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Archive for the ‘rasta speak’ Category

From the top of my heart and the core of my being I wish you an ilaful day…

If you are not familiar with this word, ilaful, you can learn more about it here.

If you do know this word please comment and share with me what it means to you. I would love to know.

One Love, walk good, know that you are blessed 

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Montego Bay police station catches fire Good Friday. I was surprised to learn of this just hours after I posted about the Coral Gardens Commemoration.  Ironic indeed. Apparently this police station was the main precinct where Rasta folk were “processed” and beaten Good Friday, 1963.  Pretty heavy stuff.

And so it was. That very Good Friday, commonly referred to as Bad Friday by Rasta people, Barnett Street police station was blazing fire. The almost Easter breeze carried the flames into the belly of the beast. “gutting the barricks” is what the newspapers would say. The ashes spread across the town and scattered about in the streets. Fluttering on the very ground that so many feet crossed 47 years before at the hands of brutal police and citizens of the area. The injustice was too great for many to bear and lives were lost. Locks, lay in the streets covered in blood, the same blood that ran through the holding cells for days. The same blood that ran through the arms of the inhumane beings that terrorized the innocent. This is how it was told to mi.

47 years later, to the day, the station ketch a fyah. Hmmmm.

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Coral Gardens Commemoration, is an annual memorial for the Ras Tafari brothers and sisters who were killed, wounded and shamed for their livity. Good Friday, 1963 was a horrific experience for many Ras Tafari people. After an isolated incident involving a “bearded man” (not necessarily of the Ras Tafari faith) the government commanded the police force to gather and bring Rastafarians, dead or alive. The events that followed remain in the nightmare archives of survivors, their families and many Rastafarian people.

Given the history, it is not surprising that many Rasta refer to this day as “bad friday” Indeed, it is ironic that Good Friday was the day chosen to shorn, beat and kill innocent people because of their faith, lifestyle, religion etc..

I arrived in Montego Bay nine years ago a couple of days before Good Friday. I met some very kind folks early on. A bredren invited me to attend the Coral Gardens Commemoration. At the time I was in the process of documenting the history of Ras Tafari. The event was a perfect opportunity to gather data, interviews, photos etc. Whelmed by the energy of the ceremonies, I did nothing of the sort. But I did meet a few friends and the man that is now my husband.  I made connections that night that greatly enhance my life and Jamaican experience. Although we aren’t able to attend Coral Gardens this year, Good Friday is a mindful day for us. May we remember to honor those who have gone before so that InI might live in life…

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