Born in Africa.
Lived in Africa.
Flourished in Africa.
Established illustrious civilization and academics in Africa.
Celebrated God, ancestral spirits, and community in Africa.
Then. . . the rape of Africa.
Betrayed in Africa.
Chained in Africa.
Stolen from Africa.
And “Africa was stolen.”
Shipped from Africa.
Forced in the belly of the beast.
Prayed in the belly of the beast.
Tortured in the belly of the beast.
Plotted in the belly of the beast.
Gave birth in the belly of the beast.
Rebelled in the belly of the beast.
Died in the belly of the beast.
From the belly of the beast, the spirit of the ancestors accompanied us.
From the belly of the beast, we surrendered to the ancestors in the relentless, reckless, and restless ocean.
From the belly of the beast, the ocean battered and bruised us, but not our spirit.
From the belly of the beast, the ocean taught power, perseverance, and persistent.
I sat on verandah of the Mission Church in Toco, Trinidad looking at and listening intently to the pounding, powerful, persevering, and persistent seas – where the Caribbean Sea kisses the Atlantic Ocean – the ocean that reluctantly carried ancestral spirits from the land of Africa.
I am in awe as I see it pounding the persistent and stubborn rocky coastline.
These stubborn coastlines now represent the stubborn minds and hearts of the descendants of the creators of the belly of the beast.
Only diplomatic smiles, charm, and words.
Ancestors learnt the power, persistence, and perseverance of the ocean from the belly of the beast.
They witnessed that the ocean destroyed stubborn and wicked coastlines and built beautiful beaches of nationhood and personhood with its by-products.
These are the new oceans pounding, persevering, and persisting against the stubborn and hard heart of post-modern European imperialism disguised,
Even in non-European fashion.