Spiderweb Publications

Page 1

Table of Contents Stefanie Thomas 1

Tom Tegento

Table of Contents

Danielle Hooke Goodbody

-- Cover photo: Spiderweb

Editor’s remarks


-- What We Have To Comfort The Dark

Arpana Rao

-- Bendy Path

-- Muse


Winsome Monica Minott


Emma Dee


-- The Painter And The Loom “After Sorrow” - Vincent van Gogh


Winsome Monica Minott


-- Hats Off “Gauguin’s Portrait” - Vincent van Gogh

Arpana Rao

-- Migratory Birds

Emma Robdale

-- Womb of Life)

-- Sunrise With Sea Monsters

Emma Robdale

-- Ocean Cunt (Anemome)

Jessica Taggart Rose

-- “River Bank in Springtime” – Vincent van Gogh


Bahriye Kemal

-- Differential Map

Danielle Hooke Goodbody

-- Frost Wood


-- Sublime Lacuna

Jessica Taggart Rose

R. Kaiser



Mirande Bisselle 4


-- Alfa and Omega

8 9 10 11 12


Summaries Of Zion Roses Velma Pollard


Nadi Edwards 26-27 Stefanie Thomas - Webb 2


Marva Mc Clean


Dawn Davis Amilcar Sanatan.

30 31-32

Bank of the Siene Vincent van Gogh


About Contributors


Editor’s remarks Poems, Prose, and Paintings “Lines spiderweb thin/on which[we] balance reality.” This compilation is a celebration of poetry, prose, paintings and the passion art inspires. It gathers together sixteen new works, some of which were produced during harsh challenging Covid months. I hope artworks herein will provoke strong emotions. I am happy to introduce to you names you may not yet know, but one day your children may recite half-remembered lines, not knowing the lines are lines of poetry. Others will reflect on the beauty of Bendy Path by Rao, or when faced with life uncertainties will visualize and reference lilac beauty in Stef Thomas’ Spiderweb encounters. As you study these works we invite you to consider the mastery of craft demonstrated by poets and prose writers, maneuvering form and language to do their biddings. In similar fashion, painters web their worlds as they so choose, each painter displaying unique sensitivity and style. This e-Zine is not for sale but has been compiled to encourage poets, painters and prose writers. It is for educational purposes only. Images of paintings have been extracted from various sources, including online images made available by van Gogh Museum Amsterdam. The appropriate acknowledgements have been cited below each image to safeguard rights. Please enjoy this issue and provide feedback to the artists as well as the eZine: wm238@kent.ac.uk 3

What we have to comfort the dark I’ve never found a crossing. There may be a footpath on the other side of the river, stands of beech and poplar, rock nests and stiltgrass. A friend says what matters about the other side of the river is that it’s there, its scale double or triple ours, vines spidering up boulder faces high as two of me. On this side, an elderly man and his son point a camera. Five turtles sun themselves, flute keys closing apertures on a tree fallen in the water, five backs slick with inwardness, the son in no hurry to lead his father past where turtles map the ripple-ridged silt, leaf sediment drifting, each day pulled from its source. On the river’s lip, my limbs swish on and on in perpetual motion. Little automata of the deciduous forest tilt their heads and listen for the ice-melt over there filling the river between us. I am what is on the other side of the river—the tunnel of air over us, the snow fresh and unreachable.

- Mirande Bisselle 4

Muse Watch her brilliance go in one short gasp she’s down the street, a streak of red and gold a melody, a fortune to be told to strangers trying hard to keep their grasp on what’s still real in this fictitious world. Her beauty can’t be reproduced, it’s now she’s here before you, gone before you know. She can’t be trapped or gifted, bought or sold. And truth? A flash of recognition dashed between two souls. It’s fleeting form most like the cormorant – now fish, now bird - with equal yet conflicting facts amassed. So tell me not the things your eyes have seen but how they touched you, where they made you feel.

- Jessica Taggart Rose




Sunrise With Sea Monsters J.M.W. Turner

In such infinity the urge towards limitation overwhelms. An edge marking a random moment in eternity. A net, the beach. Possibly the ship is hidden in toothache, or the fog of dead momentum, or it never was there to sink Zones of temperature. In a gin dream the dog whispers that its own name is White Storm Cloud & in sunrise the memory narrows to the lost catch grown menacing in its drawn out disappearance Or we are staring from the morning deck & to have seen is to have caught. It may dive as a fish and rise as a beast, but it will dive again

- Danielle Hooke Goodbody


Ocean Cunt (Anemone) Completely hairless. Almost featureless. No arms. Legs. Eyes. Or nose. The rhythm. The rhythm of the sea is all it knows. Reams of tubular fingers reach out, pulsating to every ripple, retracting in rougher currents, a many petaled flower, this vibrant orange cunt blooms only when at ease. Delicate and soft, it refuses to be harassed, tentacles poised, luring shrimp close, ready to consume, ready to deliver sharp stings to curious fingers. Feeling froth upon its labia, it fears the ebb of the tide, longing only to be wet, shielding moisture, it retracts, a small, jellied blob, beauty internal, it awaits the caress of the ocean.

- Emma Robdale 10

“River Bank in Springtime” – Vincent van Gogh Printemps tangle grass rising to tickle saplings, their teen limbs limber bend flex leaves reaching up green fingers to link with wrinkled hands dry foliage tumbles out seeds, seed casings dead leaves tread into dirt, dust becoming like flour under millstone. Daisies push up, bells ring wring out the colours: bloom, bloom here’s burgeoning ravishing spring river, sky dress in new season blue slate grey bridge missed the memo.

- Jessica Taggart Rose Reference: https://reproarte.com/en/choice-of-topics/category/river-and-lake/riverbank-in-springtime-detail



Alfa Omega O generous sun. O light and more light. Do you ever know darkness?

Deep down in her heart, oh… yes! As I sleep, thoughts faster than light

carry me. I traverse fields, I dare to dream; just when I am about to lose my mind,

a healing light appears. I rise without limit to

a sky just wider than my thoughts, and dreams taller but as I close in, like loves, some drift away.

To be human, to be sky, to be light, to be love, thoughts molded into unique outputs, there is no price point in priceless.

- Tom Tegento 13

“Wald-Hexen” Paul Klee

Open eyes during one of these reborn dark afternoons eyes which have become sensitive to various shades

of light, to an absence of forest & so have been wearing

dark green lenses, mimicking the shade of the muddy-limbed wood.

The trees themselves are the spell. This is what it means to go home, to be funnelled back through birth, the high pink of new life’s cheeks Journey-sick, dreaming into the navel of the wilderness

Physical experience, a threatened ecosystem oh it’s a bold threshold An empty chair in the clearing & all reaches for fire

a dream or not of this new life balanced on my knee, cross-legged in front of the picture window, while red leaves fall in the silent hour

my blood in the new emotion of her forehead in the red leaves If it was the last thing I did come home

- Danielle Hooke Goodbody


Who Was Paul Klee? Paul Klee was a prolific Swiss and German artist best known for his large body of work, influenced by cubism, expressionism and surrealism. Paul Klee participated in and was influenced by a range of artistic movements, including surrealism, cubism and expressionism. He taught art in Germany until 1933, when the National Socialists declared his work indecent. The Klee family fled to Switzerland, where he died on June 29, 1940. WALD-HEXEN, 1938




The Painter And The Loom

(A conversation between brothers) After “Sorrow” --Vincent van Gogh

“Men move in with prostitutes, some marry and lead normal lives, but few move back into their parent’s house, I dare say.”

Yet, a man with a gift knows not where the day or the next hour will take him, for I am

no loom threader to sit in a dark corner. Yes, when morning comes a colour-spirit enters the

house, sets the loom in motion, next the weaver appears and strings the thread, today’s colour

choice -red, set-off against dull green-grey walls;

I hold the colour chart though I possess the power

of magenta & baby-blue to brighten a mid-day sky.


Vincent van Gogh (1853 - 1890), The Hague, November 1882 lithograph on paper, 49.6 cm x 38.1 cm; Credits to: van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam (Vincent van Gogh Foundation)

Yes, I’m afraid to see threads in-forest-tangle that I have no right or patience to untangle.

My gifts communicate in colour; full spectrum. I have visited a sea of red, so brother what job am I suited for? I am pious but not given to

monotony. I look to the river, I see a woman naked on a stone, breasts and belly sagging sorrow running through transparent veins,

without consideration, I grab pencil and paper. And there I sat for many hours.

“Vincent, tries so hard to get her feet right, her toes will be his undoing. Her isolation is his,

her vulnerability is his

her sorrow is his …to capture.”

Vincent van Gogh (1853 - 1890), The Hague, November 1882 lithograph on paper, 49.6 cm x 38.1 cm; Credits to: van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam (Vincent van Gogh Foundation)

- Monica Minott 17

Sublime Lacuna I am looking at something that no longer exists. The image haunts me. I have seen three things that came from nothing, and now are nothing, except these photographs. Lost to fire, destruction, vanished.

I find it hard to articulate the hold these three images have over me. Some slippage of translation. Things glimpsed once in memory, forgotten. I have what is a lacuna lying shallowly along my femur, an altercation with a pint glass and a predilection for anaemia. It’s darker than the rest of me, a shadow, a lost memory of pain. Just as my smile has two missing premolars mirrored across my

upper jaw. I try and wiggle my tongue in sometimes, like an inquisitive worm. I have an insinuating tongue.

Photographs and translations, these three lost paintings. A ruined abbey and strand of monks

bearing a coffin, tiny under trees. Another abbey, closer now. Figure-lorn and snow shrouded. The same eviscerated trees. And then, ships on a frozen shore, their masts like the naked trees. Turn

them over, these black and white images, shades of ice. Like tarot cards in greyscale. A journey, a death, an absence.


The artist should not only paint what he sees before him, but also what he sees in himself. If, however, he sees nothing within him, then he should also refrain from painting what he sees before him.

Well, Caspar, these pictures live in me now. I am a gallery for their absence, the space that holds the

lacuna, the depression in the bone. He worked in that emotion. The splendid horror, the monstrous

sublime, that crushed you down. Something that came out of him like air and then drew you back

up. A Rückenfigur seem from behind and forever walking away. They’re like a memory. I thought I

met him once, the man who made these paintings. He had my brother’s name, and ‘U P O N T Y N E’ tattooed on his knuckles.

I’ve been a naughty boy, he said, and how sweet to hear an accent like that, so far from home, as

the river gazed up bluely from the backs of his hands.

Memoriam now, with the lost paintings. Locked in the vault of my mind, with the teeth and the shallow scrape of bone. Temperature controlled, humidity resistant, passed through into memory, behind safe-house door. The originals lost, flame, panic, fire.

Close my eyes, taste honey on my insinuating tongue. How sweet, to see them again. Emma Dee


Caspar David Friedrich, as quoted in “The Awe-Struck Witness” in TIME magazine (28 October 1974) and in “On the Brink: The Artist and the Seas” by Eldon N. Van Liere in Poetics of the Elements in the Human Condition: The Sea (1985) ed. Anna-Teresa Tymieniecka.


Hats Off - van Gogh

( Poet questioning Basquiat about Gauguin’s Red Beret)

It was in autumn he bought me le chapeau rouge, my first red hat! What can a hat do for me… woman? Perhaps van Gogh knew the secret to the heart, an invisible tug between Gauguin and an immortal red beret. He made light of the beret at first. You were only a thought then, yet he set off in you a most provocative line of enquiry, chalk-red against shades of greens and yellows; brown pigments skin colour made the image complete. I’m working to complete me. Will the red hat be my inked achievement? I’m not a painter. “Ah but you are. 20

Is Junge wilde and rough too much

or just enough? The violence I paint make no mistake, all I’ve received.

Now I’ve made them uncomfortable, you who trafficked us, cut the roots of colour coded transfers. History

has been kind to you, no memory of genocides, of stolen lands; I’m all

about remembering. I wear a crown. I detonate shackles., I strip down to

elemental, chalk-bones set off electromagnetic waves. I now sport a halo.”

In time I’ll wear a halo, but for now I continue mixing colours in secret, learn what a red hat can do! - Monica Minott

Vincent van Gogh (1853 - 1890), Arles, December 1888 Oil on burlap on panel, 38.2 cm x 33.8 cm; Credit to: van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam (Vincent van Gogh Foundation)


Differential Map (An Excerpt) Cyprus Spring 2014 WLA Zone and rising Crossing north-south checkpoints Captures Mediterranean fractures.

My Cuba in Famagusta Our ripe worlds and words danced and poured into Cyprus and the sea.

Here I invented something, we invented something And I give it to you, all of you Here is my gift.

Now, take the gift and nail it like LAC Here is a pen Flag up you mum’s village, your dad’s village, your nan’s village, and your sea Big up your places and your differential spaces Open it, connect it, detach it, reverse it, tear it, modify it, work it, Make it your shifting ground between deconstruction and reconstruction Mapmaking and mapbreaking You can do this can’t you? Amused at this rhizomatic play.

Its description: Marco Polo productions My red and blue crisscrossed Britain in Λευκόνοικο, Her Palestine de-starred Jordan in Nicosia, Mrs Bones bird Zimbabwe in Güzelyurt My Japan near the gas fields in padlocked Κοφίνου Nene, diagnosed my illness as paraphilia, a key fetish, with BPD – Border-line Partition Disorder. Gave me filling in stone sandwich without ‘last words’ upside-down Russia in Lefkoşa Her red and white starred Turkey in Ammochostos Her cedar green Lebanon in Yalova The dead twin’s blue Greece in Gazimağusa My ordered and progressed Brazil near the water pipeline in Kyrenia The heaven breath daughter’s blue and red America in Λευκωσία 22

He has invented something, they have invented something And they give it to you, all of you Here is the gift.

- Bahriye Kemal

Credit for photo of map: Bahriye Kemaland Literary Agency Cyprus.


REVIEWS: Monica Minott’s Poetics - Zion Roses


Zion Roses: Dr. Velma Pollard 2021 In Zion Roses, Monica Minott takes us with great skill and elegance into a wide world where she responds passionately to ordinary people, cultural and historical icons, artists of all times and genres and to deep emotions all the while exhibiting an enviable knowledge of the bible, the classics and the environment of Jamaican life and language. Here is the consummate artist and art lover praising all forms: dance, music, painting and celebrating practitioners of all. Some have poems named for them. Others have their names inscribed as they drop in on selected poems effortlessly like the traditional passerby. With poems named for them are Rico Rodriquez, Don Drummond, trombonist, whose poem is careful to include the voice of Margarita the love of his life and his victim, Barry Moncrieffe, beloved dancer, “Uncle Barry” to Monica and to so many; Degas, Malevitch, van Gogh painters, to name a few but most passionately and insistently Jean Michel Basquiat, African-American painter who died tragically at 27 but left a body of masterpieces for art collectors to marvel at finally. Six of the poems are meditations on the being and the going of this “radiant” prodigy who died too young by far. (“What is the best age for dying?” page 39). There is method in the placing of the poems. So, for example women’s tears sit across the page from each other in “BEFORE THE RAINS CAME” and “RUNDOWN” reinforcing the intensity of suffering whether it finds expression in she who would “shout back at the thunder” (page 30) or she who “shuts her eyes tight” to keep from crying while “kneading dumplings into compliance” (page 31). “BETTER STRANGERS” (pages 19-20) tells of sudden, exquisite love-making followed by “UNDER A DARKER SUN” (page 21) describing rape and a child’s “disarticulated body” eventually surrendering. Minott’s easy relationship with the bible and Christian “mythology” has been mentioned earlier but worth special attention in that regard is “WHEN TO LEAVE THE SHALLOWS”, striking in the handling of a time and a mood and for the perfect testimony and metaphor which begins: “By faith I rise from the bed of shallows. I have fished all night, and caught five parrot-fish-…” and ends “I see visions wider than all the nets cast, as I set out to walk on water” (my emphases) There is a sure-footedness about these poems, a maturity of construction, of matching thought with word and rhythm which mark Monica Minott as a craftswoman at the height of her productivity. I join her many “fans” in saying that she has lived up to the promise of her first collection, Kumina Queen. Indeed, has surpassed it. 25

Complex Contemplations: An overview of Winsome Monica Minott’s Zion Roses. Winsome Monica Minott’s second collection, Zion Roses, is a carefully crafted assemblage of lyric evocations of intimacies of place, person, history, and culture. To borrow a phrase from the title poem, Minott’s collection “carr[ies] complex contemplations” couched in a chiselled language, a precise verbal economy that deftly moves between austere wordscapes (“Bag-A Wire – An Endangered Soul”), bluesy elegy (“Trombone Blues”), spiritual contemplation, narrative rethinking of Caribbean history and Greek myth (“Me, Mahogany Tree, Now Tour Guide;” “Why Telemachus Sells Broom”), and the shifting collages of testimonial and confessional disclosures. Zion Roses limns reflections, interior journeys mapped onto external landscapes and vice versa, with a keen attention to the details of light, colour, texture, sound, bodies, sensory experiences, and language. History reverberates in Zion Roses as a perpetual present, a revenant haunting and stopping town clocks and retelling and reliving the slave master’s rape of girls “he had selected to ride” (Under a Darker Sun). Many poems are steeped in social, familial, and personal histories to such an extent that the collection seems to ventriloquize the spectres of past lives and memories, and the poet becomes her cast of characters – contemplating them even as they contemplate her, becoming messenger and medium. In “Stilts”, this role is explicitly stated: I speak to the ghosts of Ethel and Cecil, to crabs inhabiting shadows Commanding them to memorize Scriptures: I am the messenger Of hope.


Zion Roses’ complex contemplations are woven from Minott’s adroit and fluid shifting between temporalities. Her poems mine collective and personal memory in ways that suture past hurts and dark legacies to present reflection and cathartic recollection. In a language that mines the rich expressive possibilities of Jamaican Creole and Standard English, Minott gives us poems which evoke the heartfelt memories of childhood vacations (“Floorboards – Oracabessa”), ancestors, a mother’s mental illness (“Before the Rains Came”), and the unspoken histories of maternal love enacted in cooking (“Rundown”). Simultaneously unsentimental and filled with empathy, the poems of Zion Roses reveal Minott’s commitment to unflinchingly examine, scrutinize, and reflect on past and present memories, and actions - the whole gamut of human experiences – love and its complications, childhood, art, music, dance, and the irrevocable grounding of self in specific places. The taut, tough tenderness of her language and lyrical sensibility is strikingly exemplified in her suite of six poems centered on the figure of the Neo- Expressionist African American (of Puerto Rican and Haitian descent) artist, Jean-Michel Basquiat (1960 - 1988). In these poems, Minott ventriloquizes Basquiat, becoming the artist, synthesizing image and word in an act of reflexive contemplation and questioning that suggests the boldness and ambition of Minott’s poetic enterprise in Zion Roses: “Why are my lines spiderweb thin/ on which I balance reality, and where / will this road, my road, your road end?” Zion Roses suggests that Minott’s road will be marked by even more powerful poetic achievement.

Dr. Nadi Edwards - Senior Lecturer University of the West Indies -2021



ZION ROSES: “Holding Sway”

This collection weaves an Anancy web, enmeshing the reader into a linguistic landscape filled with wry humor and that tongue- in- cheek manipulation of the language that is at the heart of Jamaican patois. The speaker in each poem, casts a wide net on the reader, moving effortlessly from standard English to Patois; from a colonial past to the contemporary imaginary of a people who do not submit; to the public and private life of individuals born of the legacy of slavery and colonization to craft a dispensation where Rastafari dares to elevate a Black God in his own image and a tour guide speaks truth into reality to confound his audience and reaffirm the empowerment of resistance across the African Diaspora. This is indeed Anancy language, crafting history into verse, engulfing the reader into rhythms that hold accountable both the massa and the enslaved; the writer and the reader. This is language that reveals the inventive spirit of a people’s indomitable will, for whom every loss is a gain and young women of African descent have the audacity to believe they can walk on water. Engaging the craft of double entendre so characteristic of Jamaican Patois, and so symbolic of Anancy cunning, the language holds its sway on the reader, cunningly shifting into standard English in a manner that requires you to be present. You read each poem and experience the history while the language entangles you in the nuances of oppression and the people’s will to assert themselves through an ingenious mix of resistance, “planting branches everywhere, hoping one will catch before sunrise.” This is language that’s allusion and illusion. It is a seamless thread of an Anancy façade-where the speaker of the poem toys with you-placing you center stage within the circle of the history and historical empowerment of African descendants in the diaspora. It’s a web that can uplift as much as it can cut you down to size and put you right in your place. Through this craft of the imagination Monica Minott commands your presence as a witness to the broad sweep of history. She sounds the Abeng and you are called to be present in both the private and public worlds of characters who have been spawned of a colonial legacy to emerge as warriors fully aware that “thousands of lives have been sacrificed at the altar of sugar.” Yet, de story nuh dun yet, for these, our kinfolk-past and present, are lonely artists, scratching for trouble. They are “wild and beautiful beings” moulded within the crucible of a culture that artfully engages your critical consciousness in a web of historical accountability. Minott’s writing reveals one of the most creative uprisings of the Caribbean imaginary: the innovativeness of a people who crafted language from their motherland and that of their oppressors to give voice to their power of creativity and ongoing resistance artfully symbolized in the poem Genevieve, for the people of the African Diaspora know fully well that “years of planting seeds leave no time for regret.”

Dr. Marva Mc Clean ( 2021) 29

Eloquent Ancestral Voices Speak in Zion Roses A follow-up to her book Kumina Queen, Jamaican poet Winsome Monica Minott’s new work Zion Roses, takes us into the world of history, art, lived experiences, forgetting, and belonging with ferocious dignity. Her poems are biting, sharp around the edges, eliciting such emotion the reader becomes emotionally entangled in the words. ‘Under A Darker Sun’ takes you on such a journey:

…As he entered me, I shuddered. Stone upon stone. Surely, I would suffocate, would die. Cold upon coal, a searching hand found my land, ripped a thin veil before a disarticulated body surrendered. I fainted…

Rhythmic, powerful, defiant, Minott’s poems evoke memories of pain, of joy, of revelation. It’s not often that you get a poet whose words strike at the heart of one’s own experiences so profoundly that it leaves you breathless. Minott is one of them. She not only touches on ancestral and African roots, her creativity, although at times opening old wounds, also takes one on a path to healing. She weaves in life’s everyday routines that we all can relate to — the marvels of childhood memories, watching ‘mama’ at her daily chores, interpretations of contemporary themes. Yes, multiple themes, but all woven together by a common thread — the shared history of familial voices that runs through all of us. The tempo of Minott’s poetry gets into our heads and mimics our own heartbeats. That’s why we feel so connected when we read a poem like Set Sail. It speaks of a dislocated soul longing for the warmth of reconnection to one’s natural beginnings. It’s about the choices we make in life. Whether right or wrong, it is what it is, she intimates. So, we reminisce, we question, we bawl, but in the end ‘wih nash with teet and bear it! However, all is not lost in Minott’s world. Zion Roses, the book’s closing poem, tells us so. She concludes with optimism, yet warns: Although life offers us roses, beware the thorns, it wih jook yuh! Nonetheless, with inherited connection, compassion, eloquence we can create a trail of “the sweet smell you carry” as we steadily climb this uphill battle called life.

Dawn A. Davis (2021) Journalist. 30

Inhabiting Absence: ZION ROSES Zion Roses (Peepal Tree Press, 2021) is Monica Minott’s second collection of poetry. Minott meditates on the intersections of history, landscape, art and identity. Ekphrastic poetry, particularly on the works of Jean-Michel Basquiat, and elegies for pioneering Jamaican cultural icons, the likes of Rico Rodriguez, and Barry Moncrieffe, connect her poetry to visual art, music and dance. A recurring theme that brings together poems in the collection is movement. She explores movement across borders, throughout time, in the streets of Kingston and between life and death. In Dunbar Creek to Nigeria Two Hundred Years Later, she writes, “The water spirit brought us here/far from the shores of Africa/The water spirit will take us back” (25). Movement is no stranger to sorrow and possibility for people of the Caribbean and the diaspora. This collection of poetry continues the global conversation about the dignity, personal and collective histories and creative visions regarding Black life in the aftermath of the 2020 Black Lives Matter movement. Yet, Minott’s political messaging is not heavy-handed. While the poet assumes the role to bear witness to “travelling spirits” (17), “drought-stricken weeks” (30) and the “horizon of a wayward beach” (32), she is interested in the private dimensions of people’s lives and their relationships to family, the natural environment, ancestors and God. Minott illustrates the voices and visions of multiple characters in varied contexts throughout the collection but she also speaks to her lived reality. In Set Sail the poem is in conversation with V.S Naipaul’s The Middle Passage (1962). Naipaul’s travel writing narrates his “return” to “half-made societies” in the Caribbean. Turning Naipaul’s critical and equally condescending gaze of Caribbean societies on its head, Minott travels to England and says: I looked up to grey English skies and felt absent No poui tree, no poinciana, no river of golden dust. I am in the land of my captors… (23).


The Caribbean poet is not the alien, the geography of England is. Truly speaking, none of this is totally unfamiliar territory. Colonialism long manufactured education and cultural systems that imposed knowledge of their history and landscapes while excluding the colonised and rendering them “absent.” This is a postcolonial condition of thousands of people who move from former colonies to the land of a fractured empire. Instead of taking the short-cut and typical criticism of Naipaul’s failings and tone, Minott summons the memory of her friend, Mushay, a “true carnival-loving Trini” (23) who continues to live in Trinidad with a tumour. She remembers his beauty and vulnerability. The potential loss and disconnect from Mushay can translate to the poet’s loss and disconnect from the Caribbean. Perhaps this is an inevitable outcome. Still, the poet has the power to give clarity by writing about the ambivalence.

Amílcar Sanatan -2021 poet.


Bank Of The Seine Vincent van Gogh (1853 - 1890), Paris, May-July 1887 oil on canvas, 32.0 cm x 46.0 cm; Credits: van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam (Vincent van Gogh Foundation)


About Contributors To This e-Zine Mirande Bissell’s - first collection of poetry, Stalin at the Opera, was published in June, 2021 by Ghost Peach Press. She is a graduate of Bennington College in Vermont, and lives and teaches near Baltimore, Maryland. Dawn A. Davis - Dawn A. Davis, a journalist with more than twenty years’ experience. Davis is passionate about sharing the talent, unique voices, and business acumen characterizing the Caribbean. Her journey began with Jamaica’s oldest newspaper, The Gleaner before moving to freelance work for publications and websites including Caribbean Today, ebony.com, and Jamaicans.com. Her natural curiosity and keen interest in cultural connections and community building underpins her work as a writer and researcher. Emma Dee - is a PhD candidate for the University of Kent, Writing the Novel; Practise as Research. She is interested in literary depictions of taboo and transgression with particular focus on the Gothic. Her poetry and prose have appeared in anthologies both in the UK and in Le Menteur in Paris. She is currently working on a novel of Gothic Horror proportions and content. Dr. Nadi Edwards - Nadi Edwards is a senior lecturer in the Department of Literatures in English at the University of the West Indies, Mona Campus. He has published widely on anglophone Caribbean literature and popular culture. He is a critic of Caribbean literature. Danielle Hooke Goodbody - Danielle Hooke Goodbody is originally from Chicago, but has lived in the UK since 2009. She is a PhD student at the University of Kent, Canterbury. Recent work appears in Golden Handcuffs Review and Molly Bloom, and she is an Associate Editor for Free Verse: A Journal of Contemporary Poetry & Poetics. Roxane Kaiser - R. Kaiser is an engineer and a painter who has wintered in Wisconsin for twenty years. She works assiduously at her craft as a landscape painter. She believes that the artistic call is linked to ancestral giftings. Photo of painting: Frost Wood Dr. Bahriye Kemal - is passionate about and actively supports moves towards a differential world. She was born in London to refugee parents from Cyprus, and has studied and taught at various universities including Cyprus, Japan, Peru and the UK. She is currently a Lecturer in Contemporary and Postcolonial Literatures at the University of Kent. Dr. Marva Mc Clean - is a poet, scholar/activist and Teacher-Researcher. She is the Gladstone Library, UK, Political Scholar in Residence 2020, author of From the Middle Passage to Black Lives Matter: Ancestral Writing as a Pedagogy of Hope (2019) and co-author of Indigenous Epistemology: Descent into the Womb


of Decolonized Research Methodologies (2020). Dr. McClean leads the online literary initiative, Strong in the Broken Places: Poetics of the African Diaspora and is interested in collaborative inquiry with international scholars, activists, writers and community leaders. Dr. Velma Pollard - Velma Pollard writes poetry, fiction and studies of language. She has several books of poetry including Shame Trees Don’t Grow Here, and Leaving Traces. Winsome Monica Minott - Monica Minott is a poet and a Chartered Accountant. Her first collection, Kumina Queen, was published by Peepal Tree Press in the UK, (2016) and her second collection Zion Roses was published in April 2021 by Peepal Tree Press. Twitter: @mint99wm Arpana Rao - Arpana Rao is a prolific fine artist from India with a vision to represent life through art and design. Her journey with art began at a young age in India and continued as she completed a Bachelors in Fine Art in Pune/India, and soon after her MA in Fine Art at the University for the Creative Arts (UCA) Canterbury. She continues her exploration of water colours as she captures the vast, distinctive and stunning landscapes of Kent, including the birds of Kent. She finds fascinating connections between birds and landscapes. Pictures of painting titled: Bendy Path, and Migratory Birds. Instagram: @arpanaart Emma Robdale - Emma Robdale, is a writer, performer, painter and most importantly a student in performing arts at University of Kent. Picture of painting titled: Womb of Life. Twitter: @ERobdale Amilcar Sanatan - is an artist, emerging academic and activist from Trinidad and Tobago. For over a decade, he has constructed spaces for youth and student leadership in the Caribbean. Jessica Taggart Rose - is a writer and editor concerned with human nature and our interactions with the natural world. Her work has been published in the Letters to the Earth, New Contexts and Storm Chasers anthologies, Confluence Magazine and in a range of zines. A founding member of Poets for the Planet, she’s currently studying an MA in Creative Writing at the University of Kent. Twitter: @jessicatrose Stefanie Thomas - Stefanie Thomas, a dancer and painter lives in Belgium. Stefanie Thomas leaps through spaces adding elegance and infusing vibrant colours, always paying great attention to details. She is adept at producing images commissioned by writers to enhance the covers of books and magazines. Cover picture Spiderweb, and Webb 2. Twitter: @hiddenbluegem Thomas Tegento - Born in Ethiopia and grew up in a rich and multicultural environment of East African nations but currently lives in UK as a refugee, writer, performer, tutor and most importantly a student in performing arts at University of Kent. 35

Ezine Produced by: International Poetry from Around the World Series. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted by any means without prior permission in writing from publisher. Contact Publisher: wm238@kent.ac.uk

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