Category Archives: Poem

l’Only a Seed

The eb and flow
Rise and fall
Of it all

Maintaining the horizon
So the clouds don’t come
Crashing down

Manic
Stagnant
Numbness feels safest

The rage in every tear drop
Suffering in each smile

How can I dance if my feet are rooted
In volcanic mud?

Burning to ash with each step away from soil
Sunken vessels rise again when salt dries
and fish fly from its absence

Lotus blossom if sun is allowed through
When light shelters the rain
Only the ripened fruit rots from within

So remain as a seed
Promising, yet unspoiled
Perfect in all ways fathomable
Without the need to show possibilities beyond imagination

Sometimes it’s safer to not be known
©DaraMonifah 03/21/2017 8:12 a.m.

Ode to Derek Walcott

#Haiku4UYou remember me. I was too young. Saw paintings.Uncle Derek lives.I only remember the paintings you left on…

Posted by DaraMonifah Cooper on Saturday, March 18, 2017


Haiku For Derek Walcott:

YOU remember ME.

I was too young. Saw paintings.

Uncle Derek lives.

I only remember the paintings you left on my wall of my mother. Still they are enough to remember you were there and forever more shall be. Travel well Walcott.


THE CARIBBEAN WRITER MOURNS THE LOSS OF ITS ESTEEMED ADVISORY EDITORIAL BOARD MEMBER, POET, PLAYWRITGHT ARTIST NOBEL LAUREATE DEREK WALCOTT

Alscess Lewis-Brown, Editor of The Caribbean Writer shared the following.

The Caribbean Writer mourns the passing of its esteemed founding editorial board member, Nobel Prize Winner, Playwright, Poet and Artist, Derek Walcott, who passed away earlier this morning. Alscess Lewis-Brown, editor of The Caribbean Writer, states that Walcott’s meticulously woven metaphorical poems and plays captured the essence and spirit of Caribbean expressivity across a spectrum of Caribbean political and social consciousness. Walcott’s support and insight helped to shape and guide the Caribbean Writer’s path over the pass thirty years. For this, we are grateful. We will miss his abiding frank and witty manner.”

He was a great advocate for the Caribbean. Lewis-Brown shared that in an interview with Walcott in 2014, from his home in St. Lucia, in response to her question about his thoughts on the possible idealism in the notion of pulling the fragments of the Caribbean together Walcott had this to say:

“Everywhere has division in all countries. I don’t know what the division comes from, but of course there is a difference in things: difference in pronunciation, accent, and stuff like that. Even in little St. Croix there is a division between Christiansted and Frederiksted. Each island has different qualities assigned to it by other islands. However, I think that regionally we are coming together through the products of our creative imagination. The Caribbean Writer is a good example of that effort. So, no. I don’t think we are being idealistic when we talk about pulling the fragments of the Caribbean together. Poets are doing it.


UVI Professor and The Caribbean Writer Editorial Board Member, Dr. Vincent Cooper, fondly recalls that during the 1970s Derek Walcott either directed or provided advice on the staging of several of his plays in the Virgin Islands. Between 1973 and 1978, he directed scenes from Dream on Monkey Mountain, The Charlatan, and Franklyn, on St. Croix, and later that year on St. Thomas. In 1974 he directed Ti Jean and his Brothers on St. Croix, as well as on St. Thomas, as well as on Tortola. In April 1977, he directed Remembrance on both islands. During the Fall of 1978, he directed Pantomime on both islands.

Throughout the Fall of 1979, Walcott taught a seminar on Tirso de Molina’s The Trickster of Seville (El Burlador de Sevilla) and Walcott’s adaptation of Molina’s play, The Joker of Seville. Walcott also spent part of the summer of 1979 revising his new play, Marie Laveau, while residing at the University of the Virgin Islands (then known as CVI) campus. Tirso de Molina’s The Trickster of Seville and Derek Walcott’s adaptation, the Joker of Seville, as well as Walcott’s musical, Marie Laveau were first produced at the University of the Virgin Islands in St. Thomas, in November 1979.

​ Author and Poet Edgar Lake another TCW editorial board member recalls his presence at a Walcott poetry reading in New York Public Library in a poem entitled, “Walcott Reads to Brodsky’s God Mother” published in Calabash, A JOURNAL OF CARIBBEAN ARTS AND LETTERS in Summer 2007. The following is an excerpt from Lake’s poem:

“ …He reaches for his poems, curled in a coat-pocket – and begins to read, the lady shifts her weight, and clamps her feet about her bags , Walcott caught his breath and leapfrogs to another page He’s accustomed to this silence, pigeons caught in eaves some simile, once winged, and now fretting for the rhyme Walcott, litany-voiced, free-verses about sea-grapes…”

Walcott has a long history with the University of the Virgin Islands and The Caribbean Writer. Our writers and scholars have been enriched by their drinks at his intellectual and artistic font.

University of the Virgin Islands ● RR 1, Box 10,000 ● Kingshill, St. Croix ● U.S. Virgin Islands 00850-9781  Phone: 340-692-4152 ● Fax: 340-692-4026 ● Email: info@thecaribbeanwriter.org Website: www.thecaribbeanwriter.org

When tears alone just won’t do

2012When tears alone just won’t do
it’s time to scream until the air starts screaming back

Wind howling like a vampire in the night
Thirsty for more though having over-feasted
Gluttony and selfishness galore

Purge.

When tears alone just won’t do
it’s time to channel the energy into something more

More of something that empowers
Provokes thought and elevation
Deeper learning and introspection

Growth.

When they fill your eyes, but just won’t over flow
blink them in to hydrate and wash away settled debris
until they glow

Seeing through the darkness
hearing through the noise
feeling through the numbness
clarity through chaos

Breathe.

When tears alone won’t do
Do for yourself
What you thought you needed them to

Love.

Go Deep

heART songs sin…

heART songs sing my soul to sleep as their vibrations heal me awake.

No language can express abundance better than the heART can feel and share it…. but the closest thing I’ve felt to it, I feel from the chords of my acoustic guitar, the keys of my grande piano and the release of my INner voice when it is allowed to project freely.

Why stifle self healing? Why shelter self from being loved? Why not just smile, love and be loved. Could you be loved? Then be loved.

I remember the feeling I’d get from doing simple pencil and charcoal sketches or black and white photography. I could get lost in just the moment of doing and not worry so much about the end result. The same with my writing… poems inked on random napkins, Styrofoam containers, leaves or whatever else shared itself to my moments.

Knowing how easy it is to love and how much I love to love pains me sometimes when I realize I’ve stopped breathing, stopped drinking, stopped eating, stopped singing, stopped drawing, stopped running and jumping… stopped living. or just paused.

I know it was by choice. I know it was for protection. I know it was out of pain, shame, fear, feelings of failure and self neglect. I know. I accept. I allow it to be so…

I know I am love. I know I am a healer and that I must start over and continue at the same time, by healing myself.

I know I am ready… have been and will continue to be. I am that.

 

i am

HEALED.

bring on the colors and the notes

bring out the tears and the sweat

having kept them in so long I look forward to what they will share

with me as their first audience

in the middle of the all

heART songs sing my soul to sleep as their vibrations heal me awake.

as I look left. I know now the time to right.

heART songs sing my soul to sleep as their vibrations heal me awake.

Good Mourning

SunShine. Moonlight. Pillow clouds. Purifying rain. Healing flame. detoxifying grain. Page turning breeze… tantalizing tremors accepted as quelling quakes used to shake me open

eye lids unlocked

voice freed

Time 2 reKreate DaraMonifah.thePoetArtistMusician ME.