Nostalgia For Guantanamo

Next on the series of challenges for Na/GloPoWriMo Day 11 is to write a poem pertinent to places of origin.  It seems to me that regardless of place of birth or my history of Hawai’i and California, the place that formed my character most and has kept me in the good company of a lifetime of greatly supportive and loving extended family was GTMO.

Little Havana

Nostalgia For Guantanamo

by Michael Romani

Nostalgia beats as a fond memory

Of lived love and hearth of family

Fondness of the heart grows in absence

Often deeper than it grows in presence

Brothers and sisters joined in singularity

Laughing and crying at the same hilarity

We are joined together by a place

We are bonded together a we embrace

The Western and Eastern banks of Guantanamo Bay

At a handful of beaches we'd splash and play

Few of us knew that Columbus landed at Fisherman's Point

Or that many of name  of those who had come before to anoint

All the many places we committed to our memory

As one large and ever growing extended family

John Paul Jones Hill oversaw the journeys of us all

While most happenings happened on Windward as I recall

Both rainforest and cacti were fields of play

Guantanamera was a hit once so they say

Interestingly a naval base embraces natural history

Protecting the flora and fauna of rare endemicity

And perhaps it's that uniqueness that flavors us

As willing to stick our hearts and courage out just because

Of all those little things that come to shape our youth

Like a singular hold on living out our best truth

The cactus curtain separated those living in freedom

From those living under the horror of that revolution

Opuntia and landmines filled that rugged no man's land

Each side certain that the Curtain held the upper hand

Most of us Pirates attended William T. Sampson schools

Where we began to grow up and break the rules

A one of a kind experience for the children of those who protect

And most it, preserved in the Guantanamo Public Memory Project

Semi arid, we grew up there on the dust and not a lot of rain

And learned that to conserve was more about life than pain

When water was cutoff by that brutish Cuban nation

We learned to get by and thrive through desalination

What I remember a lot of was all the water just in reach

There at Family, Cable, Glass and mostly Windmill Beach

All of the lessons such a life had to readily teach

At Hidden, Blue, Cuzco, Niknik and Ferry Landing Beach

It's true that no man steps into the same river twice

But looking back, mostly what I remember is very nice

Riding horses out on the hillside and coral trails

We knew freedom, love and friendship in our best tales

Small town living as we grew restless then island hopped

Partying and carrying on until we finally dropped

But the best of things has been an incredible extended family

That for this lifetime has kept us in the best and truest company


c)  April 11, 2019   Michael Romani

All Rights Reserved

Shagwong Cove Resort - Pagoda Ruins With Coral




About alohapromisesforever

Writer, poet, musician, surfer, father of two princesses.
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