Patty Patten Tiffany ~ Collision, St. Lucia

Hurtling along
We soar down mountainsides.

Faster, I think,

Past the waving profusion of
Red ginger, vanilla, bougainvillea,
The heavy, drooping pods of the bird of paradise.

Past catamarans with tall masts,
Full of tourists, pasty in the hot sun.

And the dark faces of the Lucians…
Saucy plump in youth,
But quickly aged,
Haggard and gray,
Missing teeth,
Missing jobs,
Missing the modern moment.

Trapped between slavery
And freedom,
The promise of a rainforest paradise
Gone wrong.

We speed up
And the faces disappear
In the blur
Of a rough road.

Faster, I say,


Patty Patten Tiffany was born in Appalachia, descendant of the infamous McCoy clan. Daydreaming and books allowed her to travel the world as a child, while her first real travel came through college study abroad in Austria. Her master’s in German was a great fit for a career in higher education, and she retired in 2013 after 30-plus years, mostly as a dean of admission in Virginia. She has lived in Mexico, Canada and Germany, and now resides on a floating home in Key West, complete with magical sunsets, her husband/editor, their petite pup, and a very strange cat.

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