Poem by Nicolette Bethel

• December 2011

Easter Sunday: Remembrance

The congregation is young and old; few in between.
A young man shakes my hand. His palm is hard—
a worker’s palm—and hopeful for a wife.

We honour woman-courage on this day:
an empty tomb before Black Mary’s gaze.

The women who aren’t girls all let themselves wear fat
that cloaks hard muscle, big hearts, brass voices.
Their eyes are soft. Their green-eyed children
inhabit skins the shades of sand, of soil,
of treebark, eggshell, cedar, earth, red loam.

The braveheart women weep, and laugh.
The rain falls with the Gospel.
Christ is gone, the angel sings,
and the silver rain falls down.

 

Nicolette Bethel is a Bahamian playwright, poet, and anthropologist, who is an assistant professor of sociology at the College of The Bahamas. Her work has been published in a variety of print and online publications, including Caribbean Writer and Caribbean Review of Books. She is the founder of Shakespeare in Paradise, an international theater festival held in Nassau, Bahamas, every October, and the founding editor of the online Caribbean literary journal tongues of the ocean. In 2010, her poetry chapbook Mama Lily and the Dead was published by Poinciana Paper Press.