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Is Gone-soft bridge falling down?

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Ah will not exchange my Primary School days foh Silver or Gold, but doh tempt me though. It was close to de end ah de Colonial period and as children of de Empire, we were drilled wid Nursery Rhymes and Patriotic Songs dat were all British. We sang those songs at school, on Empire Day Parade and during de moon-light, we found de widest cross-road to sing and play ring games. How well ah remember de Nursery Rhyme: “London Bridge is Falling Down!” Two bigger boys would stand in de centre of de Ring, wid both hands forming an arch dat represented London Bridge, while de rest of us would dance, passing under de Bridge as we sang: “London Bridge is falling down, falling down, falling down; (repeat)” de last line was: “my Fair Lady!” At de end ah de song de two lads would drop dey hands and down came London Bridge! De remaining verses of de poem suggested an urgency foh ah reconstruction wid lines like: “Wood and Clay will wash away, Bricks and Mortar will not stay, Iron and Steel will bend and bow; Silver and Gold will be stolen; put ah Man to watch de Bridge but he might fall asleep, so give him ah Pipe to smoke!”

We sang wid gusto, but didn’t have ah clue about dat Nursery Rhyme, where or what was London Bridge or who was My Fair Lady, dat’s how young and ignorant we were. What we understood was when things at home or in de country appear to be slowly slipping into K-us ‘n’ Depression, we uses to day “ London Bridge Falling down?” Today I ask: “Is Gone-soft Bridge falling down?”

De man whose voice is being circulated making big boast dat: “Dey have to come back to Papa,” is now back-tracking say: “ah never said dat!” And Lie-Za is asking where is Papa in de recent High Court decision ruling in fair-for de PSU wukers, who took de PSC to Court foh Unfair and Unjust practices, very similar to what de Scripture describes as corrupt-shun in High Places! And where is Papa now dat de Court-of-Appeal over-ruled High Court Judge Justice Cottle’s ruling, in which he rubbished as “ah waste-of-time,” de Case of de three Pull-it-to-kill Victim-eyes teachers: Bash Thomas, Elvis Daniel and Johnson, who were denied dey pen-shun. Dat’s another victory case fo Jomo Thomas, and Lie-Za is asking if de Iron and Steel under Gone-sotf Bridge bending and bowing under him? Or is it dat de real Papa has decided dat “Enuff is Enuff! and all “unfair games are now being played over.”

Are we hearing from de same Public Servants who said nothing 16 years ago when de ULP Go-venom-mint slapped ah freeze of dey pay fo over six years, but on Choose-dey were wid Teachers protesting wid pickets outside Parliar-mint? Is dis ah sign dat de “Wood and Clay” washing away and de “Bricks and Mortar” refuse to stay under “Gone-soft bridge falling down?”

Now check it out. Just about every session ah Par-Liar-mint is ah protest. Even de Marie War-nah Bill dat suppose to bring prosperity to de country, Rasta and Ras-star protested.

And Lie-Za say to tell de PM dat he must only go pon his “Yes, Mr Prime Minister! Yes! Yes!” Radio Stay-shuns. Stay far from Hot 97 and Boom FM way de Hosts not on his pay sheet. It was like ah Hurry-cane in January last week when he fell foh ah trap dat Sir James, (sorry) Bing had set foh him on Boom’s OMG morning program. He spent four grueling hours trying to deliver his message, only to be knocked down on de canvas as callers went foh his juggle-Law vein. Lie-Za felt his frustray-shun when ah caller in responding to something he said, told him point blank he was ah liar. Dat’s when de Silver and Gold lose its shine. And where is de watchman? He is smoking de Pipe to stay awake just to see when Gone-Soft Bridge Falling down! And wid dat is gone ah gone again!

One Love Bassy

Bassy Alexander is a land surveyor, folklorist and social commentator.

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