My Mission is to become an accomplished writer internationally and in Jamaica, my home country. This page highlights my published work in print and online.
The sculpture featured an 11ft bronze cast male and 10ft female standing in water, facing each other and looking above. The base of the statue bore the words “None but ourselves can free our minds”; a quote borrowed from Marcus Garvey and popularized by the iconic Bob Marley in his tune “Redemption Song”, which coincidentally bears the same title as the statue. At first, it seemed as if the artist had succeeded in capturing the essence of freedom as the images in the water symbolized a rebirth, rising from the bondage of the past and looking forward with hopes of a new beginning.
This brilliant piece of artistry brought more than hope and optimism to the Jamaican people. Its unveiling sparked myriad heated discussions and controversial debates in the former British colony, for the months that followed.
Why? Apparently, the fact that the bronze cast couple were naked enraged quite a few persons. Many argued that it was inappropriate for such an image to be placed in a public park where children would visit. Some even vowed that they would never take their families there. The religious leaders and self righteous academics believed it was a shining example of the moral decay that was facing the society. There were endless newspaper articles and radio talk show programs dedicated to “Redemption Song”. One journalist joked that it was the governments’ attempt to elude the public’s attention to the problems in the failing economy.
It’s been five years since the unveiling of “Redemption Song”. Except for occasional snickers of cheeky children and bashful adults, there has been little mention of what is undoubtedly one of the most famous sculptures in
An island famous for its lush green mountains and country sides, charismatic blue-green glistening waters and white sandy beaches,
‘Reaching’ The Reach
By Janeen Johnson
After three weeks in Brussels I thought I had seen it all, the magnificence of the monuments and the grandeur of architecture that Europeans so prize themselves on. It wasn’t difficult to adjust to the sinful Belgian lifestyle of chocolate flowing freely from every shop on the corner of every street and beer wasn’t assumed to mean a Red Stripe but could be any one of a hundred brands. I was in a place where asking for ketchup in a restaurant was an unforgivable act but a glass of wine at breakfast was a way of life. Though I loved the experience and appreciated the difference in culture, I longed for a patty just as much as I yearned to find a pastime other than visiting museums. My trip was coming close to an end but time hadn’t allowed me to see much outside of the capital city. It was a last minute decision which almost didn’t happen but thankfully it did as it changed the outcome of my entire trip.
I was in awe from the very moment I exited the train station. Instead of German made automobiles scurrying about on the streets, scores of bicycles were parked neatly outside of the station whilst dozens were in motion. It was as if I had walked into a bicycle convention. Bicycles were apparently a very popular mode of transportation for the young and young at heart. As I went deeper in the city and walked across acres of well manicured, storybook-green coloured lawns, my fascination grew. Nothing had prepared me for the beauty and charming characteristics of this medieval city, Bruges.
Bruges is the capital of the West Flanders province in the North- Western region of and is predominantly Dutch. It’s known to many in Europe and across the world as the “Venice of the North” because it bears many similarities to the Italian city. Picturesque bridges and canals flowing through the city centre contribute to its aesthetic and romantic appeal. I was captivated by all the elements of my surroundings, beautiful white swans glided gracefully atop the canal as couples merrily went by in boats. On the narrow grey bricked streets, cars yielded and made way for horse-drawn carriages whilst wide-eyed tourists were busy snapping away with their cameras. It was if I had ventured into a fantasy world.
Enchanting tearooms and sidewalk cafes where one could feast on freshly made Belgian waffles were common fixtures in Bruges, but not as common as delectable hand-made pralines being displayed in the windows of local Chocolatiers. In Bruges, chocolate is more than a sweet treat, it’s a culture and I was happy to embrace it.
I wandered about the city for hours, never once tired or bored. Grand castle-like cathedrals and museums stood proudly in the city centre. Whether it was a house or shops bearing intricately designed Belgian lace, each building seemed to have a story to tell. Bright floral arrangements and flags adorned the window sills of red and brown brick buildings with orange roofs. This delightful city captured my heart.
Bruges’ unrivalled beauty, deeply rooted traditions and well preserved heritage makes it a city well worth visiting.
What a wonderful day,life as we know it is good,
people are off to acheive their goals, to
fulfill their purpose.
Dreams and aspirations linger in the air,
will I be the next millionaire?
The sky is beautiful,oh blessed city,with so much to be thankful for.
In split seconds my peace of mind was disturbed,
by loud cries for help,thousands of footsteps;
the great Twin Towers were on fire.
Everything was at a standstill;
the city of York was burning,
the twin brothers had fallen just like Nostradamos had said.
Hopes, dreams,promises became mere ashes.
Why oh Lord? Why so many?
Will there ever be another normal day?
What a wonderful day; or is it?