I know, I am straying, but damn this story is good. There was a couple at the party dressed like the characters from the movie Pulp Fiction. The gentleman had a line of red liquid running down his nose so I congratulated him on how authentic his costume was and asked him what he used for blood. He looked at me puzzled, and then held up a small glass container on a chain around his neck. The light was dim so I leaned in and saw that it was filled with white powder. I had heard about cocaine use at parties but that was the first time I had seen someone bleed from their nose. I was so embarrassed I just swallowed hard and walked away, as he wiped the blood from his nose.
There was no question at all that the front house belonged to Alison’s grandmother because bright colours distinguished it from the other two. The front door was painted in yellow and the frame in bright blue, the bright green roof shimmered in spots when the descending sun seeped through the trees round the house. I got off the bike and walked up the pebble-stoned walkway to a small wooden gate, I mean, what kind of strange people were they? No fence round the house just this bloody wooden gate. I shook me head and pushed open the gate and walked up three concrete steps, stumbled and almost fell into the door, damn steps was too small for me size seventeen shoes. I looked up at the door, there was a red cross painted on the middle of it and I leaned forward trying to get a better look at it, I remembered me grandmother telling me that some obeah priests used goat blood to paint crosses on they doors something to do with Passover I believe. Hesitantly I ran me fingers along the smooth surface when suddenly the door opened and I found meself looking up into the eyes of an old lady, she was wearing a gray dress the coarse material brushing against me face as a gently breeze escaped from inside the house.
“Wey you want?” she barked. I straightened up but still did not say anything I was vexed with meself, I mean, it was just a bloody old lady.
“You ah dummyboy?” she demanded a large mole on she bottom lip moved up and down when she spoke.
“I am Alison’s teacher,” I said, me voice a whisper. “She said I should come here to get help.” She eyes never left me face and for a moment she did not seem to know what the hell I was talking bout. I started to speak again but she raised she arm stopping me.
“Don jus stand dere, come in,” I got to me feet and followed she inside me heart pounding and me mouth suddenly dry. Before I could compose meself she disappeared into another room and I was left standing alone.
I sat down in the chair nearest to me wondering where the hell that damn woman went. There was incense lit in every corner of the room, teardrops oozed out the side of me eyes and rolled down me cheeks and I shut me eyes then open them trying me best to clean them. The chair poked into me skin and I looked down it was made out of Bamboo, now who in they right mind would have old bamboo furniture, I mean, the damn thing felt like I was sitting on needles or something. I cursed a little and slowly I shifted me position trying to make meself comfortable.
I looked round the room but I could not tell what colour it was because the smoke settled on the walls creating a black, gray cloud. There were dolls everywhere and the shadows on their faces made them look almost life like as if at any moment one of them would stand up and start a frigging conversation with me. Right then I wanted to get up and run but I told meself that everything was cool runnings so I settled back down. The curtains on the lone window shifted as the early evening breeze pushed it; I mean good lord, what have I gotten meself into? Alison materialized out of the smoke startling me, man, I need to stop talking to meself so much. She body made a pathway through the thick smog as she stopped in front of me smoke whirled round she then dissipated in the breeze.
“You all right Mr. Dickens?” She asked bending over and looking into me eyes.
“Yes, I am fine,” I replied, brushing away a teardrop that rolled down me cheek.
“Come on den, Ah go show you to you room.” I got up and followed her to a door that seemed to appear at the side of the room me water logged shoes squeaking as we went. I stepped through the door into a Victorian looking bedroom, I tell you what, the difference between this room and the one I just came from was like night and day. There was a huge window that took up one side of the room, a cream coloured laced curtain hung from it barely touching the floor, a mahogany dresser stood at the foot of the bed and on top of it were pictures of Alison, so I walked over to the dresser and looked at the black and white photographs. There was two of her as a baby and one of her when she was still a pupil at the small Primary school just a short distance up the road. There was a jewelry box over flowing with bracelets and necklaces, Jesus, did she think she had enough jewelry or what? I turned round in a tight circle surveying the room, surprisingly there was no smoke in there not even the sent of the incense violated the room.
“Dere is you change of clothes,” Man, I jumped so high me head almost touch the ceiling, I mean I had completely forgotten Alison was still in the room. She was pointing to a suit of clothes that lay in the middle of the bed so I walked over and picked up the garments
“Ah go come back to get you later on for de ceremony,” she said. I was still feeling the clothes not paying any attention to she at all so I was surprised when I turned round and realized the girl had already left the room.
I sat down on the bed me head started to hurt a little. I looked at the light blue paint on the walls it made the room seem brighter in the fading afternoon light.
There was a grandfather clock sitting in the far corner of the room and I watched the hands go round, I mean, I was looking at the bloody thing so long it’s ticking and me heart were beating the same frigging rhythm.
I heard a commotion in the backyard so I got up and walked over to the window, there were two roosters fighting while the other chickens scrambled round trying to get out of the way, dirt and feathers flew into the air as the two roosters tried to get the upper hand on each other. After bout three minutes of wings flying and intense clucking one of the roosters gave up and ran away its wings flapping vigorously, I chuckled to myself, run brother run before he kills you.
I opened the window and leaned out its wooden frame pressed against me elbow making them hurt a little, the late afternoon sun gave me enough light to see what the yard looked like, Aloe trees were planted along the sides of the house, it was common for Islanders to plant these trees because it was believed that they had the power to keep out evil spirits. Some people even eat the bitter plant believing that it would cleanse them, Idiots, that plant was so bitter it could make you hair stand straight on your head. The chickens had stopped milling round in the dirt and were beginning to settle down for the night, a bat flew by a mere shadow in the florescent light.
I went back into the room and sat down on the bed thinking hard bout why I was there and what good it would do for me. An owl hooted outside and I got up and began looking round for a light switch but stopped when I heard the door creek. Puffs of smoke seeped through then disappeared as it was sucked back into the other room. I waited, a dull pain in me chest as me heart rate sped up like crazy. It was just a few moments, but I tell you man, it seemed like a hundred years before an old man walked into the room surrounded by a cloud of smoke. He did not even look at me as he walked over to a chair beside the door and sat down, he wrinkled hands clasped round a homemade cane that supported the weight from he hunched over body, thick veins ran up and down he arms disappearing under the sleeves of his shirt. He dropped the cane onto the flow,
So here I am walking down 4th avenue last night coming from the radio station around 12.30 am when There were several people walking in the same direction as me. When I got near to the Tattoo shop I heard someone shouting, “Hey bro, hey bro!” So I turned around and a man with about three bags ran out of the dark. At first I started walking but he shouted, again so I stopped. he walks up to me, blood streaming down his face, droplets of blood dropping off his nose. “They beat the f.. out of me.” he sais, so I said “Call the police,” he said “Nah don’t want to do that.” so I said, “What do you want me to do?” He said, I need shoes to wear and looked at my feet, “I said cant help you I wear size 18 shoes,” He says “Ahhh s…” All the while blood is flowing from cuts all over his face. “I said again, “Call the cops,” He mumbled something and reached into one of the bags so I took a defensive stand, he says “You are alright,” as he digs through the bags. That was it for me, I started walking away insisting that he call the cops. I am still wondering with all the people walking on the street, why did he pick me to call. Is it because I am seven feet talk, did he think if people who assaulted him came back I would fight for him? hmmm I guess I will never know. There is one of the reasons I do not walk late in the town.
In the fall, an incident transpired that totally turned me off from playing ball. I was walking to the dorm when two school buses drove by and all the kids screamed at me. Their voices echoed through the small city as the busses rounded a corner just down the road. I thought nothing of it until the busses came back, stopped and all these kids ran up to me. I was a little unnerved and almost took off running. This one red headed kid frightened me so bad, all I thought was “Children of the Corn”. Bloody kids were like vultures, jumping and screaming, pushing notepads and pencils at me and basically treating me like I was a big star or something. You would have thought that I had just stopped a hurricane, or brought peace to the Middle East or something. Their faces were red from the cold. Yeah that is something I noticed: lots of red faces, their little eyes wide with excitement. Hell, I had not even played a game yet.
the shadow stood over him
knife in hand
blood dripping from its jagged edges
ohhh the satisfaction
if a shadow can feel
ohh the serenity
if a shadow can feel that
the shadow looks down
the man moans
there is a bloody mess where his penis was
the shadow took his manhood
who is that shadow
he lives in me
he lives in us all
he savours the moment
that moment when he used his knife to take this mans manhood
he will watch him bleed
stinking political puppet
you deserve what you got
thats the shadow talking
as he turns and walk away
The people in the procession began dancing to the rhythm of the drums their movement slowly becoming more emphatic, long white gowns covered their feet making it seem like they were floating. As the old woman danced by the crowd some of them reached out and touched she others jerked they bodies uncontrollable. The old woman stopped in front of the woman with the chicken, she took the fowl and spun it round over she head its neck snapped sending its body flying through the air. One of the men danced over to its twitching body, picked it up and drained a couple of drops of blood into a silver cup. Everyone in the circle was dancing now they bodies twisting and turning, they faces contorted yet no sound came out of they mouth. The old lady took the cup from the man and approached me and I was forced to me knees by a strong pair of hands, sweat poured down me body like I was in an invincible shower or something, I tried to get up but the hands were still holding me down. The old lady danced towards me, the cup raised above she head, she white dress twirling round she ankle, she eyes were so big they almost looked like stars that had fallen from the sky. I struggled against the hands holding me, but it was fruitless.
The old woman stood above me tilting that bloody cup, I closed me mouth, hell they were going to have to force feed me that damn potion. Someone held me head back causing me mouth to open and I felt the liquid fall into me mouth, oozed down me tongue and hit the back of me throat. Some of it escaped out of the side of me mouth and I brought me hand up and tried to wipe it away, a woman in the crowd was screaming she voice echoed in me head, the old lady was chanting imploring the spirits to come to me aid. Someone pulled me head further back causing some of the liquid to flow into me nose, I swallowed quickly so as to stop meself from drowning, I mean, what the hell were they trying to do kill me or something? The sweet, sticky liquid went down me throat settling heavy on me stomach and I fell forward coughing me head spinning like crazy. The rhythm of the drums ran through me like a raging river and to top things off I sprang to me feet and started dancing round the circle me body twisting in ways I did not know it could. I bumped into other dancers as I swung me arms around, then I felt it, this strange tingling feeling. It was the same damn feeling I had when the woman in white appeared to me, me head felt as if it had floated off of me body and I was looking down on the circle, the crowd became one big blur of slow deliberate movement and God help me but my head felt like the one time I tried smoking ganja.
The moon looked like it was bouncing round in the sky. It was then I realized that I was trashing round on the ground looking up at the starry abyss, sparks from the fire floated in the air above me, stopped then dropped to the ground some landing on me, but I felt nothing. Me stomach felt as if someone had placed a sack of rocks on it and soon I was throwing up me chest burning as the bile erupted form me stomach, then I lay there not moving the sour taste in me mouth the only thing I was aware of.
I lay on the bed looking up at the ceiling. Sleepless nights were now part of my life. I was running through the forest, an AK-47 rifle in my hand. I heard the voices of soldiers as they chased me. The forest was dark despite the sun being high in the sky. My lungs were on fire as I maneuvered through the trees and bushes. Bullets whizzed by my head, hitting the trees, creating a buzzing noise in my head. Leaves flew into the air; branches fell in front of me. I hurdled over bodies. Some were still alive, begging for help.
I kept running as the footsteps of my pursuers grew closer. I was so panicked, I did not see the wounded man step out in front of me. Part of his face was blown off and one eye had tears of blood pouring out of it. He lifted his arm as if asking for mercy. I bumped into him and he fell backwards. I stopped and looked down at him. He was trying to get back up, his voice a mere gurgle as blood oozed out of his mouth. I reached out to him, but he fell back to the ground. I looked back and saw the approaching soldiers; I turned and ran off, my legs feeling like they would freeze up. I ran until I came to a precipice. It was about a sixty-foot drop, so I looked around for another escape route. Sweat poured down my face, getting into my eyes. I wiped it off and looked up just in time to see the soldiers standing in front of me. I wanted to run, but I knew I was cornered. I closed my eyes for a second hoping to block out my fate, but I opened my eyes and they were all pointing their M16 rifles at me. I watched as the bullets shot out of the rifles. The closer they got to me, the darker the scene became. I closed my eyes just as the bullets exploded in my body. I screamed, my voice disappearing into the darkness. I sat up in bed, my heart racing so fast, I almost fainted. My ex-wife moved a little asking me if I was alright. I mumbled that I was, got up and went to the bathroom. I looked at myself in the mirror. I was white as a red-headed step child. Sweat rolled down my face as a sudden chill went through my body. I splashed some water in my face, then walked back to the bedroom and stood over her for a moment. She looked so peaceful, that smile on her face. I hoped she was having a better dream than the one I’d just had. I crawled into bed and snuggled up against her. I always felt better when I was close to her. The scent of Egyptian Musk on her skin, the slow throbbing of her heartbeat; quite frankly, it was those moments that kept me sane.