Sheba and the Sheila

Her expressive eyes are deep and dark, a certain painful poignancy to them as she stares, so serious, straight into the camera, leaning slightly, with full lips slightly open. Rings adorn slender fingers on both hands and long “jhumka” earrings with their characteristic fringed bell shapes reach the top of covered shoulders.

Several chains in graduated sizes ranging from the simple necklet with a sacred single “rudraksha” protective bead, to a pair of solid silver torques in the tribal style decorate her dress of draped sari pleats, slung into a loose “orhini” or head covering.

Since the old image is in black and white, we cannot tell if the elaborate beaded “tikka” ornament arranged across her forehead and parted hair, may be a “mathapatti” or South Indian wedding band with the characteristic gold, red and green that could have been echoed in the fine, braid-embellished coloured velvet “choli” or blouse…..

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A wedding, no funerals

“Away, away, what nectar spray she flings about her bow. What diamonds flash in every splash that drips upon my brow.

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The singing stevedores

“Sweet Evelina, dear Evelina, My love for thee shall never, never die. Dear Evelina, sweet Evelina, My love for thee shall never, never die.

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The land down under

“Oh, naughty, naughty Clara, how could you serve me so? I’ll go to Demerara, if you tell me to go.

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Of Bengali and Berbice Baboos

Leading chutney artiste, the young Terry Gajraj shot to fame with a restless reworking of old lines in his “Guyana Baboo” hit composed during an astonishing creative outpouring with friends one noisy, nostalgic night in a tiny Bronx, New York apartment in 1992, far from the fertile Fyrish fields and modest mandir of his buoyant Berbice boyhood.

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Fear for this fair land

The early afternoon of Monday January 14, 1991 started like any routine assignment for us covering Parliament but by the end of the dramatic day, we would witness historic scenes of acerbic anger, unprecedented disorder and ugly uproar. 

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