Sunday, April 29, 2018

Sancho and NaPo Day 29

Last night, went with GH to the National Black Theater to watch Sancho, written and performed by Paterson Joseph. Brought from the Caribbean to London by his master, Ignatius Sancho rose from servitude through education and patronage to become an author, composer, and letter writer in the eighteenth century. He was even painted by Thomas Gainsborough as an English gentleman. No Moorish prince or spear-shaking warrior for him. The talented Joseph, whose parents also came to London from the Caribbean, from St. Lucia, showed a vital connection to one whom he considered legitimately an ancestor. The first half of the play was well conceived and written, dramatizing his birth on a slave ship, the theatricals at his mistresses' London house, his education by the powerful Montagu family. The courtship portion fell a little flat and the opening of a grocery shop at Westminster felt anticlimactic. But the writing brought the one-man play to a suitably triumphant end, which I won't give away, except to say that it echoes nicely the theme of the political symbolism of the image at the start.

*

New Hampshire

Not on this trip
but on another
day, you’ll visit
old “Live Free,
or Die.” Live
first,  you think,
and in your way
rises from the sea
of eroded plains
Mt Monadnock.

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