Leonard Dabydeen

Bronze Star - 2,269 Points (Guyana)

Black History - Poem by Leonard Dabydeen

One day me cross over punt trench
greenheart bridge only wide like me shoulda
me machete tie ‘pon me waist
me head-band tie strong
fuh steady me head
me bend down and scratch me big toe
waiting like a morning cock a crow
in Goberdhan back yard
‘till overseer done make he list
me and Cujo fuh cut cane
‘till punt come, ‘till punt come
quick, quick me squat on the grass
take out me calabash
with me dry-coconut
and me salt-fish
eat quick, quick and drink water
from the canal
and all day we cut cane
cut and bundle cane
load punt ‘till sun come down
skin black like punt
ashen-gray in Picasso color
in the truck I listen to the voice
deep inside my heart
how the dust from my black skin
will one day take me far, far away
on a journey of my dreams
from Africa, through the villages in Ghana
across the Atlantic and the Pacific
into the cold, winter streets of America
and rendezvous in Canada
for my new generation
to make black history
a curriculum of their lives.

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, February 4, 2010

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