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Nov 13, 2001

20 year old poetry book re-launched

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Poetry is one of those art forms that is supposed to be timeless. That quality was put to the test this afternoon as a new generation of Belizeans was introduced to words written over two decades ago.

Jacqueline Woods, Reporting

In the summer of 1981, just before Belize got her Independence, three men: Evan X Hyde, Roland Parks and Dickie Bradley got together and expressed through poetry the powerful sentiments of the time.

Roland Parks, Author

“We were focusing on the patriotism, building up some kind of patriotic feelings among Belizean people here, with regard to loving the country and dealing with it from that patriotic standpoint. Independence was around the corner and there wasn’t a whole lot going on patriotically speaking.”

Besides patriotism, some of the poems also speak of passion and protest. Today, the authors have re released the book of poetry, which Parks says is still very much relevant to what is taking place in the country.

Roland Parks Reading Poem

“Yesterday I saw them dragging you to the jail house son. Through bloodstained glass windows, I saw them squandering your dignity with fists and clubs. Through illustrated iron bars your tears settles in anger on hopeless streets where other like you will ride their way to the festival of the forgotten sons. What does it matter to you now son, when you are caged away from the madness, paying with your pride for the immortalised sins of others who live in glory, while others like you must nourish starvation. What does it matter? I saw them hauling you to the jail house son.”

Roland Parks

“If the poem is well written it can stand for many, many years. The poems are still quite relevant today, although the social and political geography of Belize has changed a whole lot with the advent of television and so on. Poetry is a language that speaks to the heart.”

The book of poetry will be available at most bookstores for fifteen dollars. Reporting for News 5, Jacqueline Woods.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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