A woman prophet dem call Anna,
a somebody well old, from de tribe
of Asher, arrive at de moment
me take Jesus back from
Simeon. She take one
look on him, lift her hand in de air,
start give thanks to Jahweh
and tell everybody about Yeshua,
meaning all Jah-Jah pikni waiting
for de salvation of Jerusalem. Eye-water
drizzle down from her chin
to de ground in a soft waterfall.
“Mother,” she tell me, “look good dis day
on your child, him eye bright, him skin soft.
Put your nose in him clothes.
Smell him clean. And remember him so
on de day him fall down
in de dirt to lift up Israel.”
Pamela Mordecai’s previous collections of poetry include Journey Poem (1989); de Man, a performance poem (1995); Certifiable (2001); The True Blue of Islands (2005), and Subversive Sonnets (2012). de book of Mary is set to be published in 2015. In 2006 she published Pink Icing, a collection of short stories; her first novel, Red Jacket, appeared in February, 2015. She has edited and co-edited ground-breaking anthologies of Caribbean writing including Jamaica Woman (1980, 1985, with Mervyn Morris); From Our Yard: Jamaican Poetry since Independence (1987); Her True-True Name: An Anthology of Women’s Writing from the Caribbean (1989, with Betty Wilson) and Calling Cards: New Poetry from Caribbean/ Canadian Women (2005). Her play, El Numero Uno had its world premiere at the Loraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People in Toronto in 2010. In spring 2014, she was a fellow at the prestigious Yaddo artists’ community in upstate New York yaddo.org. Pam and her family immigrated to Canada in 1994. She lives with her husband, Martin, in Kitchener, Ontario.