buried umbilical cord / renatta laundry

for a moment as a hurricane
in your bosom
where forlorn no longer
stretches me between sleep
and nostalgia,
i’d rescind the very beat
of my circadian
let my belly go
run wild and unruly
between the rows
of sugar cane
in your Demerara.
be the broken portions
of fertile soil on either bank
O Essequibo, drip delicious
the sticky of spice mangoes
around my lips
let the cow’s moo be music.
crash violently into East Flatbush
the quintessence of Kaiteur.
still me
lull me
bring the rapids of Whitewater
and somehow siamese mend
your hilly sides to my valleys.
switch the once sour now sweet
of Five Fingers turned Star Fruit
‘cause i yearn
with passion immeasurable
to be home
In your arms.
wash away the petals
of these forget-me-nots
around the temple of my familiar
be my undoing
my becoming
my get it together.
O Bourda
where are your sweet figs
and sapodillas
for the angostura
swimming in my America?
good god Guyana
suction every droplet
into your Lamaha Canal
leave only the sweet
the warmth
that brushed
me cinnamon
in ink permanent.


Renatta Laundry, a Brooklyn based Guyanese writer, is passionate about Capoeira, hoarding good memories and writing about them and their opposing bits. She was once a reporter for Stabroek News, an English and Psychology major and is presently working on a collection of poetry called Deconstructed: Emotions & Expletives.


  1. Renatta,
    I so enjoyed that I had to look up names from your poem.It is to your credit that your poem carries such cultural information.It is important that poems locate and inform.It is all part of making places more visible and known.
    None of this took away from my initial enjoyment of your luscious style.A favourite phrases is ‘wash away the petals of these forget-me nots around the temple of my familiar’. It makes me fell dis-location in every cell of my body. Well Done!
    Nancy Anne Miller

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