⌗AtoZ Challenge, 11th April 2020, J is for Jamaica.

Welcome to my blog Life in Poetry.

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Quote of the Day : Art like Life is an open secret.

Pursewarden in The Alexander Quartet by Lawrence Durrell.

Welcome to the 2020 APRIL A to Z Challenge

if you would like to know more about the A to Z Challenge, founded 11 years ago by Arlee Bird at Tossing Out,  read here

for my theme revealed , go here on Blogger

On WordPress, read here 

Q will be a day to answer all your questions on my novel in progress, so feel free to write them down in your comment, on any day till then. On the 20th April, I will compile all the questions and answer each one on my Q post.

My Ninth extract will appear just after the first Annabella, half-way through the novel.

J is for Jamaica

Brief synopsis of plot and characters :

Mathilda, my first main character, is American and lives in New York City. She is a student at NYU where she is preparing a thesis on the origins and developments of African American Music. She is a first person narrator. Her timeframe is 2005. In my previous extracts, Mathilda has travelled to New Orleans and Jekyll Island, already met Annabella.

Bartolomé, my second main character, is Cameroonian and lives in Yaoundé. He is a professor of Mathematics at the University there. I will be using a third-person narrator for this character from his Point of View. His timeframe is the early ’90’s. In my previous extracts, Bartolomé has made a trip up North for his grand-father’s funeral and decided to leave Yaoundé behind for good.

Annabella’s story.

” I grew up in a small village, not far from Kingston as the crow flies, but nearly a day’s trip by cart and donkey. Ma came from the back country, the Trelawny hills, she was Maroon. her childhood was rocked by the stories of Nanny of the Moon. Her parents were mortified when she married a gadjo from the town. But she brought me up in the Maroon tradition and entrusted me with the gift, as her mother and grand-mother had before her. My Pa didn’t come from much, he lived in the shanty towns East of Kingston. he went to school until he was ten, then worked, running errands and help tend the small grocery store his mother kept. My GrandPa was a hired hand either on sugar plantations or small construction sites. Pa, Winston, didn’t want to be like his father. He hung out in bars at night and performed tricks in between the musician’s acts. Winston was deft with his hands and tongue : juggling, dabbing in magic and spinning jokes.
When Winston met Derajuh, my Ma, who came to town weekly to sell the family farm produce with Grandad, her black magic found an instant adept. The rest is history.I have three brothers and two sisters. Us siblings came to Louisiana in the eighties to try our luck in the States. Winston and Derajuh established themselves near Kwame Falls,  on a farm of their own but Pa was bewitched by music then and made a few bucks as a musician in the sixties and seventies, coming regularly over on tour to play in clubs along the Gulf . He started with blues and jazz, then went onto crooner songs and soul, flourishing with the Reggae wave. He even participated briefly in the Kingston riots against the new government after independence, when two of his front teeth were broken, something even Ma couldn’t fix. With his dreadlocks, it gave him an uncanny grin which still haunts me. “©susanbauryrouchard

The Café by Leonard Cohen
The beauty of my table.The cracked marble top.A brown-skinned girl ten tables away.         my changeCome with me.I want to talk.I’ve taken a drug that makes me want to talk.

Inna deYard, documentary 2019, watch here Inna de Yard and Winston McAnuff, Live in Paris, here new album, The Soul of Jamaica, listen here
Serge Gainsbourg, Couleur Café, 1965, here                                Aux Armes etc.., 2010, Live recording in Jamaica, here

Missing Stratford-upon-Avon

Field squirrel near Anne Hathaway’s cottage, July 2010

Black Swan on Avon, July 2010

Thank you for reading. Gardening this morning, planting May flowers and reading on my deckchair in the spring breeze.

7 thoughts on “⌗AtoZ Challenge, 11th April 2020, J is for Jamaica.

  1. Happy birthday Susan! 💐💐
    I’ve been unable to follow the entire series but I think I’ll come back once the challenge is over. That will give me a better view of your WIP.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Sonia. I’ve been looking at your contributions. All more fascinating than the next. Very behind on commenting. Swamped with writing … but that’s a good thing, I think. Will be posting my WEP on Thursday. How about you ? Olga’s has already gone up.


      1. Hi Susan. I understand it can get overwhelming.
        I hope you had a good birthday amidst all the lockdown and that your family is doing well.
        I’m not doing WEP this month for various reasons. I will be back in June. Wish you luck. I will be reading the posts though.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Thank you Sonia. I had a fabulous day. My eldest daughter’s birthday tomorrow. Unfortunately she lives in London and because of the confinement we have not been able to come together for our birthday time. I was supposed to be in Monte-Carlo this week for the kick off of the clay court season and Nadal’ s 12th victory … but tennis won’t be back until August now. Officially a day behind. Posting N , only today , along with my WEP. Been working on my poetry collection and writing the rest of Alphabet extracts that I had not had time to finish in March. Hope you are well. Take care and maybe we’ll find time to speak in Mai. Toodle Loo .


  2. Belated birthday greetings, Susan. Have an inspired year and stay safe & sensible.

    Another episode where you demonstrate your ability to paint people’s backstory in well-chosen words.

    Liked by 1 person

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