Green limestone caves,
Concealed cruising for runaway gays.
After busy days,
Driving past fields of phallic sugar cane.
Luminous under moonlight,
Glistening blue chests under pearled stalactite.
Maroons of Midnight,
Escaping imposed realities, hetero and mundane
Hidden karst hillsides,
Black bodies rolling on grassy, untrod grounds.
With buttocks perky,
Rise and fall, like domed hilltops of cockpit country.
Behind powerful cascade,
Waterfalls conceal manly garments being peeled,
Legs spread apart,
As pounding water gouges limestone cracks wider.
J.A. VIII hails from the plains of Clarendon, Jamaica. He is a scientist in training, currently completing his undergraduate degree in Biochemistry, with the intention of pursuing his PhD in Molecular Biology. Despite his interest in the sciences, writing poetry has been a source of cathartic release since his adolescent years, as he grappled with his sexuality, religious beliefs, and his family’s dysfunctionality. His decision to write under the pen name J.A. VIII is not out of shame for his queer identity, but serves to provoke thought about the number of queer Jamaican voices that go unheard due to the fear of becoming targets of homophobic violence.