“Tomorrow is not promised to beasts or men”

by Nicholas Laughlin on October 19, 2010

4 a.m., posted at Vimeo

Muhammad Muwakil is one of the emerging stars of the Trinidadian poetry scene, and recent performances in other parts of the Caribbean are winning him a regional audience as well. (Your Antilles blogger was there when Muwakil brought down the house during one of the open-mike sessions at the Calabash Literary Festival in Jamaica in 2007.) He recently collaborated with filmmaker Janine Fung on a film version of his poem “4 a.m.”, an unsparing commentary on social conditions in urban Trinidad, set in his home neighbourhood of Belmont. Beautifully shot in a palette of shadows and streetlamp amber, it captures both the insomniac atmosphere of east Port of Spain at night and the strength and anger of Muwakil’s voice.

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