
Youth and Adulthood, naive to the wise.
What a predicament.
As time moves, so will the young.
Two parts, divided into three woven strands,
To control the curls.
Irony in comparison to the lack of partisan control.
Big redish-brown eyes, have grown sukken.
Sukken with knowledge of Jamaica.
Wisdom ages individuals, as lack of wisdom keeps the youth.
The partisan divided, in the O’ so little tivoli gardens, create death.
Prods of drugs, shots of weapons, and horrid acts; all for a vote?
The prods, are oblivious to the naive.
Causing death in even the youngest of citizens.
Is this universal or unique?
A new idea of power dividing the innocent.
The protectors are suppose to protect the innocent.
Humor arises; how can you protect the innocent when you are paying the violence to happen.
The leaders seem to be asleep, despite all the the awoken knowledge they seem to speak to have.
Who do u cry to, when you are all crying?
The Boss man, is who.
Part of the Wailing, instrument group.
He too, grew up not too far from Tivoli Gardens, in Trench Town.
Wiser than the authority, knowledgeable than all.
Intrinsically he was born out of a divide; between the white man and black man.
Extrinsically he lived in the divided between JLP and PNP.
Boss man, was the grey peace meant to woven feuds.
His occupation was a given, since he stepped on the tough ground.
Boss man like marriage, was born to create peace.
Alliances form because of Boss Man.
He is the unifyer, created by the highest hands in the universe.
The beat sang to a melody so true.
Rock your body to the peace it brings,
Between people and feuds.
The PNP, Michael Manley and JLP, Mr. Edward Seaga.
Tivoli is the lands of Mr. Seaga.
Barricades plastered with, welcoming scriptures, to designate the turf.
The Gruesome writings are to the loyalty to Seaga, himself.
The British relinquished their rule, leaving only Jamaica.
Now, home to Ami, O’that beautiful baby.
In the the center, West Kingston, home to the ghetto, Tivoli gardens.
Partisan violence and divides in the country, and lives in her backyard.
The youthful men, accept fate and keep the partisan divide of the newly free country.
All climbing, in the rat race for power.
They all say “Money mi a pree!”
At “Take your mark.”
Power is all based on the wealth on acquires.
But what is the point of wealth when all that remains after one acquires wealth is danger.
Die and than, you ask yourself is it really worth it?
The Mango tree is loyal to the earth of kingston as the young men are loyal to Seaga in Kingston.
Always keep their word despite the heavy rain and winds.
O’ Peace, for Jamaica, the boss man promises.
Freedom, liberty, and peace, the boss man promises.
“O’ mi luv yuh” to Jamaica they all say.
Beautiful country, full of opportunity.
Just recently set free, by the white man, across oceans.
Full of mango trees, as strong as the natives.
Both born and bred, in the same soil.
How can not that be true?
1976, Marley sang to peace, the country.
A handshake conquers all divisions the people thought.
It did not finalized it was just the beginning.
October came, with chilled winds and partisan tension at the hight.
The young man increases their barricades and tactics.
The boy, is a son that can grow up to be a hero.
But no, corruption of power poison his mind.
Filling it with intangible truths.
Lies cause divides.
Ami losing a friend, whom she referred to as family.
Her own brother killed her own gone sister.
What is peace?
If partisan violence seems to never end?
Not long passed, in the time December 1976.
The earth avoiding the sun, the cool breeze blow in Jamaica.
The boss man, is missed by a hair and almost shot dead like all the other black bloods.
To great in the mighty eyes, which is why he stayed.
To invisible for anything.
Only, the left outs, can be exceptions.
All for a vote?
Do you really want to smile, Jamaica?
How do you smile with all this chaos?
O’ it is to smile, until it becomes true.
Hiding all the bad and showing just the surface.
Only if, shallow waters were as deep as the ocean.
“A hungry man is an angry man| A rain will fall, but the dirt it tough”|
~Them Belly Full, Bob Marley
Ami, now grown but still is oblivious. O’ what a life.
At a decade on Jamaica; the mango trees still move.
Swinging back and forth, full of ripe fruit still to this day.
A friend becomes a family, Ndieh is her name.
Laying under the trees, the blue sky full of fluffy stretched out breadfruit.
The corners of the clouds outline the fluff as the green skin of the fruit hold the sweet white cotton.
Adjacent to them, the barricades, stand with it’s scriptures.
Ami and Ndiegh headed to the local bodega.
Ndiegh throws a rock and begins hopping on one feet.
The girls hopped and laughed, ignoring the pain of the sun rays.
The heat beat down on them, as did the gangs.
Sorrel, flower like and bloomed.
A rose in color, a bitter lime in taste.
The cold beverage called to Ami.
“Da one deh” Ami points.
The man, shook his head in understandment.
Ami handed the man eighty Jamaican dollars.
Ndiegh and Ami saved up hard for the money.
They were rewarding themselves.
The cold drink, flowed so easily down, but how hard it was to get.
Funny way, how things work in actuality.
It’s so easy to fail but so hard to succeed.
It is so easy to spend, but so hard to acquire.
It is so easy to be blind, but it is difficult to see.
Ami and Ndiegh collected valuables to give to the man up the street, for jamaican dollars.
If you brought him a bad load, he would get angry.
He would shout “Wasteman!”
Too cruel to say.
Not that they collected trash, but the person is innately useless.
Irony, peace not hate should pass on.
As they walked back to the mango tree,
Prods of poison lingered around, like a candy wrapper.
Young children, as Ami and Ndiegh.
This is the life they think.
A good one to them but, who are they to say?
No, let the boss man choose.
PNP or JLP, peace or shed black blood.
Peace is abandoned from Jamaica but alive, under the Mango Tree.
Ami, sings with her innocent voice.
Black blood is shed, in down South Africa.
Black blood shed in up America.
Black bloodshed in middle, home , Jamaica.
The Apartheid, divides the the melanin filled people
Into tribes, divided on communication.
Xhosa or tswana, all the same in Boss man’s eye’s
Beyond, the melanin full people, the others are also divided.
The white, pearled colored and colored, caramel colored.
Territories are divided on the amount of melanin
As are territories over here are divided on partisan.
In America, too like South Africa, is also divided.
The colored people versus the white people
Divided on freedom, they are less than, many say.
We want to live freely, the people say.
“O’ we did not chose!” People exclaim.
Young Ami, all in her own world, listens to the boss.
Hearing only a voice, but not knowing the extent.
Her family sat around the radio hearing his optimism
A tear falls on hitting, the warm to the touch floor.
A breeze swings in through the door curtain, as the sun went to bed.
The delightful hues of orange peared through, taking a peak at the brown iris of young Ami.
The women swayed in rhythm.
The men nodded and children mocked.
Laughter filled the room.
Along, with the flies.
The music beat to heads.
Marley making sense of the world through his words.
Smiles from ear to ear wide , longer than the Black River
Eyes glistening from the tears that wallow in their eyes, from all the laughter.
One day, partisan won’t divide the family.
Her brother oly eight months now, knows more than Ami
Will know more as time comes.
He will have much more bad than all the family including Ami.
Ami looks up her father.
As he is crouched down near her mother, hiding his height.
As tall as an oak, but as strong as a mango tree.
Beautifully colored by the great man in sky.
Chocolate jewel, just like Ami
Almond, shaped iris just like Ami.
So calm and so welcoming.
A smile circumferences his face, to brighten his eyes.
Ife, is what they call him.
“Full of love,” Ami’s grandmother would say.
Ife, had a heart to love and to be loved.
To have such a huge heart, and to birth a son who can’t do the same.
Is a question to Ife, will forever stumbleupon.
Death and life are inverse.
To love is to be alive to be chose death is to not love.
“Three O’clock in the rain| Roadblock curfew.|”
~Rebel Music (Three O’clock Roadblock), Bob Marley
The barricades go up, and does the moon.
The moon stands alone in the stage above, known as the sky.
The sun heads to the west, saying goodbye to the eastern people in the Tivoli.
Ami and Ndiegh part ways, each one headed home.
The day was done, and the cycle will repeat again in the morning.
Throughout the day they collected scraps to give to Mr. Oscar.
They only made two jamaican dollars.
The young girls, played by the well that afternoon.
Dipping their hands the newly collected rain water.
Her hands look baby soft under the warm water.
Nice golden brown, Like fried plantains.
Now, that they are dried, Ami looks down and sees her skin all crepy.
How old she got in a short period of time.
Foreshadowing herself in the future.
Walking alone now, Ami paces herself to head home before the night’s devil’s appear.
All, drunk’n and mad, the drunken man walked
On the street to Kingston they roam to prey on the innocent.
Ami skeries fast to her safe haven.
Ami feels the cold clasp on the wooden door pushing against the door to open it.
Ami, is greeted my her mother.
So sick now, because of her legs, and hands the money to her.
Ami would never tell her, what she bought that day, due to circumstances.
The baby wailed, Ife slept from exhaustion.
Emigration is on his mind, to leave.
The states full of jobs to thrive on.
He grinds tirelessly daily in the the mines, managing, with little to pass by .
December 1976, The election of Manley sent many of his people to the states.
JLP lost, the strive is done, Manley reigns.
Going Foreign, and rejecting the mango trees, reigned possible in the mind of Ife.
Manley’s policies does not make life easy.
Division here and there is all the same for Ife.
At Least in the states, he can provide and have stability.
No need to worry about political division, but racial division is at a high.
You can never run away from your problems, when they follow you everywhere you go.
States, just a decade prior opened their doors to cubans.
Vast but official anyone and all are welcome.
Refugees to immigrants.
O' What peace it would be for Ife.
His love, his wife, he worries about all day.
Since their sweet boy was born, she has been ill.
Doctors over here says nothing is wrong, but she gets sicker and sicker.
Atleast at the states she will have a chance.
A chance to live and love.
So frail and weak, famine sweeps over jamaica like a swarm of flies.
To seek asylum is a show of strength rather than weakness.
What shines is not always glitter.
The blue water, the green grass, and the mango trees are only parts.
Part of the whole divided nations full or corruption.
Violence and danger.
Marcus, Ife’s brother has left with his family.
Struggling there too, he explains when they speak on the card.
Acculturative stress overcomes their family, too different but similar on the inside.
The scat of his tongue speaks foreigner, everytime he expresses.
Assimilation means losing all of Jamaica.
The mango trees will fade of beauty as time moves on.
Pineapples will the soon resemble.
“First class and second class citizens of any nation| Until the color of a man’s skin| Is of no more significance than the color of his eyes|”
~ War/No more trouble, Bob Marley
Documentation as refugees, in the new the states
They must run to live, live to run.
Love will actually have a chance.
On the Miss Pitts they boarded.
In 1977 they landed on the land of divided and privileged opportunity.
Leave one division and join another, but there are jobs!
Women, men, black, white, gay straight, and war or no war all divided.
At Least in the states progress and protest were made, and gangs will not shoot for a vote.
Hate may spread over, but love never smears.
Only holding on and sharing but still remaining intact to its origin.
There were no mango trees, young Ami looked at this foreign land.
Full of crowds of new spots.
On the plane Jamaica lived on, off of it there was a new narrative.
The people spoke in a tongue much foreign.
So long and stretched unlike patois, which so short and sweet.
Just like the delicious mangoes.
There were no barricades, so unfamiliar to Ami.
Ife, would start on the first of the week working as a Miner, to which he learned in Jamaica.
Moved from partisan divide, to “I stand for this!” divide
Territories were not designated to groups but dynamic sized.
One person is not defined by the whole group.
Ife worries for his wife but knows they will help her.
Beginning of the week hit, the nearest hospital the went.
The building looked foreign, so large and so packed.
The floors were dustless, and square full.
Ami now older sees the difference.
The new found home is an asylum, just like the hospital.
The care her mother needs is here, not in the land were the mango trees swayed.
Her family’s peace is not in the Peace Jamaica, but in the states.
Away from ill natured,
“One bright morning when my work is over, | Man will fly away home.”
~Rasta man chant, Bob Marley
Ife pushes one leg in front of the other, arms raised over head and hatched below it falls.
Bones creak, and mind creaks.
In need for oil but has no source.
Like a tin man, trying to move through its rusty joints.
The street full of buildings, some square lit others darker than the night of Jamaica.
The street lights create a shadow man around Ife.
Creek, Crack, Creek!
As Ife heads upwards into their home.
The cold metal knob provides relief as Ife grasped upon tight as a right hand man.
His wife laid on the teared up sofa, like a caterpillar.
The doctors last week spoke of the an illness beyond comprehend able.
This disease has no mercy, killing all.
It lives in her stomach, they although hit was just temporary but it grew.
Like the baby had earlier.
So round but deadly.
Ife stands up in agony to greet his wife,
Both pretending to hide their pain in front of each other.
Ife’s wife sat up with the utmost control to greet her husband.
A new life they though rested in the belly.
Growing each day and forming a mound.
That could not be any further from the truth.
A devil grew but not a human.
Taking away all lives.
No mercy for anyone,
JlP or PNP
Black or White
Young or old
Ami and Ndiegh are now divided between waters.
How strong their ship was.
Standing with the utmost strength of the mango trees.
Swaying, oblivious to the lost of a friend.
This new world, built with no barricades, only the open pavement.
People love upon each other.
No mango trees,
Ami places her hands, palm to palm
Forehead to joining fingertips.
Tears dripped to the ground.
Praying away all her sorrow.