The Caribbean Writer


Vernon L. Jackman


Sails flesh out and shiver,
night shift insects lose their bleat
in the clicking wail of cicadas,
angling louder to the incoming

That seam between dark and day,
tailored in roughly. Attempts at waking.

An old woman reveals herself
through fret and stagger,
through the grate of leather,
hollowed on cool tar;
and a road coils grey, straining
to the foot of a hill.

Who sees it first? The sudden light
reveals us, returns the brutal
outline of shacks,
and galvanized roofs that blind.

Light scuttles back the choppy talus
of our nakedness. Below,
the water changes its ridges;
winds alter, swilly
with half-awakened syllables.

Birds shrieking?
or the screech of the island s limestone
ache? Branches stir. Lapsed,
water drains: a cool finger
down the spinal groove in a leaf.


Copyright © Vernon L. Jackman

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