Hungry Days

Tammi Browne-Bannister

1

I overheard this conversation between the people sitting on the strip-up van seat in front of me. The latest was about a woman who had to run for her life. I heard that she was panting, dripping sweat, snot and tears, wearing a pair of boyshorts and racerback bra. In the cold December breeze, she must have been shivering.  

I heard she made it to a police station in a small fishing and farming village. That night had the wrong kinda duty officer for anyone to butt up on when in crisis. Some haggard-looking fella who had no broughtupsy, as far as I understood. I could see everything I heard before me. This policeman turned the woman away – despite her twisted cry-face – despite her shouting that her boyfriend had threatened to kill her. He extended his index finger at the woman’s face then swivelled it toward a sign upon the wall that spoke of complying with the dress code. I could only picture how his brazenness mussee frighten the woman, cause, I heard from my seat that urine gushed down her legs. I heard how the officer pushed up his face into a sneer at the mess and how he had the nerve to say, “Big stone ooman like you pissing yuhself. Is me have to deal wid dis now.” I clacked my tongue at how disturbed I was at hearing this. The people an’ them looked round to see whose mouth it was and I snapped my neck to look around for the clacker like they did. When no one stood out the chat started again. The officer advanced, removing his baton and wielding it at the distressed woman. The woman back back from him. Snivelling, begging the dis-orderly man not to chase her out – not to let her boyfriend get her. He stared her in the eyes refusing to take her on. She turned around and sprinted into the cold darkness. Them say the officer had the gall to reveal all this to his colleagues and how he kept on lamenting on the pissy floor he had to mop up. Like he had no common decency about him fuh real – no sensitivity. No shame-box.

As I sat there listening, I asked myself, “Something go so?” Quite specific, this story, I thought. Who knows for sure what truly went on there but God, the woman and that brazen policeman? The fly-on-the-wall-custodian? The myriad of eyes one does not see when one is in need of witnesses? Or not. This-ah small island thing. Eyes and ears everywhere. Everybody knows somebody and people propagate words to suit themselves and listeners. I said these things to myself behind the news-bearer’s back, holding my road where I going.

*

This morning, I pick up the newspaper:

Inset – a black and white photo of Alice Nation, owner of Underland Farms. Caption: Missing woman last seen near Crab Gundy Police Station – Monday 04 December 2028.

I hold my gut how the news stifle me. I take small frantic breaths, still grasping the paper in disbelief. Catching my breath, I break into a high-pitch mangled scream because is only one smaddy I know name Alice Nation. I drop my bottom into a rattan bucket chair before my two feet give out on me. Then I recall the casual conversation between two strangers on a bus called Hurricane on my way to Mack Pond, All Saints to look some stinking toe. “It can’t be.” I said, shaking my head, still in disbelief, as the day I had heard all that talk. “She can’t be the woman they had spoken about.”

To see her photo was to remember the sixteen-year-old girl I’d met ten years ago.

Her uniform short, tight and wash out. Her toes breathed through navy blue socks that poked out her shoes. She looked like a single dandelion seed – feathery and light, something wind would disperse. As marga as a stray dog. It was obvious to me that Alice didn’t have much and even though hunger whitey-up her lips, she walked around with her head held high, as though she had plenty.

One day, I saw her writhing in pain. I witnessed the sweat beading on her forehead mere minutes to lunchtime. I noticed the pallor of her skin. When the bell rang for lunch, she doubled over with bad feel. I ran to her side to catch her from falling. I fanned her drenched face – her warm body with an exercise book – right there below the broiling sun on the bitumen quadrangle before a mob of curious students. I fanned her until she came through the episode. I ignored the bags of shame that lay beneath her eyes and the bitter scent of her dry mouth. A teacher hurried over to relieve me. I was perched on the hot asphalt with Alice’s head in my lap and my thighs were roasting where they rested.

*

Alice didn’t have to be a friend to enjoy a cup of bush tea with me. She knew I was curious about her, I had said this to her. Since my house was across the street from the school, I’d asked Alice over for sweet biscuits and fever grass tea. My mother set the dining room table for three. After settling down with her plate and mug Alice said, “Tings real brown, home.”

“What you mean?” I asked. Alice stopped chomping. She began to chew, slow and careful-like before swallowing then she sipped and sipped and sipped her tea.

“My grandmother migrated to Antigua from Dominica when she make ten – sometime in the early sixties.” Alice said after a while. “She finished school here. She worked at a fast food restaurant. When that place closed, she applied for hotel work and ended up in housekeeping as a maid. Years after, she worked as housekeeping supervisor before she retired for medical reasons. Congestive heart failure,” Alice said before my mother could ask. “My gran had her Social Security and Medical Benefits cards and her voter’s ID. She received pension from gov’ment. Only thing, her passport was stolen umpteen years ago. She tried to replace it but couldn’t remember the passport number to tell the clerk at the passport office. She didn’t even know she had to make out a police report.”

“The Medical Benefits Scheme paid for some of the medical procedures and medication my gran needed. Until, Mr. Jack come PM for a second term. New MBS cards were issued, and my grandmother missed the deadline because of sickness. When she got to the office to renew her card, she was asked for her birth certificate and couldn’t produce it because she couldn’t find it among the yellowish-brownish worm-eaten documents she kept in a drawer. She was told she had to send to Dominica for the birth certificate but my gran couldn’t travel because of her bad heart. We have it hard to eat because gran now has to pay full price for medication and so on.”

“But, that shouldn’t be. Wha happen to the agreement Papa Bird put inna place for anyone who came to Antigua before the inaugural Independence celebrations inna 1981?” My mother asked the question, talking under her breath then she left the room and went into the kitchen.

Alice shrugged her shoulders at my mother’s back then looked at me. “For all the years, my grandmother working and contributing to the development of the island – keeping she-self outta trouble, like not being accused of theft like how Antigua people like to be up-in-arms with foreigners’ thiefing—.”

“Come again?” I said.

Alice scrunched her lips tight, stared me up and down before speaking again. “I’m just repeating what my granny say, so don’t hold nutten against me. Gran kept her hands free of dirt on this island. Now she cry for the Birds. She miss all-ah them cause, irregardless of the bad them do in the past, they were for any and everybody.”

Boy, she brazen bad, I thought to myself. I already felt some kinda way about her claims that Antiguans had the habit of accusing foreigners of stealing. She didn’t even backpedal. I couldn’t believe her kinda nerve. This is the blasted thanks I get in my own quarters? I rocked back and forth in my seat. Doesn’t she know I’m Antiguan? Doesn’t she consider herself Antiguan? I felt some type-a way about what Alice said. After all, I welcomed her hungry-looking self into my home. In my mind, she didn’t have the right to accuse anyone of anything because:

  1. It wasn’t her place cause she wasn’t in a position to judge anyone, and
  2. I didn’t think it was a fair assessment.

I wasn’t going to get on as if my hand was slapped across my mouth, especially since she didn’t hold back from saying her mind. One thing she got right. Them Bird nuh innocent and mighty.

I asked this ungrateful piece-of-work called Alice, “Why your granny didn’t go back where she come from?” Alice shrank back. I’d heard stories of foreigners who lived from hand-to-mouth and endured the gnawing pains in them and them pickanyegah tuhmuck. Yet, I wondered, wha mek them stay?

“My granny was brought here for a better life.” Alice interrupted my thoughts. “Gran knows nothing about Dominica. She buried the aunt who brought her here and with that went the knowledge of any family back there. Granny say, ‘Dawg and Pussy leff she long time.’ She ain’t got nobody but me.”

“I remember when Mr. Jack offered amnesty to those who were on island illegally,” I said. My memory was vivid because I didn’t know the word amnesty applied to people as well. I thought it only had to do with guns and bullets when the authority offered such a call to all and sundry and there was a ‘don’t-ask-don’t-tell’ policy implemented to respondents. My mother came out the kitchen to join us again. She said, “I doan understand what ah go on in likkle Antigua. As far as I see, Mr. Jack came out publicly ‘gainst the Windrush sit-tee-a-shun in the UK. It was a big thing pon social media, as far as I know. Why Mr. Jack ain’t hot and sweaty about the long-established migrants we have here in Antigua who can’t get them citizenship sorted?” I shrugged my shoulders at my mother, having not seen anything of this news item on local TV. Since studying for CXC’s, I found myself behind on current affairs anyhow.

It was true that for a very long time Antiguans proposed the notion of Antigua for Antiguans. Born and Bred. But for bloody big heads the word foreigner pertained to those migrants coming from the Caribbean region and not those outside. Why we wining and dining some demographic of foreigners and not others? I wondered. With one hand on her hip and the other on her chest, my mother said: “Girl, I ain’t mean to come off insensitive, but, “whey yuh parents?”

“My fadda in jail for killing my mudda – her body missing twelve years now,” Alice replied.

The bush tea mussee swallow wrong cause I ended up hacking like a cat. Mummy threw some hefty thumps into my back to clear my air passage. The shock of what Alice said. It was also about her delivery. The abruptness, it fazed me. My mother wasn’t alarmed. “The Jabberwocky real,” mummy said. “Neither sand nor sea cough up them belly. The Jabberwocky know bout this top-Calypsonian sista. Up till now he askin where he sista be? He wrote a whole calypso about her disappearance and he still askin wha happen and who do um? T’ink people say police only find he sista head. Don’t quote me, you hear?” Mum bored her eyes into me then Alice. I nodded at mum then shrugged my shoulders at Alice.  

My mother could lose her mind at times and be all over the place – embarrassingly out of focus. Alice began to squirm in her chair. A distant gaze grew in her eyes. At that very second, before my mother could inflict another awkward or insensitive titbit, I threw an arm around my friend and ushered her through the kitchen door to have a look at my mother’s garden. Mummy soon followed us. She filled a bag with herbs and vegetables, a few passion fruits, a half-ripen soursop and young emerald leaves for making tea, two ripe sugar apples, and a red sugar cane (cut into shorter stalks). My mother cut a pumpkin in half and placed it inside the bag as well, and she said to us, “When times hard, we have to be creative. We have to make-do, yes, but we need to rise above make-doing.” She said to Alice, “Take the seeds, dry them in the sun, then plant. In times of crisis, think about how to dig yourself out of a hole.” She sauntered off from us.

I knew what mummy meant. When my father died of coronary artery disease, the funeral expenses almost buried us. We had to contend with our own hungry days. The bank foreclosed on our house in Fitches Creek. They almost repossessed our car. They ran my mother down for payments. Mummy said likkle more, them bankers wudda mek she go Skells fuh wuk off the arrears.

Before my mother’s mother died, she left a two-bedroom house in Gray’s Farm that was on rent at the time. My mother gave the tenants notice, and we moved in when they vacated. I transferred from Christ the King Private High to Gray’s Farm Secondary in the last year of my secondary school education. My mother transformed the backyard into a little garden. I helped her every day until fruits and vegetables came. She also raised free-range chickens and sold eggs. Mummy then said to me one day, “Your duty is to your books.” She left me to concentrate on my education because she said when she was younger she had this cousin to look after, this great-aunt to wash for, this-that-and-the-next took precedent over her schoolwork – until she took stock of her life. She caught back up with extra classes and attended the Antigua State College in her mid-twenties. “Nutten more important than yuh books. I ain’t gon be responsible for distracting you from getting a good head.” Mummy said she wanted me to avoid hungry days.

*

Days after afternoon tea, mummy told me to ask Alice if her grandmother want to straighten her papers. My mother said there would be another amnesty call for illegal immigrants to get their status sorted soon. And mummy told me not to tell Alice the question came from my mother because as mummy worked for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, she ain’t wan get rope up inna nutten wid nonebody that will cause her to lose her likkle job and years of service in the future. And mummy said she took her confidentiality clause real serious.

I promised not to divulge anything that would embarrass my mother. I promised not to call any names, and my mother said when she knew of the date and place, she would let me know to tell Alice.

*

Alice began to ask everyone at school for seeds. Some of our classmates thought she was crazy. Others gave her the brush-off. Our secondary school principal and a few teachers thought Alice’s vegetable garden idea was admirable. They encouraged her and brought her seeds. In one morning assembly, Alice was the highlight. The principal talked about creating our own sources of food, becoming subsistence farmers. “If that is not a young-people thing, then support our own budding farmer, Miss Alice Nation.” I screwed up my face at the first part of his statement rather than the latter. Like the principal playing chupit or something, I said to myself. Of course, he knew young people nowadays ain’t want to get their hands dirty. If he went round and asked us what we wanted to become in life, he would get responses like doctors, lawyers, accountants and so forth. Nonebody go say they want to be a farmer. Nobody wan come fisherman. I must admit that even I wanted to do something in science. I hadn’t figured out what yet but I had some idea back then.

Alice was different. At first, she didn’t know what she wanted outta life. After speaking to my mother and falling in love with our garden, she decided to become a farmer. I remember her words plain, plain as the starless night she said them. She said, “One day, I will own a large piece of land and I will have chickens, pigs, cows, sheep, goats and turkeys. I will have a huge vegetable and herb garden and I will have plenty plenty fruit trees. I will sell seeds and get into canning and butchering and everyone on the island and those overseas will love my products and services.”

In fifth form, she decided to study double-award Agriculture that offered both animal husbandry and vegetable farming. I went on to study Chemistry, Biology and Physics, as I had my own goals in mind.

In the meantime and between time, Alice didn’t have to ask me for a thing. From the outset, I brought dwarf mango seeds, Scotch bonnet and running spinach seeds. When mummy bought okras from the vegetable market (cause we didn’t have okras growing in our garden), I broke the tips off each one to test for old ones. A clean break annoyed my mother: that usually meant it was a young okra, and she loved to crunch okra tips. I hung the old okras on a nail on the backyard fence to dry in the sun. Once the seeds rattled on the inside, I saved some for my mother and took the rest to Alice for her garden. It was easy for me to give to Alice – a person who hardly complained for hunger or not having certain things in life.

Mummy said how she admired Alice, cause nowadays Antigua people don’t see the need to share like they used to in olden days. Every time she came to us for tea, she brought a bag of tamarinds or some snotty dumbs. Alice always offered some little something in return for our kindness and when her garden grew, she offered a bag of this and that, whatever she reaped that day. I helped her too. I helped Alice sow bonavist and pigeon peas and weeded the tomato beds. Her tomato plants had small delicate flowers on them. I even helped her pick anchobas for a few of the neighbours who promised to purchase. Yes, Alice went beyond subsistence farming and sold the surplus she had. It was this possibility that opened Alice to a hunger of a different kind and, little by little, she began to see her way in life.

2

A whole week later and police still can’t find you? What happened to you? Where you be, gyal?

*

I woke up with red swollen eyes again. I heard that police had a man in custody assisting with your disappearance, and that that person had been released. I refused to believe you just up and vanish. I wished you had notice me. From the beginning, I became your knight-in-shining-armour the day you fainted. I did everything to get you to take me on (ask you to my house, give you seeds, help you sow and then reap and then sell). I looked out for you. I cared for you. I listened to your dreams. I didn’t mind you not asking about mine. I figured you had too many distractions to add another person into your life.

I gave you every contact of where I would be overseas. Why didn’t you call me? I called mummy last night to let her know what I was going through. Mummy couldn’t help but talk over me most of the times. She became insistent with me. She said, “Greer, me know you to the T. Lemme do all the worrying before you burn out.” She always mentioned two ‘sit-tee-a-shuns’ and again she did so last night. One, when she was a business student of the Antigua State College, an A-level student went missing upon Jabberwock Beach. Never to be found. Disappeared. That led people to believe all kinds-a obeah. “How a young ooman can vanish below a sinking moon?” I could imagine my mother standing with upturned palms, her eyes digging into mine.

Two, it so happened that my mother knew of a woman who was buried alive at Valley Church Beach. My mother often spoke about this particular case because she and the woman were friends at primary school. Mummy always said she didn’t understand how the woman ain’t a haunting for government. On an island where sun, sea, sand, and coconuts are the bread and butter for man, one would think politicians would do everything possible to stop what was happening.

After talking to mummy last night, my mind ran over and over the things she said about what she thought happened to her friend. Mummy didn’t remember the full account, so it was all, “Don’t quote me, you hear?” Mummy said, long before the woman dead, some letters appeared in the media. The writer highlighted her abusive husband, as if appealing to the public for help. Mummy couldn’t recall if anyone at the radio or newspapers acquired a telephone number of the author of those mysterious letters. Again, she reminded me, the police later found out the letters belonged to the woman who was buried in the sand. She had mailed them, hoping for help.

By the way, Alice, mummy is living in Maryland. I have the whole house to myself. You could have had a room of your own here with me. Free of charge. Hassle free.

The scariest thing to the mind is the unknown, I didn’t think enough was being done to ascertain your whereabouts. Mummy felt the same way. She finally sent a letter to the newspaper asking Mr. Jack to have Scotland Yard investigate your case. This left people asking if my mother crazy or what? Up till now, Mr. Jack ain’t say boo about you. It’s been four-going-on-five weeks already.

I had to remind mummy that you didn’t leave anyone any letters to understand your situation. You didn’t leave police a clue to discover. Plus the so-called man you involved yourself with wasn’t opening his mouth for a soul. I was like, why police don’t question his past girlfriends to discover old habits and hauntings? Had you been talking to me – letting me in on your private affairs, I would have been in a position to offer some notes on possibilities. I could have protected you. But look what you have me doing…I don’t mean to blame you. Damn you, Alice.

I keep asking your photo in the newspaper: What did my mother say to us, during the other visits? She wanted to know how you and your grandmother were keeping and you didn’t want to come off as a complainer. Mummy said people who kip tings pon them chest have no use for them heart. Them have no regard for them liver. Them don’t respect their own tuhmuck. Worse, how they neglect them own minds. ‘Member? Mummy said this to both of us. She said we needed to guard our organs.

You kept yourself to yourself. You held your innermost thoughts to your breast.

I wish I had the chance to tell you no person should hold that kinda privacy hostage. I wish I had told you pride nuh feel pain. You had this thing about you…this solitary prowess. And yuh man, whose name appears in the papers round the time St. John’s red-up for Valentine’s Day – months after your disappearance. This Manky Buntin fella. The police had him again for further questioning. How could he appear as suave as people say and still be such a Jabberwocky? People who feel them in the know are talking about him. To me, they shuffle stories like a deck of cards to see who will have a better hand.

I’m disgusted because I knew you, Alice. I knew your life. I knew you better than most. Even though I didn’t know the life you had outside of your great farm, I knew of your journey, and that’s something no one can erase. And I’m angry with myself cause I didn’t stay in touch after I left for university. I was too busy studying and getting to classes on time.

I wish I could shake you, but I keep staring at this darnn photo inserted in the newspaper with a wide-spread toothy grin on your face. Are you mocking me?

*

Nyegah make you out to be his sweet little island girl. Them say how this Manky character built you a two-bedroom house in Tyrells – how he paid for your grandmother’s funeral, how he frien’ up wid some ace in a single-breasted suit who got you in the land for agriculture scheme, how he said he made you cause he’s responsible for your success, and that he supplied ideas for your business. He—he—he— I tired hear about this two-bit-wannabe-knight-in-tarnished-armour taking all the credit and having everyone gobble everything he spews from his (what people refer to as) ugly rubbery guppy lips.

Is a wonder he ain’t say he filed for your grandmother’s citizenship. I know you did so with my mother’s help. That Manky monster. I’m sure he knew you wanted a family of your own. I’m sure he took advantage of your loneliness and kindness. I’m sure he saw the desperation and longing in your light hazel eyes and he held you captive with phoniness. I may be right and I may be wrong, but that man is nothing but a red knight before my own sight.

Now I hear it’s the same lawyer in the single-breasted suit he’s using to spin his side of the story, passing it on to people in Crab Gundy to cover up your disappearance. To facilitate tourism? Well, that part does not surprise me cause the higher-ups have yet to state anything about your disappearance.  

It’s been four months since you gone and nothing. Man still ain’t saying boo to jack nor spade nor bloody big heads.

*

People strike up again. Same ole talk. I heard your guy went through your cell phone. I heard that he counted your steps, narrowed his gaze onto yours so he could see every skin-teeth and shimmering eyes – that he settled his ears against your own. With that, he began to hear every one of your conversations. I heard he sniffed between your limbs for foreign odours.

There’s much tossing and turning in my sleep. My mother’s voice occupies my head. I’m upset because I can’t remember yours. She repeats, “When a coconut tree head bow, is outta respect for the dead.” Wha that has to do wid anything? I forgot to ask. Then I thought to myself maybe mummy believed you were buried somewhere on Crab Gundy Beach below the coconut grove.

I visit the Crab Gundy area just across the pineapple farm not too far. The sweet fruity scent high high, it could drunk a toad. I look around for sandbars and mounds of anything, anything resembling a grave but then I said to myself, the police already combed through the area and with cadaver dogs.

I tread into the sea nearby, look at the reflection in the water and wonder – why it doesn’t look like me? All I see is you, Alice. Could you be hiding in the looking glass, or are you stuck in the wormhole?

At the back of today’s newspaper:

Jamaica News – Desperate search on for missing August Town, St. Andrew, woman

My mind creates these images of the acts I think that monster committed. I imagine you living, in the moment of your last breath. Caught off guard. Stunned – that looming flash of life. Your eyes stop fluttering. A frozen stare grew in their place.

In my mind, there was a flicker of silver, a gloved hand holding a cleaver above your head. It struck your temple, which spurted like a geyser. You dropped like a sack of coconuts upon the stone, cold ground.

I took the empty road ahead of me. I didn’t want to, but for some reason what happened to you felt like if I had done it, I had been in on it. I held that butcher’s knife above your head and I chopped you to death, too. I took to the dusty road with all my might. Knees buckled. Ankles twisted. Shoes abandoned. I ran harder than I could ever imagine. Panting like a wild beast. I couldn’t escape those hack-hacking knife sounds of, presumably, two pairs of hands pulverizing you, Alice.

I must be hungry. I can’t tell last time I’ve had something to eat. It must be that cause I can’t outrun the things inside my head.

*

It hurts. Guilt chokes the air out my lungs. Stitches and cramps. Slip to the ground until the stars in the back of my eyes diminish. Crouch until I can see light again. All it takes, is a coupla seconds to gather my thoughts. But my mind rambles further and further until I’m afraid. Where am I running to?

Home.

Close the door. Latch the dead bolt. Oh, God, I’m seeing you everywhere. There was so much blood. Ent it, Alice? Tell me who wants to paint the white roses red?

What would that monster do? Wash from head to toe. Get under the nails. Scrub until I bleed. Wait a minute. Did anyone see what I did? Can they pick me out in a crowd? I don’t know. Them too preoccupied with themselves. The villagers. Those bloody big heads. The ace in the single-breasted suit. Your man, Manky. All are butchers. Plain and simple.

In the shower, the water isn’t hot enough. I want it scalding.

I want the water to flay the skin from my face. I want to lose every ounce of flesh – to lose my old self and adopt a new identity. I hold my head, frightened it will fall and roll upon the floor, too far from my body to be found. Unlatch the door.

My eyes see the flicker of metal again. My ears hear the chink, chink chops. Cobwebs drape my flesh. The skin of my face pulls itself toward my scalp and I know you are here. I have nothing to ward your spirit away – no bucket of saltwater to mop the floors. I could get a bottle of ammonia, but I don’t think you will harm me. I don’t think you will blame me for what had happened to you. Speak to me. Tell me where to look.

*

Six months in, Alice. I’m looking at the face of the person who probably sent you to an early grave. Dark sunken eyes, round head, and the thick guppy lips I’d heard about. The saying goes: Every slunkoo hab a lunkoo – so who am I to judge? Maybe you were mesmerised at the openness of his smile. I feel the kindness in his eyes allured your spirit like fluorescent light to flying ants. You chose him, Alice. You saw some redeemable quality in him. You didn’t know his charm would wear off. You didn’t know you would end up with a Jabberwocky.

I will never force myself to believe you kept your hands at your sides and gave into everything.

I heard about the police report – days after they picked him up – Mummy still has her connections. She refused to let your case rest. Like my mother, I, too, won’t rest. I will be a tick in them backside. Those scratches and bruises on his face and body. I heard about the bite marks on his arm that twisted his skin into a bulbous proud flesh.

*

Tonight, on the 7 O’clock news, the authorities said the bruises and scratches and bite marks on Manky Buntin’s person were unrelated to your case. I heard yuh man got into a fight with some woman from town that he was checking and she nearly nyam off he skin. “Back to square one,” Mummy said. She wanted to know what police doing now to find out what happen to you, cause every which way them turn lead to a scratched head.

I burst into hopeless tears. Mummy said I can’t save everybody. Sometimes, I have to leave a person to dig themself outta them own hole. I wish… I cudda save you. You deserve some kinda sympathy, even if the authorities don’t give two black pineapples about who you were and what you did for a little bit of paradise.

Tammi Browne-Bannister is an Antiguan writer based in Barbados. Her work appears in So Many Islands: Stories from the Caribbean, Mediterranean, Indian and Pacific Oceans and New Worlds, Old Ways: Speculative Tales from the Caribbean (both from Peekash Press), The Caribbean Writer, SENSEISHA: Memoirs of the Caribbean Woman, POT BAKE Productions: Jewels of the Caribbean Anthology and NIFCA/ARTSEtc: Winning Words anthology. Her short fiction has been published online by Akashic Books: Mondays are Murder series,  MOKO Magazine, Tongues of the Ocean and several other literary journals.