Electricity Comes To Cocoa Bottom

Written by Simon Lee for Caribbean Beat on

Born in England, Marcia Douglas spent her formative years in rural Jamaica, and her poetry reflects the biblical diction and concerns of the island’s revival churches and rural communities. In the title poem, village children witness electric light for the first time. In others, a young country woman prepares for her wedding (‘for weeks you have massaged your knees with cocoa butter’); a young Jamaican scans the London dock ‘for the Queen’ as he arrives full of hope in the Mother Country. Douglas’s poetry unselfconsciously transforms ordinary experience into ‘the stuff of dreams’.