3rd Religion

Chiming of a wooden stick
calls the assembly
to a stainless temple.

Salt fish incense wafts thickly throughout,
the chorus of flour raising the hymn.
Congregants rise,
chalice brims with water
and bitter herb reminders
of marjoram and thyme
piquant slivers of onion and scotch bonnet
slip in.

In a call to buck pot altar
supplicants anticipate their trial of fire.

Baptised in hot oil-
they surface renewed.
Lowly lives transformed
now as missionaries,
they share the Gospel:

encased in the new Ark of the Covenant-
a revelation to rum bibbers
liming in chattel house styled shops;

glistening in napkins
inspiring awed reverence
from bakes sales regulars;

crucified by toothpicks
on cocktail party trays-
a sacrament to aristocratic palates.


And though
to this celestial host
many pray daily,
greed tears them asunder.



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.


Anonymous said...

AWESOME.... never saw fishcakes in that light before .... Beautiful imagery, Sandra! Mouth watering already....

Shakirah Bourne said...

wow I really tasted your poem! Now I need a napkin lol

Shakirah Bourne said...

I really tasted your poem! Now I need a napkin lol

scribe said...

Wonder how you would rhapsodize a porkchop?! Interesting.

Carol said...

Ode to fishcakes, you made me miss Barbados so much. Great imagery. Congrats.

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