Whose lives have leached into this coiled mass
of chromosomes, shaping bone and flesh, that stares
back at me from mirror’d Llyn Berwyn?
Celt, with echo-tones of otherness.
on sinewy stem of self
fed with forebears’ sap,
I feel the pull of helix’d cord.
Leaf thrum stirs parchment-pale;
below dark-hidden heartwood
exposed roots spread wide.
I squint at inky branches
from Welsh hills’ whorled contours
to Jamaica’s cassonade sands,
of four times
From first breath, enslaved:
mother, simply Jessie.
A dead end. Umbilical cut.
But Caribbean cousins gift me a song,
I hear Nathaniel’s deep baritone
field-hollerin’ his heritage
as he straightens
from stooping to slash at sugarcane.
Unchained ancestral voices
across centuries and lands
to ring clear in this Cambrian cwtch
where they meld with notes of telyn and crwth,
and flow through me
to the child at my breast.