Elizabeth Brown. Current location: Bath, England.
Sarnia Cherie, gem of the sea, bobbing in the Channel Islands, Guernsey.
My island, my life, my home.
Beauty stretches her limbs through the flowers and wildlife
to the lantern parades and Christmas lights.
We are small but a haven for 62,000 people.
We have no trains, double decker buses,
or squirrels! But we do have one pound notes
and brown cows delivering the sweetest milk
My Guernsey should be known for its own journey across the clock.
It takes the small, steady steps of a child – It is cautious, but ever-moving,
yet it is old, and ever-beautiful.
Waves of history crest the shores and
shells of the past are scattered over.
It has been a conquered beauty.
The island bears the granite scars of war.
It is pock-marked with bunkers from moral blunders.
We are a people that have grown around our conflict wounds.
Bunkers exist for hide and seek now, or the odd, discreet kiss.
The island once exhaled on Liberation Day,
and cleaned the soldiers from its lungs.
No more rationing. No more hunger.
No more nettle tea to soothe the silenced tongue.
Our grandparents danced through the closure of conflict,
cheered, swayed, sang,
and swished flags that blurred white, red, and yellow.
Spirits flowed with happy tears that had left for five years.
But my dear little rock isn’t always looking to the past.
Often it has the sun soaking its face and
freckles the skin of children on its sands.
Cats hide in hedge stalls that sell jam, books, and juicy toms,
and the flowers are as bright and colourful
as their place in Candie Gardens.
Most people will live their lives never hearing of the island,
but that doesn’t bother me at all.
For those who have been, or known, or loved Guernsey,
it will etch in their memories for a great while to come.