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My Soca Birthday Party
with Jollof Rice and Steel Pans

As Anne’s birthday drew close, her friends prepared a soca party. Anne loves the sound of Caribbean soca music played on steel pans and West Africa’s spicy jollof rice. Hence, her friends planned to celebrate her special day with a fusion of sounds and traditional dishes from Caribbean and African countries — a representation of their diverse yet comparable cultures. Anne was in for a real surprise.

Sweet Sorrel Stand

Rose and Nicolas loved their favourite Caribbean sorrel drink so much, the siblings decided to create a sorrel stand with the assistance of their parents. Their Sweet Sorrel Stand was a success in the neighbourhood. The main ingredient of the drink is the Roselle plant (Sorrel), a species of hibiscus which is native to West Africa. The red flower buds are boiled, strained, sweetened with sugar, with a touch of ginger, cinnamon, orange peel and cloves. Once cooled for a couple of hours or overnight, it is served with ice. It is known to be very rich in antioxidants. Traditionally, this drink is served during Christmas holidays. On a hot summer day, it is a refreshing alternative to lemonade.

Miles Away In The Caribbean

Miles Away In The Caribbean is a poetically written story about a Canadian boy named Miles. In his magical spaceship, he visits Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago. Miles highlights magnificent landmarks and enjoyed his cultural adventures.

A Piece of Black Cake for Santa

Femi and her friends planned to leave some traditional Caribbean treats out for Santa, including Black Cake. The children shared warm wishes for their favourite dishes while enjoying winter activities at the Christmas fair. This is the 2nd edition.

Keman's First Carnival

This was Keman's first experience of Toronto's annual Caribbean Carnival. The excited 8 year old and his Mother enjoyed the rituals at the Caribbean celebration, such as picking a flag to wave, the Caribbean influenced foods, dancing, costumes and music. Keman is a young, Black Canadian child with Caribbean roots.

Messages on Dried Leaves

Messages on Dried Leaves' is a mild resurrection of the Author's first poetry book, 'Obayifo'. This book is a poetic collection of personal notes, texts, emails and voice mails sent to muses of the past.

A Poetic Journey into The Mind of Miss Marshall 

"Enter my dark room of flickering lights,

Entertainment most suited for the eyes

Eyes so voiceless your lips express jealousy

Ending conversations, competing quietly


Enter my world"

© 2020 by Yolanda T. Marshall

Toronto, Canada