Razor edged wire, threatens no more
pock marked walls show soul’s erosion
wind, humidity and whipping post,
rotters in this Devils’ Isle.
Faceless among spirits’ wails,
I roam this prison centuries freed.
Death’s release forced my choice
and I am staid midst crumbling stone.
My crimes were but a patriot’s wish
allegiance not to putrefied wigs,
but to the poor and scrabbling ones
who sought but food and voice.
I swear to you, the sun cared more
within these exiled walls,
than in London’s teeming lanes
and me upon bended knee.
I watch you, with eyes no more
buildings turned to crypt
by guards decrepited, paneless,
upright never then, and failing now.
I see those who cannot see me
workers, reclaimers and visitors alike,
bodies who will never understand
restoration shall never be.
Motivated by dVerse Poet’s Pub: Victoria tending the bar asked us to think about Me, Myself, and I…..or Is It? and write a poem in the first person. This piece is inspired by both the ruins and the history of Bermuda. Photo is at the Royal Naval Dockyard — the Casemates, built in 1839 by British convicts. These buildings were first used to house militia and later became a prison. Some restoration work has occurred — the climate here takes its toll on the old and the new.