Colonisation In Reverse

Colonisation In Reverse

Wat a joyful news, Miss Mattie,
I feel like me heart gwine burs’
Jamaica people colonizin
Englan in reverse.

By de hundred, by de t’ousan
From country and from town,
By de ship-load, by de plane-load
Jamaica is Englan boun.

Dem a-pour out o’ Jamaica,
Everybody future plan
Is fe get a big-time job
An settle in de mother lan.

What a islan! What a people!
Man an woman, old and young
Jusa pack dem bag and baggage
An turn history upside dung!

Some people don’t like travel,
But fe show dem loyalty
Dem all a-open up cheap-fare-
To-Englan agency.

An week by week dem shippin off
Dem countryman like fire,
Fe immigrate an populate
De seat o’ de Empire.

Oonoo see how life is funny,
Oonoo see de turnabout,
Jamaica live fe box bread
Outa English people mout’.

For wen dem catch a Englan,
An start play dem different role,
Some will settle down to work
An some will settle fe de dole.

Jane say de dole is not too bad
Because dey payin she
Two pounds a week fe seek a job
Dat suit her dignity.

Me say Jane will never find work
At the rate how she dah look,
For all day she stay pon Aunt Fan couch
An read love-story book.

Wat a devilment in Englan!
Dem face war an brave de worse,
But I’m wonderin how dem gwine stan
Colonizin in reverse.

Louise Bennett
Jamaica Labrish, 1966

louise_bennett

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