Who We Are

           We own the country we grow up in,
                or else we become aliens and invaders.
                             Michael Ondaatje

Let violence takes its own course,
as I write this, singing praises
because of what others have in store
           for us, if you must know.

Being in one place, we yet think we could
be somewhere else (as I hear you say),
and how we might have survived crossings
           down through the ages.

Time itself veers this way and that;
and we’re indeed here,
           continuing to be brave,
if only wishing to be new.

We continue to sing songs with voices
          raised louder, while we wait
for more to come to pass —
          reaching out to you only.

Gesticulating, with our heads held
high as we reclaim what’s lost,
          or seemed always around
because of what we left behind.

Cyril Dabydeen