‘I am in awe of Lorna Goodison’s myriad talents—award-winning poet, memoirist, writer of short stories, as well as sensuous visual artist, she is here revealed as a consummate essayist. In Redemption Ground all her skills shine bright—no pomp, no fuss, just magic.’—Margaret Busby
In her first-ever collection of essays, poet and novelist Lorna Goodison interweaves the personal and political to explore themes that have occupied her working life: her love of poetry and the arts, colonialism and its legacy, racism and social justice, authenticity, and the enduring power of friendship.
This enlightening, entertaining, profoundly political and poetic gathering of work by the Poet Laureate of Jamaica covers a wealth of subjects, from the odd dissociation of a colonial education to the reality of life in the wider world and the many influences—music, art, storytelling, theatre, cinema, travel, religion, family life and politics—that nurture our imaginations and her own writing voice.
Taking her title from Kingston’s oldest market and downtown meeting place that was almost destroyed by fire last year, Lorna Goodison introduces us to an extraordinary cast of characters and range of influences—from finding a black hairdresser in Paris and crying at a movie in Jamaica to having a life-changing epiphany in New York’s Bottom Line Club or drinking tea with an old friend and new strangers in London’s Marylebone High Street.
Lorna Goodison describes not only the daily slights and challenges that weigh down our souls but also the leaven of kindness and compassion that enables us to rise above them. Her poet’s eye, profound vision and glorious combination of metaphysical and post-colonial sensibilities in these essays, confirm her as a major figure in World literature.