To My Coral Bones

Deep
I Cariwoma
have always
carried deep
these islands,
this piece
of Atlantic coastland
inside me.
Sky-deep
Sea-deep
As star is to stone
As tide is to shore
Is just so I hold
these islands
to my coral bones.
And long before
hurricane strike,
some little butterfly,
some little blue messenger
of the soul will ride
the wind to bring
first news to my door.

Copyright: from I Have Crossed an Ocean (Bloodaxe, 2009) © Grace Nichols 2006, used by permission of the author c/o Curtis Brown literary agency.

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Grace’s poems are full of the sounds and stories of Guyana, the Caribbean country where she was born and grew up, often drawing on its ...

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