I and I Bob Marley

By Washington Parent

Kudos to author Tony Medina for choosing the perfect form to convey a sense of Marley’s spirit and art. The free-verse poems are rich in sounds and images, from Marley’s birth in rural Jamaica in 1945 (a “baby chile” singing “like three little birds”) to global renown with his “dreads atwirl” and “music in [his] belly.” Though dead at 36 from cancer, this remarkable man lives on in his songs of hope and peace, in his influence on other musicians and now through Medina’s unique biography, with its vivid acrylic paintings by Jesse Joshua Watson.