A-Dziko Simba is the author of All Over Again (Blouse and Skirt Books, 2013).
Six a.m. Halfway Tree, Kingston 10
and the chip-chip chop of jelly and cane the cart man out again and the windscreens showered with bottles and boxes and mint and nuts and crackers and crix and the begging tricks of the shuffling rags the criminal act of the open palm the tight-fisted hand behind the glass slid safely shut and sealed away from hungry gnawing at the bone as buses gorge on schoolers crisply ironed, lightly greased and pressed between the seats 'ductors defying gods of sense swing from doors half hinged and rattle and bob to the boombox spewing gravely grain the rockstone voice vomiting vice, innocents enticed to sing along while elders wilt in far back rows humming hellfire these church organs gripping bosoms and bibles and Jesus and visioning flocks washed white as snow to stem the flow of red down gullies and gutters slashing streets like scars where taxi cars weave on speed heart attacks on wheels blasting drivers driven to exceed driven to exceed all limits unconstrained life as passa passa all untamed all peeled open all revealed the ever static change the buzz. the heat. the same. halfway hell and halfway heaven pull up and come again.
From So Much Things To Say: 100 Calabash Poets, edited by Kwame Dawes and Colin Channer. Copyright © 2010 by Natasha Trethewey. Used with permisson of Calabash International Literary Trust and the author.