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Pray foh guts to speak out


De Searchlight Midweek Paper did not make de streets dis week; even de ‘Printer’s Devil’ is at wuk in SVG. However, de paper’s on-line version was and is always available, so ah looked at de headlines: “Woman doused with gasoline, lit on fire.” Ah overs dat at four o-clock on Sat-dey morning, ah man sets fire to his woman, girlfriend, he wanted Es-E-Ex! Oh please, Father Moses, can we bring back you Law: “Gasolene foh Gasolene! Set fire for set Fire”? When de criminals get de message we will go back to Jesus Law: “Turn de other cheek!”

Next: “Two Men Shot!” Dey was ah shooting at Redemption Sharpes on Sat-dey night. Major Leacock, de man on de ground and representative for Central Kingstown (including Redemption Sharpes), was on NICE Radio on Monday appealing to de young men of de area to put down de guns, but on Monday night, way ah live in Murray’s Village, ah hear shots pouring like rain from ah gun, next morning another youth from de area was shot dead! Kaisonian Chalkdust sang “Ah pick-up me guns again!” Gangster-is-him is back. And Now everybody asking way de hell de Police doing. Lie-Za say de Police dem have serious grievances too, dey mek ah mistake to hold ah private conversation, saying dat since dey can’t get anybody to listen to dey problems, dey will Storm no, not Storm, Storm is ah noun; dey will mutiny wid trees-on de Pry-minister’s office and put dey problems to him. As ah result, dey are being charged like common criminals foh Mute-in-us behaviour. Dey done Mute de whole country, de want to Mute de police. And Lie-Za is asking just foh once: “will dem TV and Radio Tele-vandal-ists dedicate one program, calling on Go-venom-mint to deal wid de Police matter void of hate and spite? All dey good for is: “Lord we pray foh de Prime Minister, Lord we pray foh de Opposition Leader.” Why not: “Lord we Pray foh guts to speak out!”

What else was on de Front Page? Oh yes. “Front Line Protests Death of Activist in Front Hospital”. About ah dozen protestors from de “Front Line” venting dey pains over de death of Oscar Allen, alleging dat it was negligence. Lie-Za asking one question, “Way was all de moaners who been crying ah river, ah crooked-eye tears foh Oscar, all who been cussing de Go-venom-mint foh letting de Hospital run down to dirt… wey-dey-dey?”

Those three young men who got shot, one was killed; are all 22 years ole. Dey were less dan seven years ole when Arm-in Eustace launched his Redemption Charter, dat’s eye-run-ache Redemption Charter, Redemption Sharpes. He was asking foh ah Kind-ah, Gentle-ah society. Ah society way Sunday afternoon was foh Sunday school again. For more Boy Scouts, Girl Guides, Cadets, Rangers. Ah will bet me last dollar dat none ah dem three lads ever went to ah Sunday School. But even though Arm-in words fell on deaf ears, What is de Church itself doing. Ah must commend dem ladies in de Gospel Hall Church at Mespo who keep Sunday schools in dey communities: Betty Walker and Jen Shallow in de Valley Church Hall; Rhona Burke, Anne Lewis, de ever faithfulls Sonny and Cynthia Burke at Cane End School; Jenny Richardson and Aneshia Phillips at Carriere, one-dah-full job. Should these kids continue going to Sunday School (and other things too eh) it is very unlikely dey wil be in gun business.

She is 95 today, looking as charming as ever, gardening, meking “Free breakfast every morning, sun or rain foh Owen and Ken, son and son-in-law. Happy Birthday, Mother Mary Jackson.

And wid dat is gone ah gone again.

One Love Bassy

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