For Kamala

I see you
child of a Jamaican immigrant
because I am one half that too.*
I understand the pressure
and the power
I get the humor
and the struggle
I know
what it means not to comprehend
when someone says “can’t”
or “don’t”
or “maybe.”
These are not words in your vocabulary
because among the many gifts…
music, rhythm, sun, ocean, passion…
that were poured into your ear
in the honeyed lilt
of your parent’s native tongue,
was never among them.

You received your gifts…
No nonsense,
No problem,
No bullshit,
with grace and faith
but not so much that you can’t look at yourself
and laugh…
even today in wild unbridled vanquishing triumph
…laugh, at the child of a Jamaican immigrant
in the mirror
who will always believe they can do better
Should do better
Must try to do better
and will always believe they can take the world along
For the ride.


*My father, Dr. Charles A. Dyer was born in St Ann’s Bay, Jamaica in 1936

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