(inspired by Lorna Goodison’s ‘The Woman Speaks to the Man Who Employs her Son’)
In case you did not know, I am the woman who gave birth to your employee Collin Davis and I think we need to talk… We need to talk about how proud I was as a single mother, before you turned my bwoy into the street’s headline news for doing bad. Like any concerning parent I just need to know, who gave you the permission, to take charge of my 16-year-old Collin who does not even have proper education. The bwoy does not even know how to spell his full name, and yet you telling him you giving him a job! Who gave you the right to give him that job? We need to have a talk urgent Sah!
Crying, crying, and crying I cannot stand it anymore. Do you know how bad it is for me, to see my son go down like this? He was my first, the one and only who made me feel a sense of unease, a need to cry. He was the little reason and caused of the metallic tide that rise in my mouth each morning. I was only sixteen when he gave me such signs, he made me knew I was not alone in my body.
A proud mother I wanted to be, so I carried him full term, tight up under my heart. I carried him like the poor carried hope; hope that I would get a break or a visa, hope that my bwoy will go through and remember me.
There is no father figure in poverty so you and I both know what that mean Sah.
Collin made my raped during a haunting blackout something I just cannot regret. Several years later when I first met the man I made him with, I realised he had much more like him. He was a fair-minded man, who treated all his children with equal and unbiased indifference: nothing to give. I had no choice but to raise Collin twice, once as a mother than as a father. You must know how I struggled a lot Sah.
I always dreamt my Collin would be a doctor, an earth healer or even one of the men who flew wings. I just never knew how one job could change everything. Like birds, I gave him no ceiling of what he could be, but when he tells me, you offered him a job I just knew it was up to no good.
I tell him NO, no, no, no Collin, but that dam bwoy does not even listen anymore. From the beginning of deep voice and growing of pubic hair, he just thinks he is the man of the house. I want to know what you teaching him Sah, because whenever I try calling him bwoy again, he just gives me some dirty looks. I need you to tell me clearly Sah, what type of job convert an innocent bwoy into a filthy deep-rooted crook! That job of yours had made him worthless, and now everybody wants to chop his hands off.
Do you know how it hurt, the first week he came home telling me how you was like a father to him and how much you value him so much? His poor words made me cry for days wondering who I was for sixteen years and where you had come from.
The second week hurts even more when the foolish bwoy came with that submarine gun telling me you said, ‘it is all for himself’. Until this day, I am still questioning, what type of father gives a son hot exploding death, when he only asked for bread?
I have not seen him since I tell him to carry it back.
Two days ago three more lives was done, so I am just wondering Sah if you have seen my bwoy Collin?
In case you have any wonders Sah, I am on my way downtown to buy three and one-third yard of black cloth and a deep crown veiled hat for that day he draws his bloody salary, because I just cannot take it anymore. It is too much for me now Sah; I have no power of what your job offers. From that day, you employed him I have been throwing two hands of partner with Judas’ mother, one as a mother and a father. It is to prepare me for when he dies.
I have not given up on him yet though, I am still saying psalms, weep for his soul, hoping one day my eye-water will cover you. However, until you reply, I will just be that crying mother using prayers at knee city. I hope you read and contact me soon.
Mel. N. Davis.