To No Music
That is my quarrel with this country.
You hear them say: “April?
April? Spring’s on its way, come April.”
And, poor things, believe it too.
See them outside, toes blue
in some skemps little cotton skirt
well set on making what don’t go so, go so.
And think: this big April morning
it make as if to snow.
That is something that must
make a body consider: if you can’t
trust the way the world turn —
winter, spring, summer, autumn —
what you can trust?
When it reach April
and you been bussing your shirt
for eight straight month just
to keep warm, you in no mood
to wait one dege-dege day more.
Not when you poor
and cold in the subway
cold in the street
cold where you work
where you eat
where you sleep.
But you don’t get a peep
of protest from these
people. “Well, it’s late
this year,” they say, toes blue
peeping out the open-toe shoe,
and hug the meagre little skirt
tight round them, shivering
for all they worth.
They don’t agree with the coldness
and they don’t disagree;
they walk to no music
and that is misery.
Reviews of Certifiable
Brown, Stewart. Wasafiri, Vol 18, Issue 2003. Taylor and Francis Online. 18 July 2008. Taylor and Francis Online. 5 Sept 2013. Vol 18, Issue 38 (2003). pp.61-62.
Callahan, Lance. “Two Unique Voices in the Choir of Caribbean Diasporic Poetry.” Fiddlehead 215 (2003). 120-122.
Carey, Barbara. “That Saucy Island Lilt.” Toronto Star.
Carson, T. Anders. Review of Certifiable in The Danforth Review.
Clarke, George Elliott. “Mordecai sharp-witted; pleasant, charming” The Sunday Herald. 12 Sept 2001.
Fawcett, Nicole. “Poetry lit straight from Jamaica: Sex, truth and inspiration.” Imprint 24.10 (2001)
Kemayo, Kamau. “Review of Pamela Mordecai’s Certifiable.” Macomère 5 p. 273.2002. Macomere. 12 Jan 2014.