Port-au-Prince has become an amputated town, throbbing in upon itself. Grief muffles the rhythms of this Caribbean port city—tourists gone, trade vanished, a crazed dictator pressing the Haitian millions into misery. Still, amid desolation and dismay, the smell of ripe mangoes is good, sun and salt are good, the sway of Creole girls a? they go about their day is a happy reminder of time that was and time still to come—why not?

  Or so my friend Max Liptzen, the fish importer, explained to me. Someday the walls of the Fort Dimanche prison would be torn down and bamboche would take the dancers once more. And then, he said, the living will regret giving up life before they have to. ' 'This is a country for people with juice in them. Let's squeeze the juice, kid.”