RIP: Carolle Madeleine Grant-Bourne 1937/2012 Warrior Poet

Survived by sons Ronald & Ian, 3 sisters from her father's 2nd marriage as well as her familiar - Mimosa, alias "Mimmo"

Born in St. Vincent, Carolle Bourne moved to Trinidad as a young woman and enjoyed a career composing advertising copy before going on to journalism in the United States, where she divided her time between caring for her two sons and writing fashion promotions for Lits of Philadelphia and Gimbels of New York.

Portrait of the poet at 12, Carolle and furry friend - Bobby as a puppy, I think

After returning to the Caribbean in 1974, she settled in Barbados, concentrating on short fiction, poetry and art reviews for the local press, including the Advocate and the Nation newspapers. She won the Kamau Brathwaite Award for Poetry in 2002. The previous year, Saraband was the recipient of a Frank Collymore Literary Endowment, Barbados’ most prestigious arts award.

  • … The author is a descendent of Chatoyer, an 18th-century chief and St. Vincent’s first national hero.

Momma on my wedding day, 12 years ago - stubborn and would argue with God (could well be debating Heaven's policies now)

But these poems also narrate a difficult love affair. See Perfume: “Once a lover of / things light and floral – / I find myself drifting / from jasmine to /pungent pithy fragrances / like burying myself / in the deepest sense of you.” Fascinatingly, Bourne often shifts between Victorian phrases and street- talk: an ex-colonial tic.

How Momma preferred to be recalled

[She’s an exmplar] of … exemplary transatlantic poetry.

** George Elliott Clarke, a Nova Scotia-born author and poet, teaches literature at the University of Toronto. In 2001, he won the Governor General’s Literary Award for poetry. **

Editor of the poetry collection "Saraband," Robert E. Sandiford with author Carolle M. Grant-Bourne, founding members of Barbadian Author Movement: Writers' Ink (Inc.) in 2006

She departed Sunday 22nd in a final act of obstinacy, in not wishing to go to the QEH again, she shut herself down, implacable against heading for the Martindale’s Road facility…

For me she was Momma, when I was a young toddler of 5 or so, she made me tacos when I recovered from colds. As she got older, it was my turn – so I made her coffee and burgers, this morning I started to make a cup in habit… My eyes are still stinging, the funeral is soon – awaiting coroner’s approval. My updates have been sporadic, sorry! Will get back to original stories soon… I am an orphan now, please bear with me?

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  1. my deepest condolences Ian.


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