Nobody Could Match Kenneth
We doh hear much about ah plant called “Vomit Bush” de sight or smell alone uses to mek yuh vomit up yuh guts and give yuh ah good clean-out.
Now-ah-days ah doh have to use Vomit Bush, all ah do is go to certain people funerals, way certain people will be presenting de eulogy or ah tribute. Ah weary vomit foh de year already. Is ah good thing ah was home watching PR Campbell’s Funeral pon TV, ah vomit twice. Having said dat ah will not even try to pay Tribute to my long standing friend Kenneth, Dr Kenneth “Care-Not” John (he fraid no one) who left us last week. He was promoted to Glory to continue writing his weekly column in ah news bulletin edited by St Peter called: “Heavenly Sunshine”.
Four days after Kenneth’s passing dey was ah protest outside Par-Liar-Mint by people opposed to several issues including, ah Call foh Justice and Respect foh de Law in SVG. Ah was present long enough to see protestors kicking down metal barriers and meking barricade across de street blocking traffic. It was ah road block but not foh long, as de police, who in my opinion showed restraint, and as fast as dey replaced de barriers, de protestors kicked dem down. At one point ah saw de crowd heading up de Mc Kie’s Hill road towards de side gate of de Par-liar-mint compound. Seemed like de Pry-Minister was slipping away via de back door, and de mob surrounded and rocked his car. Ah over heard someone said if he had more help he would have overturned de vehicle. We doh need dat!
Ah saw enough, so ah went straight home to refresh my memory from an article written by Kenneth and published on May 10, 2017 entitled: “ Needed Not A Government Of Men, But Of Laws.” De article was re-published as an abridged version by ‘The Vincentian’ ten weeks ago, on April 23, 2021. Ley me quote: “ In fact the ULP is Government of men, but a government of a one-man administration, Ralph Gonsalves, despite the legal gloss and democratic façade. In 1998, the NDP Government barely won in elections that were universally accepted as “free and fair”, but Gonsalves and his clique bluntly refused to accept the verdict of the electorate.
Mike Browne, Ralph Gonsalves and Vincent Beache vociferously declared that they were still in control of the streets, if not the Government, and that they would render the country ungovernable until they got the change they hankered after. And so was instituted the ‘road block revolution’, which was a period of total lawlessness and bedlam.
At the opening of the House, Sir Charles Antrobus, the Head of State, was unfairly dragged into the political mire and told that he must bear the heat coming from the political kitchen he had entered. He was insulted, barracked and threatened by the ULP supporters, with the connivance of ULP leadership……..
The Head of State was kept by the new ULP Government, forgiven, and in fact praised by Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves at his funeral which shortly followed!” End quote. If ah tell you de truth, just reading dis mek me feel ah had some Vomit Bush to drink! Kenneth will be remembered foh years to come.
AH GREAT SENSE AH HUMOUR
Doc Adrian Fraser and I had de benefit of Kenneth’s biting sense of humour whenever we visited. He joked about de time de late John Horne waking him up at 4:00 a.m., to play Jouvert. Foh his Ole Mas costume, he played “De long and short of it”. Kenneth shortened (cut-off) one leg of his pants and one arm of the long sleeve short. It was still very early when de long, tall and elegant Kenneth, along wid his short charming wife Jenny, drove from Villa to town, he looked like de King of Jouvert, appropriately dressed in character, pants wid one foot long and one short; same foh de shirt one sleeve long, one short; Originality at its best:”De long and short of it!” But Alas! Dey was nobody on de streets of Kingstown. Was not Carnival time, Kenneth had Bad Dream!
SVG has lost ah Legend and ah Patriot. No Columnist, No Reporter, No Editor, No body could ah write like Kenneth. In Kenneth’s Weekly Column, “This Week” he milked de Classics: Latin, English language, History, Economics, Law, Politics, Life, even Co-mess! He caressed paper wid pen and ink, and wrote freely in de Vernacular dat reached de very widest of readership. I am so happy dat Kenneth was one of my Teachers at Grammar School. And wid dat is gone ah gone again.
One Love Bassy
Bassy Alexander is a land surveyor, folklorist and social commentator.