Island Soul City Dreams

I love New York, but my heart has a Caribbean beat. It pulsates to the traditions of my people. Attuned to the rhythms of this City, I stay West Indian to the bone. I reflect. I analyze. I speak my mind. ~ I Keep it Irie ~

Archive for the month “December, 2012”

Does It Matter When Jesus Was Born?

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I awoke this morning to the icy rain and cool 20-something degrees-temperature of New York City. It’s Christmas Day. My third in the Big Apple. Well, that’s not exactly true. While I might have started today in New York, I’m now miles away from there; the place I’ve called home for the past seven years. It’s 10 a.m. now and as I write, I’m soaring about 35 thousand feet in the air, gliding through fluffy white clouds and over boundless waters. By the time this piece is posted, I would have arrived at one of the most beautiful places on earth. Read more…

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Journey Beyond Paradise

As the holiday cheer heightens and the countdown to 2013 draws near, I find myself reflecting on my journey from Barbados to New York and the remarkable progress I’ve made over these past few years. I first wrote about the start to what has become an incredible chapter in my life during my Magazine Workshop – a capstone class in the master’s degree I earned at Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. The class was taught by editor extraordinaire of The New Yorker, John Bennet, who had assigned us to write personal essays. For me, sharing this particular slice of my life was somewhat cathartic. My classmates and I read to one another our respective stories – all of which portrayed some challenge we had to overcome. Almost every narrative evoked tears. Today, I’ll expand my audience beyond the classroom to include you. This piece is an excerpt from the book I have yet to complete on my life story. I’d love to hear your feedback.

At the start of 2005, my life seemed almost perfect. I was living in my native Barbados, the easternmost of Caribbean islands where rejuvenating breezes cascade off the Atlantic Ocean. All year the sun kisses us a brilliant good morning and bids adieu with even more radiance as it sinks beyond horizons of white sand beaches and crystal clear blue waters. I was about to celebrate my 30th birthday on January 30 – a date shared with my younger sister who came screaming into this world the day I turned 4-years-old. She remains my best birthday gift ever. I was working as a reporter – the career I’d dreamt about from the age of 13 and I had an adoring boyfriend who’d lift me over a puddle of water into the car just so I wouldn’t soil my shoes. To top it off, every week, my mother baked my favorite treat – coconut bread – for which I’d travel for miles through narrow unpaved tracks in the lush, rural countryside of Barbados. It was looking like my best year yet. Read more…

You’re An Enigma

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Why can’t I get over you?

Despite everything,

I miss u like crazy!

A day doesn’t go by

Without thoughts of you.

I get mad sometimes

When I think of the hurt you caused

Deserting me when I needed you most.

I tell myself you’ve given me

More than enough reasons

To let go, move on and forget you.

But inexplicably, I’m still in love with you.

To my chagrin I admit,

I love you unconditionally.

It’s like you stole my heart from day one

And I’ve been fighting a losing battle

Ever since to retrieve it!

I want to and need to let you go!

I’ve tried with all my being.

I’ve prayed that you be

A distant memory, if any at all.

I’ve sought every measure of distraction

Compiled all your heartless actions

To fuel animosity toward you.

I’ve struggled to forgive you

As you’ve proven yourself

Less than human and unworthy

Of my friendship and love.

Yet though my head screams, “Let go”

My heart says, “I’m all for you.”

Why can’t I let go?

-by Maquita “Queenie” Peters

~ I Keep it Irie ~

For KMEM.

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