Saturday, June 17, 2006

Buried on Foreign Soil

Photo: Wyatt Gallery

When I first saw this beautiful photo by Wyatt Gallery it sent my mind racing.
This evocative image portrays a burial ground in the Caribbean and it made me wonder what had brought these souls to the island.
Were they retired pirates or privateers?
Former indentured servants from India or China? Kidnapped Africans? European adventurers who reinvented themselves as New World royalty?
Our islands have always been this refuge for lost souls, even today you can find the odd escapee from the cold weather zone.
This seeming paradise on earth has not always supported its residents.
Many of us have fled and continue to flee to those same grey cities that house our gawking, fun loving tourists. Swept north by the currents of economic turmoil, our fate is to toil amidst the steel towers of Babylon.

Yet, countless foreigners have been buried beneath our palm trees, an idyllic final resting place for their remains. How many of us will never make the trip back home? How many of us will die like my grandfather, to be buried on foreign soil.