Filling A Government Prescription

-My lady, why you chupsing?

When you does come hey,
You gotta mek up you min’
‘bout two tings:
wait or guh long.

-Private pharmacy? If dah suit you.
True you ain’ gotta wait;
yuh might gotta pay, doh.
Evahting bout money, money, money, man.
Anyhow, I got time.
Lathe and saw put down evah since.

Line real long, yuh
but um is gob’ment.
Wuh yuh expec’?

Don’ vote fuh a fella!
Dif’rent letter; same shite!
Mekkin’ sport.
Dem is drink up wid one annuda,
Get fat,
An’ laugh bad at we.
You tink dey ceh bout we waitin’ hey?

Wait! A nex’ one gone lunch?
Black people, boy.
Treat duh own scruffy, scruffy, scruffy.
Dah is why wunna cyan’ get nuh farther.
If dese duh white people, we wuh get dispatch evah since.

-Obama? I like he real bad but you cyan’ see
he half a white man, anyhow?
Boun’ tuh get t’rough.

-No. I does do evah’ting fuh muhself.
My daughta’ gone tuh Amurica,
An’ de gran’? Plain wufless.
She mudda really try wih she doh,
But dis drug ting, man!
Got she grip up like ah octopus,
I de see shite in dis life but…

-Guh ‘round, guh round, man!

…but not like dah.
I gih she food, if she hungry,
But she cyan’ sleep at me; I sorry.
Too tiefin’.
Wuh tek up me tablets (I waitin’ hey suh long fuh!) an’ all.

-Wait…dah woman en know
you’s tuh wait like de restah we?
Wey de fuck she tink she gine?
…Yes darlin’; de line start back dey
Behind dat red girl…
Nuh broughtupsy.

…matter ah fac’, I nuses tuh drink Cockspur an’ smoke hard.
But I done wid dah…
…buyin’ roun’s too expensive, boh.

-Companion? Yes.
Sleep nex’ tuh me
Com-fiteble evah’ night, too:
Me King James Bible.
Heh heh

-Wait! She ain’ know you is tuh say, “Mornin’”?
Young people, boy.
An’ where she gine wid all she stomach at de door?
Nuh training.

-Wuh? I aright.
Done widdout woman fuh 32 years.
Muh mudda learn me to do fuh muhself.
I does cook, clean, wash evahting, bohsie.

-Hungry? When I reach home.
Got me mauby hey, so I don’ fall down wid bad feels.
Fas’ food, killin’ out de yout.
Like dey ain’ know dah tek de lead out ya pencil.

-Woman? No soul!
She gone…
…‘long time
wid anudda man.
like she addicted to he doggie.
Believe I nuses tuh gih she muh pay packet
when de week come?
Ceh ‘bout she?
It duh October t’ird, 1972.

Well, I nex’…
(Blasted gob’ment tiefs)
You ain’ know we pay fuh dis out we taxes?

I done mek up me min’
tuh wait hey fuh de lil’ pressure med’cine,
an’ it ready…

Tekking yuh time ain’t laziness, Miss Lady.

Sandra Sealy is an award-winning Barbadian writer of poetry, non-fiction (articles), fiction and drama with work published in the region and beyond. Her poem “Beauty Of The Bald Head” (1998), moved from page to stage in 2005, as a critically acclaimed CD spoken-word jazz single, to a music video premiering at the African & Caribbean Film Festival (Pelican Films). In addition, this former Cultural Officer, Literary Arts ,is a storyteller and creative writing tutor to several children who have won many NIFCA awards under her tutelage.
Her blog Seawoman’s Caribbean Writing Opps, which enjoys a good Google ranking, reaches several international writers.


Summer E. said...

Oh gosh Sandra, this is pitch-perfect! Had me smiling! I was back in a specific pharmacy n Trinidad with this one.. notorious for their slow service but ppl are forced to go there because it's one of the few places in the area accepting the government health-care assistance programme. This is exactly the kind of thing I've heard while waiting in the line in that pharmacy, lol.

Genesis said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Genesis said...

I swear I met this man yesterday in Oistins. You captured this type of personality soooo well! LOL

Sandra Sealy said...

Thanks so much for your comments!

At first, his voice was annoying me coz I was trying to read. Then he became so entertaining, I couldn't resist. The person next to me in the line thought I was psycho writing down everything this old man was saying.

Then I fleshed out the character who told ME what else he wanted to say and it turned into the poem.

Anonymous said...

This is a magnificent piece by one of our most celebrated female literary artistes! It is - quite impressively - boiling over with all the flavour and delicious nuances of life not only here in Barbados but in the Caribbean. Sandra has managed to capture, in one impressive sweep, a character that is so true to caribbean masculinity that I'm left expecting to meet this guy the next time I walk down the street or go to the clinic for that matter! You are a magician with words Sandra!

scribe said...

Don't never say politics ain't your forte. I'm feeling you sistuh soulja.

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