Cuban clouds drift overhead,
I study their shape and search for meaning;
And just when I so nearly find
They shift and change then fade from mind.
I lift a lazy hand to shield my eyes,
From Cuban smoke-drift skies,
Behind Raybans stinging tears hide,
And wave this half-paradise a long goodbye.
Cuban sun kiss my skin,
Disperse the building cloud within,
Let your humble heart beat strong,
Give melody to Cuban blackbird’s song.
I breathe deep and free the Cuban air,
Her captive colours cannot share,
Like the Tocororo’s song,
Proud, this feathered flag flies on.
How precious, how fragile this jewelled sea,
My footprints wiped so easily,
Whilst in my heart a hungry cry,
No earthly food can satisfy.
Meaning I cannot invent,
For it was always here to learn,
A gift for us heaven-sent,
For the willing to discern.
Cloudless now, white sand, emerald sea,
Lapping waves washing me,
A moment of blissful serenity,
Creation hints eternity.
The Tocororo or Cuban Trogon is Cuba’s National bird. It bears all the colours of the Cuban national flag and cannot survive in captivity; a nod to Cuba’s turbulent history and struggles for independence and freedom.
The black bird, ubiquitous here, is actually called a Greater Antillean Grackle and makes quite a racket. It has a yellow beady eye and certainly doesn’t sing like the British blackbird! It had worked out how to steal and open the sugar sachets from our holiday breakfast bar.
I have also referenced the Cuban ‘Revolution of the humble, by the humble, and for the humble..’