A woman outside a voting precinct holding a ballot. Photo credit: Garry Pierre-Pierre

By Jaury Jean-Enard 

My Dearest People,

I see your strenght. I see your determination.

I respect your resilience. I admire your drive.

Young single mothers with just born babies in their arms crossing piles of trash to get to your destination.

Schoolchildren in one, two or three behind a motorcycle passing through muddy roads and weaving in and out of traffic between cars to get to school.

Parents waiving down tap-taps to get to work

Merchants selling water, soda and all you can find.

I can’t forget about members of the law enforcement – PNH, CIMO, BIM etc… Although there may be many corrupt officers among your ranks, you’re up at the crack of dawn facilitating traffic. Your life is first on the line everyday for little to no pay.

And oh “ti manman cheri,” our 11 million children, boys and girls, parents, students and teachers.

Your resilience is also a reflection of your strength.

You do it every day. I don’t know how you do it every day.

I never mention your name, but I promise respect, compassion, tolerance and patience.

I pray for you every day. Everyday I pray for you. Prayer for a better tomorrow. Prayer for the most simple and basic things like decent roads, decent school, streetlights, running water and electricity.

I pray and dream of a better tomorrow for you and me and for our sons and daughters whose patience may be running out and resilience, turning violent.

I pray for you.

Writer’s note: I moved back to Haiti in 2019. I’ve since been on a roller coaster of joy and regret over that decision as I encounter pleasantries and troubles of every day life with my Haitian people. Ultimately, the resilience of the Haitian people can be summed up to their mere existence and acceptance of a condition of life that no human being should be subject to.

I wrote this letter on the way to Jacmel on February 10, 2020 for work. I was overrun by emotions seeing people jump through mud, pile of trash and debris to get to school, work and other destination

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