“The Ball” By Sterling Henderson

Castle Kilarney was packed for the ball
All who were there citizens all
Stairway cramped and music played
The band recessed in a discreet way
In the salon open to the dancefloor
Couples and children no room for more
It was here Trinis met annually
For the Governors fete and census
It was here the couple found themselves
Not drinking and dancing but talking with friends
The wife of the pair she is with child
And so they all greet her with a smile
The Governor says to her oh how nice
That you are having a baby
You shall name him Jesus and he will be king
Because it was said that in Kilarney would happen such a thing
You expect soon this I know but worry not
You don’t have far to go
For in the back is a manger ready and set
With cows and sheep and other pets
Swaddling clothes await your son
Whose birth will save everyone
Tonight is special so I must
From here on call it Christmas.


Sterling Henderson is a Trinidadian poet, performer and journalist. He launched his debut spoken-word album, When Soca Full Meh Mouth, in 2020. This poem was written as part of a workshop hosted by the Trinidad and Tobago Institute of Architects at Killarney, Port of Spain, in November 2023.

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