|dis tek pun de Internet.. ah know ah should tek me own but..|
But ah shut me mout bout de tennis roll an de chinee cake at de time.. ah tink nuff ah we know how fuh lie fuh de greater good.
I aint know why dis deh in meh head.. pineapple and plantain only... like is how some people mo' wanted dan odders as we move aroun' de Caribbean an' how customs and immigration does mek sure dat we know dat we aint know damn 'one Caribbean' an' how when we talk Caribbean it doan always reflect de whole Caribbean because it does depend pun who talkin' wedder is tourism people or whuh. Ah mean.. we need visa fuh Sint Maarten now..an Haiti people need visa fuh some Caribbean places dat does big up de Haitian revolution ..
I friken Trinidad and Barbados bad because dem is big shat.. dem place clean and rich and i hear pun Barbados radio how dem doan like Guyanese - but was coolie Guyanese dem aint like.
I friken Trinidad tuh because uh de crime .. it does be vicious.. like Jamaica an i know Guyana getting like duh now tuh
Wan time pun de plane from Barbados to Jamaica ah man tell me dat Jamaican like Guyanese people dem an' i meet a Jamaican lady who ask me which parish I come from because me sound like dem and i does talk nice nice. Ah swear, i cyan talk jamaican much less country ..
No trini or no odder Caribbean person evah tell me nuttin like duh.
And in Jamaica walking roun and man smoking ganja callin me Doc Doc.. suh i seh if ah had to move from Guyana, is Jamaica ah would wan' fuh guh and live an' also because I like de Devon House icecream.
But is funny, when I lef dis part uh de world.. how ah does push de Caribbean ting. ( i was tellin' a fren is Burnham jumbie in me.. an' I laff when I remembah how dem people in Englan' used to tell me dat i soun 'black' an' how i join up wid de African and Caribbean Students Society instead of de Asian Students because I feel like I had more in common wid black 'Caribbean' people. Anodda time ah had to laff because a drunk India coolie computer man.. we bin at a conference party.. tell me dat is a good ting we ancestors lef India because at least we could dance.
An i laff because i tink how i would radder be Latin American because dem people does kiss two an tree time and talk and laff loud an suh.. an i wan fuh larn fuh dance like dem ...
But it does amuse me.. how Caribbean does seem to mean black only.. and I know I does walk around dese islands and push de coolie ting.. like when in Trinidad dey had openin prayers fuh a workshop an' ah ask if I could seh a Hindu prayer. I wuz wearing one a burnham shirt jac tho' .. an' i know i like Kamla because Kamla could sing Bob Marley an' wear sari.. an' she is not Drupattie rolling up no tassa and even if she politics bad.. but is which Caribbean man politician does lead deh country good good.. but den i wonder bout we coolie.. how come is coolie does have to 'mix' and odders dont have to mix? An i aint talkin' bout wearing bollywood clothes an' eating curry. An because I doan want to be no India coolie.. i doan buy no blasted bollywood kurta and dem stupidness from dem soap opera and movie.. but i does do me best fuh mek sure dat people know I is a coolie who does sing chowtaal and Ramayana tuh. An is funny, ah tink ah does do dese tings suh dat people could know dat dey doan have to be 'western' or Christian fuh be Caribbean but it also nice fuh sing in a group.
It does mek me shake meh head tho' when experts pun Caribbean culture rass nevah here bout chowtaal or ramayana baani or does talk bout coolie ting like if it 'quaint' an' different..
A chowtaal.. sung at Phagwah time
And dis is a Ramayana baani
Dis coolie caribbean ting does be sumtin.. like when ah go Jamaica an ah hear how much man name Rohan and I wan fuh know.. some tell me is because of Rohan Kanhai de Cricketer from Guyana but den .. some man wid dreds tel me dat dem is Indian like me. An' when I guh Ochie and see how dem India coolie tek ovah de place and some ah dem wan' fuh know if i come fuh do bizness deh tuh.. becauze nuff ah dem nevah really hear bout Guyana or know dat Guyana/Caribbean had coolie barn hey.
Me aint know what is dis big ting bout being Caribbean.. ah know Burnham was a big man bout it .. but is nuff ting.. yuh know.. Haiti.. an' Dominican Republic an' Cuba .. dem is big big place.. wid nuff nuff people.
Me cyan stan' dat Caribbean is supposed to be bout dance, sex, music, blue sea an' homophobia. Guyana rass doan have no blue sea so dat does mek it stupid when yuh explain dat de watah brown an suh. An Caribbean man supposed fuh gat nuff woman an' sumtin' wrang wid he if he like woman and he tink' dat man shouldn't hit woman an dat is arite fuh man deh wid man an woman deh wid woman an dat chirren musn't get licks. So i mussee a Caribbean anti-man den an' nat a pineapple or a plantain..so nuff ah we mussee 'faren'
I doan really bodda bout cricket .. i tink dat west indies cricket does waste nuff time and energy an' money.
But dis Caribbean ting.. last year I stan' up in Grenada.. me, a coolie man, reading a black man , Thomas Glave, poem 'Lorde' from he book Among The Bloodpeople.. bout how much a black woman Audre Lorde inspire he an she also inspire me tuh ... an' den in Trinidad ah reading from anodda black man Anton Nimblett story about a black man name Push who soun' a lot like me sometimes.. an den ah was tinkin'.. ah which side uh de world.. which odda part dat dis kind ah ting could happen?
De last time ah pas' tru Piarco, de customs man seh.. right.. you bring yuh pastries and tennis roll an' suh? I laff and seh, afficah me aint wan' lie suh ah doan wan answer... an' is how you know bout tennis roll?
but he seh is arite.. is small amount an "ah know how yall Guyanese stay."
(This post was written as a contribution to Code Red for Gender Justice’s e-Mas Blog Carnival on the theme ‘To the Caribbean, With Love’. See all the contributions here. )