Walking past
The stickball games
And the old cars
Hiding in the shade
Of history
Children reaching
Through barred windows
Trading photos
For American dollars
And smiling away
Slow misery
In the stagnant
Havana heat
As I make my way
To the Bodeguita del Medio
For a plate of black beans
And ice cold mojitos
Crossing the old square
Beneath bullet holes
That scar the walls
Where empty promises
From the back country
Echo along
Well-worn streets
As the start
Of a new Revolution
Surrounds me

John is a social worker working in the field of disability management and holds degrees in social work, rehabilitation services, and psychology. He is the author of six books of poetry: “March” (2019), “The Seasons of Us” (2019), New Days (2020), Fragments (2021), A Long Walk (2023) and Sojourns (2024) . His work has appeared widely in numerous literary journals, magazines, and anthologies internationally. John is also a Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominee. He lives in Caledon Ontario, Canada with his wife and two children. Read other articles by John.