The Independence anthology of Jamaican literature

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Title:
The Independence anthology of Jamaican literature
Physical Description:
227 p. : ; 22 cm.
Language:
English
Creator:
Hendriks, Arthur Lemiere, 1922-
Lindo, Cedric
Publisher:
Arts Celebration Committee of the Ministry of Development and Welfare
Place of Publication:
Kingston Jamaica
Publication Date:

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Jamaican literature   ( lcsh )
Genre:
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage:
Jamaica

Notes

Statement of Responsibility:
selected by A.L. Hendriks & Cedric Lindo ; with an introduction by Peter Abrahams.

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
oclc - 23287531
lccn - 91815280
ocm23287531
sobekcm - AA00004572_00001
Classification:
lcc - PR9265.I62 H46 1962
ddc - 808.89 H498i
System ID:
AA00004572:00001


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Full Text
THE
INDEPENDENCE ANTHOLOGY
OF
JAMAICAN LITERATURE
selected by A. L. Hendriks & Cedric Undo with an introduction by Peter Abrahams
A Publication of The Arts Celebration Committee of
The Ministry of Development and Weltate Jamaica 1962


This book was published by the Arts Celebration Committee of the Ministry of Development and Welfare of the Government of Jamaica in commemoration of the achievement of Jamaican Independence
1962.
Printed by United Printers Ltd., 218 Marcus Garvey Drive, Kingston, 11, Jamaica. Distributed by Sangster's Bookstores, 91 Harbour Street, Kingston, Jamaica.


ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
The editors thank the various authors and poets for their co-operation and for permission to use their work. In addition specific acknowledgements are made to the following for permission to use the material indicated: The Atlantic Monthly for the story, "At the Stelling" copyright I960 by the authot, John Hearne.
Jonathan Cape Ltd., London fot the extract from "Brother Man" copyright 1953 by the author, Roger Mais.
The Christian Science Monitor for "Across Cold Skies" by A. L. Hendriks.
Thomas Y. Crowcll Company, New York for the extract from "Anansi, the Spider Man" copyright 1954 by the author, Philip M. Sherlock.
Mrs. H. O. A Dayes who holds the copyright in the wotks of the late Roger Mais.
Faber & Faber, London for the extract from "The Autumn Equinox" copyright 1959 by the author, John Hearne.
Mrs. Ellen de Lisser who holds the copyright in the works of the late H. G. de Lisser.
The Gleaner Co. Ltd., Kingston for the work by Leslie Roberts, Monica Marsh, H. V. Ormsby Marshall, Hartley Neita, Beryl Marston, Vivette Hendriks, Basil McFarlane, Barbara Ormsby and H. P. Jacobs.
Hutchinson & Co., Publishers, Ltd., London for the extract from "Creole" copyright 1951 by the author, Lucille Iremonger.
Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., New York for the extract from "New Day" copyright 1949 by the author, Victor S. Reid.
Methuen & Co. Ltd., London for the extract from "Susan Proud-leigh" copyright 1915 by the author, H. G. de Lisser.
The New Yorker for the poem by Louis Simpson.
The Pioneer Press, Kingston for the stories by Ulric Simmonds and R L. C. Aarons.
The Tribune, Spanish Town for the story by Lloyd A. Clarke.




CONTENTS
Foreword ............ Hon. Edward Seaga,
Minister of Development and Welfare ix
Introduction .... .... .... Peter Abrahams xi
SHORT STORIES
At the Stelling John Hearne 1
Good Brown Earth Leslie Roberts 17
Grannie Bell Ulric Simmonds 21
Lost in the Shuffle Monica March 28
Madam ____ R. L. C. Aarons 33
Poinsettia for Ghristmas H. V. Ormsby Marshall 41
Riverman Lloyd A. Clarke 45
Spring Planting Claude Thompson 5 1
The Mermaid's Comb .... Hartley Neita 61
The Sound Beryl Marston 65
Harry the Hummer Laurice Bird 69
When Fly Bodder Mauger Mule Carmen Manley 75
POEMS
San Gloria extract Tom Redcam 80
On National Vanity .... J. E. Clare McFarlane 8 3
Street Preacher Edward Baugh 84
Ancestor on the Auction Block Vera Bell 85
History Makers George Campbell 87
Holy ........ George Campbell 88
I Shall Remember H. D. Carberry 89
Fugue Neville Dawes 91
Expect No Turbulence ____ Barbara Ferland 92
At Home the Green Remains .... John Figueroa 93
Port Royal ........ G. A. Hamilton 94
Across Cold Skies A. L. Hendriks 96
Road to Lacovia A. L. Hendriks 97
At Villa Flora ........ Vivette Hendriks 98


Leda and the Swan
Yellow ............
Chrysanthemum Song of the Banana Man Lament of the Banana Man .... Arawak Prologue Bananas Ripe and Green .... Flameheart Men of Ideas Jamaica Market The Day my Father Died k Certain Beggar Named Lazarus The Maroon Girl Jamaica Symphony extract .... On Immortality Jamaican Fisherman My Father in the Night
Commanding No Jamaica
Testament extract .... I Have Seen March .... The Hour EXTRACTS FROM NOVELS Susan Proudleigh New Day
Creole .... .... ...
Brother Man The Autumn Equinox MISCELLANEOUS (Autobiography, How War Came to Paris Spanish Town extract The Self-Government Movement Anansi, the Spider Manextract Anancy and Sorrel Mein Kampf Extract In Reverse
Vivette Hendriks 99
Constance Hollar 100
K. E. Ingram 103
Evan Jones 104
Evan Jones 107
Basil McFarlane 109
Claude McKay 111
Claude McKay 112
Roger Mais 114
Agnes Maxwell Hall.... 117
Mervyn Morris 118
Barbara S. Ormsby .... 119
W. Adolphe Roberts 121
Andrew Salkey 122
K. B. Scott 124
Philip Sherlock 126
Louis Simpson 127
M. G. Smith 129
M. G. Smith 130
Vivian L. Virtue 134
Vivian L. Virtue 135
H. G. de Lisser 136
Victor S. Reid 143
Lucille Iremonger 155
Roger Mais 164
John Hearne 178
History, Folklore, Humour)
W. Adolphe Roberts 190
Clinton V. Black .... 196
H. P. Jacobs .... 205
Philip Sherlock .... 215
Louise Bennett .... 218
A. E. T. Henry .... 22T
Louise Bennett .... 226


Dedicated to THE FREE PEOPLE OF JAMAICA




FOREWORD
The publication of this Anthology of Jamaican writings was one of the tesponsibilities of the Committee set up by the Ministty of Development and Welfare to plan and organise the artistic activities of Jamaica's Independence Celebrations. It also reflects a conscious effort on the part of the Government of Jamaica to bring the Arts into greater focus as the country entets its new era of Independence.
I should like to pay tribute to all those pioneet writers and organisations, whose vision and unstinting labours have laid the foundations of our creative literature, so that today as we enter Independence, we can publish a collection of Jamaican poetry and prose, without having to apologise for the quality of its contents.
It is far easier to follow than to make a beginning; and it is one of the besetting sins of our society that as we become more sophisticated, we tend to look down our noses at those who by making mistakes first showed us the way.
Even so, the works of many of our earlier writers I have in mind the poets Tom Redcam and Claude McKay, and among those who are still living, W. Adolphe Roberts and J. E. Clare McFarlane have already entered into the complex of our national culture. And it is a pleasute to attend Speech Festivals and other gatherings and hear our young people speak with conviction such poems as San Gloria, Flameheart, The Maroon Girt and On National Vanity.
One of the challenges of Independence is that national pride will always seek for indigenous artistic expression. This is not the same thing as suggesting a blatant partisanship on the part of the artist, or that he should be committed to one ideology ot another. The artist, if he is worth his salt, will always be true to his own vision.
There seems to be overwhelming evidence from the history of othet cultures, however, that until we are truly national, that is to say, until we have really learnt to exploit our own resources, the body of our creative literature will nevet speak with a voice that is undeniably its own, and thus


throw up the writets who can win through to universal acclaim.
It is true that a number of Jamaican writers have been securing publication overseas. They deserve our warmest congratulations.
I appreciate that the opportunities for publication in Jamaica ate limited. One cannot overlook the fact, however, that Jamaican and other West Indian books do not at present have a commanding readership in this island, but it is hoped that efforts such as the local publication of this volume will help towards creating a reasonable market at home.
I do not believe that writers can escape the responsibility of writing fot their own people. To the extent that they are able to communicate to their own people at home, that they can give them some illumination of life, to that extent will they be establishing contact with univetsal values and writing the books of which we can be proud.
It is for these reasons that I am able to commend this Independence Anthology of Jamaican writing as making a start in the right direction.
EDWARD SEAGA,
Minister of Development and Welfare.
Hanover House, 90 Hanover Street, Kingston, Jamaica.


INTRODUCTION
The publication of this anthology of Jamaican prose and verse is to commemorate the achievement of Jamaica's political independence on August 6th, 1962: it is part of the island's independence celebrations, and the publishers are an advisory committee to the government of Jamaica the Arts Advisory Council. Production costs will be met out of a sum allocated as an annual subvention to the Arts Advisory Council by the Ministry of Development and Welfare to encourage the arts in Jamaica. This anthology is therefore not a private commercial venture but is government-sponsored. But it was compiled as though it were a private commercial venture. The compilers sent out invitations to a number of known writers and published advertisements in the press inviting manuscripts. When these arrived they selected, sorted and edited them and sent them to the printers without reference to any government official anywhere along the line. The reader should therefore know that but for the active interest and financial support of the government of Jamaica there might have been no anthology to celebrate Jamaica's independence.
Modern Jamaican writing can fairly be said to have begun with 'Tom Redcam' Thomas Henry MacDermot whose Irish ancestors settled in Jamaica in the 18th century. Redcam was born in 1 870 and died in England in 1 933 after spending nearly eleven years in and out of English nursing homes, dreaming of and longing for his 'Little Green Island'.
A Little Green Island, in far away seas!
Now the swift Tropic shadows stride over thy leas:
The evening's Elf-hugles call over the land.
And ocean's low lapping falls soft on the strand.
Then down the far West, towards the portals of Night.
Gleam the glory of orange and rich chrysolite.
Day endeth its splendour; the Night is at hand:
My heart groweth tender, dear, far away land. But before that Redcam had sung Jamaica in a new way that made its people and its natural beauty come alive with that startling freshness and sense of discovery which is the glory of good poetry. As editor of the Jamaica Times Redcam encouraged younger writers and found space for the works. As a native-born white Jamaican


of his times he was totally committed to Jamaica, there were no split loyalties, no thought or talk of Great Britain or Ireland as 'Home'. As far back as 1 899 he could say to his fellow whites and coloureds: "Today we lead; tomorrow we advise; and on the day following we arc co-workers together with our black countrymen. ... It is as our actions and opinions relate to them that they will stand applauded or condemned by the future historian."
Among those whom Redcam published and encouraged was a poor black boy from the hills of Clarendon named Claude McKay. Thanks largely to Redcam McKay's first two volumes of verse Constab Ballails and Songs of Jamaica were published in his homeland. With these, and a Musgrave Medal from the Institute of Jamaica, the young poet left his homeland to win a great reputation as one of the leading poets of the 'Negro Renaissance' of the 20s in the United States. In America, Africa and elsewhere McKay is known mainly as the explosively angry race and colour-conscious poet using words as weapons against discrimination and bigotry: If we must die. O let us nobly die. So that our precious blood may not be shed In vain; then even the monsters we defy Shall be constrained to honour us though dead! But in Jamaica he is also remembered, and honoured, for his humorous and comic verses like 'Flat Foot Drill' he spent some time in the Jamaica Constabulary force: Fus' beginnin'. flat foot drill, l.arnin' how fe mek right tu'n: Tentionl keep you' han's dem still Can't you tek in da! a li'l? Hearin' all, but larnin' none And for the haunting lyricism of his love for his island and the terrible homesickness in poems like 'Flame Heart' and 'After Winter'. For McKay his self-imposed exile was winter and after winter would be when he got home. But he died in America in 1948 in winter. Both Redcam and McKay, the pioneers of modern Jamaican poetry, died far from home.
By 1923 interest in poetry had grown to such an extent that [. E. Clare McFarlane, the island's senior living poet could found


the Poetry League of Jamaica as a branch of the Empire Poetry League. The League posthumously declared Tom Redcam Jamaica's first Poet Laureate. In 1924 McFarlane published his own first cal-lection of poems. He also edited the first anthology of Jamaican poetry, Voices From Summerland, which was published in London in 1929. The poets of the Poetry League were not, overtly at least, as preoccupied with, and involved in, the social, political and economic problems of Jamaica as were Redcam and McKay. Their verse did not reflect or draw inspiration from the growing national awakening that stirred the land. Their verse brought to mind Keats and Wordsworth, and Shelley bereft of revolutionary content. But they nurtured the poetic awakening and McFarlane himself and Vivian Virtue, to my mind the most successful of the Poetry League poets, achieved some memorable verse. McFarlane's 'Villanelle of Immortal Love' is a fair example:
Love will awaken all lovely things at last.
One by one they shall come from the sleep of time,
Bearing in triumph the deathless dreams of the past.
Hard on their fair designs come the wreck of the blast;
Where they lie scattered in every land and clime,
Love will awaken all lovely things at last.
The troubles of the 1930s and the growth of the nationalist movement under the leadership of the P.N.P. led the emergence of a new group of poets in the late 1930s and early 1940s These poets were involved in the nationalist movement, drew their inspiration from it and gave voice to its aspirations. Much of this was protest, agitational verse, often crude and lacking in the grace achieved by the Poetry League poets. But occasionally they struck pure poetic gold as did Roger Mais with his:
All men come to the hills
Finally .
with its deep undertones of the island's past and the poverty of the 'proud lone men' with 'dusty, broken feet'. A host of other poets emerged the most outstanding to my mind being George Campbell, M. G. Smith, H. D. Carberry and Basil McFarlane, son of Clare McFarlane. And there were other poets like W. Adolphe Roberts and P. M. Sherlock who preceded and nurtured the awakening.


Up to this time prose fiction had played a relatively unimportant part in Jamaican literature. At least a dozen novels had been written but mostly in the nineteenth century, beginning with Michael Scott's Tom Cringle's Log and the Cruise of the Midge. But Scott and all the other writers were 'outsiders' seeing and writing about Jamaica as 'outsiders'. In the opening years of this century Herbert George de Lisser had published five novels, but it was not until 1943, with the publication of the first hocus under the editorship of Edna Manley that prose, first of all in the form of the short story, came into its own. The first locus contained ten short stories, over fifty poems, three short plays and five short essays. The second hocus, published five years later, had roughly the same number of poems but there were sixteen short stories. The third Focus, published in 1956, had thirteen stories simply because there was no room for any more. And the fourth Focus, published in. 1960, carried eighteen prose pieces of which sixteen were fiction, and fewer poems than in all the other issues of Focus.
Prose fiction had come into its own, and when Robert Herring devoted an entire issue of Life and Letters to Jamaican writing way back in 1948 he could not find space for all the publishablc short stories he received from Jamaica. In the second Locus Edna Manley wrote: "There are signs that our people are becoming more conscious that it is essential that we should produce books of our own, and if this feeling grows, there will be far less financial risk involved in putting our writers of talent before the public". In 19 50 this idea became a reality when the Gleaner Company established the Pioneer Press which has published well over twenty titles in very attractive paperback editions selling round about three shillings and six-pence. It is a great tragedy that the publishing activity, of the Pioneer Press has fallen off so very badly in recent years.
In 1949, the same year in which J. E. Clare McFarlane published his second anthology, A Treasury of Jamaican Poetry, Vic Reid published his novel, New Day. This novel which was published in both New York and London, was the beginning of the emergence of a whole new school of Jamaican and West Indian novelists. The names of the leading members of this group are pub-


lie property. There is Edgar Mittclholzer, George Lamming, Roger Mais, John Hearne, Vidia Naipaul, Samuel Selvon, Jan Carcw and Andrew Salkey. And behind them are others pressing hard for publication and public recognition.
It is not my purpose here to discuss the novels of all these West Indian writers indeed it is not possible to encompass such a discussion within the framework of this brief introduction to an anthology commemorating Jamaica's Independence. But some of the problems which face these writers are common to Barbados, Trinidad, British Guiana as much as to Jamaica. So, while I shall confine myself to the Jamaican novelists specifically, it might be useful to bear in mind that the problems are region-wide and-that on the whole the novelists themselves see them as being region-wide.
After Vic Rcid published his Ncu Day, Roger Mais appeared on the literary scene with three novels following each other in fairly rapid succession. These were: The Hills Were Joyful Together, Brother Man and Black Lightning. And then, in 1 9 5 5 Mais died just when he seemed on the verge of becoming a really powerful influence on Jamaican and West Indian writing. Next came John Hearne whose publication of Voices: Under the Window heralded the emergence of one of, if not the best, craftsmen among West Indian writers. All his succeeding novels have attested to his skill. The fourth Jamaican novelist to have achieved a critical and public-acclaim that entitles him to consideration beside Reid, Mais and Hearne is Andrew Salkey.
Of the four only Vic Reid stayed at home. The others went away to England to live and write and find the wider fields they sought for their talents. It is possible that because he stayed at home Vic Reid has published only two novels, his second, The Leopard, dealing not with Jamaica but with the Mau Mau in Kenya. This, incidentally, was one of the most remarkable feats of creative imagination I have ever read. It is equally possible that if he had gone away he might still have written only the two novels between 1949 and the present time. Roger Mais went away, but in some ways his three novels written within a tight time span give a truer street level view of the lower depths of contemporary Jamaica than


anything else I know. By the same token there is no knowing whether Hearne and Salkey staying at home would have made any difference to the choice of subject matter and angle of approach. So it seems to me that we want to get away from all this talk about the 'pleasures of exile' or the duty of writers to come home. In any case, writers everywhere have a tendency to do exactly what they want and the reader can take it or leave it. If the writer elects not to be concerned with the human and social problems of his own emerging society, that is his business. There may be those of us who think that since all good art must be bedded on the realities of life any escapist or tourist guide type of fiction which trades on the exotic setting or quaintness of speech will not be great or even very good. But we cannot impose this view on the writer.
What we can say, and I think we can say this fairly of the Jamaican novelist and of the West Indian novelist, is that there must be a reason why there has been such great skill and promise shown and why it has remained just promise, unfulfilled these many years. We can ask our novelists to try and give answers to this question. And their best answer would be a really great Jamaican novel that would make Jamaica and Jamaicans uniquely real as a land and a people for all men in all lands and for all time. I think it is the recognition of this challenge that has brought John Hearne home, and that is a very hopeful thing.
As this anthology shows, Jamaican literature has evolved and grown and achieved much that is extremely good in both poetry and prose. It is striking and impressive compared with that of any emerging society similar to ours. The challenge to our writers now is to build on what has been achieved and to create a literature that will stand beside the best in the modern world. And for this our writers need, I think, to look deeply inward.
Peter Abrahams
Coyaba, Jamaica


AT THE STELLING
JOHN HEARNE
one is no boss fe' we, Dunnie," Son-Son say. "I don' like how him stay. Dis one is boss fe' messenger an' women in Department office, but not fe' we."
"Shut your mout'," I tell him. "Since when a stupid, black nigger can like and don't like a boss in New Holland? What you goin' do? Retire an' live 'pon your estate?" But I know say that Son-Son is right.
The two of we talk so at the back of the line; Son-Son carrying the chain, me with the level on the tripod. The grass stay high, and the ground hatd with sun. It is three mile to where the Catacuma tun black past the stelling, and even the long light down the sky can't strike a shine from Catacuma water You can smell Rooi Swamp, dark and sweet and wicked like a woman in a bad house back in Zuyder Town. Nothing live in Rooi Swamp except snake; like nothing live in a bad woman. In all South America there is no swamp like the Rooi; not even in Brazil; not even in Cayenne. The new boss, Mister Cockbutn, walk far ahead with the little assistant man, Mister Bailey. Nobody count the assistant. Him only come down to the Catacuma to learn. John stay close behind them, near to the rifle. The other rest of the gang file out upon the trail between them three and me and Son-Son. Mister Cockburn is brand-new from head to foot. New hat, new bush-shirt, new denim pant, new boot. Him walk new.
"Mister Cockburn!" John call, quick and sharp. "Look!"
I follow the point of John's finger and see the deer. It fat and promise tender and it turn on the hoof-tip like deer always do, with the four tip standing in a nickel and leaving enough bare to make a cent change, before the spring into high grass. Mister Cockburn unship the rtfle, and pow, if we was all cow then him shoot plenty grass for us to eat.
"Why him don't give John de rifle?" Son-Son say.
"Because de rifle is Government," I tell him, "and Mistet Cockburn is Government. So it is him have a right to de rifle."
Mister Cockburn turn and walk back. He is a tall, high mulatto man,


2
At the Stelling
young and full in body, with eyes not blue and not green, but coloured like the glass of a beer bottle. The big hat make him look like a soldier in the moving pictures.
"Blast this sun," he say, loud, to John. "I can't see a damn' thing in the glare; it's right in my eyes."
The sun is falling down the sky behind us but maybe him think we can't see that too.
John don't answer but only nod once, and Mister Cockburn turn and walk on, and I know say that if I could see John's face it would be all Carib buck. Sometimes you can see where the Indian lap with it, but othet times it is all Indian and closed like a prison gate; and I knew say, too, that it was this face Mistet Cockburn did just see.
"Trouble dere, soon," Son-Son say, and him chin point to John and then to Mistet Cockburn. "Why Mister Hamilton did have to get sick, eh, Dunnie? Dat was a boss to have."
"Whatever trouble to happen is John's trouble," I tell him. "John's trouble is Mister Cockburn's. Leave it. You is a poof naygur wid no schooling, fivepickney and a sick woman. Dat is trouble enough for you."
But in my heart I find agreement for what stupid Son-Son have to say. If I have only known what trouble .
No. Life don't come so. It only come one day at a time. Like it had come every day since we lose Mister Hamilton and Mister Cockburn take we up to survey the Catacuma drainage area in Mister Hamilton's stead.
The first day we go on the savannah beyond the stelling, I know say that Mister Cockburn is frighten. Frighten, and hiding his frighten from himself. The worst kind of frighten. You hear frighten in him voice when he shout at we to keep the chain straight and plant the markers where him tell us. You see frighten when him try to work us, and himself, one hour after midday, when even the alligators hide in the water. And you understand frighten when him try to tun the camp at the stelling as if we was soldier and him was a general. But all that is because he is new and it would pass but for John. Because of John everything remain bad. From the first day when John try to treat him as he treat Mister Hamilton.
You see, John and Mister Hamilton was like one thing except that


John Hearne
3
Mister Hamilton have schooling and come from a big family in Zuyder Town. But they each suck from a Carib woman and from the first both their spirit take. When we have Mister Hamilton as boss whatevet John say we do as if it was Mister Hamilton say it, and at night when Mister Hamilton lie off in the big Berbice chair on the vetanda and him and John talk it sound like one mind with two tongue. That's how it sound to the rest of we when we sit down the steps and listen to them talk. Only when Mister Cockburn come back up the river with we, aftet Mister Hamilton take sick, we know say all that is change. For Mister Cockburn is frighten and must teduce John's pride, and from that day John don't touch the rifle and don't come to the veranda except to take orders and for Mister Cockburn to show that gang foreman is only gang foreman and that boss is always boss.
Son-Son say true, I think. Trouble is to come between John and Mister Cockburn. Poor John. Here, in the bush, him is a king, but in New Zuyder him is just anothet poor half-buck without a job and Mistet Cockburn is boss and some he cast down and some he taiseth up.
Ahead of we, I see Mister Cockburn trying to step easy and smooth, as if we didn't just spend seven hours on the savannah. Him is trying hard but very often the new boot kick black dirt from the trail. That is all fight I think. Him will learn. Him don't know say that even John hold respect for the sun on the Catacuma. The sun down here on the savannah is like the centurion in the Bible who say to one man, Come, and he cometh, and to another, Go, and he goeth. Like it say go, to Mister Hamilton. For it was a man sick bad we take down to the mouth of the river that day after he fall down on the wharf at the stelling. And it was nearly a dead man we drive up the coast road one hundred mile to Zuyder Town. We did want to stop in Hendrikstadt with him that night, but he think him was dying we think so too and him would not stop for fear he die away from his wife. And afterwards the Government doctor tell Survey that he must stay in the office forevermore and even Mister Hamilton who think him love the bush and the swamp and the forest more than life itself was grateful to the doctor for those words.
So it was it did happen with Mister Hamilton, and so it was Mister Cockburn come to we.


4
At the Stelling
Three weeks we is on the Catacuma with Mister Cockburn, and every new day things stay worse than the last.
In the morning, when him come out with the rifle, him shout: "Dun-nie Take the corial across the river and put up these bottles." And he fling the empty rum and beer bottle down the slope to me and I get into the corial and paddle across the river, and put the necks over seven sticks on the other bank. Then him and the little assistant, Mister Bailey, stay on the veranda and fire across the river, each spelling each, until the bottle is all btoken.
And John, down by the tivet, in the soft morning light, standing in the corial we have half-buried in the water, half-drawn upon the bank, washing himself all over careful like an Indian and not looking to the veranda.
"John!" Mistet Cockburn shout, and laugh bad. "Careful, eh, man. Mind a perai don't cut off your balls."
We have to stand in the corial because perai is bad on the Catacuma and will take off your heel and your toe if you stand in the river six inches from the bank. We always joke each other about it, but not the way Mister Cockburn joke John. That man know what him is doing and it is not nice to hear.
John say nothing. Him stand in the still watet catch of the corial we half-sink and wash him whole body like an Indian and wash him mouth out and listen to Mister Cockburn fire at the bottle across the river. Only we know how John need to hold that rifle. When it come to rifle and gun him is all Indian, no African in it at all. Rifle to him is like woman to we. Him don't really hold a rifle, him make love with it. And I think how things go in Mister Hamilton's time when him and John stand on the veranda in the morning and take seven shots break seven bottle, and out in the bush they feel shame if four shot fire and only three piece of game come back. Although, I don't talk truth, if I don't say how sometimes Mister Hamilton miss a shot on the bottle. When that happen you know him is thinking. He is a man think hard all the time. And the question he ask! "Dunnie," he ask, "what do you see in your looking-glass?" or, "Do you know, Dunnie, that this country has had its images broken on the wheels of false assumptions? Arrogance and servility.


John Hearne
5
Twin criminals pleading for the mercy of an early death," That is how Mister Hamilton talk late at night when him lie off in the big Berbice chair and share him mind with we.
After three weeks on the Catacuma, Mister Cockburn and most of we go down the river. Mister Cockburn to take him plans to the Department and the rest of we because nothing to do when him is gone. All the way down the river John don't say a word. Him sit in the boat bows and stare down the black water as if it is a book giving him sectet to remember. Mister Cockburn is loud and happy, for him feel, we know say, now, who is boss and him begin to lose him frighten spirit. Him is better now the frighten gone and confidence begin to come.
"Remember, now," him say in the Department yard at Zuyder Town. "Eight o'clock sharp on Tuesday morning. If one of you is five minutes late, the truck leaves without you. Plenty of men between hete and the Catacuma glad to get work." We laugh and say, "Sure, boss, sure," because we know say that already him is not so new as him was and that him is only joking. Only John don't laugh but walk out of the yatd and down the street.
Monday night, John come to my house; I is living in a little place between the coolie cinema and the dockyard.
"Dunnie," he say, "Dunnie, you have fifteen dollar?"
"Jesus," I say, "what you need fifteen dollar for, man? Dat is plenty, you know?"
"All right," he say. "You don't have it. I or y ask."
Him turn, as if it was the time him ask and I don't have no watch.
"Hold on, hold on," I tell him. "I never say I don't have fifteen dollar. I just say what you want it for?"
"Lend me. I don't have enough for what I want. As we pay off next month, you get it back. My word to God."
I go into the house.
"Whete de money?" I ask the woman.
"What you want it for?" she ask. "You promise say we don't spend dat money until we marry and buy furnitures. What you want tek it now for?"


6
At the Stelling
"Just tell mc where it stay," I tell het. "Just tell me. Don't mek me have to find it, eh?"
"Thank you, Dunnie," John say when I bring him the fifteen dollar. "One day you will want something bad. Come to me then."
And him gone up the street so quick you scarcely see him pass under the light.
The next morning, in the ttuck going down to the boat at the Cata-cuma mouth, we see what John did want fifteen dollar for.
"You have a licence for that?" Mister Cockburn ask him, hard and quick, when he see it.
"Yes," John say and stow the new Ivor-Johnson repeater with his gear up in the boat bows.
"All right," Mister Cockbutn say. "I hope you do. 1 don't want any unlicensed guns on my camp."
Him and John was never born to get on.
We reach the stelling late afternoon. The bungalow stand on the bluff above the big tent where we sleep and Zacchy, who we did leave to look to the camp, wait on the wharf waving to us.
When we passing the gear from the boat, John gtab his bundle by the string and swing it up. The string break and shirt, pant and handkerchief fly out to float on the water. Them float but the new catton of .32 ammunition fall out too and we see it for a second, green in the black water as it slide to the bottom and the mud and the perai.
Mister Bailey, the little assistant, look sorry, John look sick, and Mistef Cockburn laugh a little up in the back of him nose.
"Is that all you had?" him ask.
"Yes," John say, "I don't need no more than that for three weeks."
"Too bad," Mister Cockburn reply. "Too bad. Rotten luck. I might be able to spate you a few from stores."
Funny how a man who can stay decent with everybody always find one othet who turn him bad.
Is another three weeks we stay up on the survey. We triangulate all the stretch between the Rooi Swamp and the first fotest. Things is bettet this time. Mister Cockburn don't feel so rampageous to show what a hard boss him is Evetything is bettet except him and John. Whenever


John Hearne
7
him and John speak, one voice is sharp and empty and the othet voice is dead, and empty too. Every few day him give John two-three cartridge, and John go out and come back with two-thtee piece of game. A deer and a labba, maybe. Or a bush pig and an agouti. Whatevet ammunition John get him bring back meat to match. And, you know, I think that rowel Mister Cockburn's spirit worse than anything else John do. Mistet Cockburn is shooting good, too, and we is eating plenty meat, but him don't walk with the gun like John. Who could ever. Not even Mistet Hamilton.
The last Saturday before we leave, John come to Mister Cockburn. It is afternoon and work done till Monday. Son-Son and me is getting the gears ready for a little cricket on the flat piece undet the kookorit palms. The cricket gears keep in the big room with the other rest of stotes and we heat every word John and Mister Cockburn say.
"No, John," Mister Cockburn tell him. "We don't need any meat. We're leaving Tuesday morning. We have more than enough now."
Him voice sleepy and deep from the Berbice chair.
"Sell me a few rounds, Mister Cockburn," John say. "I will give you store price for a few rounds of .32."
"They're not mine to sell." Mister Cockburn say, and him is liking the whole business so damn' much his voice don't even hold malice as it always do for John. "You know every round of ammunition here belongs to Survey. I have to indent and account for every shot fired."
Him know, like we know, that Survey don't give a lime how much shot fire up in the bush so long as the men stay happy and get meat.
"You can't give three shot, Mister Cockburn?" John say. You know how bad John want to use the new repeater when you hear him beg.
"Sorry, John," Mister Cockburn say. "Have you checked the caulking on the boat? I don't want us shipping any water when we're going down on Tuesday."
A little latet all of we except John go out to play cricket. Mistet Cockburn and Mister Bailey come too and each take captain of a side. We play till the parrots come talking across the river to the kookorits and the sky turn to green and fire out of the savannah. When we come back to the camp John is gone. Him take the corial and gone.


8
At the Stelling
"That damn' buck," Mister Cockburn say to Mister Bailey. "Gone up the river to his cousin, I suppose. We won't see him until Monday morning now. You can take an Indian out of the bush, but God Almighty himself can't take the bush out of the Indian."
Monday morning, we get up and John is there. Him is seated on the stelling and all you can see of him face is the teeth as him grin and the cheeks swell up and shiny with pleasure. Lay out of the stelling before him is seven piece of game. Three deer, a labba and three bush pig. None of we ever see John look so. Him tired till him thin and grey, but happy and proud till him can't speak.
"Seven," him say at last and hold up him finger. "Seven shots, Dunnie. That's all I take. One day and seven shot."
Who can stay like an Indian with him game and no shot gone wide?
"What's this?" a voice call from up the veranda and we look and see Mister Cockburn in the soft, white-man pyjamas lean over to look at we on the stelling. "Is that you, John? Where the devil have you been?"
"I make a little trip, Mister Cockburn," John say. Him is so proud and feel so damn' sweet him like even Mister Cockburn. "I make a little trip. I bring back something for you to take back to town. Come and make your choice, sir."
Mister Cockburn is off the veranda before the eye can blink, and we hear the fine red slipper go slap-slap on the patch down the bluff. Him come to the wharf and stop short when him see the game. Then him
look at John for a long time and turn away slow and make water over the stelling edge and come back, slow and steady.
"All fight," him say, and him voice soft and feel bad in your ears, like you did stumble in the dark and put your hand into something you would walk round. "All right, John. Whete did you get the ammunition? Who gave it you, eh?"
Him voice go up and break like a boy's voice when the first hairs begin to grow low down on him belly.
"Mistet Cockburn," John say, so crazy proud that even now him want to like the man and share pride with him. "I did take the rounds, sir. From you room. Seven shot I take, Mister Cockburn, and look what I


John Hearne
9
bring you back. Take that deer, sir, for yourself and your family. Town people never taste meat like that."
"You son of a bitch," Mister Cockburn reply. "You damned impertinent, thieving son of a bitch. Bailey!" and him voice scream until Mister Bailey come out to the veranda. "Bailey! Listen to this. We have a thief in the camp. This beauty hete feels that the government owes him his ammunition. What else did you take?"
Him voice sound as if a rope tie round him throat.
"What else I take?" John look as if him try to kiss a woman and she slap him face. "How I could take anything, Mister Cockburn? As if I am a thief. Seven little shot I take from the carton. You don't even remember how many rounds you did have left. How many you did have leave, eh? Tell me that."
"Don't back chat me, you bloody thief!" Mister Cockburn yell. "This is your last job with Survey, you hear me? I'm going to fite your arse as soon as we get to the river mouth. And don't think this game is yours to give away. You shot it with government ammunition. With stolen government ammunition. Hete! Dunnie! Son-Son! Zacchy! Get that stuff up to the house. Zacchy gut them and hang 'em. I'll decide what to do with them later."
John stay as still as if him was dead. Only when we gather up the game and a kid deet dtop one splash of dark stomach blood onto the boards him draw one long breath and shiver.
"Now," Mister Cockburn say, "get to hell out of here! Up to the tent. You don't work for me anymore. I'll take you down river on Tuesday and that's all. And if I find one dollar missing from my wallet I'm going to see you behind bars."
It is that day I know say how nothing so bad before but corruption and rottenness come worse after. None of we could forger John's face when we pick up him game. For we Negro, and for the white man, and for the mulatto man, game is to eat sometimes, or it is play to shoot. But for the Indian, oh God, game that him kill true is life everlasting. It is manhood.
When we come back early in the afternoon, with work done, we don't


10
At the Stelling
see John. But the corial still there, and the engine boat, and we know that him not far. Little later, when Zacchy cook, I fill a billy pot and go out to the kookorits. I find him there, in the grass.
"John," I say. "Don't tek it so. Mister Cockburn young and foolish and don't mean harm. Eat, John. By the time we reach river mouth tomorrow everyt'ing will be well again. Do, John. Eat dis."
John look at me and it is one black Indian Carib face stare like statue into mine. All of him still, except the hands that hold the new rifle and polish, polish, polish with a rag until the barrel shine blue like a Chinee whore hair.
I come back to the stelling. Mister Cockburn and Mister Bailey lie into two deck chair under the tarpaulin, enjoying the afternoon breeze off" the river. Work done and they hold celebration with a bottle. The rest of the gang sit on the boards and drink too. Nothing sweeter than rum and river water.
"Mister Cockburn," I tell him, "I don't like how John stay. Him is hit hatd, sah."
"Oh, sit down, Dunnie," him say. "Have a drink. That damned buck needs a lesson. I'll take him back when we reach Zuyder Town. It won't do him any harm to miss two days' pay."
So I sit, although I know say I shouldn't. I sit and I have one drink, and then two, and then one more. And the Catacuma run soft music round the piles of the stelling. All anybody can feel is that work done and we have one week in Zuyder Town before money need call we to the bush again.
Then as I go to the stelling edge to dip water in the mug I look up and see John. He is coming down ftom the house, gliding on the path like Jesus across the Sea of Galilee, and I say, "Oh God, Mistet Cockburn! Where you leave the ammunition, eh?"
But already it is too late to say that.
The first shot catch Mister Cockburn in the forehead and him drop back in the deck chair, peaceful and easy, like a man call gently from sleep who only half wake. And I shout, "Dive-oh, Mister Bailey!" and as I drop from the stelling into black Catacuma water, I feel something


John Hearne
11
like a marabunta wasp sting between my legs and know say I must be the first thing John ever shoot to kill that him only wound.
I sink far down in that fiver and already, before it happen, I can feel perai chew at my fly button and tear off my cod, or alligator grab my leg to drag me to drowning. But God is good. When I come up the sun is still there and I strike out for the little island in the river opposite the stelling. The river is full of death that pass you by, but the stelling holds a walking death like the destruction of Apocalypse.
I make ground at the island and draw myself into the mud and the bush and blood draw after me from between my legs. And when I look back at the stelling, I see Mistet Cockbutn lie down in him deck chair, as if fast asleep, and Mister Bailey lying on him face upon the boards, with him hands undet him stomach, and Zacchy on him back with him arms flung wide like a baby, and three more of the gang, Will, Benjie and Sim, all sprawl off on the boards, too, and a man more, the one we call "Venezuela", fallen into the grass, and a last one, Christopher, walking like a chicken without a head until him dtop close to Mister Bailey and cry out once before death hold him. The other seven gone. Them vanish. All except Son-Son, poor foolish Son-Son, who make across the flat where we play cricket, under the kookorits and sttaight to Rooi Swamp.
"Oh Jesus, John!" him bawl as him run. "Don't kill me, John! Don't kill me, John!"
And John standing on the path, with the repeater still as the finger of God in him hands, aim once at Son-Son, and I know say how, even at that distance, him could break Son-Son's back clean in the middle. But him lower the gun, and shrug and watch Son-Son into the long gtass of the savannah and into the swamp. Then him come down the path and look at the eight dead men.
"Dunnie!" him call. "I know you is over there. How you stay?
I dig a grave for the living into the mud.
"Dunnie!" him call again. "You hurt bad? Answer me, man, I see you, you know? Look!" A bullet bury itself one inch from my face and mud smack into my eye. "Don't shoot me, John," I beg. "I lend you fifteen dollar, remember?" "I finish shooting, Dunnie," him say. "You hurt bad?" "No," I tell him the lie. "I all right."


12
At the Stelling
"Good," him say from the stelling. "I will bring the corial come fetch you."
"No, John!" I plead with him. "Stay where you is. Stay there! You don't want to kill me now." But I know say how demon guide a Carib hand sometimes and make that hand cut throats. "Stay there, John!"
Him shrug again and squat beside Mister Cockburn's chair, and lift the fallen head and look at it and let the head fall again. And I wait. I wait and bleed and suffer, and think how plenty women will cry and plenty children bawl for them daddy when John's work is known in Zuyder Town. I think these things and watch John the way I would watch a bushmaster snake and bleed in suffering until dark fall. All night I lie there until God take pity and close my eye and mind.
When my mind come back to me, it is full day. John gone from the stelling and I can see him sit on the steps up at the house, watching the river. The dead stay same place where he drop them. Fever burn in me, but the leg stop bleed and I dip water from the river and drink.
The day turn above my head until I hear a boat engine on the far side of the bend, and in a little bit a police launch come up mid-stream and make for the stelling. When they dtaw near, one man step to the bows with a boat-hook, and then the rifle talk from the steps and the man yell, hold him wrist and drop to the deck. Him twist and wriggle behind the cabin quicker than a lizard. I hear an Englishman's voice yell in the cabin and the man at the wheel find reverse before the yell come back from the savannah. The boat go down-stream a little then nose into the overhang of the bank whete John's rifle can't find them. I call out once and they come across to the island and take me off on the other side, away from the house. And is when I come on board that I see how police know so quick about what happen. Fot Son-Son, poot foolish old Son-Son, who I think still hide out in the swamp is there. Him have on clothes not him own, and him is scratched and torn as if him had try to wrestle a jaguar.
"Man," the police sergeant tell me. "You should have seen him when they did bring to us. Swamp tear off him clothes clean. Neatly tear off him skin."
As is so I learn that Son-Son did run straight as a peccary pig, all night, twenty mile across Rooi Swamp where never any man had even put him


John Hearne
13
foot before. Him did run until him drop down in the camp of a coolie rancher bringing cattle down to the coast, and they did take him from there down to the nearest police post. When him tell police the story, they put him in the jeep and drive like hell for the river mouth and the main station.
"Lord witness, Son-Son," I say, "you was botn to hang. How you didn't meet death in Rooi Swamp, eh?"
Him just look frighten and tremble, and the sergeant laugh.
"Him didn't want to come up river with we," he say. "Superintendent nearly have to tie him before him would step on the boat."
"Sergeant," the Superintendent say. Him was the Englishman I hear call out when John wound the policeman. "Sergeant, you take three men and move in on him from behind the house. Spread out well. I'll take the front approach with the rest. Keep low, you understand. Take your time."
"Don't do it, Super," I beg him. "Look how John stay in that house up there. River behind him and clear view before. Him will see you as you move one step. Don't do it."
Him look at me angry and the white eyebrow draw together in him ted face.
"Do you think I'm going to leave him up thete?" he say. "He's killed eight and already tried to kill one of my men "
Him is bad angty for the constable who sit on the bunk and holding him wrist in the red bandage.
"No, Super," I tell him. "John don't try to kill you. If him did try then you would have take one dead man out of the river. Him only want to show you that him can sting."
But what use a poor black man talk to police. The sergeant and him three stand on the cabin roof, hold onto the bank and drag themselves over. Then the Super with him five do the same. I can hear them through the grass like snakes on them stomach. John let them come a little way to the house, and then, with him first shot, him knock the Super's black cap off, and with him second, him plug the sergeant in the shoulder. The police rifles talk back for a while, and Son-Son look at me.
When the police come back, I take care to say no word. The sergeant curse when the Super pour Dettol on the wound and beg the Super to


14
At the Stelling
let him go back and bring John down.
"We'll get him," the Super say. "He knows it. He knows he doesn't stand a chance."
But him voice can't reach John to tell him that, and when them try again one man come back with him big toe flat and bloody in the police boot. When I go out, though, and walk along the bank to the stelling and lay out the bodies decent and cover them with canvas from the launch, it could have been an empty house up there on the bluff.
Another hour pass and the police begin to fret, and I know say that them is going to try once more. I want to tell them don't go, but them is police and police don't like hear other men talk.
And is then, as we wait, that we hear a next engine, an outboard, and round the bend come a Survey boat, and long before it draw up beside the overhang, my eye know Mister Hamilton as him sit straight and calm in the bows.
"Dunnie, you old fool," him say and hold me by the shoulders. "Why didn't you stop it? D'you mean to say you couldn't see it coming?"
Him smile to show me that the words is to hide sorrow. Him is the same Mister Hamilton. Dress off in the white shirt and white stocking him always wear, with the big linen handkerchief spread upon him head under the hat and hanging down the neck back to guard him from sun.
"I came as soon as I could," him say to the Super. "As soon as the police in Zuyder rang Survey and told us what you had 'phoned through.
You can see the Super is glad to have one of him own sort to talk with. More glad, though, because it is Mister Hamilton and Mister Hamilton's spirit make all trouble seem less.
"We might have to bomb him out," Super say. "I've never seen a man shoot like that. He must be a devil. Do you think he's sane, Hamilton?"
Mister Hamilton give a little smile that is not a smile.
"He's sane now," he say. "If he wasn't he'd have blown yout head off."
"What's he going to do?" Super ask.
Mister Hamilton lift him shoulder and shake him head. Then him go up to the cabin top and jump on the bank and walk to the stelling. Not a sign from the house.
I follow him and move the canvas from all the staring dead faces and him look and look and pass him hand, tired and slow, across him face.


John Hearne
15
"How did it go, Dunnie?" him ask. I tell him.
"You couldn't have stopped him?"
"No," I say. "Him did have pride to testotc. Who could have stop that? You, maybe, Mister Hamilton. But I doubt me if even you." "All right," him say. "All right." Him turn and start to walk to the house.
"Come back, man," Super shout from where him lie in the grass on the bank. Mister Hamilton just walk on regular and gentle.
John's first bullet open a white wound in the boards by Mistet Hamilton's left foot. The next one do the same by the right. Him nevet look ot pause; even him back, as I watch, don't stiffen. The third shot strike eafth before him and kick dirt onto him shoe.
"John!" him call, and Mister Hamilton have a voice like a howler monkey when him want. "John, if you make a ricochet and kill me, I'm going to come up there and break your--ing neck."
Then I know say how this Mistet Hamilton is the same Mister Hamilton that left we.
Him walk on, easy and slow, up the path, up the steps, and into the house.
I sit by the dead and wait.
Little bit pass and Mister Hamilton come back. Him is alone, with a basket in him hand. Him face still. Like the face of a mountain lake, back in the Interior, where you feel but can't see the current and the fullness of the water below.
"Shirley," him call to the Supet, "bring the launch up to the stelling. You'll be more comfortable hete than where you are. It's quite safe. He won't shoot if you don't rush him."
I look into the basket him bring down from the house. It full of well-cooked labba. Enough there to feed five times the men that begin to gather on the stelling.
The Super look into the basket also, and I see a great bewilderment come into his face.
"Good God!" him say. "What's all this? What's he doing?"
"Dunnie," Mistet Hamilton say to me. "There's a bottle of rum in my boat. And some bread and a packet of butter. Bring them over for me,


16
At the Stelling
will you? Go on," him tell Super. "Have some. John thought you might be getting hungry."
Him draw up the deck-chair in which Mister Cockburn did die. 1 go to the Survey boat and fetch out the rum and the bread and the butter. The butter wrap into grease paper and sink in a closed billy pot of water to keep it from the sun. I bring knife, also, and a plate and a mug for Mister Hamilton, and a billyful of river water for put into the rum. When everything come, him cut bread and butter it and pour rum for Super and himself, and take a leg of labba. When him chew the food, him eat like John. The jaws of him mouth move sideways and not a crumb drop to waste. The rest of we watch him and Super, and then we cut into the labba too, and pour liquor from the bottle. The tarpaulin stretch above we and the tall day is beginning to die ovet the western savannah.
"Why did he do it?" Super say and look at the eight dead lay out undet the canvas. "I don't understand it, Hamilton. Christ He must be mad."
Him lean over beside Mister Hamilton and cut another piece of labba from the basket.
"What does he think he can do?" him ask again. "If he doesn't come down I'm going to send down river for grenades. We'll have to get him out somehow."
Mister Hamilton sit and eat and say nothing. .Him signal to me and I pass him the bottle. Not much left into it, for we all take a drink. Mister Hamilton tilt out the last drop and I take the billy and go to the stelling edge and draw a little water for Mister Hamilton and bring it back. Him draw the drink and put the mug beside him. Then him step from under the tarpaulin and fling the empty bottle high over Catacuma water. And as the bottle turn and flash against the dying sun, I see it fall apart in the middle and broken glass falling like raindrops as John's bullet strike.
We all watch and wait, fot now the whole world stand still and wait with we. Only the watet make soft music round the stelling.
Then from up the house there is the sound of one shot. It come to us sudden and short and distant, as if something close it round.
"All right," Mister Hamilton say to the Supet. "You better go and bring him down now."


GOOD BROWN EARTH
LESLIE ROBERTS
Our village is on a hill and it is three miles from the bay where the waves wash the shore in a noisy, purposeful way and one is reminded that it does no good to be a lazybones. Most of us villagers like this place whete we belong and many tty to be industrious. It does something to most of the young ones when they hear Old Tom bragging about how much work he could and did do, in a day, when he was young. It is like hearing a gambler say how easy it is to win. One gets the feeling that if
one wotks his hardest good luck will come his way.
But Old Tom hardly seem to think he has been particularly lucky. He is called Old Tom because he likes to call himself The Old One, but we do not really think of him as being old. He has a well-knit body of medium built and he walks with a slightly shuffling gait which is natural and due to no physical defect. Those who knew Old Tom's father will tell you that he walked just the same way. Old Tom is about as straight as a young man although his hair vies for whiteness with the white-washed walls of his house. He is not particulatly skilled in any way such as Willie While who is the best fiddler we know or Ackman Skully who sculptuted a marvellous likeness of the devil. But he is as popular as any other worthy of the village.
Old Tom's cottage, a plain oblong structure, stands on a sort of moundlike rise above the road. From the house there is a lovely open view of the river below the road. The river fits into its bed like an infant in a fourposter, the compatatively wide water course comes near to being fully occupied only when the river is in spate. Old Tom knows the contours of the rocks at the side of the stream about as well as he knows the lines in his hands. This place was always home for him. He played by the sides of the stream when a boy and even nowadays he can be seen fishing in the river sometimes when the mood moves him to do so.
It is well known that he inherited a portion of his land from his father and that as he prospered from his farming he acquired adjoining land, adding to that he already had. There are as many stories of his thrift as


18
Good Brown Earth
there are stories of his industry. But he is human enough, he has his little faults and failings like the rest of us. His wife, Ma Sanny, is a little deaf in one ear now but she is a very cheerful soul and in some ways she is like Old Tom.
When she was young she had worked harder than most women. Ma Sanny had had opportunities to marry outside of the village and be other than the wife of a farmer who had to work hard to make a living. But this was the life she chose. She loves to see plants and animals grow and to gather the fruits although her years of going to market are over. She likes to know that Old Tom is at wotk in a field even if she is not thete beside him. I always feel that in some subtle way their intense love of animals and plants do something to their charactet and helps to make them lovable.
The couple had not been as plenteously blessed with children as they would have liked. They had only one child, a son called Larry.
When Larry was fifteen years old and Old Tom was having his best success Larry went away to continue his schooling in the metropolis. In time, Larry became a clerk. Then he married and his wife bore him a son. But before he was thirty-five Larry's wife had become a widow. Larry had died somewhat suddenly.
Old Tom and Ma Sanny took the loss gamely and the young widow didn't take long to find herself another mate.
Larry's son would come at times to visit and stay a few days with his grandfathet and his grandmother. Old Tom and Ma Sanny were frankly proud of their grandson. Nigel was a bright, handsome boy.
"But he will never love the village here; he was born in the city and there he will belong," Old Tom once remarked.
A drought came. It gripped the land with malignant intensity. It seemed as if the drought would never break. During the drought, a noticeable change came over Old Tom. The jovial man had become taciturn and moody. Like the grass he seemed to be withering away. Well, of course, almost everyone had become less cheetful as the drought lengthened. But this was not the most frightful drought Old Tom had experienced, and at other times of drought he had been the one to coax


Leslie Roberts
19
courage into othet farmers and he would do whatevet he possibly could to keep up their spirits, much as if he felt that was a duty.
Ma Sanny would offer no clue regarding the change that had come ovet Old Tom. If you asked het if he was ill she would say, "I don't know", in her non-committal way and you would wonder if he was really ill and she knew it but had no mind to disclose the nature of the malady.
But she was not unconcerned. She was secretly worried about Old Tom. She could not be cheetful when he was not contented.
A woman of the village had said pointedly to Ma Sanny that she could not suppose it was just the drought that was the cause of the change in Old Tom, for he wasn't one of the poorest men in the neighbourhood. She added, "It would be a long drought your Tom couldn't see his way through. And if you was a young gal, Sanny, I would ha' fancy dat what eatin' Tom's spirits is a belief dat you hav' another lover an' dat you not all for he."
Alfred Tucker, another farmer, is also a cobbler and a professed Christian, with perhaps, too much of an inclination to be prophetic. His prophesies had invariably proved false. Nevertheless, several of the villagers were inclined to believe his allegation that Old Tom was losing his mind.
The mid-summer holidays had come and Ma Sanny thought up something. Quite a scheming one she can be, in a lovable way. Her idea was to write to Nigel and ask him to come and spend a week or two with her and Old Tom during the time school would be closed.
Nigel came and for a day or two Old Tom tried to raise himself out of his depression. But the reticence came back again. Again he was avoiding company and looking like one who despaired. And time and again Ma Sanny caught him looking at the boy askance with furrowed brow. It was a look she could not fathom.
Another dawn and the sun threw shafts of colour and light on huge packets of fleecy clouds. "Look, Grand-Pa, look at the clouds gathering," the boy yelled excitedly. Rain will come, rain will come, soon!"
Old Tom uttered a quiet laugh. "The rains will matter to you, Nigel?" he asked sheepishly.
"Really it will, really it will, Gtand-Pa", the boy answeted, "I do want


20
Good Brown Earth
to see the trees and the fields come green and thriving again. Look at the apple tree how it seems to be crying for thitst. I would like to see the cows not looking so puny and I would like to see mote water in the river."
"Old Tom laughed again, now less quietly and with obvious mirth. Then Old Tom was grinning thoughtfully and the boy could count his Gtand-Pa's remaining tobacco-stained teeth. After a while Old Tom said, "I am glad you think of that; I did not know you cared."
"Our land here is good," Nigel was saying, "I know other parts of the country and nowhere else the trees and fields are more lovely when the good brown earth is not thirsty for rain".
Turning to his grandmother, the boy said, "You know what I think, Ma Sanny? I believe God chose the best colour for the trees when He made them green."
And Old Tom nodded approvingly.
That was when the change came. From then Old Tom was again his usual cheetful and vigorous self. After breakfast he worked, plowing a field, making the earth loose for the rain that would come.
In the evening Old Tom and Ma Sanny were alone.
"Larry come back," he said.
But you remember, now, that Larry was the son who had died. "Yes, we may say he come back," she replied. They understood each other.
Rain was falling when night fell.
Naturally, at first folks took it for granted that aftet all it had been just the vicious dry spell that had made Old Tom taciturn and moody. But when Ma Sanny heard them saying that now that the drought had ended Old Tom was looking younger each day, she said, "I wonder how much good it would do to a fiddler if he lay abed dying and knew that his fiddle was still quite good but knew, too, that no one would care to play it when he would be gone. Nigel loves the land it will be his one day."


GRANNIE BELL
ULRIC SIMMONDS
I will never forget the night Grannie Bell died. It seemed to me then that a link with the past had been cut. It was somewhat strange how this legendary figure of our youthful days had so affected us children that with the passing of the years it had never entered our minds that Grannie Bell would die.
The first time I remember seeing Grannie Bell was in 1926 when I was taken to Trelawny. I was young then, barely six, and my sisters and brothers were only slightly older.
And there was Grannie Bell. She was a big woman, big and rawboned, with a broad, flat nose and the widest mouth I have ever seen on a woman's face. She didn't have many teeth and het wrinkles made her black face appear like a shrivelled star-apple.
If we thought her strange, if we were fascinated by the bright-coloured 'kerchief she wore continuously around her head, we were even more fascinated when Mammie told us that Grannie Bell was more than one hundred and fifteen years old !
"Why, then, she must have been a slave !" my eldest brother exclaimed, and I can still remember every one of us children opening our eyes wide and taking sly peeps at Grannie Bell as she nodded quietly in the comer.
I went closet to her to take a good look. I wanted really to tealize what one hundred and fifteen years old was like. She was nodding in short jerky fashion. Her lips were open and I heard her mumbling in a sort of sleepy sing-song fashion. The words I finally made out are among the things about her that I shall never forget.
"The yeat ob Jubilee is come ."
She gave a sudden snore, a sudden jerk, and I scampered away rabbit-fashion. She opened her eyes and smiled at us, and ftom that moment we children lost our fear of Grannie Bell.
We hardly left her alone after that. We would sutround her, sit on the arms of her chair, sit in het lap, stare up at her, surprised to find that


22
Grannie Bell
one so old could be so strong, could see so well, could laugh so loudly, could move about so heartily.
And she told us stories. Oh such wonderful stories. Of days in cane-fields. Of slaves. Of rolling calves, and debbil-ghosts. She knew everyone in Falmouth Barrett Town, she called it and she knew to which slave owner their parents had belonged.
But it is about the night she died that I am to tell. This happened
some five years after we first came to know Grannie Bell, and she must have been over 120 years old then.
She had been dying all day. At least, that's what we children heard the old people talking.
All the family seemed to have been gathered in the little home; every now and again I would creep into the room among the grown-ups and unseen and unheard, take sly peeps at Grannie Bell and listen to her mumblings as she lay there on the bed on which she was spending the last moments of her life.
The sun had long since fallen below the horizon when she finally caught sight of me. She called me to her. I had always been her favourite. "Little man," she used to call me.
Het voice was weak, extremely weak. It sounded like the rustle of slight bteezes along dried, fallen leaves in a wood. But you could heat it gathering strength like when you hear rain rushing down from the mountains; and somehow in a strange far-away manner, while the light from the old oil-lamp threw flickering ghosts of shadows against the walls, I seemed to hear the creak of ox-carts, the curses of book-keepers, the grunts of black people bawling, Lawd Lawd Lawd in unison with the crack of whiplash, the sound of mournful voices singing mournful songs.
A shiver raced up and down my body, and now that I am older I wonder if it was racial memory rising up to my mind that made me heat these things, or if it was the look I saw in the dying eyes of my great-grandmother.
In those eyes that were glazed with death was a look that btought


Ulric Simmonds
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cold, clutching fear to my eleven-year-old heart. They seemed to be looking backward, backwatd, backward into faraway days, into awful fataway days. I began to cry.
Grannie Bell seemed to gather strength in telation to the volume of my weeping. She raised herself on the crook of an arm and placed the other on my bowed head.
"No cry, little man," she said, her voice in a hoarse, croaking whisper. "No cry." It was like the rattle of a crow-picked skeleton in a dark cotton tree. "No cty, little man. De days ob crying am over. De days ob freedom am here."
But I continued to cry, and I know now that the tears will not stop, and somehow I will always be crying in my heart, for I had caught a glimpse of something I had never known before.
They tried to "hush!" me.
Grannie Bell turned the fierce light of her eyes on them.
"No hush him 'tall if 'im wan' fe cty!" It was queer how she was all on my side of a sudden. "Eberybody ob fe cry sometime."
And while hei hand still lay trembling on my bowed head, she began to talk in the mannet in which I had always known her to talk. And while she talked my tears dried, and I opened my eyes and followed the movements of het toothless mouth as she spoke in her high-cracked voice.
I could hear the keening of the wind in the high trees and the rustle of the dried leaves about the house. And deep, deep down in my consciousness there was the crack of whiplash, the creak of ox-carts, the sound of mournful voices singing mournful songs, the deep familiar refrain of black people bawling, "Lawd Lawd Lawd !"
"I used to cry," Grannie Bell said. "Deep, deep down in ma heart, I used to cry. Sometimes I feel like my belly was a-buss."
Het voice trailed off, and she looked as if she was about to cry again, while the wind kept keening in the high trees, and the dried leaves kept rustling against the shingles on the roof. But she didn't cry. And suddenly I knew that Grannie would cry no more, for she had used up all her tears.


2-i
Grannie Bell
She must have lost the trend of her thoughts, for she lapsed into a shrill falsetto.
"Thirty-nine lashes. Black people getting thirty-nine lashes. Thirty-nine lashes. Black people getting thirty-nine lashes. One ah two ... ah ... three ah four ah five ... ah ... six ... ah .. .
seven ah .. eight.. ah nine Jesus Black and red. Red blood a-turning rivers on black people's skin. Red blood making patterns on black people's skin."
I shivered. I could feel my heart going thump, thump, thump against the bones of my chest; and in my head I could hear the sound of mournful voices singing mournful songs, the creak of wagon wheels, the lash of whips, and black people's voices bawling, Lawd Lawd Lawd !
Grannie Bell's voice grew stronger. "Yes, little man, everybody ob fe cry some time, but nobody eber cry like we black people. Nobody but we black people will eber know how eye water can fall behind the eyes, how screams can scream within de heart. Nobody, yu heat me, little man? Nobody 'tall."
She stopped speaking and nobody else spoke.
A light, thin drizzle raced out from the far dark, tripped lightly over the roof and was gone. Far away a dog howled. Quite near by there was the croak of a frog in a tree.
Grannie Bell's eyes went to the window, and our eyes all followed hers. Peenie-wallies were flirting in the datk of the night, theit flashing fires like slave-lights bobbing in a dark canefield, like the lights of white folks seeking a hiding slave, like cane fires burning on a riot night.
When she looked at us again, the peenie-wallies were in her eyes.
"Ah goin' tell yu a story, little man," she said. "I goin' tell yu a stoty that is as true as de Lord, a story of what happened jus' before that man Knibb done fteed we black people. It happen one dark o'night in this veiy town on Marse Barrett's land. De oberseer, a big red-faced Scotchman, him was bexed because the freedom was a-come. Him didn't want it fe come. Him was tearing bex, that man, tearing bex Me 'member him wid him cane-trash mustache and him big red-face gettin' redder and redder, like when cane-fire bun strong 'gainst big bteeze. And de more


Ulric Simmonds
is
fe him face get red, de more him cuss black people. De men not de wimen, fot him like de big strapping black gal dem. Me 'member the night it happened, when him come a house-slave quarters a look fe a big black gal whey catch him eye. Lawd Me wi neber feget dat night, little man, neber, neber, neber. De gal no like him 'tall. She got her husban', a tall spanking bwoy, with de light ob heaven in him eyes. ."
Her voice trailed off again, and the far-away look returned. She seemed to be looking on vast spaces and far distances, on an unending spiral of memories, bitter sweet with sing song voices and the harsh, acrid sound of whiplash under a burning sun.
When she spoke again it was in a softer voice, a sort of whispering monotone, like the light patter of a heavy drizzle on shingled roofs or the playful rush of a summer-day's breeze through leafy plantation fields.
"De light ob heaven in him eyes," she repeated, and then she roused herself. "Like I tell yu, little man, dis oberseer come looking fer dis black gal and, she didn't like him 'tall, and she bawled and lick him and him bex.
"Let me go, Busha," she cry out, "Let me go," and fe het husban' hear her a scream and come running come lick down Busha. When dat red face man pick himself up a dutty, him reddet than Poinsettia rose in June. Him cuss somethin' awful, an' de more him cuss, de more him get bex. Well wha' happen? Him decide fe punish de gal and fe her husban'. 'No nigger mustn't lick white man,' him roar, and order de gal fe strip naked an' lash to wagon wheel. Den him otder fe her husban' fe gib de thirty-nine lashes."
Grannie Bell stopped speaking again, and she closed her eyes and the peenie-wallies were gone. In their place was the wrinkled face of an old, old woman, looking like a shrivelled star-apple.
I could hear the bteathing of my mother. I could hear the soft weeping of my aunt, and I could hear the testless shuffles of Brother Jim and Sister Kate, and the keening of the wind in the tall trees, the rustle of dried leaves around the house, while the oil lamp threw flickering black


26
Grannie Bell
shadows against the walls, shadows that played hopscotch with each
other, and leap-frog, and hide-and-seek.
She re-opened her eyes so suddenly that it took us all by surprise, and
I saw another of the things about Grannie Bell that I shall always remember as long as I live, so long as I have memories. The deepest fifes
burned in those neaf-dead eyes. The most mournful things were in those neaf-dead eyes. I have nevef seen eyes that looked just that way since, and I can't describe it, but fof always I'll remember it.
When she spoke again, her voice was weaker, and we had to bend low to catch het words.
"Dey did it, little man. Dey did it. Dey didn't want to, but dey did it. The oberseer ha' two bookkeepers wid him, and dey ha' big long guns wid dem. Dey did it, sonny, dey did it. While the ted face Scotchman counted slowly up to thirty-nine, de gal's husban', with the guns a point pon him, him beat him naked wife whey dem tie her to de wagon wheel, while she cry an' she twist, an' she wondet if de baby in het belly would a die. An' all de while de beatin' went on, dey ha' wood-torch dey a light up de place, an' de black people a look on an' a moan'. ooh-a .. ooh-a ooh-a .."
"When de beatin' all finish, an' de gal look as if she dead, de white
people dem mek dem rub saltpetre in de blood 'pon her body, but she
didn't cry no more. She near dead. She no know whey happen den, but later dem tell her, when she so better she could talk an' understan'. Dey
tell her say she hustfan', dat tall spanking black bwoy, begin cry, an' den
him must a get mad, for him tek up a cutlass whey lie nearby, an' him mek one spring, one chop, so cut off de Busha head. Den him run like
de debbil back o'him fe de woods. Dem no fin him 'till nex' day him a hang by him own rope tie by him own han' from a cotton-wood tree."
Grannie Bell lay back on the bed and began to breathe as if het strength was spent. But only for a while. She stared out of the dark window, drew back her eyes inside the toom, looked around at those who were standing by her dying bed, and quite suddenly she turned herself over on her face, lifted up her clothes above her buttocks, and with a quiver in


Ulric Simmonds
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her-shrill voice, said: "Dere am de marks o' that night o' beating Dere am de marks !"
I stared with my eleven-yeat-old eyes at the angry weals that a lifetime of living could not erase, and as I stared I felt the blood welling up to my head, and a fierce awful beating began to beat at my ear drums.
Grannie Bell was now lying on her back again, but she was weak. Het strength was spent. Her voice was now the rustle of coconut cakes against coarse brown paper.
"It was me, little man. It was me dat cried dat night, just a day before de night o' freedom. It was me own spanking husban' who hang himself a look fo' de freedom him neber get before, just a day before de black people dem all a go a Baptist Church fe listen Knibb, de parson man, a tell dem dat we people am free. I cry that night little man, but I nebet cry again 'tall. I neber cry again. Fo', little man, I know from dat night dat we black people neber ha' need fo' dat day ob freedom 'tall._ We always free, little man. We always free. Is dem people dat mek we husban' dem beat we dat wasn't free. Is dem people, little man, no' we. We am free fe cry. We am free fe cry. We am free fe laugh. We am free fe sing."
The last smile I ever saw on Grannie Bell's face made its feeble appearance and she began to sing, a very thin voice of song: "De day ob Jubilee is come." And while she sang she died.
But the song continued in my head like a tecotd that would not stop.
While the others cried, I could not cry. I could only stare out of the windows at the peenie-wallies flirting in the dark, like cane fires burning in the night, and I could heat the keening of the wind in the high trees, and the rustle of dried leaves around the house, and somewhete inside my consciousness, there was the creak of ox carts, the ctack of whiplash, the sound of black people's voices saying, Lawd Lawd Lawd !
And above all, like a flash of lightning, like the butst of a rocket, was the sound of a single word "Freedom."


LOST IN THE SHUFFLE
MONICA MARSH
It was one of those gtay, foggy November mornings that Moygula appeared on our doorstep. Newly atrived from West Africa, the weather must have been as great a trial to him as it was to us Jamaicans but he radiated such good cheer! Eyes all lit up with friendly, easy laughter.
When Moygula arrived in London that morning, he had contacted Tom, the only other African he knew in London, a suave, sophisticated, Nigerian of mixed Aftican and European parentage who occupied a bedsitter in the flat above outs. Tom wasn't at all happy at putting up Moygula when he scornfully described as an ignorant African, an expression, I remember, that amused me out of all proportion coming as it did from a fellow African.
After making it quite clear that Moygula was not a friend of his, Tom agreed that he could come and bunk with him. Tom was planning to leave shortly for the United States and even said most graciously fot him that Moygula could perhaps take over the bedsitter if my West Indian friend Kathryn, who owned the flat and who also lived there, had no objections.
Everything about Moygula intrigued me. His name for instance an impressive, almost guttural Moy-gu-la, followed by James. I never tired of saying it. He called me Monicah and I found myself making opportunities for him to say it. In fact, I now spent neatly all my spare time upstairs hearing all about Moygula's latest social blunders from an irate and voluble Tom who was frequently stopped in mid-speech by my gentle and understanding friend Kathryn. But most of all, I enjoyed talking to Moygula, his face beaming like the sun. In those eatly days, it seemed to me that he was always smiling.
Moygula intrigued me because he was the first real African that I had met. Tom I never thought of as African. He looked like a West Indian and behaved like one and his frequent disparaging remarks about Moygula only served to emphasize his difference. Tom had grown up in Lagos, was a city man in fact. Moygula had been there twice in his life, living in a small native village 400 miles away.


Monica Marsh
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Moygula was so anxious to please and be liked! He never made an original remark and agreed enthusiastically with whatever sentiments were being expressed, his eyes opening and closing rapidly the while. To please Kathryn, who was so proud of him, Moygula started going to Mass every Sunday and on so many occasions that I lost count, I would heat his voice as he ran down the stairs: "Just going to Mass, Kathryn." Inevitably, Tom took ruthless advantage of this willingness to please and in no time at all, Moygula was saddled with all the domestic chotes, cleaning the flat, cooking, making innumerable trips to the grocery, the butcher, the tobacconist. Each time he ran past my door, he would cheerfully call out: "Just going to the corner, Monicah." It was as if he needed our approval of his every action.
Looking back now, I realize that at that time, I saw Moygula as a primitive African, devoid of any sort of culture, that I was judging him by Western standards. The truth of course being that his way of life, incorporating an ancient, unadulterated culture, was too alien for me to understand it. I can now appreciate the reason for Tom's furious out-butsts at Moygula's social lapses. Having exchanged this pure African culture for a Westernized one, any reminder constituted a thteat to Tom, an outrage, against which he had to protect himself at all costs. Two incidents in particular serve to illustrate this. Moygula and Tom shared the bathroom with Kathryn and, at Kathryn's stattled request, Tom furiously and at some length pointed out to Moygula that this was not his village and that one was expected to pull the chain before leaving the bathroom. He didn't get the message and Kathryn and I undertook to enlighten him. I'll nevet forget how pained he looked as he explained that he was only trying to "conserve" water a great necessity at home where one had to carry water for miles on foot.
Then there was the famous farewell party that Tom gave. He was about to leave for America to take up a scholatship in Drama. Tom was a very clever, versatile chap who had originally come to England to study Law but that's another story. He had, however, put a lot of effort into making the patty a success, and among his guests were Winnifred Atwell, two visiting American celebrities and a playwright lately "discovered" whose current play was making headlines in London's West End. Kathryn


30
Lost in the Shuffle
and I were hostesses, and were kept vety busy seeing that evetyone was fed and happy. Someone had persuaded a girl to sing a West Indian who was currently appearing in a cabaret show and who had just happened to bring her guitat along. As she staffed to sing, Tom beckoned to me from the doorway. I took one look at his face and went quickly over to him. Speech failed him. He could only point to where Moygula sat, erect in a straight chair in the passageway, just outside the room where the guests were assembled, draped in an enormous white towel while a fellow African, wielding a shining pair of shears, worked solemnly and with great concentration on Moygula's head .
Tom left for America and Moygula was in sole possession of the bedsitter. He seemed to gain in self-confidence. His once diffident: "Just going to the corner, Monicah" now told me that here was a man who knew where he was going.
He began to entertain. I was invited to tea on several occasions along with some African friends he had acquired. We all behaved very correctly and passed the cake and sandwiches in approved mid-Victorian manner. Moygula was becoming westernized.
Then he acquired a cheque book and his joy was complete. This was the open sesame to all his desires. This was also the beginning of his troubles. Fot Moygula dispensed with ready money and wrote cheques with great rapidity, sevetal times a day, with no provocation, and on evety imaginable occasion. He paid his tent by cheque; he paid his school fees by cheque; he paid the grocer by cheque; he paid but with great difficulty for four records by a cheque which had to be ceitified by his bank. He reached the limit the day I arrived in time to rescue him from the wrath of a London cab-driver who was being offered a cheque for eight shillings for the fare. Of course the inevitable end was in sight. Cheques written at such a rate require an adding machine to keep a proper balance between expenditute and income. Moygula hadn't an adding machine. Fottunately for him, the first one that bounced was to Kathryn for his rent. He appealed so amazed and puzzled that Kathryn readily forgave him. He wrote another. That bounced also, but by this time,


Monica Marsh
31
others were coming back and Moygula was in trouble with his bank. I could never understand how anyone who was studying accountancy as part of his course could get himself into such a hopeless financial tangle. Some people said that Moygula wasn't half as dumb as we thought and that this was all an act to give us this impression. But he appeared so naive and so bewildered that I could nevet bring myself to believe him capable of this duplicity.
By now, Moygula's once cheerful face began to wear a worried, serious expression and it was obviously an effort for him to be gay. He was not doing well in his studies. Had just failed an exam fot the second time in fact and, coupled with his financial difficulties, this was very serious indeed. Moygula, let's face it, was not very bright. I often wondeted how he ever got admitted to the Polytechnic School at all. His ultimate aim was to study Law, but at this stage he was doing English, Latin and a specialized accountancy course which looked to me like simple bookkeeping. All these subjects were more than he could cope with.
One evening, I went upstairs to see him and found him very glum indeed. "You know, Monicah", he said to me, "I will never go back home unless I get through my exams. I am the first from home who they sent to England to study. They were so proud of me. Gave me presents and money ... I told them then, I said: 'You will never be ashamed of me.' I must remain here until I get through." In the sudden silence, I shivered as I thought of all the long, cold winters facing Moygula.
Later, he said something else. "You know, Monicah, you people from the West Indies, I don't undetstand you. I don't think you understand me either. You like me yes, but not as a friend. Why is this? At home I am Moygula James. My grandfathet is a Paramount Chief. Some day I may be one too." I had tead a book lent me some months before by Tom, called Trial by Saswood, written by an American who had spent a great deal of time in Africa. Certain wotds from the book spoken by an African came back to me now: "To be a Chief is a wondetful thing indeed, but who so great as a Patamount Chief?" For the first time, I teally looked behind the smiling mask at the powerful, proud tilt of the


32
Lost in the Shuffle
head and for the fitst time, in his presence, I didn't feel like laughing.
I left England shortly after. I learned from Kathryn that Moygula had moved to cheaper quarters and that he had taken a job and was going to school at night instead of full time.
This summer, three years later, I returned to England just in time to hear that Moygula had had a sudden seizure at his workplace and had been rushed to hospital. Kathryn, who had kept in touch with him, went with me for news, to the flat which he shared with two other Africans. We learned that Moygula had died the day before. They insisted that we come to the morgue with them to pay our last respects apparently an accepted custom and, reluctantly, we went. There, on a cold marble slab, I took my last look at Moygula, the man who had travelled so far to assimilate Western culture and had succumbed in the effort.


MADAM
R. L. C. AARONS
"Madam."
That was her name, she said. Just that and nothing more.
Clara Harmsworth and her husband stood looking down upon the miserable little bundle of wet rags huddled on their front verandah and who in response to their enquiries as to her name and what she wanted would give no other answer but "Madam."
"Madam?" she repeated, bending over the child and trying to rouse her. "That isn't a name. Surely you must have some other. Come tell us who you are and what you want."
In reply the child began to whimper afresh and to cower further away among the shadows of the verandah.
Mrs. Harmsworth stood and faced her husband with a gesture of resignation.
"I'm aftaid I can do nothing, Jim," she said. "You'd bettet try."
Jim Harmswotth removed his pipe from his mouth and regarded the wet bundle before him critically. Unlike his wife who was city bred, he had spent his boyhood in the country and knew the people and their ways.
"If I were you," he told her after a little, "I wouldn't bother about the name. In fact it's just the sort of thing she's likely to be called. A sort of pet name. I'll even bet she has a sister named 'Princess' or something just as inappropriate."
"That might be so for all } care," his wife assented a trifle impatiently, "but in the meanwhile what are we to do with her?" She indicated with a movement of her hand the state of the weather outside. It had been raining heavily earlier in the night and even now it was still drizzling slightly. An inky darkness hemmed them in on all sides. From nearby ttee tops came the harsh discordant croaking of innumerable toads.
Mr. Hatmsworth shrugged his shoulders.
"A bit awkward, yes," he admitted. Then as if struck by a sudden thought added, "suppose we feed it. Probably the poor thing is hungry. 'Twill talk after that I'm. sure."


34
Madam
Between them they lifted the child to its feet and led her across the wide polished floor of the dining room. Balancing herself nervously on the edge of a mahogany chair while Mrs. Harmsworth set before her bread, cheese, cold beef and some hot cocoa, they had opportunity to observe their guest the night had brought.
She was black as coal and probably not more than nine or ten years of age. Her thin body was obviously underfed and the legs that twined around the bars of rhe chair were long and spidery. They were cut and bruised in many places. A tear-stained face entirely in keeping'with the body surmounted the whole, lighted up by a pair of unnaturally large eyes which gave her a curiously solemn and aged appearance. For clothes she wore a nondescript sort of dress which might have been cut down to fit her or just as likely built up out of smaller ones. There was no telling. Hat she had none.
For some minutes she sat in silence and ate ravenously. "Finished?" Mrs. Harmsworth asked as she bolted the last bit of bread and looked nervously around.
"Yes, ma'am," she replied in a peculiarly tearful singrsong. "Had enough? Sure?" "Yes, ma'am."
Again the suggestion of teats. She'd begin crying again if they weren't careful. Mrs. Harmsworth leaned across the table and patted her reassuringly.
"Come, don't be frightened," she said. "Nobody's going to hurt you. Now do you think you can tell us about it? I mean who you arc and how you came to be outside there looking all so miserable?"
At first the child seemed disinclined to answet the question. She looked
wide-eyed and silent from one to the other as though trying to decide from which of the two she could expect more protection. Then at last between sobs it came out.
It appeared that she was the eldest of five childten, the youngest being not mote than a year old. Over this brood of brothers and sisters it was her duty to watch and see that no harm befell during theif mother's ab-


R. L. C. Aarons
35
sence. Their mother, who worked out as a domestic servant, often left them at times with scarcely any food, and they had to manage as best they could until her return in the evenings.
On this patticular evening, their mother had been much later than usual and as all the smaller children were crying for hunger she had gone into a box where she knew her mother had put away a few bits of silvet and had taken a threepence to buy some bread.
As ill luck would have it the threepence dropped from her and got lost while on her way to the shop and her mother when she got home wouldn't believe her story. Said she had stolen it. Moteover had flown into a terrible rage and called her a thief; had beaten her dreadfully and told her that she didn't want to see her again and finally had driven her away hungry as she was. Not knowing where to go she had wandered around the village and when the rain came had crept on their verandah to shelter.
"And," she wound up piteously, looking up to them, "Ah doan't know where to go."
Mrs. Harmsworth called the child to her and put an arm prorectively around her.
"Never mind about that, Madam," she said. "We aren't going to turn you out tonight. You'll sleep here and in the morning we'll see if we can find your mother. What say you to that?"
"De Lawd will bless you," she brought out unexpectedly and with all the mature gravity of one who, within the space of ten years had already experienced most of the major tragedies of life.
Benefited by a hearty meal and a good night's rest, Madam appeared to better advantage in the morning light. Her face still showed thin and wan, but it had lost the pinched expression of the night before. With good food and care there was no telling how she would improve. Mrs.
Harmsworth thought too that she seemed intelligent and her mind went on to dwell excitedly on a little scheme she had been planning. It was no other than this.
Ever since her husband had bought a property in the country and they


36
Madam
had come here to live, she had wanted to get some little girl who in return for her board and keep would make herself generally useful in the home. What used to be called 'a school girl'. None of those she had seen had so far taken het fancy, then just as if heaven sent, Madam had turned up. Of course, she realised that nothing could be definitely decided upon until she had seen the child's mother.
She wasn't a bit surprised either when an hour or so later that lady announced herself.
"Mornin', Mrs. Harmsworth," she began without any other preliminary. "Ah 'ear say dat Madam is 'ere."
For a moment or two Mrs. Harmsworth made no reply. Instead she surveyed the newcomer. She saw a surly, barefooted woman in a none-too-clean dress of coarse blue material, wearing a dirty straw hat. She couldn't have been more than about twenty-six years of age, but had none of the mature freshness peculiar to that period of life. 'Brutalized' was the thought that came to Mrs. Harmsworth as she watched the purposely put on insolence with which the woman stared about her as though expecting to see her child's head or feet protruding from some hiding place as in some clumsily performed conjuring trick.
"Yes, Madam is here," Mrs. Harmsworth replied at last with elaborate coolness. "Do you think I'd try to hide her?"
Caught out as it were, the woman's carefully prepared assurance forsook her almost at once. She shifted her feet about uneasily.
"It's not dat ah t'ink you 'ide her, ma'am," she hastened to explain, "but she run 'way last night and dis mornin' ah 'ear say she's 'ere. Dat's all.
"Why did she run away?" pursued Mrs. Harmsworth relentlessly. She was playing her hand for all it was worth.
"Pickney too rude an' tief, missis," was the emphatic reply. "An' when dem want beating you mus' beat dem."
"But surely there is such a thing as over-doing it. I think it's a shame how you flogged her The poor child is all cut up. Women like you ought never to have children. You don't know how to care them."
"When we is poor, missis, an' 'ave plenty of dem, it's hard," Madam's mother replied in surprisingly contrite tones.


R. L. C. Aarons
57
"Then why don't you try and get someone who would take them and look after them fot you?"
The woman hung her head a moment as though abashed, then suddenly raised it and looked at Mrs. Harmsworth.
"Ah tell you what, ma'am, you want take Madam?"
Her lips parted in a netvous smile as she waited for the reply to the daring proposal she had made.
Mrs. Harmsworth looked at her for a moment or two to make sute the woman was in earnest, then quickly nodded her head. "All right, I'll take her."
And that was how Madam came to live with them.
The months went by. Not once during this period did Mrs. Harms-worth ever have cause to tegret the sudden impulse that had caused her to take the child. She proved a perfect marvel. Quick and intelligent beyond het years, she soon made herself indispensable to her mistress. She learned how to sew, to wait at table, to do light household work and she proved just as apt at learning to read and write. Clothed and well fed she was a far different petson to the pinched and hungry Madam they had found on the verandah some months before. She rounded out, became a child again.
Nor in her present prosperity did she forget her mother and younger brothers and sisters. It would have been perfectly understandable if she had now refused to have anything to do with her mother. On the contrary, however, she frequently asked permission to go and see her and many an evening would be seen sneaking off carrying with her some of her own supper she had saved.
Time went by. In a few weeks it would be the annual Sunday School picnic. Mrs. Harmsworth had promised that if she kept on as splendidly as she had begun she would give her a pair of shoes and a new dress to wear for the occasion. Madam had never yet wotn shoes and the glee with which she teceived this announcement was boundless. To be the possessor of a pait of shoes was the highest limit of her ambition. A


38
Madam
dozen times a day she could be seen attentively examining her feet and then all at once she would suddenly hug herself and skip about through sheer joy.
On these occasions Madam who ordinarily was a quiet child would grow expansive and talkative. She would never leave her kind mistress, she said. She would remain with her until she became a big, big woman she opened her arms wide to show how big she would be so that when Mrs. Harmsworth grew old she would be there to take care of her. And many othet such childish nonsense she would talk.
But one evening Mts. Harmsworth noticed that Madam seemed unusually quiet and thoughtful after her visit to her mother. To her question if there was anything wrong, she answered in her shrill treble:
"Nuttin', ma'am."
"Are you quite sure, Madam?" she asked, drawing the child to her and tilting up her chin. "She hasn't been scolding or flogging you, has she?" A look of pain flickered across the child's face. "No, ma'am." "Then what is it?" She wriggled herself free. "Nuttin', ma'am."
One evening about a week later, Mrs. Harmsworth thought she heard the woman's voice at the back gate. Madam had just returned from her usual errand of mercy and her mother had walked home with her. Mrs. Harmsworth was about to move away when she was struck by the menacing tone of the other. She seemed to be threatening the child. She listened, amazed.
She knew now why Madam had been so downcast after her last visit to her mother. The woman was actually proposing that on a stated night the child should contrive to steal some of her mistress's coffee out drying on the barbecue and give it to her. If she refused she would be given a sound beating, besides which, Mrs. Harmsworth would be told that the child was in the habit of stealing coffee and selling it.


R. L. C. Aarons
39
"For," the woman concluded with a brutal chuckle, "she will believe me for she will say dat ah wouldn't tell lie 'pon me own chile."
Mrs. Harmsworth moved away from the window quietly. She hadn't been observed. What a wretch Madam had as a mother She had half a mind to call the child then and there and tell her she had overheard everything and suggest that after this she should have nothing to do with so unnatural a parent. But a sudden impulse restrained her. She was curious to see how the child would act in the face of this little blackmailing scheme. Would she allow her undoubted affection for her mother to outweigh all considerations of honesty and gratitude? Or would she take the harder course? It would be interesting to see.
At times Mrs. Harmsworth would grow suddenly aware that the child too was watching her, furtively it seemed. And then she would call to mind how notoriously ungrateful children were supposed to be. One's own sometimes were, how much more so a little waif picked up so to speak from off the streets.
In other moods, however, she would grow ashamed of her suspicions. Madam was different. It was unthinkable she could ever prove so wicked and ungrateful.
Then on the evening before the long-looked-for picnic, Mrs. Harms-worth in her room writing letters heard a softly uttered call coming from somewhere by the back gate.
"Madam Madam !"
Madam sitting on the dining room floor playing with the cat evidently-heard it too for all sounds of play suddenly ceased. Again the soft call. "Madam Madam !" The child dropped the cat and went out.
Dimming her lamp Mrs. Harmsworth tip-toed quietly to the window and listened.
The woman was there asking in a breathless whisper if she had brought the coffee.
In a surprisingly firm little voice Madam replied that she had not and had no intention of so doing. "What !" the woman choked, taken aback. "You didn't bring it You


40
Madam
really mean to say dat you not bringin' it?" Madam remained silent.
In a sudden fury the woman grabbed hold of the child by the collar of her dress and shook her savagely from side to side.
"Dat will teach you !" she hissed, letting her go. She fell with a little cry of "pain against the iron gate.
The woman stalked away muttering oaths and voicing threats of what she would do on the morrow.
Mrs. Harmsworth watched Madam cross the back yard and return to the house. She heard her lock the dining room door and make her way to the little room at the other end of the passage where she slept, and it seemed to her that Madam took rather a long time to take her things off and get into bed. But she thought nothing of it.
The following morning, the day of the picnic the day Madam had been looking forward to for months broke fine and fair but of Madam there was not a trace. The door of her little room stood wide open, and heaped upon the bed were all the things Mrs. Harmsworth had ever given her: slate, pencil, books, hats, dresses her new pair of shoes. But Madam herself had disappeared completely.
Slowly the realization of what it all meant dawned on Clara Harms-worth. Madam in her own tragic little way had forestalled her mother and decided the issue. She had run away rather than be bullied into stealing from her mistress and benefactress.
Something suspiciously like a sob caught in Clara Harmsworth's throat, fot she knew she would never see Madam again.


POINSETTIA FOR CHRISTMAS
H. V. ORMSBY MARSHALL
Amelia martin glanced uneasily toward the entrance of the restaurant where she worked. Would the incoming crowd ever lessen? Where were so many people coming from she wondered, even although she knew the great size of London? And she was tired now so tired. It was a good thing that when, at length, she could set out fot her home she would not have so long a wait on her 'bus as back home in Jamaica.
Amelia liked the big double-decker 'buses that came along so frequently. Seated on the upper deck of these she had managed to see quite a bit of London since she had come to England a couple of months earlier. She had a fairly long run to her home in Brixton. It was nice to be able to see all the lights and the houses, and the shops that wete now being so elabotately decorated for Christmas. She knew that as the Season advanced the sights would be even more wonderful.
"Hurry along Amelia. That table over there in the far corner needs a waitress. This is no time for day-dreamin' my girl!"
Amelia's boss, a fat, florid woman, whispered this advice in her ear as she passed by on her way to the kitchen from which standpoint she usually kept her hawk's eye on the outside scene. Amelia endeavoured to hurry at these words. Having deposited the contents of the tray that she was carrying on the table she was serving near by, she went across to the one indicated by her boss. At the table sat an elderly lady and gentleman.
"Please Ma'am, what can I do for you?" the girl enquired politely, as she had been instructed always to do. The lady who had been scanning rhe menu card, gazed intently at Amelia for a few moments before she said, "Tell me, my girl, where do you come from?"
"Please Ma'am, I come from Jamaica," Amelia answered.
"From Jamaica! Oh, then it really must be you!"
The lady's ejaculation caused her companion to sit forward with a sut-prised expression in his face.
"My dear, what on earth are you talking about? Who do you think our waitress is?" he enquired of his wife. "John, I am almost cettain that she is the maid who attended out suite


12
Poinsettia for Christmas
at the Atawak when we were in Jamaica last December. Tell me, young woman, am I right? Ate you Amelia? And do you not remember us, Sir John and Lady Cardell?"
Amelia's eyes lighted with recognition. Of course, now she remembered them, though in the confusion around her and in her own perrurbed state of mind she had not done so. Now she said, smiling, "Yes, M'lady. I 'member you well now. Please if you are both well?"
"We are very well indeed, thank you Amelia, thanks to the sunny-Winter that we spent with you last yeat. We should like to be back in your lovely island again now."
"We certainly shall be back next Christmas," Sir John said.
"Where are you living Amelia?" Lady Cardell next asked, making her choice and handing the menu card on to her husband, "I understand that living quarters are very hard to find when you all come across to us from the West Indies."
"Please Ma'am, I live in Brixton," Amelia replied.
"And why did you leave that lovely land of youts to come over here Amelia? You were in a good position at the Atawak."
A shadow, perceptible to Lady Cardell's searching eyes, crossed Amelia's face.
"I did come to the father of me little girl Ma'am. I did do what I did think was the bes' for her."
"Oh! And did you bring your child with you Amelia?" "Not yet Ma'am."
"But you ate with her father?"
The shadow deepened and settled itself in the depths of Amelia's lovely dark eyes.
"No, Ma'am." "Why, Amelia?"
Amelia hesitated perceptibly. Then in a low voice barely audible above the clamour in the restaurant she said, "Because him tek up with a English girl Ma'am."


H. V. Ormsby Marshall
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"You poor girl. But never mind. I am sure that you will soon settle down happily and be able to send for your little girl. If you are ever in need or in trouble Amelia, telephone or write to me here, at the address on this card. This is where we live," Lady Cardell said, handing the girl her card.
Amelia received it graciously and placed it in her pocket. Then she hurried back to her employer at the kitchen door, feeling her sharp eyes bent upon her. Before they left the restaurant Sir John pressed a large tip into Amelia's hand. "We'll be in again before Christmas for some more shopping," he assured her.
But on the day that they did come in Amelia was nowhere to be seen. Lady Cardell made enquiries of the restaurant manageress.
"She's in 'orspital M'lady. Down with the pneumonia, she is."
Lady Cardell sighed. "Poor girl, this is all that she has got for coming over."
On learning which hospital Amelia was in the Cardells went to visit het that afternoon before returning home. Amelia was ovetjoyed to see them. She had been too ill to let them know she explained, but now she was improving. Before they left Lady Cardell spoke to the Matron.
"The girl is to have every care. She must want for nothing. This is my address. Do you think that she will be well enough to leave the hospital before Christmas?"
The Matron showed surprise at the concern of these titled people for one of the dark immigrants, but she replied yes, that she thought so.
"Then please telephone me the moment that I can come and take her out. I shall keep her at my home to recuperate. Will you tell her this for me please?'
Amelia's surprise and thankfulness at this message aided her recovery as nothing else could have at the time. True to their word, Sir John and Lady Cardell arrived at the hospital for her in their car two days before Christmas. The glimpses that she had of London arrayed in its Christmas gear astonished the girl as she sped through the crowded streets. She had never before seen anything so wonderful. The mantle of glistening snow that had fallen only that morning converted the scene into a living Christmas card.


44
Poinsettia for Christmas
Amelia was given a warmed room in the maids' quarters at Dainton Manor, and one of the Cardells' maids was placed in charge of her.
"Now just you rest yourself Amelia," Lady Cardell instructed her before leaving," and tomorrow we'll come to fetch you to show you our great hall decorated for Christmas before our guests arrive."
True to her word Lady Cardell came herself for Amelia. The girl was feeling stronger now and was able to walk down the long corridor slowly, her distinguished hosts on either side of her. At the entrance of the hall a chair had been placed in readiness for her to rest in.
At the doorway Amelia paused, gazing in dismay at a sight that astonished her beyond words. Forming the centrepiece on the huge dining-table under the crystal chandelier were red poinsettia blooms, as fresh and beautiful as if they had just been picked from the garden. Clusters of these lovely Christmas blossoms were in evidence also in many othet parts of the long chamber.
Amelia uttered a low cry at last. "But Ma'am, please how did they reach here?" she questioned eagerly. Lady Cardell laughed in delight.
"We had a florist in Jamaica send them to us by ait Amelia," Lady Cardell explained. "After seeing them in Jamaica last year we felt that we wanted all our friends here to experience the delight we felt in seeing them at this Season. We feel that Christmas will never be Christmas again for us without poinsettia blooms."
Suddenly Amelia knew that as soon as ever she was well enough to travel she must return to the land of the red poinsettia.


RIVERMAN
LLOYD A. CLARKE
If you asked him his name, most likely he wouldn't say: "Gideon Thomas;" that's how he had been christened. Most likely he would answer "Rivetman," just plain: "Riverman." He knew most of the Rio Cobre where it ran through the Gordon Pen area in St. Catherine knew it as you and I know our own backyard.
But then, that part of the river was Riverman's backyard.
His wattle-and-daub hut stood on the high bluff overlooking the valley where the river forked at the spot known as "Two Meetings." Riverman's canes and corns thrived on the fertile slope. Betsy, his dun-coloured cow, grew fat on the lush grass along the riverbank.
Usually, you would find Riverman working in his field. You'd hear him swopping jokes with the village women who washed clothes in the river, spreading them out to dry on the stony islet across from Riverman's field. Ever so often his hearty laugh would boom and swell along the slope; and the ground-doves drowsing in the bushes would rise, scattet-ing in fright.
Often, too, while Betsy contentedly cropped grass, Riverman squatted on the bank, his eyes twinkling at the antics of the naked boys who splashed and swam in the fiver below. After a while, though, he would caution them: "Come out now. You wi' get cramp if you stay in de water too long. Bad if you get cramp in water, ver' bad ." Then the boys would clamber, dripping, up the bank, and listen wide-eyed and open-mouthed while Riverman told them strange tales about the Rio Cobre.
Oh, yes, he was a great one for talking about the river. He could tell you anything you wanted to know about the Rio Cobre. He would, too, if you asked him. .
Perhaps you'd say to him' "Hey, Riverman, I hear you know a lot about the river. Tell me something about 'Gold Table' Hole. They say a gold table comes up there at noon sometimes. Is that true, Riverman?"


16
Riverman
The gleam of white teeth would light up his dark face as he answered: "No, me nevah see no gol' table dere, but me ketch plenty fat mullet in Gol' Table 'Ole. Plenty fish in dat 'Ole; it nevah dry."
If he was in that mood, and the water was low, maybe Riverman'd roam upstream with you. Seeing him plunge his hand into a rocky recess you'd wonder what Riverman was doing. You'd wonder. .until he withdrew his hand, and you saw the fat crayfish squirming in his grasp. And
when he scooped up handful after handful of shiny shrimps from under the slime-coated stones in the shallows, then you'd begin to realise that Riverman really knew the river. Not as you or I know a river.
No. With Riverman it was different. To him the Rio Cobre was alive. It had moods, fickle and unpredictable as a woman's. The river spoke to him, too. .so it seemed to Riverman. What did the river say? What could a river say? Only Riverman could have told you; he understood the language of the river.
Sometimes he had seen it tushing along in flood, stretched from bank to bank like a shimmering sheet of corrugated copper. Rio Cobre. Copper River, indeed. Times like that Riverman would shake his woolly head and say: "Huh, she vex today. .wonder who she goin' tek 'way dis time. ." To him the river would seem to roar a warning; "Stay away, Riverman. 1 am angry today. Stay away." And standing, helpless, on the slope, Riverman would watch the foaming Rio Cobte as it overflowed its banks, uprooting the corns and levelling the canes in the lower part of his field.
Afterwards, though, the river would glide leisurely by, clear and calm, seeming to murmur an invitation: "Come on in, Riverman. I am gentle today. Come on in, and forget that I flooded your field." Just like that it sounded to Rivetman: like a penitent mother soothing a favourite child she had scolded.
Today, wotking on the high ground back of his hut, Riverman knew that the river was angry. From time to time he rested on his hoe, his


Lloyd A. Clarke
r
head tilted to one side, listening. The sullen roar of the water from below told him that the river was rising.
Riverman remembered Betsy, but he wasn't worried about the cow. Luckily, he had pastured her high the watet couldn't have teached her yet. She'd be all right, unless she strayed Riverman paused at the thought. Come to think of it, a cow does stray sometimes he'd better see about Betsy.
Trotting briskly down the slope, Riverman pulled up sharply as he neared the spot whete he had pastuted Betsy. There was no sign of her. His anxious eyes swept the slope in vain where sould she have gone? Riverman rounded a bend in the trail, and hurried farther down towards the brimming banks of the river. It was then that he saw Betsy, and Riverman's heart began to hammer against his ribs.
Betsy had wandered upstream to graze on the grassy mound that stood out in midstream, rearing its summit high above the sutface of the water when the river was low. She must have crossed before the water had risen. Riverman recalled that earlier that morning the stream had been shallow enough to wade at some places. It was not shallow now. The Rio Cobre was like that: gentle and shallow this hour, and the next, fierce and flooded with rain from the hills.
Betsy was trapped on the mound. She was a strong swimmer, Riverman knew; but she wouldn't last long if she ventured into the wide stretch of water that boiled between her and the safety of the bank. Betsy seemed to sense her helplessness, too. Mooing plaintively, she shied away from the water that seethed up the steep sides of the mound towards her.
Bleak thoughts rose swiftly, insistently, in Riverman's mind ... he had toiled hard sweated in the sun, shivered in the rain to buy Betsy, gaunt and underfed though she had been. He had tended her long, lovingly, and his eyes had shone with possessive pride at the way Betsy's flanks had filled out fast and her hide had become sleek, until now well, now she was a fine animal that any man would hate to lose. Riverman's jaws set resolutely. He couldn't just stand by and watch the river take away Betsy. He had to do something
Racing up the slope to his hut, Riverman hurried back with a coil of strong rope. He would have to try a swift cast a forlorn hope ..


48
Riverman
Betsy had always been shy of ropes; the distance, too, would make an accurate throw difficult. With luck, though, he might manage it.
The noosed end of the rope shot swiftly from Riverman's hand, hissed through the air to fall some distance from the cow. Riverman tried another throw; Betsy backed away; the rope fell short of her. Riverman hastily hauled in the rope, his heart heavy with apprehension. He would have to try something else. But what ?
The silence and a strange sense of loneliness weighed heavily on Riverman. Later on the riverbank would be noisy with the shouts of village boys bickering over coconuts and other treasures salvaged from the swollen stream; but just then there was nobody near to offer him any suggestion, any help.
And the water was rising higher and higher up the mound.
Riverman's eyes, roving distractedly about, gleamed at the sight of a sturdy tamarind tree standing on the slope. A plan took swift shape in his questing mind. Tying one end of the rope around the tamarind, Riverman hastily slipped off his clothes. If he could swim out to Betsy with the other end, he mighr be able to tope her, then work her gradually towards rhe bank. A risky plan, he realised; but what else was there to do?
The water closed coldly around Riverman's bare body. The loose end of the rope was gripped between his strong jaws, giving him full use of his hands. Even near the bank the cutrent was swift and strong. No man could swim up that stream not even Riverman; but he was wise in the ways of the river, was Riverman. He sttuck a slanting course towards the mound, twisting his body snake-like to escape the full force of the water.
Out in midstream, the current clutched greedily at Riverman. The water churned muddily under his flailing arms and plunging legs. It was awkward, swimming with the end of the rope in his mouth. Gradually the treacherous tug of the current began to tell on Riverman. It was powerful, too powerful, for him. He was borne steadily, relentlessly, backwards. The rope tautened and stretched till it was jerked from his jaws. His clutching fingers found the end, gripped it.
Betsy's terrified voice reached Riverman. A swift glance upstream showed him that the rising water would soon sweep her from the mound.


Lloyd A. Clarke
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Riverman's heart was a cold, leaden lump in his breast. He could do nothing fot Betsy now the river would take her; but he wouldn't let it take him. No. He would fight the flood .. .
Work-hardened muscles corded in Riverman's arms and shoulders as he inched his way, hand over hand, up the rope. He was glad that he had tied the other end so securely around the tree on the slope. Rivetman strove strongly, but the bank was still fat away, and he was tiring.
Maybe you'd think it wouldn't be difficult for Riverman to pull himself out of the river. Maybe you'd think that... if you had never seen the Rio Cobre in flood.
The river-devils fastened poweiful, icy fingers around Riverman, trying to tear him loose from the rope. His fingers grew stiff with strain; his body began to get numb from contact with the cold water. He felt the rope slipping through his weakening grip. the torrent tore him loose, whirling him swiftly downstream.
Riverman was too water-wise to struggle against the tushing force of the swollen stream. Catching hold of one of the huge logs bobbing along, he tested, letting the current carry him. He couldn't force a landing then .. perhaps he might make it farther down where the river narrowed between its banks.
He could no longer see or hear Betsy. Was it possible that she had teached the bank after all? Hope stirred for a second in Riverman, then faded. No. Betsy couldn't have made the bank. more likely she had perished upstream. Riverman wordlessly cursed the Rio Cobre.
The river bore him rapidly along past Philpott's Fording, past Pile with its steep, frowning banks. A knot of curious villagers cowered far back up the banks, awed at the fury of the flood. Their excited shouts floated faintly after Riverman as the water swept him around the bend into Naseberry Hole.
Hope surged suddenly again in Riverman's heart. A thick vine overhung from a milk-weed tree on the left bank. The end of the sturdy creeper trailed tantalisingly in the water, not far from the bank. It was now or


50
Riverman
never, Riverman decided, his eyes gleaming with determination co he but reach that vine, he might yet thwatt the Rio Cobre. he but reach that vine, he might yet thwart the Rio Cobre.
Riverman kicked free from the log, and sttuck out strongly towards vine. The river was wide there. He angled his way against the retard tug of the cross-current. His muscles strained in aching struggle agai the strength of the stream. The distance lessened the vine was nes now. A few more strokes and Riverman would have reached it... if cramp had not seized him then, knotting, numbing the over-ta muscles of his thigh. No man. not even Riverman can fight era in a flooded river.
The water buffeted him brutally away from the vine. Riverm; struggles became weaker, and the devilish roar of the river rose in his e mocking him with the memoty of his own words: "Bad if you get en in de water, ver1 bad..."
The Rio Cobre raged along, racing down the straights, blustering aroi the bends, thundering through gloomy gorges. Could he have heard angry voice of the river then, it would have seemed to Rivetman to be : ing: "You are rash, Riverman. I warned you to stay away when I'm angry I'm angry today, Riverman." Just like that it would have sounded to Rr man ... if he could have heatd.
There was another creature, though, that could hear the scolding of fiver ... a cow wandering, frightened and forlorn, along the bank wf a strange caprice of the current had swept her to safety... a dun-colou cow it was that lowed piteously into the evening.


SPRING PLANTING
CLAUDE THOMPSON
It was not until after her father's digging match that Liza Ann knew which man she would choose. When you married it was for keeps. When you married sometimes you discovered you had made a mistake too late. She could hear her Aunt Hepzi
"Min' yu'self and dem man Liza Ann Min' yu'self. Sweet wud can't full belly gal. See me ah one ting come lib ah house wid me is anuther."
And Liza Ann was afraid; afraid of herself lest she could not wait and then be bound forever no way of breaking free perhaps no way. She could hear her Gran'paw "Never been a divorce in this fambily ycrric. We is from good stock and we breed with good healthy stock. Never been a tief in this family either No sah."
What would you do? Get a man that would let down your people? You could not go back home. When you called on them they'd all be silent and they'd speak only for speaking sake
"Long time don't see yuh gal "
"Yes sah."
"Er-r-r-m-p-h -"
"Good weather down your way?"
"No mam -"
and you'd know they wanted you to go to go back where you now called home to lie in your bed as you had made it and after you had gone they would say
"Only Lawd know how we could hab a gal like that in de fambily "Who's gwine swear fi a 'ooman? Lawd God What dem want dem tek. Bred to a no-count follow-line !" and they would spit in disgust
ashamed of you and glad to be rid of the sight of you and if you died they would be glad; for at last God had settled the bill.
Her father had been a-warning her. Nothing open just a hinting "Don't like that dere Big Joe Boy. Hear he been drunk and in a fight down to town last week. Always a-wanting to fight someone he going get dead sudden one of these days. No count raskil same like his paw." and she knew what he meant sitting there as calm as a rock and


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Spring Planting
puffing his chalk pipe with his hands hanging dead over his crossed legs.
" he's gwine dead sudden." And he'd stare across the barbecue into the night.
"Yes," said her mother, "dose who live by the sword." "Powetful true is de word of God," said her father, "One cannot gather figs of thistles."
You would hear the toads calling into the night; you could see the 'peenie wallies' flying about and night was made for love and desire and for a gal to choose het man the father of her children. If the night breeze touched het cheek it was the fingers of her unknown mate and with it was the smell of the land of life as yet unborn.
In December the lignum vitae had blossomed and it was like a lady
in blue. Now in May it blossomed again but the rains were coming, after
the droughr, and the pale blue blossoms were beaten to the ground and
it was a time of decision for planting and she was reminded of the
beauty of a woman here today and tomorrow She was reminded of
the choice of a girl joy tonight and tomorrow
* *
In December Big Joe had been making passes at her.
"Coming up to see yuh gal "
"Not unless you want to dead sudden."
"Strong man nevah wrong. Who's gwine stop me."
"Yuh heerd about my paw?"
"Who's afraid of Tata Higgins. He an his old gun "ht yun not scared what's stoppin' yuh?"
"I'm takin' my time gal and need none of dem boy in the district set eye pon yuh. Yuh belong to me. I gwine to come a courtin'" "Death" she had said and flounced off.
And day after day if he met het he was at her. Big Joe had a way with women bold and btassy. The othet men she knew were too quiet especially Fred. He'd just sit there and look at her and he'd have no words to say and somehow she had narrowed it down to one of these two and out of sheer perversity perhaps Big Joe would win because the other one was aftaid to move.


Claude Thompson
53
"Nice boy dat dere Fred" her father would say "quiet like and she knew he was feeling his way telling her what he wanted her to do. You may have sons but there is something about a daughter especially a daughter that is an only child; especially a tall, lissom well-shaped girl growing up in your house growing so fast like a field of corn, yesterday a tiny plant peeping above the ground and tomorrow a golden field ready for the reaper, and you are afraid who the reaper will be. You try to hint to her knowing so much of life but even a father is afraid of his own girl child; for if she gets it into her head that you are forcing her into something she will be like the worst of mules. She'll be like a mule that will kick and bite when you are tightening a gifth and she'll be no use to anyone. You have to break her gently like a mule first a bag, then a pack saddle leading her around with a light load and then And remember to keep het neithet in the centre of the road or too fat into the bank side. As she was broken so would she be. She knew it herself and she knew why her father was hinting
"Dere is a lotta time everything comes to him who waits. All one wants is patience."
Patience when you are young patience to reach fruition! Patience when the night calls!
It is like the parched land waiting for the rain. It is like the parched grass waiting waiting and everything is in embryo.
In February when she had looked across the low foothills to the sea standing high on the barbecue with the wind pressing her print dtess around her, she had looked across the ever descending and undulating bottom lands to the savannahs and the sea, and far away in the distance she had seen the white virginal blur of the great catchment to a tank awaiting rain and she had rebelled against the lot of woman to wait and wait, perhaps forever; and forever was the eternal hills the eternal sea; blue, far-distant and dispassionate. Waiting for time and God knows what, waiting through the eternities of man.
And that had been February February of the parched earth and no one dared to plant. Day after day the sun rolled like a molten ball across the skies; day after day her father and the other men had looked at the skies and prayed for rain, and day after day there had been no rain. The


54
Spring Planting
parson when he preached spoke of rain he prayed for kindly showers and the people understood that their rain-maker was interceding with God and when they came out they looked for a miracle from the iron skies. They knew it would come it must come but when? And a girl seeking in her heart asked herself other questions of life someday I shall live but when?
But men seek water. The earth and the green things thereof may wither and die but man and the animals must have water. Man seeks it and finds it. Man must have love too. He seeks it and then suddenly out of a clear sky it is all around.
" never a drought like this."
* *
Easter Sunday is always a day to remember. All the women are in white; white the symbol of purity and of the contrite heart white as the slain Lamb. And here is the familiar spirit of God the only thing that the common man over the world may have and the people are filled with the awe of it that a man should die for them; even for them the black people! But what is colour? Black people are like all othet people. They have the good points and faults of all other people but above all people they have had and still have the burden of great suffering and out of this has come their great spiritual capacity. But this is of the spirit. What of the flesh? The black people are strong. Black women are beautiful. You can ask Big Joe hete in church or Fred. There is no other woman for constancy there is no othet race of women of such controlled desire and satisfying approach and even here in church Liza Ann knew her fathet was looking at her and praying to God to give her what it was beyond his power to give her; peace and happiness and the love of a good man for she was beautiful. You can ask Big Joe and Fred. The, parson will tell you the Song of Solomon is analogous to the Church. Big Joe and Fred will tell you it is a love song to a black woman. It is Liza Ann sitting in Church on Easter Sunday; it is the lovely black column of het neck it is the ebony of her skin like unto velvet. You can ask Big Joe and Fred.
Why should Big Joe go to church and keep away from drink? Why should Fred go to church? For a man who died for you? Do men die in times of peace for strangers? For a man you do not know when in this


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.ge there is only selfishness and greed? A man shall go to church to look t a lovely young black girl and through love of her try to find the beauty hat there is in life to find faith; for women believe. How else can hey live? And they cannot live unless they love and love is trust. But vhat shall a young girl believe? The Song of Solomon is an analogy to he Church!
Look out over the parched commons to the earth; look out over the >lack faces of the black sheep; feel the wind on yout cheeks and listen o its whisper in the pimento trees and see the sun
"Oh Lamb of God who taketh away the sins of the world.
Have mercy upon us."
* *
After the service Liza Ann had come out into the sun and her father nd het mothet had had her right along with them. And everyone was aying -
"Howdy Tata Higgins "
"Howdy Miss Rosa "
"Howdy Liza Ann -" ^nd the old men chucked her under the, chin with their calloused fingers nd said to her father "Tata ah whey de gal ah grow good looking ah ;o?" and her father had been proud; and they had said to her mothet
" she tek after you Miss Rosa," and her mother had giggled.
"Gwan wid you Mass Joe and you Mass Alec The old men had chucked her under the chin and the young men had Ireamed dreams. They had said
"Howdy Liza Ann -"
"Howdy Liza Ann and the rest was in their eyes "Some tomor-ow you'll be mine."
And all the while she knew her father was watching them hetself nd the young men. He would shoot stone dead the man who 'advan-aged' her. He was a God-fearing man but for his family he would fight n Church and she had been thinking.
"Which of you all? I cannot make up my mind. Which of you all? f you want me come and get me take me. Make up my mind for me." ind she had laughed to herself
"Come and take me! Ha! Ha! Not with Paw around Ha! Stretch


56
Spring Planting
out your hand and take me! My God! Paw would have a fit.
And it had made her eyes crinkle with hidden laughter and the young men and the old men had smiled themselvesand an old man had said
"What a happy gal!" And now her father had spoken and everyone had listened men and women.
"It must tain please God. Of we'll be starvin'. Ah never see a drought like this in all my born days. Last week ah been down to Savannah and dem is already starvin." The sins of man is heavy upon de earth and de hand of God is fallen upon us And the old men had shaken their heads
They had puffed at their chalk pipes and had been lost in thought and the women too had held the silence pregnant with hope. She had smelled the land in the tobacco-filled air; she had heard the land in their voices; she had seen the red earth in their dark bodies her country, her people, herself waiting for rain.
* *
In May the rain had come suddenly. When the tamarind tree in the common opposite theit house had appeared almost dead when het father had decided to sell his stock the rain came. Suddenly in the night it had come. Fitst as a hesitant pattet and then it had become a steady tattoo botne on a gust of wind hastening to the earth. She had known then how the eatth must feel and the datk faces of her father and get two bottles of rum. Now we got the rain we must keep movin'"
In the morning the world appeared new. She had come out on the barbecue and gone to the tank to see how much water had gone into it. But first, before she did that, she had turned het eyes across the savannahs to the sea had turned her face into the wind and then to the stone wall, now wet, on which a bird had been singing.
Her father had come out filled with tenewed life as if the rain had poured it into him, and ovet his coffee in the kitchen he had announced that he would have a diggin' match the next week Wednesday. He had said
"Gwine to plant out the three acres 'cross the common and only way to do it quick an' ketch the rain is to have a diggin' match. Ah'll tell dem man on Sunday and oonu 'ooman must look aftet the food. Ah'll


Claude Thompson
57
get two bottles of turn. Now we got the rain keep movin'."
He had been full of plans and he had spent the day in the "buttery" looking over his tools and mending a pack saddle. Her mother had said nothing. After breakfast she had tied up her skirt in a pokopanya and had taken a hoe and gone out to the land behind the kitchen and commenced to plant corn. You could see her digging a hole in the ground and then dropping the corn in it from a pocket in her apron and then 'moulding' up the hole with a bare foot. The earth was receiving its own to give it forth again many fold and she what had she been doing? She was still waiting and it was as if her father had known her dissatisfaction. Once passing her he had taken his pipe from his mouth and spoken as usual apparently to no one
"Everything comes in God's own time."
* *
It is sttange how time appeared to fly when one looked back at it. You spent all the days in the expectation of an event and it seemed a lifetime away and then after it had come and gone you discover that it had come too quickly.
Wednesday morning had been upon them before they knew it. They had hardly set a light to the latge blocks of dried pimento wood that formed the fires beside the stone wall and put on kerosene tins of'chocolate' and water to draw coffee before the men had commenced to arrive singing and shouting. All the women who were helping with the food had been there already and now came the men singing 'Bring me half a hoe'
Come gimme ya
'Bring me half a hoe and she had heard Big Joe roaring above the rest with his hoe over his shoulder.
'Bring me half a hoe' And where had Fred been? He had been standing inconspicuously in the crowd and he hadn't been singing. You never knew how these digging matches, giving free labour to one's neighbout, ever get under way. One moment they are drinking large steaming mugs of 'chocolate' and coffee and then they are off. A great line of men is surging across the


"38
Spring planting
field. They are digging potato hills in one mad, frenzied struggle tight actoss the field. The hoes ate rising and falling with all the strength of the wielder. You never knew that men could work so hard. And out in front had been the singing man singing and dancing and controlling the match. Singing fast songs to get the tempo of the race making his own words
'Gal oh! Gal oh! They had gone across the field like mad leaving a straight line of potato hills behind them and now they were coming back and the pace had begun to tell. They had begun to string out panting, sweating, straining every muscle and out in front had been Big Joe and behind it had seemed impossible Fred.
The spectatots were shouting and the men were coming along with a despetate hurry Big Joe had never been beaten in any match for a year now and here was a challenger to the champion digger of the district. To the people it had been only that the champion digget and a challenger. To her it had been much more than that. The battle was for her. It had been as if at the end she would be the prize and that was what she knew they hoped to get the prize of her self-esteem. The pace had told. The same two had gone far out in front and Big Joe had become desperate. He had hurried his strokes and put too much into the down swing of the hoe and Fred had come up abreast. Then the race had commenced in deadly earnest. One man had to collapse. Hill for hill they had come down the line and the old people had come to stand on the finishing line. Hill fot hill they were coming and then imperceptibly Fred had come ahead and strangely she had been glad. A hill ahead! Could he hold it? Her fathet had spoken
"The greatest diggin' match I have evet seen in the district."
And Old 'Custos', the oldest man in the district said
"Only once afote ah ever seen ah match like this and the winnah dropped dead."
Fear had seized her heart. They had come on and on then thete was a great cheet for the new champion. They had been panting as at the end of a long running race. They had only been able to lean on their hoes whilst the sweat had run down their dirt-begrimed faces. And then it had happened. Someone had laughed at Big Joe and in moving he had


Claude Thompson
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bounced against her and she had drawn away and Big Joe humiliated before her eyes, had said
"Who the r you drawin' way from? Since when you become so damn stocious?"
Fred had dropped his hoe and hit him so hard, Big Joe had rolled on the ground. Then Big Joe was up roarin' "Hell yah tiday -"
She had stood petrified and her father had rushed Big Joe and Big Joe had hit him and het fathet had tushed for his gun. The men had held both Fred and Big Joe and over all she heard her mother shouting
"Jesus Christ! Tek him whey before Tata come out wid him gun! Ah, don't want Tata heng fi murder!"
And then there had been a roar from the house and there was her father rushing from the house and bringing the gun to his shoulder
"Jesus Christ! Mass Tata "
"Mass Tata -"
Everyone except her mother, Fred and herself had run, desperately for the stone wall, Big Joe well up in front and she not knowing what she did had taken Fred by the hand and suddenly the gun had spoken.
"Lawd Jesus -"
Everyone had fallen flat on their faces and Big Joe had crawled behind the stone wall. Everyone had been screaming
"Mass Tata "
"Mass Tata and her father had stood there and he had said
"Dat one was in de air to get yuh people out of de way. I am just waitin' for that son of a b to show his head."
And everyone had trembled flat on their faces on the red earth. Tata Higgins was known fot his gun. The greatest gun man'in miles and he never missednot a target the size of Big Joe.
And everyone had moaned. It was a saddening sound going across the field to behind the stone wall where Big Joe was hidden it was the end of time and no one moved for fear of Tata Higgins turning his gun on them instead and all the while she had been holding Fred's hand and he had put his hand around her and neithet of them had


60
Spring Planting
realised that they were doing this and even her mother just stood there waiting.
Everyone waited for Big Joe to break from cover but Big Joe had lain behind the wall At last her father had laughed and lowered his gun and shouted
"Everybody get up. Ah not shooting anyone but tell that Big Joe boy to get off my place."
And then he had come up to them Fred and herself and said
"Drop in at de house any time son."
And then she knew. It was as simple as that.


THE MERMAID'S COMB
HARTLEY NEITA
The Dornoch River starts as a large pool of watei at the foot of a tall cliff near Stewart Town in St. Ann. In the days the women from the nearby districts come to the pool with latge bundles of clothes to wash in the watet, and while they scrub and rinse, they keep a wary eye on their young ones swimming and splashing in the water downstream.
But at nights now, in spite of its inviting peace, no one goes to the pool for the people of these districts are fearful. And their fear is born out of a legend that has come down through the years from parent to child that has made this river-source a pool of mystery.
No one knows where the water that forms this pool comes from, but what they do know is that it is bottomless. And thete is a strangeness about this place. There the trees grow tall and tower towards the sky, and if you look up into the lacework of branches far above your head you can see the leaves trembling when the breezes blow and sweeping the sky clean of clouds.
And the trees are thick with leaves which shadow the pool, so that the sun never finds its way through except at the odd moment when a thin beam lights this quiet and secluded spot,
* *
Once a rock stood at the edge of this pool. A rough, white mass of stone that on moonlight nights glowed with a strange light which brightened the pool. This rock, the people said, was the throne of a mermaid called Dora. Today the rock is gone. It tumbled deep into the pool many, many years ago, but the people who believe the legend will show you where it rested its weight during the lifetime of the legend. They say the spot will remain there until the end of time, for no blade of grass, no shrub or tree will ever take toot on this bare patch of earth.
Yet, the people of the neighborhood have never seen Dora. They say that long ago she swam away down the Dornoch and into the sea. Since then, people in othet parts of the island have seen her combing her long, silky, green-tinted hait as she sits on rocks in various rivers, in the Martha


62
The Mermaid's Comb
Brae, the Rio Grande, the Black River, and in more recent times on Pirn Rock in the Rio Cobre.
The legend says that on moonlight nights Dora used to sit on this white rock near Stewatt Town, and because the light shining from the tock gave the pool a looking glass appearance, she would look at het reflection in the pool, and humming softly to herself, would comb her hair. The song she hummed was strange, and it lilted across the river and the ttees, so that people around could hear it. It was strange, yet beautiful, and it had something about it that was sad and haunting.
The tune she hummed had no words, but to all those who wanted and hoped for the things they never had, the meaning of the song was clear. It was an invitation to come to the pool and frighten het, and if they wanted the something badly enough, then Dora would leap into the pool and leave her comb on the rock. And though deep under the water, het song would still continue in the ears of the lucky one, and the words were clear.
"Take my comb home and I will come to you in your dreams, and anything you ask of me, I will give you if you will only teturn my comb." This was the song.
* *
Now in Stewart Town there lived a girl named Hazel. Her father was wealthy and Hazel had everything she wanted. Her dolls were the envy of every mother in the town. They walked, cried and some even spoke saying "Mama, Mama." Hazel had no cause to play dirty pot as did the other children of Stewart Town. Oh no, she had a real kitchen set, with a small stove, pots and pans, knives and forks, and even cups and saucers. If Hazel wanted anything, she got it.
But there was one thing her father could not give her, and that was the thing she desired most of all. Her hair was short and stubby and she longed for hair that could rest on her shoulders and tickle her when it shook as she walked. So while the children envied all her possessions, here was something they could tease her about. And ther did.
Hear them:
... Eh picka-pecka head How is the cane row? .


Hartley Netta
63
. Child, is how you head look so like when fowl done eat coconut meal .
... Eh, Hazel? .
This was her torment. She bought patent oils from Kingston's best stores. She tried all the things the old women of the village suggested, coconut oil, toonah leaf, banana root, single bible, policeman oil. .. all and everything, until sometimes her head stank with the mixture of herbs. But in vain.
So when one night Hazel heard the mermaid Dora singing, it seemed as if the song was for her alone. The pool was nearly a mile from her home, but to Hazel the song came as if from below her window It was clear and sweet, the invitation strong and full of appeal. And Hazel left her bed softly, for fear of drowning the song from the pool, and once outside she ran straight for the river and the rock that was Dora's thtone.
It was Hazel's haste that frightened Dora that night. As she neared the pool her feet tangled with some brushwood and as she tumbled to the earth she screamed. The scream shocked Dora into terror, and like a flash she dived into the pool.
When she heard the splash, Hazel knew that Dora was gone, leaving her comb behind. Jumping and forgetting her bruised knees she ran towards the rock. And sure enough there was a comb, that could only be the mermaid's comb And it was too, for among its finely carved teeth were a few silky strands of the mermaid's green-tinted hait.
The dream didn't come that night; it never comes the first night. But on the following night Hazel was hardly asleep before Dora appeared in a dream, as promised. The mermaid was beautiful, more beautiful than Hazel had imagined, but she hardly saw the flawless perfection of Dora's face, for her gaze was fastened on the hair that flowed softly over the shoulders, below the waist, and down, down until it sheathed the mermaid's fins.
Dora was the colour of chocolate that has been two days sweating its juicy coat in the boiling sun. Her face was almost full-moon round, and the green glory of her hair framed it with gentle curves and waves.
And Dora's voice was soft, sweet, and caressing. "What do you wish fot most of all my child?"


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The Mermaid's Comb
Hazel choked with emotion "Oh. I want hair, beautiful and long
as youts, deaf Dora", she begged.
"This you shall have my child. Come with me to the pool. Sit on the rock that is my thfone. Look down into the water, and comb the haif you now have. The lovely hair you seek shall be yours."
The dream ended, and Hazel woke suddenly and was out of bed and running through the woods straight for the pool. She scrambled up on the rock, and sat looking down at her reflection in the pool.
And she began to comb.
So soft were the teeth of the comb as it passed through her hair that she was reminded of a knife passing through soft butter. Each time the pull-through was longer, and looking down Hazel saw her hair reaching now to her neck, tickling it with such a strangeness that she felt he blood curdling with cold. Then her hair was stretching past her shoulders, and it was soft and brown, like the tuft of hair at the end of an ear of full-grown corn. Soon it lay in thick tresses against her hips.
Then the rhythm of the combing became a command. It was as if other hands were helping her to comb. The hair grew heavier and heavier, and her neck bent under its weight towatds the pool. Hazel saw her hair spreading on the surface of the pool, and as it soaked up the water, it began to sink, futther and heavier. Then there was a splash as the haii dragged her from the rock and deep down into the pool. Her hands lost the comb as she tried to grab at the edge of the rock, but her fingers slipped helplessly on its moss green surface. And then she was grasping at empty air, and then water.
Next night Dora was back on the rock, singing her wordless, haunting melody, and combing her hair with het comb. And she was smiling now, smiling.


THE SOUND
BERYL MARSTON
I t came like a tiny shivet. A soft, timid, trickle of sound. As though a child threw some grains of sand against a window pane. Yet, its origin was impossible to locate.
The boy and girl looked at each other, then measured the possibilities of the room. There was the table around which they sat. A bare deal table, burdened with a motley assortment of books. The beams of light from the single kerosene lamp placed in its centre, hardly reaching beyond the edge. There the shadows took over. Tall ill-shaped shadows cast by the chairs on which they sat by their own bodies and by the sofa in the corner nearest the outer door.
For there were two doors. The one leading into the darkness of the night and the other into the room beyond. They had thought there was nothing more except of course the silence. The noisy silence of a country night when when the crickets chirped or the night owl hooted.
Now they knew better. There were so many things more. There was the night wind whistling in the bamboo trees. There was the same wind sighing through the cotton ttee. Ah! the cotton tree! It was a convenient place fot robbers. Added to all these there was The Sound. But, most important of all was their mummy's absence. When she went through the door she had told them to sit at their studies.
* *
Out of the sea of aloneness the boy said. "There is nothing there!"
He spoke aloud. He spoke too loudly because he was afraid. He needed to re-affirm his faith in the safety of the night.
"Thete is!" his sistet whispeted hoarsely. "I just know there is."
The fingers of one hand caught in her mouth, she pushed the other between her tiny legs hugged together.
"Let us look," the boy said.
He rose, hesitantly drawing one reluctant hand across the edge of the table.


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The Sound
The diamond drops stood in her eyes and in a whimpering voice she said:
"Take me with you then!" "Come!" the boy said.
* *
He held the lamp in one hand and with the other clutched the shade, keeping it in place. His curly head peeped round it as his eyes combatted the shadows.
The girl, still with her fingers in her mouth, held tightly to the seat of his pants. So they began those myriad miles across that tiny room.
Then it came again. The same slither of sound. Only, now it was accompanied by the swish, swish of bamboo leaves fighting against the wind. It seemed more companionable.
The girl took her fingers from her mouth but she still held firmly to her brother.
They moved very slowly. He knew fear but it was better to pretend he was accommodating his steps to those of his sister.
They reached the inner doorway. The limited rays from the lamp pricked at the darkness before them but could not pierce it. It needed but a moment fot the gathering of courage and then they would go in. The boy looked down at the girl and smiled. A slow, secret smile that said he was not afraid.
"Now!" he said and stepped forward.
PLOP!
* *
The scream came teating from theit throats and the darkness was entire and complete because the lamp lay in pieces where he had dropped it. Their bare feet were dripping blood as they flung themselves back into the room from which they had come.
"Mummy!" they screamed. "Mummy!" on a rising note of terror.
Battering themselves, clutching at each othet's clothes, falling and rising again, they stumbled towards the lighter dark that was the doot leading into the night.


Beryl Mantn
67
"Tommy! what is it?" the mother's voice split the darkness and brought them back to sanity.
"There is something there," the boy sobbed. The girl a whimpering cuddle on her mother's shoulder would not so much as lift her head.
Voices came in then and with them a strong light. They stepped across the room which but a short while ago seemed a myriad miles. The darkness of the room beyond became the friendly daytime room.
There was the bed they usually shared. There was the story book their mummy had left open when she tead them an evening tale. There was Tommy's silver gun and beside it the little girl's teddy bear.
* *
Voices went past the open window and the bamboo leaves swished, a soft friendly sound. Even the cotton ttee was searched. The rays of the several lights belted its girth so they saw there was nothing there.
And then they searched the room again. The boy and girl held tightly to theit mother's fingers.
They moved the table which had held the lamp. The grotesque shadows shifted their shapes as the position of the chairs was changed. The sofa near the door was moved.
But they had forgotten the window. It stood closed as it had done for years. It was beside the door and had been closed because of its superfluity. Now they came to it and what lay beneath.
On the soiled wooden floor they saw the heap of white marl. It had tumbled from the Spanish wall which made the house. It had left a tiny hole where the wooden framework of the window and the wall parted company.
They saw all this and then the mother found it. It squatted beside the heap of white marl, its well developed legs ready for hopping again.


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The Sound
It was as surprised as they were and seemed to gathet breath for another leap after its fall. Its tiny sides heaved and its bright, grotesque eyes looked steadily at them.
It was the mother who saw it for what it was. "See," she said, "it is a frog. He pushed through the Spanish wall and tumbled with it to the floot!"


HARRY THE HUMMER
LAURICE BIRD
Harry the hummer was feeling low in spirits this special Sunday morning.
For many seasons past Erma and himself had built their nests in the notches of an old-fashioned hanging lantern in one of the country churches of Jamaica. Now each notch encircling the lantern had rhe remnants of a nest firmly embedded in it
Harry was thoroughly against doing any further 'repairs', and wanted an entirely new nest this season. He had a special reason for this. The day befote he had rushed with great excitement to Erma, as she flitted hete and there in the church, quietly looking for anothet suitable place to build.
"Listen to this, old girl," he burst out. "Just heard that I've been chosen as the national bird of Jamaica! Can you beat that?"
"Oh, Harry ." Erma laughed indulgently. "You mean it's your species they've chosen not you in particular."
"Eh what did you say?" Hatry quietened down for a moment, a bit taken aback. "Oh, well, that includes me, anyway," he said gtandly, buzzing his wings a bit faster. "You've heard that the Natute Club youngsters are camping out at Johnson's Farm?" he continued. "Young Bertie pointed at me as I hovered around. He said, 'This chap has been chosen as national bird, because he is found only in this island.' Boy, that means we're really important !"
Now it was nearly time for people to statt coming in for morning service. Harry did feel annoyed that they had no new nest ready to show the important people who would be there for the service of Thanksgiving, to mark the island's independence.
Hovering in mid-air by means of his loudly vibrating wings, he voiced his complaints to his little spouse, who was not as brilliantly garbed as he was, neither had she his long and elegant tail.
"You know, my dear," he said fussily, swishing his scissors tail as he followed her round the building, "I can't think what we're going to do


70
Harry the Hummer
about this housing shortage! We can't find a suitable site, and building materials are so scarce. It's really bothering me."
"Don't be silly, Harry," answered Erma without conviction. "The heavenly Father knows our needs, and He will show us what to do. In the meantime," she added drily, "may I suggest that from to-morrow you go a little furthet afield, and see if you can't find any silk cotton? Failing that, you must search for the down of asclepias seeds."
Erma always looked on the bright side of things. She knew that Harry had spent most of his time moping, and had scarcely been further than the churchyard to look for the soft silk cotton which they needed to build the nest. This seemed to be in short supply, and he had volunteered a few ideas as to how to obtain some.
"We might, of course, look out for other birds who have got some and nab it." (He wouldn't say 'steal'; 'nab' sounded more respectable). But Erma had put her foot down on that one.
"We will do no such thing," she said firmly. "Call it what you will
nab, pilfer, borrow, bag it's just plain stealing." Harry had the grace to feel ashamed; but then he came up with another suggestion.
"You know what, Erma, suppose we make a father of a fuss till the churchpeople feel they must do something about it? Or I tell you what
the members of the Nature Club are the ones who ought to assist us!" "Oh, get on with you, Harry," Erma replied a bit wearily. She did wish
her husband would make more effort himself and not dwell so much on what others ought to do to help them.
She herself, like any human mother, had already begun to think about trimmings for the nest. She knew just where to find the scraps of lichen and fine fern to decorate the outside.
To make the nest she would skilfully weave the silk cotton with her beak into a beautiful egg-cup shape. When the nest was half-finished she would sit down in it, and with het breast press it into shape.
Erma never allowed any slip-shod sort of job. Truth to tell, she spent a great deal of petspitation on it, whilst Harry's job was mostly admiration!
The church bell began to ring, and Harry flashed around to see who and who were out this morning. He cut quite a dash in his bright metallic


Laurice Bird
71
plumage, of shimmering greens and blues and darker shades.
There was the fat lady who dressed to beat the band, and who sang louder than anyone else. Sitting at the back were those horrid boys who loved to tease him. He wished the Nature Club would get hold of them.
The specially invited guests were beginning to arrive, and Harry cut his capers through the church and made sure that they all noticed him. After all, was he not a national figure now?
Presently his attention was turned to the choir coming in, and with a cheery "S'long, see you later!" to Erma, he dashed lower down to watch with interest as they took their places. Harry knew them all quite well by now, including the boy who pumped the organ.
Just under the hanging lantern he could spot Miss Esmie, the nice old lady who kept the village shop, and ... ah yes, there were his favourite family, the Johnsons, in their pew as usual. They filled up a second bench today, having as their guests members of the Nature Club, to which twelve-year old Bertie belonged.
Besides Mr. and Mrs. Johnson and Bertie, there were two daughters. Audrey was a year older than Bertie, and Rita was quite a bit younger. If Harry the hummer had a special liking for them, there was no doubt that the Johnsons took a lively interest in the doings of Harry and Erma.
There was an anthem by the choit, and then the congregation sang a hymn that Harry had often heard. He felt ashamed of his former peevish mood as he listened to the verses.
"Through all the changing scenes of life,
In trouble and in joy,
The praises of my God shall still
My heart and tongue employ.
O magnify the Lord with me,
With me exalt His Name;
When in distress to Him I called,
He to my rescue came.
Fear Him, ye saints, and you will then
Have nothing else to fear:
Make you His service your delight,
Your wants shall be His care."


72
Harry the Hummer
"Huh ... I guess Erma's right," Harry told himself, "It really is better to praise than to pout. If even a sparrow has the Father's care (and he didn't think much of sparrows) I reckon He will look after our problems."
Next came the sermon, and Harry felt even more ashamed as the Jamaican minister seemed to know just what was going on in his mind. Harry liked the first text he quoted. "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding." He knew that Erma would approve of the next. "Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might."
The minister repeated an old saying which he urged everyone to apply to himself or herself as a motto for Independence. "We must trust as if we had no need to work; and we must work as if thete was no need to trust."
Erma had been listening intently as she sat motionless on an eave above the pulpit. Harry, however, could not be still for long and, glancing round the congregation, he spied the bright artificial flowers that covered the entire crown of Audrey Johnson's hat.
Down swooped Harry the hummer upon Audrey's head, and stuck his long red beak into the flowers, but alas, there was no nectar for him to sup!
Audrey quickly btushed him away with her hand, but Harry was only the more eager and determined to get at the lovely nectar he was sure those beautiful flowers contained.
Again and again he returned to the attack until a veritable boxing match was taking place between Audrey and himself, assisted by enthusiastic members of the Nature Club.
Harry was a fighter like all of his species, and was determined to gain his objective, whilst poor Audrey's face grew crimson under her swarthy skin.
She became more uncomfortable each moment, as people turned round to look. The children giggled outright. There was a peculiar twitching at the corner of Mr. Johnson's mouth, as he sat at the other end of the bench.
Mrs. Johnson decided that something must be done. "You'd better take your hat off, Audrey," she whispered hurriedly. Only too happy to take her mothet's advice, Audrey quickly grabbed it off her


Laurice Bird
head and stuck it under the bench, whilst Bertie flipped away his friend for the last time.
As he flew back to Erma to pour out his rage, Harry bounced against one of the old nests and dislodged it right out of its notch in the hanging lantern.
Erma gave a gasp of delight as she saw it fluttering down on the shoulder of Miss Emmie.
"Look, Harry!" she almost shouted, as het very annoyed and indignant husband fluttered round her. "Do you see what's happened? Why, thete'll be no need for us to look elsewhere to build our nest!"
It took Harry a moment ot two to collect his wits and allow his temper to cool off; for really, it had been provoking not to be allowed to get at that nectar. As he saw the empty notch in the lantern, he stuttered in amazement, "Now why hadn't I thought of that befote?"
"We may be nitwits, deaf," Erma said joyfully, "but again we've proved that our heavenly Father really does make 'all things work together for good to them that love Him'!"
As the people trooped out of church and greeted one another, Harry hovered within earshot of the Johnsons, pretending to gather nectar and insects from the honeysuckle vine nearby. He really wanted to hear all the latest news.
Bertie drew the attention of the Nature Club to the way Harry thrust his long, slender beak into the flowers. Audrey joined them, having thrown her offending hat into the car. "I'm mad with him still!" she said, as Bertie with a grin, continued his lecture.
"A humming bird's tongue is like two tubes laid side by side," he explained, "but it is joined half way, and separate for the remainder."
"Yes, he sucks up nectar from the flowers through these tubes," Mr. Johnson continued, "and the tips, which are split into tiny, irregular pieces that turn backwards, he uses for catching and entangling insects."
"Why is he called the 'doctor' bird?" enquired Rita.
"I know!" exclaimed a member of the Club. "It's because his long tail reminded people of the frock-tailed coats that doctors used to wear."
"I've been told it was the black crest on his head that made people think of a doctor's top hat," said another.


74
Harry the Hummer
"Really, it's time we were going home, or dinner will be late," chipped in Mrs. Johnson.
"Mummy, wait for me!" called out little Rita, as she ran to a bed of fern where, before the service, she had left some pods of silk cotton. "I brought these for Etma and Harry; where shall I put them?" she asked, looking around.
"Here, under the honeysuckle," ordered Bertie. "Then they'll be sure to see them."
Erma was already having lunch from a red hibiscus flower, when she turned to see them depart. Her eyes fell on the silk cotton as Rita placed it on the spot indicated by Bertie.
Hardly able to contain her joy, she called "Harry! Harry! Two miracles in one day! First we can build again in our dear old lantern; and now, just look at what that thoughtful child has brought us!"
Harry too was thrilled, and he looped the loop and turned somersaults till his wife was almost dizzy.
Then Erma called him to order. "Listen, old top," she said in her best lecture manner, "make up your mind that from tomorrow Independence Day your'e getting down to some good hard work on rhat nest!"


" When fly bodder mauger mule nobody see, but when him kick, dem say him bad.''
CARMEN MANLEY
JVErs. spider was known by everyone in the town as a trouble maker. She would carry news and gossip from one home to the other. Uninvited, she would move into any house in the town, weave her web, and settle down on the ceiling for an indefinite stay. Ftom her position on the ceiling, nothing that went on in the house would escape her shatp eyes. She was always boasting about her famous gtandfathet, Anancy the wonderful webs he had woven and the hundreds of flics he had caught in them.
Mrs. Spider had just moved into Mauger Mule's house. She had heard that Mauger Mule was having a trying time with Hies. The Fly family were squatters; they would never settle down but would swarm into homes, eating, and sleeping, and playing music and dancing all ovet the place, until the food was finished. Then they would move on to another house and start all over again. Their behaviour was a disgrace to the town. They would hang around shops, on the street corners drinking and singing at tops of their voices. Traps had been set for them, but they were too clever to be caught in that way.
Mauger Mule was a worried man. He pranced about all day swishing his tail, trying to clear his home of the squatters and as if that weren't bad enough, Mrs. Spider kept up a steady stream of chatter, telling him how useless his methods were.
"Why," she would say, in her high squeaky voice. "Mauger Mule, you arc a fool. Your tail is missing them by a mile every time."
"Oh, shut up!" Mauget Mule would bray "What would you have me do? Stand still and do nothing?"
"Oh, no," Mts. Spider said. "I know exactly what to do."
"What, then?" stamped Mule.
"Oh," smiled Mts. Spider. "I had bettet not tell you, for it is a secret my grandfather, Anancy, taught me."
"Your grandfather," grunted Mule, "was a ."
"Was a what?" snapped Mrs. Spider, in her most icy,tone.


76
When Fly Bodder Mauger Mule
"Oh, forget it," Mule said, as a fly nipped him on his hind leg.
"If you are going to talk disrespectfully about my ancestors," Mrs. Spider said, drawing her web around her, "I will be forced to take up residence elsewhere."
Mule was shocked by this remark. Forced to take up tesidencc elsewhere, indeed This woman had moved into his home uninvited, had dittied his ceiling with her web, had called him a fool, laughed at his efforts to deal with the fly menace, and now had the nerve to stand there, on his ceiling, and suggest she was doing him a favour by remaining The nerve of some people !
They stood glaring at each other. Mrs. Spider changed her tactics. She
realised Mule, who was normally quite a patient man was getting angry. "Mr. Mule," she said sweetly. "If I told you what to do to get rid of the Fly family, you must promise not to say where you got it from."
"Come, now, woman," said Mule. "Nobody has ever suggested before that I cannot keep my mouth shut."
"Oh, I know," said Mrs. Spider. "They all say you are a very stubborn man."
"Who says I am stubborn?" brayed Mule. "Oh, Mulesy Woolsy," Mrs. Spider said, trying to look coy. "Cut out the nonsense, woman, and tell me what to do about these flies," he said.
"Well, just outside undet the cotton tree, Her Majesty Queen Bee has het honeycombs. If you steal one and put it in a box, all the flies will rush in for the honey. They will stick in it and then you could easily slam the lid on the box. Then you can take the box down to the sea and kick it in the ocean as far as it can go."
"But that sounds a good plan. Thank you," said Mr. Mule, and out he trotted to steal the Honey Comb.
He slowed down as he came to the cotton tree on whose bark Her Majesty kept her honeycombs. There were the drones, the men bees, idling away the time, doing not one stitch of work.
"Good morning, drones," said Mauger Mule. "Nice day, isn't it?"
"Buzz off," the drones said rudely.
Mr. Mule thought to himself. "They are not only lazy, but vety rude


Carmen Manley
77
indeed. Anyway, if they have been left here to guard the honeycomb, I will have no difficulty."
"Is Her Majesty at home?" asked Mule. The lazy drones looked at each other and pretended not to hear. Perhaps he would want them to take a message in, and they really had no intention of moving. In any case, Her Highness was at that moment giving audience to a deputation about Mr. Owl's new order which decreed that all sharp weapons should be put away and not used except in time of war. This was a grave matter indeed for the colony as it seemed that all stings would have to be removed. Her Highness had made it cleat that she should not be interrupted.
Mr. Mule realised that the drones were not going to answer his question, so he moved nearer to the Honey Comb. Out came the Worker bees.
"Now this is a problem," thought Mule. "I have got to get rid of them."
He hurried back into his house to ask Mrs. Spider's advice.
"Mrs. S.," he said, in his kindest voice. "It is very nice of you to tell me how to get rid of the flies, but first I must get rid of the worker bees, to get at the honeycomb."
"Use your head, man, and think," said Mrs. Spider. "You are a dumb mule. Go and borrow one of Mrs. Jackass' ropes. Lie under the tree and smoke it. You know smoke makes the bees very sleepy. They won't even notice what you are doing."
"Thank you kindly, mam." Mule said, bowing his way out.
"Mule," called Spider as he reached the door. "Would you like me to show you how to steal as well?"
Mr. Mule pretended not to hear. "That woman is going too fat," he mumbled to himself.
Going across to his neighbours fence, he called to the Jackasses.
Mrs. Jackass stopped her work of drying grass and turned to her husband. "Jack," she said, "I didn't know Mr. Mule smoked."
"You know now," brayed Mr. Jackass, who was a man of very few words. He always complained that he was too tired to talk.
He handed Mr. Mule a length of Jackass rope, and Mr. Mule thanked him gratefully. He was always very polite when he did not have to pay for what he got. Mrs. Jackass brayed, "You are most welcome," but she


78
When Fly Bodder Mauger Mule
thought to herself: "I hope you will buy your own cigars next time" (for that was really what Jackass rope was).
And so Mr. Mule made his way back to the cotton tree. Lying on his back, he crossed his hind legs, and with the tight hoof of the foreleg puffed away at the Jackass rope. The heavy cloud of smoke not only made the bees sleepy, but it also gave off a smell that was far from pleasant. Soon the workers came shouting: "Run for cover, it is a stink bomb", and they all moved off in a daze to warn Her Majesty that war had been declared.
As soon as they were out of sight, Mr. Mule removed the honeycomb and hurried into his house with it.
"Mrs. Spider," he called, as he entered. But there was no answer. Looking up into the ceiling, he could find no trace of Mrs. Spider's web.
"Well, well, well," said Mr. Mule happily to himself. "It seems I have got rid of her at last. This is indeed my lucky day. Now to attend to these flies."
Finding a box, he laid the hopcycomb gently inside, then hiding behind a door with a cover for the box in his hand, he waited smilingly for the flies to find this treasure.
Mrs. Spider, however, trouble-maker that she was like her grandfather, Anancy, had packed her web and left the house soon after she had seen Mule get rid of the bees. Now she was hurrying down the road spreading the news of the robbery and of the trick Mr. Mule had played to get rid of the bees.
Mrs. Jackass supported her story, braying: "Disgraceful. Trying to get me in trouble with the Bees. Using my good cigars for such a purpose." She was really angry for in telling the story, Mrs. Jackass had not failed to mention that the bees had thought it was a stink bomb.
Soon the whole village had heard the news and were on their way to Mr. Owl, the leader of the country, to see that justice was done.
Mr. Mule had in the meantime succeeded in trapping the flics and had taken the box down to the sea as Mrs. Spider had suggested. On his way home, he was met by two police dogs and escorted to College Proper the public square where all mattets of state were dealt with.
Mr. Owl was indeed very fair as he listened to all the witnesses, Mrs. Spider being the chief one. Indeed she so loved the idea of being the


Carmen Manley
79
centre of attention that she talked too much. And as Mr. Owl listened, he realised that poor Mule was more sinned against than wrong himself. Still, of course, he had to be punished for his crime.
Before passing sentence on him, Mr. Owl said: "When flies bother Mauger Mule, nobody sees, but when he kicks, you all say he is bad. This poor Mule is blamed because he has at last tried to do something about his continued sufferings."
The vast crowd hung their heads. They felt ashamed of their behaviour. One of the bees came forward and said: "Mr. Owl, I know that if Her Majesty could be here now, she would ask that Mr. Mule be freed. Unfortunately she is unable to leave home just now, but she asked me to say :hat she has heard much of the story and that anytime Mule has any troubles of this kind, she would be pleased to let him have a bit of honeycomb."
All the animals cheered.
"Mule," Mr. Owl said. "You are free to go now. And you, Mrs. Spider, must stop making trouble in this country or you will be deported to the land of your ancestors."
"I didn't mean any harm," she squeaked. "It was a harmless little joke. How was I to know people would believe everything you tell them?"
But she soon realised that everyone was looking at het in anger. She would find great difficulty spinning her web around them all for a long time to come.


EXTRACT FROM SAN GLORIA
(Act 3 Scene 1) On the shore as belore, Columbus soliloquises:
Moans on the reef the deep sea's hated voice; Surging and sapping on the rough reefs rim; It speaks of death, dead faces and of woes, Unnumbered, past and sorrows yet to be, It is the pulse of sad eternity; It is the prophet voice of grief and pain; It is the judgment voice of things to come, When, at high heaven's throne, the dead shall meet, And, small and great, make answer for their deeds; In those sad moanings come the widow's tears, The orphan's anguish and the hopeless hope Of watchers, from the white sands, far to sea. Mendez, what fate is thine? Perchance, now, now The body that enhoused thy soul is flung, And tumbled O'er and O'er, amid the wrack And slime of ocean's bottomless abyss. Here, it was here, on such a day as this, The sea-surge sounding in the self-same way Through these wind-whispering trees, that your young heart
Leapt to the service; once did you essay
The perilous passage, and were driven back
All but yourself killed by the silent hate
Of staring suns upon a stirless sea;
So thirst to fury grew; to frenzy past;
And madness whirled to death. Again you tried,


San Gloria extract
Then, from the sea swept back to storms, you came, But yet, undaunted, for the third time dared To cross that sea of lurking death; long weeks Have dragged their slow way towards Eternity. The sea smiles, moans, and keeps its secret. Where art thou?
My heart misgives me, dead; there is a dirge
In the soft whisper of these moving trees;
The sun gleams cynic unconcern, and the sad reef
Sends its deep murmur flooding through my mind,
As if there crept a shadow slowly on,
And dark-robed mourners trod through Memory's halls.
Suddenly I feel old; the weary body lags;
Pain closes on the brain; thought foot-sore goes;
The long, long way trails backward into gloom;
Dies into darkness there; 'tis night before.
(Through the drowsy stillness of the day the sound ol the reel comes monotonously; doves in the wood coo now and again plaintively; there is the sudden sharp scream of a hawk wheeling overhead.)
I see a vision of those savage men
In fury rushing on us, trampling dark
By their brute numbers, Life, Killing its flame,
Each spark of evidence that in this place
We suffered; so our story, it will pass
Like clouds that aimless sink in shapeless air.
A dark foreboding haunts me lest I die
Amid the careless beaury of this isle,
And these great heights, blue forest-garmented.
That wave slow signals to the mighty deep,


San Gloria extract
Callous to smaller things, across my grave Stare; while the green things tangle on the plain; While the soft waters lip the sandy shore; While dawns, arriving, spread their crimson flags; And passing day gives all her tents to fire, Seeking a new encampment; doves will coo When, into deep oblivion sunk, my grave Lies in the flood of life that blots out all, While the great hills stare on, o'er shrub and vine, Heeding my resting-place and me no more Than slow grey lichens heed the rock they stain, Or this huge taink they moisten to decay.
(He rises and paces slowly, then stooping picks up the body ol a small dead bird.)
Then will I not be in the world of men Worth more than is this little silent frame, This empty hut of feathers, whence hath life Evicted been by some chance flick of Fate. True! 'tis an empty house, its tenant gone, My tent of flesh, yet would I have it lie In some dear,well-loved and familiar spot On earth's vast amplitude.
Tom Redcam


ON NATIONAL VANITY
Slowly we learn; the oft repeated line
Lingers a little moment and is gone;
Nation on nation follows, sun on sun.
With empire's dust fate builds her great design,
But we are blind and see not; in our pride
We strain toward the petrifying mound
To sit above our fellows, and we ride
The slow and luckless toiler to the ground.
Fools are we for our pains; whom we despise,
Last come, shall mount our withered vanities,
Topmost to sit upon the vast decay
Of time and temporal things for, last or first,
The proud array of pictured bubbles burst,
Mirages of their glory pass away.
J. E. Clare McFarlane
83


STREET PREACHER
They are the daughters of music
On the pavements
Beating their drums
When the Sabbath sun goes down.
Who can say
If the goatskin drums
Pound their monotonous rhythm
On the heart of God?
Do the tambourines
Make a joyful noise in His ears?
Edward Baugh
84


Full Text



PAGE 1

THE INDEPENDENCEANTHOLOGYOFJAMAICAN LITERATUREseLectedbyA.L.Hendriks&Cedric Lindowirhan inrroducrion by Perer AbrahamsA PublicationofThe Arcs Celebration Commim:e ofTheMinistryofDevelopmentand \X! elfare Jamaica1962

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Thisbook was publishedbytheArrs Celebntion Committeeofthe MinistryofDevelopment and Welfareofthe GovernmentofJamaica in commemorationofthe achievementofJamaican Independence 1962. PrintedbyUnited Printers Ltd.,218Marcus Garvey Drive, Kingston,11,Jamaica. DistributedbySangster's Bookstores,91Harbour Street, Kingston, Jamaica.

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTSTheedirors rhank rhe various aurhors and poers for rheir co-operarion and for permission ro use rheir work. In addition specific acknowledgements 'Ire maderothefollowingforpermissionro userhematerialindicated:TheAtlanticMonthlyfor rhe srory, "At rhe Srelling"copyright1960 bytheauthor,JohnHearne.JonathanCape Ltd.,Londonfortheexrracr from"BrotherMan"copyrighr1953 by rheaurhor,Roger Mais.TheChristian ScienceMonirorfor "Across Cold Skies"byA.L.Hendriks.ThomasY. Crowell Company,NewYork for the extract from"Anansi,the SpiderMan"copyright1954 by theauthor,PhilipM. Sherlock. Mrs. H.O.A Dayeswhoholds rhecopyrighrin rhe worksofthe lateRoger Mais. Faber&Faber, London for rhe extracr from"TheAutumnEquinox"copyright1959byrheauthor,JohnHearne. Mrs. Ellen de Lisserwhoholdsrhecopyrighrin rhe worksofthelate H. G. de Lisser.TheGleanerCo. Lrd.,Kingstonfortheworkby LeslieRoberts, Monica Marsh, H. V.OrmsbyMarshall,HartleyNeira,Beryl Marsron,VivetteHendriks,Basil McFarlane, BarbaraOrmsbyandH.P.Jacobs.Hutchinson&Co.,Publishers,Lrd.,Londonfor rhe exrracr from"Creole"copyrighr1951by rheaurhor,LucilleIremonger.Alfred A.Knopf,Inc.,NewYorkfortheextractfrom "New Day"copyrighr1949byrheaurhor,VicrorS.Reid.Methuen&Co. Lrd.,Londonfor rhe exrracr from"SusanProudleigh"copyrighr 1915 by rhe aurhor, H. G. de Lisser.TheewYorkerfor rhepoemby Louis Simpson.ThePioneer Press,Kingsronfor rhe sroriesbyUlricSimmonds and R.L.C.Aarons.TheTribune,SpanishTownfor rhe srory byLloydA.Chrke.

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CONTENTSJohnHearne1 LeslieRobens17 Ulric Simmonds21Monica March28R.L.C.Aarons33H.V.OrmsbyMarshall 41 Lloyd A. Clarke 45 Claude Thompson51HartleyNeira61Beryl Marston65Laurice Bird 69CarmenManley 75 ForewordIntroductionSHORTSTORIESAtthe Stelling Good BrownEarthGrannie Bell Lost in the Shutfle Madam Poinsettia for GhristmasRivermanSpring TheMermaid'sCombTheSoundHarrytheHummerWhenFly Bodder Mauger Mule POEMS San Gloria extractOnNational Vanity Street PreacherAncestoron theAuctionBlockHistoryMakersHolyI Shall RememberFugueExpectNoTurbulenceAtHomethe Green Remains ....PonRoyal Across Cold Skies Road to Lacovia At Villa Flora ....Hon.Edward Seag<1, MinisterofDevelopmentand WelfarePeterAbrahamsTomRedcam J. E. Clare McFarlaneEdwardBaugh Vera Bell George Campbell George CampbellH.D.CarberryNeville Dawes Barbara FerlandJohnFigueroa G. A.HamiltonA.L.HendriksA.L.HendriksVivetteHendriksixXl80 8> 848587888991929394969798

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127129 130134 135 99 100 103104 107109111112114 117118 119 121122124126Louis Simpson M. G.SmithM. G.SmithVivianL.VirtueVivianL.VirtueVivetteHendriksConstanceHollarK. E.IngramEvanJonesEvanJones Basil McFarlaneClaudeMcKayClaudeMcKayRogerMais MaxwellHall....MervynMorris BarbaraS.Ormsby....W.AdolpheRoberts Antlrew Salkey K.B.SCOttPhilipSherlockLedaandtheSwanYellowChrysanthemumSongofthe BananaManLamentoftheBananaManArawakPrologue Bananas RipeandGreenFlameheartMenofIdeasJamaicaMarketTheDaymyFatherDied A. CertainBeggarNamedLazarusTheMaroon GirlJamaicaSymphony-extract....OnImmortalityJamaicanFishermanMyFatherin theNightCommandingNoJamaicaTestament-extractIHaveSeenMarchTheHourEXTRACTSFROM SusanProudleighH.G. de Lisser136NewDayVictorS.Reid 143 Creole LucilleIremonger155BrotherManRogerMais 164TheAutumnEquinoxJohnHearne178MISCELLANEOUS(Autobiography, History, Folklore,Humour)HowWarCame to ParisW.AdolpheRoberts190 SpanishTown-extractClintonV.Black196TheSelf-GovernmentMovementH.P.Jacobs205Anansi,the Man--extract Philip-Sherlock 215AnancyandSorrel LouiseBennett218 MeinKampf-ExtractA.E.T.Henry2tlIn Reverse LouiseBennett226

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DedicatedtoTHEFREE PEOPLEOFJAMAICA

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FOREWORDThepublicationofthis AnthologyofJamaican wrirings was oneofthe tesponsibilitiesofthe Committee setupbythe MinistryofDevelopment and Welfare to plan and org:mise the artistic activitiesofJamaica's IndependenceCelebrations.Italso reflects a conscious effortonthe partoftheGovernmentofJamaica to bringtheArtsintogreater focusasthe country enters its new eraofIndependence. 1 should like to pay tribute to all those pioneer writers and organisations,whosevisionandunstintinglabours have laidthefoundationsofourcreative literature, so that todayaswe enter Independence, we can publish a collectionof Jamaican poetry and prose, without having to apologise forthequalityofits contents.Itis far easier to follow than to make a beginning; and itisoneofthebesettingsinsofoursocietythataswe becomemoresophisticated, we tend to look downournoses at those whobymaking mistakes first showed usthe w:ty. Even so, the worksofmanyofourearlier writers -I have in mindthepoetsTomRedcam and Claude McKay, andamongthosewhoare still living,W.Adolphe Roberts andJ.E.Clare McFarlane have already entered into the complexofournational culture. And itisa pleasure to attend Speech Festivals andothergatherings and hearouryoung people speak with conviction such poemsasSanGloria, Flameheart, TheMaroonGirlandOnNational Vanity.Oneofthe challengesofIndependenceisthatnational pride will always seek for indigenous artistic expression.Thisisnotthe same thingassuggestinga blatant partisanship on the partoftheartist,orthat he should becommittedtooneideology or another.Theartist, if he isworthhis salt, will always be true to his own vision.Thereseems to beoverwhelmingevidence fromthehistoryofothercultures,however,thatuntilwe are truly national,thatisto say, until we have really learnt to exploitourownresources, the bodyofourcreative literature will never speak with a voicethatis undeniably its own, and thus

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throwup the writers who can win throughcouniversal acclaim.IeistcuethatanumberofJamaican writers have been securing publica tion overseas. They deserve our warmest congratulations. I appreciate that theopponunitiesfor publication in Jamaica are limited.Onecannotoverlookthefact, however,thatJamaicanandotherWestIndianbooksdonot 1t presenthave acommandingreadership in this island,butitishopedthateffoces suchasthelocalpublicationofthis volume will help cowatds creating a reasonable market at home. I do not believe that writers can escape the responsibilityofwriting fortheirownpeople.Totheextenrthatthey are ablecocommunicatecotheirownpeople at home, that they can give them some illuminationoflife,cothatextcnr wiJl theybeestablishingconranwith universal values and writing the booksofwhich we can be proud.Ieis for these reasons that Iamable tocommendthis Independence Anrhologyof Jam1ican writingasmaking astanintheright direction.EDWARDSEAGA, MinisterofDevelopmenr and Welfare. Hanover House, 90 Hanover Street, Kingscon, Jamaica.

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INTRODUCTIONThcpublicationofthisanthologyof Jamaican prose and vcrseistocommemoratetheachievementofjamaica'spoliticalindependenceonAugust6th,1962:itis part ofthe island'sindependence celebrations,andthepublishers are an advisorycommittcetothe ofJamaica-theArtsAdvisoryCouncil.Productioncostswill be metoutofasumallocated asanannual subventionto the Arts Advisor}' Councilbythe Ministry ofDevelopmellt and\\'elfarc to encouragc theartsinJamaica.This anthology isthereforenot a priv,ltccommercialventurebutisgovernment-sponsored. But it was compiled asthough it were aprivHe commercialventure.Thecompilersscntout invitations to a numberof known writersandpublishedadvertisementsinthepress invitingn1:lnuscripts.\Vhen thesearrivedthey sdected, sortedandeditedthemandsentthemtotheprinterswithoutreferenceto anygovernment otficial any wherealongtheline.Thereadershould therefore knowthatbutfortheactiveinterestand financial suPPOrtofthe government of Jamaica theremighthavebeen no anthology to celebr:lte Jamaica'sindependence.ModernJamaicanwritingcanfairlybe saidtohavebegunwith'TomRedcam'-ThomasHenryMacDermotwhose Irishancestorssettledin'Jamaicainthe18thcentury.Redcamwasbornin1870anddied inEnglandin 1933afterspendingnearlyeleven years in and outofEnglishnursinghomes,dreamingofandlongingforhis'LittleGreenIsland'.A Little GreenIsland.infar away seas! Now the swift Tropic shadows stride over thy leas:Theevening's .Elf-bugles call over the land, And ocean's low lapping falls soft on the strand.Thendown the far West. towards the portalsofNight.Gleamthe gloryoforangeanjrich chrysolite. Day endeth its splendour: the Nightisat hand:Myheart groweth tender. dear. far away land.ButbeforethatRedcamhadsungJamaicain anewwaythatmadeitspeopleandits natural beautycomealivewiththatstartlingfreshnessandsenseofdiscoverywhichisthegloryofgoodpoetry.AseditoroftheJamaicaTimesRedcamencouragedyoungerwritersandfoundspacefortheworks.Asanative-bornwhiteJamaican

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of his rimes he was tOtallycommittedtoJamaica,therewerenosplitloyalties,no ti'ioughr orralkofGreatBritainorIrelandas'Home'. Asfarback as 1899 hecould say tohis fellowwhitesandcoloureds:"Todaywe lead; weadvise;andonthedayfollowingwe arc co-workerstOgetherwithourblackcountrymen....Itisasour actiom andopinionsrelatetothem that theywillstandapplaudedorcondemnedby rhefuturehistOrian."AmongthosewhomRedcampublishedandencouragedwas a poorblackboyfromthehillsofClarendonnamed Cbude McKay.ThankslargelytoRedcamMcKay'sfirsttwovolumesofverse Cnl1s/ab Ballads andSongs0/Jamaicawerepublishedin hishome land. Withrhese, ::Ind aMusgraveMedalfromtheInstituteofJamaica,theyoungpoerlefthishomelandtowinagreatreputationasoneoftheleadingpoetsofthe'NegroRenaissance'ofthe2OsintheUnitedStates.InAmerica,Africa ::Ind elsewhereMcKayisknownmainlyas rheexplosively::Ingryrace-andcolour-consciouspoetusingwords ::IS weaponsagainstdiscrimination ::Ind bigotry:Ifwemusl die. 0lelusnobly die. So that ourprecious blood may not be shedInvain; then even the monsterswedefy Shall he constrained tohonourusthough dead! ButIn Jam::lica heisalsoremembered,andhonoured,forhishumorous ::Ind comicverses like'FlatFootDrill'hespentsometimeintheJamaicaConstabularyforce:Fus' beginnin. nat foot drill. Larnin' howfemek righttu'n:'Tention! keep you' han's dem still Can't you tekin tlat a liT? Hearin' all. but larnin' none...Andforrhehauntinglyricismofhis loveforhis islandandtheterriblehomesicknessin poems like'FlameHean'and'AfterWinter'.For lvlcKar hisself-imposedexile waswinrerandafrerwinterwouldbewhenhegothome.Burhe died inAmericain 1948 in Wl/lter.BothRedcamandMcKay,thepioneersofmodernJamaicanpoetry,diedfarfromhome.By 1923interestInpoetryhadgrownto suchan extentthat1.E.ClareMcFarlane,theisland'sseniorlivingpoetcouldfound.

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thePoetryLeagueofJamaicaasabranchoftheEmpirePoetryLeague.TheLeagueposthumouslydeclaredTomRedcamJamaica'sfirstPoetLaureate.In 1924McFarlanepublished hisownfirstcallectionofpoems.Healsoedited the firstanthologyofJamaicanpoetry,Voic{'sFrom SIII1IIIl{'rland, whichwas published inLondon In 1929.ThepoetsofthePoetryLeague werenot,overtlyat least, aspreoccupiedwith,andinvolvedin,thesocial, politicalandeconomicproblemsofJamaicaaswereRedcamand McKay. Theirverse didnetreflectordrawinspirationfromthegrowingnationalawakeningthatstirredtheland.TheirversebroughttomindKeatsandWordsworth,andShelleybereftofrevolutionarycontent.ButtheynurturedthepoeticawakeningandMcFarlanehimselfandVivianVirtue,tomymindthemostsuccessfulofthePoetryLeague poets, achieved somememorableverse.McFarlane's'VillanelleofImmortalLove'isa fairexample:Love will awaken all lovely thing3 at last. One byone they shall come from the sleeportime. Bearingintriumph the deathle:;s dreams or the pa,t. Hard on their fair designs come the wreckofthe blast; Where theyliescatteredinevery land and clime. Lovewillawaken all lovely things at last.Thetroublesofthe193OsandthegrowthofthenationalistmovementundertheleadershipoftheP.N.P.ledtheemergenceofa newgroupofpoetsinthelate 193Osandearly 1940sThesepoets wereinvolvedinthenationalistmovement,drewtheirinspirationfromitandgave voicetoits aspirations.Muchofthis wasprotest,agitationalverse,oftencrudeandlackinginthegraceachieved by thePoetry League poets.ButoccasionallytheystruckpurepoeticgoldasdidRogerMaiswithhis:Allmen come to the hills Finally...withits deepundertonesoftheisland'spastandthepovertyofthe'proudlonemen'with'dusty,brokenfeet'.A hostofotherpoetsemergedthemostoutstandingtomymindbeingGeorgeCampbell,M.G.Smith,H.D.CarberryandBasilMcFarlane,sonof Clare McFarlane.Andtherewereotherpoets likeW.AdolpheRobertsandP. M.Sherlockwhoprecededandnurturedtheawakening.

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Uptothistimeprosefictionhadplayed arelatively unimportantpartinJamaicanliterature.Atleast a dozennovels had beenwrittenbutmostlyinthenineteenthcentury, beginning withMichael Scott\TomCrillg!c's Log.lnd the Cmisc' of IlwMie!Ke. ButScott and ,IIItheotherwriterswere'outsiders'seeingand writing about .J;llnaica as 'outsiders'.Inthe opening yearofthiscenturyHerbert George de Lisscr had publishedfive novels.Butit notuntil 194.\, withthepuhlicationofthefirst Focus under theeditonhip of F.dll.!Manlcytharprme, firstof all intheformof theshnrtstory,c.mc intoitsown.Thehrst Foeus containedtenshort storil'S, over liit)' poems,threeshorr pla)'S ,Ind fiveshorres ays. The \l'conc.{:(lnt.' ,publishedfive yeusI.Her, Iud the samenumberof butthere wen: sixteen shon.'tories. Thethird F"uc",pUbli,hed in1956,hadthirteenstoriessimplybecausethere Was noroomforanymore,AndthefourthFoclls,publishedin,1960, carriedeighteen prose piecesofwhichsixteen were fiction, and fewer poems th:lnin all theotherissuesof Fo('//s. ProsefictionhadcomeintOitsown, andwhen Robert H,'rring devoted an entireissueofLife /lue!LeI/en to .J.lmaic.tnwritingW.l)' backin1948he notfindspaceforallthepublishableshortstorieshereceivedfrom Jamaica. Inthesecond F"CII.I Edn.1 wrote:"There are signsthatourpeople arcbecoming moreconsciousthatitisessentialthat we shouldproducebooksof am own, .Ind ifthis feeLinggrows, therewill be far less fin3ncial riskinvolvedinputtingourwritersoftalentbeforethepublic",In1950thiside:t becamearealitywhenGleanerCompan)'established the Pioneer Presswhich haspublisQed well overtwent)'titlesinveryattractivep:lperbackeditions selling round ahoutthree shillings andsi:\-pence. Itis agreattragedythar the publishing .Ictivit)'.of the Pioneer Pre" has fallen off soveryb'ldlyinrecent years. In1949,thesameyearin which JE. ChreMcF,trl:tne published hissecond anthology, A Trc'aHlr.l' ofjamaicallPCJ('/ry,VicReidpublishedhis novel, Nl'lvD/I.Y,Thisnovelwhichwaspublished inbothNewYork and London,was thebeginning of the emergenceof a wholenewschoolofJamaicanand \'fest Indiannovelists,Thenamesofthe leading membersofthis group:He pub-

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lic lJroperty. Thereis Edgar Mittclholzer,George Lamming,Roger Mais,john Heune,VidiaNaipaul,Samuel Selvon, JanCarew .IndAndrewSalkey.Andbehindthem arc otherspressing lurd for pub licationandpublicrecognition.Itisnotmypurpose heretodiscussthenovelsofall these \'\lest Indianwritersindeeditisnotpossible ro encompass sucha dis cussionwithintheframeworkofthisbriefintroductionto.In;Inthologycommemorating jamaica's Independence. But some of the problemswhich face thesewriters are commontoB;lrbados, Trinilhd, BritishGuianaasmuch as to jamaica. So, while I shall confim'myselftothe jamaican novelists specifically, it mightbeuseful to bear inmindthattheproblemsareregion-wide and thaton thewhole thenovelists themselvessec themasbeing region-wide.AfterVicReid published hisNcwDay, RogerNbis appeared onthe literary scenewith three novels following e;li::h other in f.lirlyrapidsuccession. These were:The Hills\'(/'('/"(. JUY/1I1 TIIXdbpr, BrotherMal1andB/lIck Lightl1ing.Andthen,in 1955, Mais diedjustwhenhe seemedonthevergeofbecoming a re;dly powerfulinfluence onjamaicanandWestIndianwriting.Next Clme JohnHearnewhosepublicationof Voices U/1{!rrtheWindow heralded theemergenceofoneof,ifnotthebest,craftsmen among''(;lest Indianwriters.Allhissucceedingnovels haveattestedtohis skill.Thefourth jamaican novelist ro have achieved acritical and publicacclaim thatentitleshimtoconsiderationbesideReid,Mais andHearne isAndrewSalkey.OfthefouronlyVic Reid stayedathome.Theothers went awaytoEngland ro liveandwriteand findthewider fields they soughtfortheirtalents.Itispossiblethatbecause hestayed at homeVicReid has publishedonlytwonovels, his second,ThcLcopard,dealingnotwithjamaicabutwiththeMau Mau in Kenya.This,incidentally,was oneofthemostremarkablefeatsofcreativeimaginationI haveeverread.Itisequally possiblethatifhehad goneawayhemightstill havewrittenonlythetwonovelsbetween1949andthe present time.RogerMaiswent away, butin some ways histhreenovelswrittenwithin a tighttime span give atruer streetlevel viewofthelowerdepthsofcontemporary jamaicathan

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anythingelse Iknow.BythesametokenthereisnoknowingwhethcrHearneand5alkeystayingathomewouldhave madeanydifferencetothe choiceofsubjectmatterandangleofapproach. 50itseemstomethatwewanttogetawayfromall thistalkaboutthe'plcasuresofexile'orthedutyofwriterstocome home.Inanycase,writcrseverywhere have atendencytodoexactlywhattheywantand thc rcadercantakeitor leave it.Ifthewriterelectsnottobeconcernedwiththehumanandsocial problemsofhis own emerging society,thatishis business.Theremay be thoseofuswhothinkthatsince all goodartmustbebedded ontherealitiesoflifeanyescapistortouristguidetypeoffictionwhichtrades ontheexoticsettingorquaintnessofspeech willnotbegreatorcvenverygood.Butwecannotimpose this view on thewriter.Whatwecansay,andIthinkwecansay this fairlyoftheJamaicannovelistandofthe West Indian novelist,isthattheremustbe a reasonwhythere has beensuchgreatskillandpromiseshown-andwhyit has remainedjustpromise,unfulfilledthesemanyyears. \'(f ecanaskournoveliststotryandgive answerstothis question.Andthcirbest answerwouldbe a reallygreatJamaicannovelthatwould make JamaicaandJamaicansuniquely realasa landanda people for all men in all lands andforall time. Ithinkitis th,,= recognitionofthis challengethathasbroughtJohnHearnehome,andthatisa very hopefulthing.As thisanthologyshows,Jamaicanliteraturehas evolvedandgrownand achiend muchthatisextremelygood inbothpoetryand prose.Itisstrikingandimpressive comparedwiththatofany society similartoours.Thechallengetoourwritersnowistobuild onwhathas been achievedandtocreatealiteraturethatwillstandbesidethebest inthemodern world.Andforthisourwritersneed, Ithink,tolook deeplyinward.PETERABRAHAMSCoyaba, Jdmaica.

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ATTHESTELLINGJOHNHEARNE ((DIS oneisnobossfe'we,Dunnie,"Son-Son say. "I don'like how him stay. Dis oneisboss fe' messenger an' women in Department office,butnot fe' we.""Shutyour mour'," I tell him. "Since when a stupid, black nigger can like anddon'tlike a boss inNewHolland?Whatyougain'do? Retirean'live'panyour estate?" But IknowsaychacSon-Son is righc.Thecwoofwe calk so atthebackoftheline; Son-Son carrying chechain,mewiththelevelonthetripod.Thegrass stay high,andthegroundhard wich sun.Itis three mile to where che Catacuma run black past che stelling,and even the long light downchesky can't strike a shine from Catacuma water. You can smell Rooi Swamp, dark and sweet and wicked like awomanin a bad house back inZuyderTown.Nothinglive in Rooi Swamp except snake; likenothinglive in a bad woman.InallSouthAmerica thereisnoswamp liketheRooi;noteven in Brazil;noteven in Cayenne.Thenew boss, MisterCockburn,walk far ahead with the little assistant man, Mister Bailey.Nobodycoumtheassistant.Himonly come down to che Catacuma to learn.Johnscayclose behind them, near to cherifle.Theother restofchegang file outupon the crail between them three and me and Son-Son. Mister Cockburnisbrand-new from head to foot.Newhat, new bush-shirt, new denim pant, new boor.Himwalk new. "Mister Cockburn!"Johncall, quick and shacp. "Look!" I follow the pointofJohn'sfinger and see chedeer. Ie facand promise cender and it turnon che hoof-tip like deer always do, withthefour tipstandingin a nickelandleavingenoughbare to makeacentchange, beforechespring into high grass. Miscer Cockburn unshipche nfle, andpow,if we was all cow chen himshomplenty grass forus co eat."Whyhimdon'tgiveJohnde rifle)" Son-Sonsay."Because de rifleisGovernment," Icellhim,"andMiscer CockburnisGovernment.Soicishim have a right CO de rifle." Mister Cockburnturnand walk back.Heis a tall, high mulatto man,

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2Atthe Stellingyoung and full in body, with eyes not blue and not green,butcoloured like the glassofa beer bottle. The big hat make him look like a soldier in the moving pictures. "Blast this sun," he say, loud, toJohn."Ican't see a damn'thingintheglare; it's right inmyeyes."Thesunisfalling down the sky behind usbutmaybe himthinkwe can't see that too.Johndon't answerbutonly nod once, and Mister Cockburn turn and walk on, and IknowsaythatifI could see John'S face it would be all Carib buck. Sometimes you can see wheretheIndian lap with it, but other times itisall Indian and closed like a prison gate; and I knewsay,too, that itwasthisfaceMister Cockburn did just see."Troubledere, soon," Son-Son say, andhimchinpointtoJohnandthento Mister Cockburn."WhyMisterHamiltondid have to get sick, eh, Dunnie?Datwasa boss to have.""Whatevertrouble to happenisJohn'S trouble," I tell him."John'stroubleisMister Cockburn's. Leave it.Youisapoornaygur widnoschooling,fivepickneyand a sick woman.Datistrouble enoughforyou." But in my heart Ifindagreement for what stupid Son-Son have tosay.IfI have only known what trouble...No. Lifedon'tcome so.Itonly come one day at a time. Like it had come everydaysincewelose Mister Hamilton and Mister Cockburn take we up to survey the Catacuma drainage area in Mister Hamilton's stead.Thefirst daywegoonthesavannah beyondthestelling,IknowsaythatMister Cockburnisfrighten. Frighten, and hiding his frighten from himself.Theworst kindoffrighten.Youhear frighten in him voice when he shoutatwe to keepthechain straight and plant the markers where him tellus.You see frighten when him try to work us, and him self, one hour after midday, when even the alligators hide in the water. And you understand frighten when him try to run the campatthestellingasif we was soldier and him was a general. But all thatisbecauseheisnew and it would pass but forJohn.BecauseofJohneverything remain bad. From the first day whenJohntry to treathimashe treat Mister Hamilton. You see,Johnand MisterHamiltonwas likeonethingexcept that

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JohnHearne3MisterHamiltonhave schooling and come from a big family in Zuyder Town. But they each suck froin a Carib woman and from the firstboththeir spirit take.Whenwehave Mister Hamiltonasboss whateverJohnsay we doasif it was Mister Hamilton say it, and atnightwhen Mister Hamilton lie off in the big Berbice chair on the veranda and him andJohntalk it sound like one mind with two tongue.That'show it sound totherestofwewhenwe sitdownthe steps and listentothemtalk. Only when Mister Cockburn come back up the river with we, after Mister Hamilton take sick,weknowsayall thatischange. For Mister Cockburnisfrighten and must reduceJohn'spride, and fromthatdayJohndon'ttouchtherifle anddon'tcome to the veranda except to take orders and for Mister Cockburn toshowthatgangforemanisonlygangforeman andthatbossisalways boss. Son-Sonsaytrue, I think. Troubleistocome betweenJohnand Mister Cockburn. PoorJohn.Here, inthebush,himis a king,butinNewZuyder himisjust another poor half-buck without a job and Mister Cockburnisboss and some he cast down and some he raiseth up. Aheadofwe, I see Mister Cockburn trying to step easy and smooth,asifwedidn'tjust spend seven hoursonthesavannah.Himistrying hardbutvery often the new boot kick black dirt from the trail.ThatisallrightI think.Himwill learn.Himdon'tknow saythatevenJohnholdrespect forthesunonthe Catacuma.Thesundownhereonthesavannahislike the centurioninthe Bible who saytoone man, Come,andhecometh,and toanother,Go,and hegoeth.Like it say go,toMister Hamilton. For it was a man sick badwetake down to the mouthofthe river that day after hefalldown on the wharf at thestelLing.And it was nearly a dead manwedrive up the coast road one hundred mile to Zuyder Town.Wedid want to stop inHendrikstadtwith himthatnight, but he think himwasdying wethinksotoo apd him would not stop for fear he die away from his wife. And afterwards the Governmentdoctor tell Surveythathe must stay in the office forevermore and e:ven Mister Hamilton who think him love the bush and the swamp and the forest more than life itself was grateful to the doctor for those words. So it was it did happen with MisterHamilton,and so it was Mister Cockburn come towe.

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4Atthe StellingThreeweeks weisontheCatacumawithMister Cockburn,andevery new day things stay worse than the last.Inthemorning, when him comeoutwiththerifle,himshout:"Dunnie!Takethecorialacrosstheriver andputupthesebottles."Andhe flingtheempty rum and beerbottledownthe slopetomeand Igetintorheconaland paddle acrosstheriver, andputthenecks over seven sticksonthe other bank.Thenhim and the little assistant, Mister Bailey, stayonthe veranda and fire across the river, each spelling each, until thebottleisall broken.AndJohn,downbytheriver, inthesoftmorninglight,standinginthecorialwe have half-buried inthewater, half-drawnuponthebank,washinghimselfall over careful like anIndianandnotlookingto the veranda."John!"MisterCockburnshout,andlaughbad. "Careful, eh, man.Mindaperaidon'tcut off your balls."Wehave tostandintheconalbecauseperaiisbadontheCatacumaandwilltakeoffyour heel andyourtoeifyoustandintheriver six inches from the bank.Wealways joke eachotheraboutit,butnor rhe wayMisterCockburnjokeJohn.Tharmanknowwharhimisdoingand itisnotnice to hear.Johnsaynothing.Himsrand in rhe srill watercatchofrhecorialwe half-sink and wash him whole body like an Indian and wash himmouthoutand listen to Mister Cockburn fire at rhebotdeacross rhe river.OnlyweknowhowJohnneed to holdthatrifle.Whenitcometorifle andgunhimisall Indian, no Africaninirar all. Rifle to himislike womantowe.Himdon't really hold a rifle, him make love with it. And I rhinkhowthingsgoin MisrerHamilton'stime when him andJohnstandonthe veranda in the morning and rake seven shots break seven bottle, andoutinthebush they feelshameiffourshotfire and only rhree pieceofgamecome back.Although,Idon'rralk trurh, if Idon'rsayhowsome times Mister Hamilton miss a shot on rhe bortle.Whenthat happen youknowhimisthinking.Heis amanrhinkhardallthetime.Andrhequestionheask!"Dunnie,"he ask, "whar do you see in your looking glass?" or, "Do you know,Dunnie,thatrhis country has had irs imagesbrokenonthewheelsoffalseassumprions)Arroganceandservility.

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John Hearne 5 Twincriminals pleading for the mercyofanearly death," Thatishow MisterHamiltontalk late atnightwhen him lie off in the big Berbice chair and sharehimmind withwe.After three weeks on the Catacuma, Mister Cockburn and mostofwegodowntheriver. Mister Cockburn to take him plans to the Departmentandtherestofwe becausenothingto do when himisgone. All thewaydown the riverJohndon'tsaya word. Him sitinthe boat bows and stare downtheblack waterasifitis a bookgivinghim secret to remember. Mister Cockburnisloud and happy, for him feel, we know say, now, whoisboss and him begin to lose him frighten spirit. Him is better now the frighten gone and confidence begin to come. "Remember, now," him say in the Department yard at Zuyder Town."Eighto'clock sharp on Tuesday morning.Ifoneofyouisfiveminutes late, the truck leaves without you. Plentyofmen between here and the Catacuma gladtogetwork."Welaugh and say, "Sure, boss, sure," becauseweknowsaythat already himisnot so newashimwasand thathimisonly joking. OnlyJohndon't laughbutwalkoutoftheyardand down the street. Mondaynight,Johncometo my house; Iisliving in a little place between the coolie cinema and the dockyard."Dunnie,"he say,"Dunnie,you have fifteen dollar?" "Jesus," Isay,"whatyou need fifteen dollar for, man?Datisplenty, you know?" "All right,"hesay."You don't have it. I oryask." Him rum,asif itwasthe time himaskand I don't have no watch."Holdon, holdon,"I tell him. "I neversayI don't have fifteen dollar. I justsaywhat you want it for?" "Lend me. Idon'thave enough for what I want.Aswepayoffnext month, you get it back. My wordtoGod." I go into the house. "Wheredemoney?" Iaskthe woman."Whatyou want it for?" she ask."Youpromise say wedon'tspend dat money until we marry and buy furnitures.Whatyou want tek it now for?"

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6AttheStelling"Justtell me where it stay," I tell her."Justtell me.Don'tmek me havetofind it, eh?""Thankyou,Dunnie,"Johnsay when I bringhimthe fifteen dollar."Onedayyouwill want something bad. Cometome then." Andhimgone up the street so quickyouscarcely see him pass under the light.Thenext morning, in the truck goingddwhtotheboat at the Cata cumamouth,wesee what J'dhh did want fifteen dollatfor."Youhave a licence forthat)"MisterCockburnask him, hard and quick, when he see it. "Yes,"JohnsayandstOwthe new Ivor-]ohnson repeater with his upin the boat bows."Allright," Mister Cockburnsay. "I 'hopeyoudo. Idon'twant any unlicensed guns on my camp."HimandJohnwas never borntoget on.Wereach the stelling late afternoon.Thebungalow standonthe bluff above the big tent where we sleep and Zacchy, whowedid leave to looktothe camp,waitonthewharfwavingtous.Whenwe passing the gear from the boat,Johngrab his bundle by the string and swing it up.Thestring break and shirt, pant and handkerchiefflyoutto floatonthe water.Themfloatbutthe new cartonof.32am munitionfallouttOOandweseeit for a second, green in the black waterasit slide to the bottom and the mud and theperai.Mister Bailey, the little assistant, look sorry,Johnlook sick, and Mister Cockburn laugh a little upinthe backofhim nose."Isthatallyouhad?" him ask. "Yes,"Johnsay, "I don'tneed no more than that for three weeks.""Toobad," Mister Cockburn reply."Toobad.Rottenluck. I might be abletospareyoua few from stores." Funny how a man who canscaydecent with everybody always find oneotherwho turn him bad. Is another three weeks we stay uponthesurvey.Wetriangulate all the stretch between the Rooi Swamp and the first forest. Thingsisbetterthistime. MisterCockburndon'tfeel sorampageoustoshowwhata hard boss himisEverythingisbetter excepthimandJohn.Whenever

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JohnHearne7him andJohnspeak, one voiceissharp and empty and the other voiceisdead, and empty too. Everyfewday him giveJohntwo-three cartridge, andJohngooutand come back with two-three pieceofgame. A deer and alabba,.maybe.Ora bush pig andanagouti.Whatever ammunitionJohnget n\m bring back meat to match. And, you know, 1 think that rowel MisterC:;ockburn'sspirit worse than anything else Johndo. Mister Cockburn is'spooting good, too, andweiseating plenty meat,buthimdon'twalk with. ,gun like John.Whocould ever. Not even Mister Hamilton. .Thelast Saturday before we leave,Johncome to Mister Cockburn.Itisafternoon and work done till Monday. Son-Son and meisgetting the gears ready for a little cricket on theflatpiece under the kookoritpalms.The cris;ket gears keep in the big room with the other restofstores and we hear every wordJohnand Mister Cockburnsay."No,John,"Mister Cockburn tell him. "We don'tneed any meat.We'releaving Tuesday morning. We have more than enough now."Himvoice sleepy ana deep from the Berbice chair. "Sell me afewrounds, Mister Cockburn,"Johnsay. "I will give you store price for afewroundsof.32." "They're not minetosell." Mister Cockburnsay,and himisliking thewholebusiness sodamn'much his voicedon't even hold maliceasitalways doforJohn. "You know every roundofammunition here belongs to Survey. 1 have to indent and account for every shot fired."Himknow, like we know,thatSurveydon'tgive a lime how muchshotfireupin the bush so longas the men stay happy and get meat."Youcan't give three shot, Mister Cockburn?"Johnsay.You knowhowbadJohnwanttouse the new repeater when you hear him beg. "Sorry,John,"Mister Cockburnsay."Haveyou checked the caulking on the boat? 1 don't want us shipping any water when we're going down on Tuesday." A little later allofwe exceptJohngooutto play cricket. MisterCockburnand Mister Bailey come too and each take captainofa side.Weplay till the parrots come talking across the river to thekookontsand the skyturnto green fireoutofthe savannah.Whenwe come back to the campJohnisgone.Himtake theconaland gone.

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8Atthe Stelling"Thatdamn'buck," Mister Cockburn saytoMister Bailey."Goneuptherivertohis cousin, I suppose.Wewon't see him until Monday morningnow.Youcan take anIndian ou( ofthebush,butGodAlmightyhimself can't take the bushoutofthe Indian." Monday morning, wegetup andJohnisthere.Himisseated ontheJtetfingand all you can seeofhimfaceistheteeth himgrinand the cheeks swellupand shiny with pleasure.LayoutoftheJtetfingbeforehimisseven pieceofgame. Three deer, a!abbaand three bush pig.Noneofwe evet seeJohnlook so.Himtited till him thin and grey,buthappyandproud till him can't speak. "Seven," himsayat last and holduphim finger. "Seven shoes, Dunnie.That'sall I take.Oneday and seven shot."Whocan stay like an Indian with himgameand noshotgone wide "What'sthis?" a voice call fromuptheveranda and we look and see Mister Cockburn inthesoft, white-man pyjamas lean overtolook at weontheJtetfing."Isthatyou,John?Wherethe devil have you been-""I make a Iitrle trip, Mister Cockburn,"Johnsay.Himissoproud and feel so damn' sweet him like even Mister Cockburn. "I make a linle trip. I bring backsomethingforyou to take ba(k to(Own.Come and make your choice, sir." Mister Cockburnisofftheveranda beforetheeye can blink, and we hearthefine red slippergoslap-slap on the patchdownthe bluff.Himcometothewharfandstopshorr whenhimseethegame.ThenhimlookarJohnfor alongtimeandturnawayslowand make water overthestetlingedge and come back, slow and steady. "All right," him say, and him voice soft andfeelbad in your ears, like you didstumbleinthedark andputyourhandintosomethingyouwouldwalk round. "All right,John.Wheredid yougetrheammunition?Who gave it you,eh?"Himvoicegoup and break like a boy's voice when the first hairs begin togrowlow down on him belly."MisterCockburn,"Johnsay, so crazy proudthateven now him wanttolikethemanandshare pridewithhim. "I did raketherounds, sir.Fromyou room. SevenshotI rake, MisrerCockburn,and lookwhatI

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John Hearne9bringyou back. Take that deer, sir, for yourself and your family.Townpeople never taste meat like that.""Yousonofa bitch," Mister Cockburn reply."Youdamned imperti nent, thieving sonofa bitch. Bailey'" and him voice scream until Mister Bailey come outtothe veranda. "Bailey! Listentothis.Wehave a thiefinthe camp. This beauty here feels that thegovernmentowes him his ammunition.Whatelse did you take?"Himvoice soundasif a rope tie round him throat."Whatelse I take?"Johnlookasif him trytokiss a woman and she slaphimface."HowI could take anything, Mister Cockburn?Asif Iama thief. Seven littleshotI take fromthecanon.Youdon'teven remember how many rounds you did have left.Howmany you did have leave, eh? Tell me that.""Don'tback chat me, you bloody thief!" Mister Cockburn yell."Thisisyour last job with Survey, you hear me?I'mgoingtofireyour arseassoonaswegettothe river mouth. Anddon'tthink this gameisyours to give away. Youshotit withgovernmentammunition.Withstolengovernmentammunition.Here'Dunnie'Son-Son! Zacchy'Getthatstuffupto the house. Zacchygutthem and hang 'em. I'll decide what to do with them latt'r." Johnstayasstillasifhimwas dead.Onlywhenwegatherupthegameand a kid deer droponesplashofdarkstomachblood Onto the boards him draw one long breath and shiver."Now,"Mister Cockburn say,"getto helloutofhere!Upto the tent. Youdon'twork for me anymore. I'll take youdownriver on Tuesday and that's all. And if Ifindone dollar missing frommywalletI'mgoing to see you behind bars."ItisthatdayI knowsayhow nothingsobad before but corruption and rottenness come worse afrer.Noneofwecould forgetJohn'sfacewhenwepick up him game. For we Negro, and for the white man, and for themulattoman,gameisto eat sometimes,oritisplaytoshoot.Butfor the Indian,ohGod,gamethathimkill trueislife everlasting.Itis manhood.Whenwe come back early in the afternoon, with work done, we don't

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10AttheStellingseeJohn. But the coria'still there, and the engine boar, and we know that him not far. Little later, when Zacchy cook, 1filla billy pot andgooutto thekookorits.I find him there, in the grass."John,"Isay."Don'ttek it so. Mister Cockburn young and foolish anddon'tmean harm. Eat,John.By the timewe reach rivermouthtomorroweveryt'ing will be well again. Do,John.Eat dis."Johnlook at me and it isone black Indian Caribfacestare like statue into mine. Allofhimstill, except the hands that holdthe newriReand polish, polish, polish with a rag until the barrel shine blue like a Chinee whore hair. I come back to thestelLing.Mister Cockburn and Mister Bailey lie intotwodeck chair under the tarpaulin, enjoying the afternoon breeze off the river.Workdone and they hold celebration with a bottle.Therestofthegangsitontheboards anddrinktoo.Nothingsweeter than rum and river water."MisterCockburn," I tell him,"Idon'tlike howJohnstay.Himis hit hard, sah.""Oh,sit down, Dunnie," himsay."Havea drink.Thatdamned buck needs a lesson. I'll take him back whenwereach Zuyder Town.Itwon't do him any harm to miss two days' pay." So I sit,althoughI know say I shouldn't. I sit and I have one drink, andthentwo, andthenonemore. AndtheCatacumarunsoft musicroundthepilesofthestelLing.All anybody can feelisthatwork done andwehave one week in Zuyder Town before money need callweto the bush again.ThenasI go to thestellingedge to dip water in the mug I look up and seeJohn.Heiscoming down from the house,glidingon the path likeJesusacross the SeaofGalilee, and I say,"OhGod, Mister Cockburn! Where you leave the ammunition, eh?" But already itistoo late tosaythat.Thefirstshotcatch MisterCockburnintheforehead andhimdrop back inthedeck chair, peaceful and easy, like amancallgentlyfrom sleepwhoonlyhalfwake. And I shout,"Dive-oh,Mister Bailey'" andasI drop from thestelLingintoblack Catacuma water, I feelsomething

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JohnHearne11like a mardbtinta wasp sting betweenmylegs and knowsayI must be the first thingJohnever shoot to kill that him only wound. I sink far down in that river and already, beforeirhappen, I canfeelperaichew atmyflyburton and tear offmycod, or alligator grab my leg to drag me to drowning. But Godisgood.WhenI come up rhe sunissriIIthere and I strikeoutfor the little island intheriver opposite thesteLling.Theriverisfullofdeath that pass you by,butrhesteLlingholds a walking death like the destructionofApocalypse. I makegroundattheisland and draw myselfintothemud and the bush and blood draw aftermefrom between my legs. And when Ilookback at thestelling,I see Mister Cockburn lie down in him deck chair, asiffast asleep, and Mister Bailey lying on himfaceupon the boards, withhimhands under him stomach, and Zacchy on him back wirh him arms flung wide like a baby, and three moreofrhegang,Will,Benjie and Sim, all sprawl offontheboards, roo, and a man more, rhe one we call "Venezuela", fallt:n into rhe grass, and a last one, Christopher, walking like a chicken withour a head until him drop close to Mister Bailey and cry our once before death hold him.Theother seven gone. Them vanish. All except Son-Son, poor foolish Son-Son, who make across rheflarwhere we play cricket, under thekookoritsand straight to Rooi Swamp. "Oh Jesus,John!"him bawlashim run."Don'tkill me, John!Don'tkill me,John!" And Johnsranding on the parh, with the repeater stillasthe fingerofGodinhimhands, aim once at Son-Son, and Iknowsay how, even atthatdistance,himcould break Son-Son's back clean inthemiddle. Buthimlower the gun, and shrug and watch Son-Sonintothe long grassofthesavannah and inco the swamp.Thenhim come down thepathand look at the eight dead men."Dunnie!"him call. "I know youisover there.Howyou stay? I dig a grave for the living into the mud."Dunnie!"himcall again. "You hurtbad? Answer me, man, I see you, you know? Look!" A bullet bury itself one inch frommyfaceand mud smackincomy eye. ttDon't shoot me,John,"I beg. "I lend you fifteen dollar, remember?" ttl finish shooting, Dunnie," himsay. "You hurt bad?" ttNo," I tell him the lie. ttl all right."

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12AttheSteffing"Good,"him say from thestelling."Iwill bringtheconalcome fetch you.""No,John!"1 plead with him. "Stay where you is. Stay there! Youdon'twant to kill me now." But 1knowsay howdemonguide a Carib hand sometimes and makethathand cut throats. "Stay there,John!"Himshrug again and squat beside Mistet Cockburn's cnair, and liftthefallen head and look at it and let the head fall again. And 1 wait. 1 waitandbleed and suffer,andthinkhow plentywomenwill cry and plentychildrenbawl forthemdaddywhenJohn'sworkisknowninZuyderTown.1thinkthesethingsand watchJohntheway 1wouldwatch abushmastersnake and bleed in suffering until dark fall. Allnight1 lie there untilGodtake pity and close my eye and mind.Whenmymindcome backtome, it is full day.Johngonefromthestellingand 1 can see him sit on the stepsupat the house, watchingtheriver.Thedead stay same place where he drop them. Fever burn in me,buttheleg stop bleed and 1 dip water from the river and drink.Thedayrumabovemyhead until 1 hear a boat engine on the far sideofthebend, and in a little bit a police launch comeupmid-scream andmakeforthestelling.Whenthey draw near,oneman step tothebowswitha boat-hook, and then the rifletalkfrom the steps and the man yell,holdhim wrist and drop tothedeck.Himtwist and wriggle behindthe cabin quicker than a lizard. 1 hearanEnglishman's voice yell in the cabin and the man at the wheel find reverse before the yell come back fromthe savannah. Theboatgodown-stream a littlethennose intotheoverhangofthebankwhereJohn'srifle can't find them. 1 calloutonce and theycomeacross to the islandandtakemeoff ontheotherside, away fromthehouse. Andiswhen 1 come on boardthat1 see how police know so quick about whathappen. For Son-Son, poor foolish old Son-Son,who1thinkstill hideoutintheswampis there.Himhave on clothesnothimown,andhimis scratched and tornasifhim hadcrytowrestle a jaguar. "Man,"thepolice sergeant tell me."Youshould have seen him when they did bring tous.Swamp tear offhim clothes clean. Neacly tear offhimskin." As isso 1 learnthatSon-Son did run straightasapeccarypig, all night, twenty mile across Rooi Swamp where never any man had evenputhim

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John Hearne13foot before.Himdid run until him drop down in the campofa coolie rancher bringing cattledowntothe coast, and they did takehimfrom theredown to thenearest police post.Whenhim tell police the story, theyputhimin the jeep and drive like hell for the rivermouthand the main starion."Lordwitness, Son-Son," I say,"youwasborntohang.Howyou didn'r meer death in Rooi Swamp, eh)" HimJUStlook frighten and tremble, and the sergeant laugh."Himdidn't want to come up river with we," hesay."Superintendent nearly have to tie him before him would step on the boac." "Sergeant,"theSuperintendent say.HimwastheEnglishman I hear call our whenJohnwound the policeman. "Sergeant, you take rhree men and move inonhim from behind the house. Spread our well. I'll take rhe front approach with theresc.Keep low, you understand.Take your rime.""Don'tdo it, Super," I beg him. "Look howJohnsray in rhar houseupthere. River behindhimand clear view before.Himwill see you as you move one step.Don'tdo ic."Himlook at me angry and the whire eyebrow draw rogerher in him redface."Doyou rhinkI'mgoing to leave him up there?" hesay."He'skilledeightand already rried to kill oneofmymen."Himisbad angry for the constable who sit on the bunk and holding him wrist in the red bandage."No,Super," I tell him."Johndon'ttry to kill you.Ifhim did try rhen you would have take one dead man ourofthe river.Himonly want to show you that him can sting." Bur what use a poor black man talk to police.Thesergeanr and him three stand on the cabin roof, hold onto the bank and drag themselves over. Then the Super with himfivedo the same.' I can hear them rhrough rhe grass like snakes on them stomach.Johnlet them come a little way to the house, and then, with him first shot, him knock rhe Super's black cap off, and with him second, him plug the sergeant in the shoulder.Thepolice rifles ralk back for a while, and Son-Son look atme.Whenthe police come back, I take care to sayno word.Thesergeant curse when rhe SuperpourDettolon the wound and beg the Super to

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14At theStelling Ict himgoback andbringJohndown. "We'llget him," the Super say. "He knows it. He knows he doesn't stand a chance."Buthimvoicecan'treachJohntotellhimthar,andwhenthemtry again one man come back with himbig tOe flat and bloody inthepolice boot.WhenIgoour,though,and walkalongthebankto the stelLingandlay our the bodies decent and cover rhem wirh canvas from the launch, it could have been anemptyhouse up thereon the bluffAnotherhourpass and rhe police begin to frer, and Iknowsay rharthemisgoingto try once more. I wanttotellthemdon'tgo,bur themispolice and policedon'rlike hearother men ralk. Andisthen,aswewait, that we hear a next engine, an ourboard, androundrhe bendcomea Survey boar, andlongbefore it drawupbesidethe my eye know MisrerHamiltonashim sit straight and calm in the bows. "Dunnie, you old fool," himsayand hold mebythe shoulders. "Why didn'tyou stop it?D'youmeanrosayyou couldn'r see ir coming)" Himsmile toshow me that rhe words is" to hide sorrow.HimisthesameMisrerHamilton.Dtessoff in rhewhiteshirt and white stockinghimalways wear, wirh the big linen handkerchief spread upon him headunderrhe hat andhangingdowntheneck back toguardhimfrom sun. "I cameassoonasIcould,"himsay totheSuper. "As soonasthepolice in Zuyder rang Survey andtOldus what you had 'phoned rhrough.Youcan seethe Superis gladtohave one ofhimownsorttotalk with. More glad, though, becauseitisMister HamiltOn and Mister HamiltOn's spirir make all trouble seem less. "We mighthavetobomb him out," Super say. "I've never seen a manshootlike that. He must be a devil.Doyouthinkhe's sane, Hamilton?" Mister HamiltOn give a little smile tharisnota smile. "He's sane now," he say. "Ifhe wasn't he'd have blown your head off" "What'she goingtodo?" Super ask. Mister HamiltOn lift him shoulder and shake him head.Thenhimgouptothecabintopandjumponthe bank and walktorhestelling.Nota sign from the house. I followhimand move the canvas from all the staring dead faces andhimlook and look and passhimhand, tired and slow, across himface.

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JohnHearne15"Howdiditgo, Dunnie?"himask. I tell him."Youcouldn't have stopped him)" "No,"Isay."Himdid have pride to restore.Whocould have stop that? You, maybe, Mister Hamilton. But I doubt me if even you." "Allright,"himsay. "All right."Himturnand start to walktothe house. "Come back, man," Super shout from where him lieinthe grass on the bank. Mister Hamilton just walk on regular and gentle.John'sfirst bullet open a white wound in the boardsbyMister Hamil ton's left foor.Thenext one do the same by the right.Himnever look or pause; even him back,asI watch,don'tstiffen.Thethird shot strike earth before him and kick dirt onto him shoe."John!"himcall, and MisterHamiltonhave a voice like a howler monkey when him want."John,if you make a ricochet and kill me,I'mgoingto come up there and break your--ingneck."ThenI knowsayhow this Mister Hamiltonisthe same Mister Hamil tonthatleftwe.Himwalk on, easy and slow, up the path, up the steps, andintothe house. I sit by the dead and wait. Little bit pass and Mister Hamilton come back.Himisalone, with a basket in him hand.Himfacestill. Likethefaceofamountainlake, back intheInterior, where you feel butcan't see thecurrentand the fullnessofthe water below. "Shirley,"himcalltothe Super,"bringthelaunch uptothestelling.You'll be more comfortable here than where you are. It's quitesafe. He won't shootifyou don't rush him." I look into the basket him bring down from the house.ItfullofwellcookedLabba.Enoughtheretofeed five timesthementhatbegintogatheronthestelling.TheSuper look into the basket also, and I see a great bewilderment come into hisface. "Good God!"himsay."What'sall this?What'she doing)""Dunnie,"Mister Hamiltonsaytome."There's a bottleofrum inmyboat. And some bread and a packetofbutter. Bringthemover for me,

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16 At the Stellingwill you?Goon," him rell Super. "Have some.Johnthoughtyou mighr begettinghungry."Himdrawupthedeck-chairinwhich MisterCockburndid die. IgototheSurvey boar and fetchoutrherumandthebread and the burter.Thebutterwrap into grease paper and sink in a closed billy potofwatertokeep it from rhe sun. Ibringknife, also, and a plate and amugfor Misrer Hamilron, and a billyfulofriver warer for put into the rum.Wheneverything come, him cur bread and burrer it and pour rum for Super and himself, and take a legof!abba.Whenhim chew the food, him eat likeJohn.Thejawsofhimmourhmove sideways andnotacrumbdroptowaste.Therestofwe watchhimand Super, andthenwe cutintothe!abbatoO,andpourliquor fromthebottle.Thetarpaulin stretch above we and the tall dayisbeginningto die over the western savannah."Whydid hedoit?"Supersayandlookattheeightdead layourunderthecanvas. "I don'tunderstandit,Hamilton.ChrisrIHemustbemad."Himlean over beside MisterHamilronandcutanotherpieceof!abbafrom the basket. "What does he rhink he can do?" him ask again."Ifhe doesn't comedownI'mgoingto send down river for grenades.We'llhave togethimoutsomehow." MisrerHamiltonsit and eat andsaynothing..Himsignal ro me and I pass him the bottle.Notmuch left into it, for we all take a drink. MisterHamiltontiltoutrhe lastdropand I take rhe billy andgototheste!!ingedge and draw a little water for Misrer Hamilron and bringirback.Himdraw the drink andputrhemugbeside him.Thenhim step from underthetarpaulin and fling the empty bottle high over Catacuma water. And asthebottlerurnand flash againstrhedying sun, I see it fall apart inthemiddle and broken glass falling like raindropsasJohn'sbullet strike.Weall watch and wait, for nowthewholeworld stand still and wait with we.Onlythewater make soft musicroundthestelling.Thenfromupthehouserhereisrhe soundofoneshot.Itcome ro us sudden andshortand distant,asifsomethingcloseirround."Allright,"MisterHamiltonsay ro theSuper."Youbettergoandbringhimdown now."

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GOODBROWNEARTHLESLIEROBERTSOURvillageisona hillanditisthree miles fromthebay wherethewaves wash the shore in a noisy, purposeful way and one is remindedthatit doesnogoodro be a lazybones.Mostofus villagers likethisplace where we belong and many try to be industrious.Itdoessomethingromostoftheyoung ones when they hearOldTombraggingabout how much work he could and did do, in a day, when he was young. Itislike hearing a gambler say how easy itisto win.Onegetsthefeeling thatifone works his hardest good luck will come his way. ButOldTomhardly seem tothinkhe has been particularly lucky.Heis calledOldTombecause he likes to call himselfTheOldOne,bur we donotreally thinkofhimasbeing old.Hehas a well-knit bodyofmedium built and he walks with a slightly shuffling gait whichisnatural and due to no physical defect.ThosewhoknewOldTom'sfather will tellyouthathe walked justthesame way.OldTomisaboutasStraightasayoungmanalthoughhis hair vies for whitenesswiththewhite-washed wallsofhis house.Heisnotparticularly skilled in any way suchasWillieWhilewhoisthe best fiddler we know or Ackman Skully who sculptured a marvellous likenessofthedevil.Buthe is aspopularasanyotherworthyofthevillage. Old Tom's cottage, a plain oblong structure, stands on aSOrtofmound like rise abovetheroad. From the house thereisa lovelyopenviewoftheriver belowtheroad.Theriver fits inro its bed like an infant in a fourposter, the comparatively wide water course comes near to being fully occupied only when the riverisin spate.OldTomknowsthecontoursoftherocks at the sideofthe stream aboutaswellashe knows the linesinhis hands.Thisplace was alwayshomefor him.Heplayed bythesidesofthe stream when a boy and even nowadays he can be seen fishing intheriver sometimes when the mood moves him to do so.Itiswell known that he inherited a portionofhis land from his fatherandthatashe prospered from his farmingheacquiredadjoiningland, adding tothathe already had.Thereareasmany storiesofhis thriftas

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18GoodBrownEarththere are storiesofhis industry.Butheishumanenough,he has his little faults and failings liketherestofus.Hiswife, Ma Sanny,isa littledeafin one ear nowbutshe is a very cheerful soul and in some ways she is likeOldTom.Whenshe was young she had worked harder than most women. Ma Sanny had had opportunities to marry outsideofthe village and be otherthanthe wifeofa farmerwhohad to work hard to make a living. But this was the life she chose. She loves to see plants and animals grow and togatherthefruitsalthoughher yearsofgoingtomarket are over. She likes toknowthatOldTomisat work in a field evenifshe isnotthere beside him. I always feelthatinsomesubtleway their intense loveofanimalsandplants dosomethingtotheircharacterandhelps to makethemlovable.Thecouple hadnotbeenasplenteously blessed with childrenastheywouldhave liked. They had only one child, a son called Larry.***WhenLarry was fifteen years old andOldTomwashavinghis best success Larry went away to continue his schooling inthemetropolis. In time, Larry became a clerk. Then he married and his wife bore him a son. But before he was thirty-five Larry's wife had become a widow. Larry had died somewhat suddenly.OldTomand Ma Sanny tooktheloss gamely andtheyoungwidowdidn'ttake long to find herself another mate. Larry's son would come at times to visit and stay a few days with his grandfather and his grandmother.OldTomand Ma Sanny were frankly proudoftheir grandson. Nigel was a bright, handsome boy."Burhe will never love rhe village here; he wasborninthecity and there he will belong,"OldTomonce remarked. Adroughtcame.Itgrippedthelandwithmalignantintensity.Itseemedasifthedroughtwouldnever break.Duringthedrought,a noticeable change came overOldTom.Thejovial man had become taciturn and moody. Like the grass he seemed to be witheringaway.Well,ofcourse, almost everyone had become less cheerfulasthe drought lengthened. Bur this wasnotthemost frightfuldroughtOldTomhad experienced, and atothertimesofdroughthe had beentheone to coax

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LeslieRoberts19courage intootherfarmers and he would do whatever he possibly couldtokeep up their spirits, muchasifhe feltthatwas a duty. Ma Sannywouldoffer no clueregardingthechangethathad comeoverOldTom.Ifyou askedherifhe was illshewouldsay, "I don'tknow",inher non-committal way and you would wonderifhe was really ill and she knew itbuthad no mind to disclose the natureofthe malady. But she wasnotunconcerned. She was secretly worried aboutOldTom. She couldnotbe cheerful when he was not contented. A womanofthe village had said pointedly to Ma Sanny that she couldnotsuppose it was justthedroughtthatwas the causeofthechange inOldTom,for he wasn'toneofthepoorest men intheneighbourhood. She added, "It would be a longdroughtyourTomcouldn'tsee his way through. Andifyou was a young gal, Sanny, I would ha' fancy dat what eatin'Tom'sspiritsisa belief dat you hav' another lover an' dat younotall for he." Alfred Tucker, another farmer,isalso a cobbler and a professed Chris tian, with perhaps,toOmuchofan inclinationtobe prophetic.Hisprophesies had invariably proved false. Nevertheless, severalofthevil lagers were inclined to believe his allegationthatOldTomwas losing his mind.Themid-summer holidays had come and Ma Sannythoughtupsome thing.Quitea scheming one she can be, in a lovable way.Heridea was to writetoNigeland askhimtocomeandspenda weekortwOwith her andOldTomduring the time school would be closed.Nigelcame and for a dayortwOOldTomtriedtoraise himselfoutofhis depression. But the reticence came back again. Again he was avoid ing company andlookinglikeonewhodespaired. And time and again Ma Sanny caught him looking at the boy askance with furrowed brow.Itwas a look she couldnotfathom.Anotherdawn andthesunthrewshaftsofcolourandlightonhuge packetsoffleecyclouds. "Look, Grand-Pa, look at the clouds gathering," the boy yelled excitedly. Rain will come, rain will come, soon!"OldTomuttered a quiet laugh. "The rains will mattertoyou, Nigel?" he asked sheepishly. "Really it will, really it will, Grand-Pa",theboy answered, "I do waRt

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20GoodBrown Earthtoseethe trees and the fields come green and thriving again. Look attheapple tree how it seemstobe crying for thirst. I would liketosee the cowsnotlookingsopunyand I would like to see more water in the river." "Old Tomlaughedagain,nowless quietly and with obvious mirth.ThenOldTomwas grinning.thoughtfullyandtheboy couldcounthis Grand-Pa's remaining tobacco-stained teeth. After a whileOldTom said, "1 am glad youthinkofthat; 1 did not know you cared.""Ourland hereisgood," Nigel was saying, "I know otherpamofthe country and nowhere elsethetrees and fields are more lovely whenthegoodbtownearthisnotthirsty for rain".Turningtohisgrandmother,theboy said, "You knowwhatI think, Ma Sann y;> I believeGodchosethebest colour forthetreeswhenHemade them green." AndOldTomnodded approvingly.Thatwas whenthechange came. From thenOldTomwas again his usual cheerful and vigorous self. After breakfast he worked,plowinga field, making the earth loose for the rainthatwould come.Inthe eveningOldTomand Ma Sanny were alone. "Larry come back," he said.Butyou remember, now,thatLarry was the sonwhohad died. "Yes, we may say he come back," she replied.Theyunderstood each other. Rain was falling whennightfell. Naturally, at first folks rook it for grantedthatafter allithad been justthevicious dry spellthathad madeOldTomtaciturn and moody. But when Ma Sanny heard them saying that nowthatthedroughthad endedOldTomwas looking younger each day, she said, "I wonder how muchgooditwoulddoto a fiddlerifhe lay abeddyingandknewthathis fiddle was still quite goodbutknew, roo,thatno one would care to play itwhenhe would be gone.Nigellovestheland -itwill be his one day."

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GRANNIEBELLULRICSIMMONDSIWILLnever forgetthenightGrannieBell died.Itseemedtome thenthata linkwiththepast had been cut.Itwassomewhatstrange how this legendary figureofour youthful days had so affected us children that with the passingofthe years it had never entered our minds that Gtannie Bell would die.Thefirst time I remember seeing Grannie Bell was in 1926 when I wastakentoTrelawny.I wasyoungthen,barely six,andmy sisters and brothers were only slightly older. And there was Gtannie Bell. Shewasa big woman, big and rawboned, with a broad,flatnose and the widestmouthI have ever seen on awoman'sface. Shedidn'thave manyteethandherwrinklesmadeher black face appear like a shrivelled star-apple.Ifwethoughther strange,ifwewere fascinatedbythe bright-coloured'kerchiefshe worecontinuouslyaroundher head, we were even more fascinated whenMammie told usthatGrannieBell was morethanonehundredand fifteen years oldI"Why,then, shemusthave been a slaveI"my eldest brother exclaimed, and I can still remembereveryoneofus childrenopeningoureyes wide and taking sly peeps at Grannie Bellasshe nodded quietly in the corner. Iwentclosertohertotake agoodlook. Iwantedreallytorealizewhatonehundredand fifteen years old was like. She wasnoddinginshortjerky fashion.Herlips wereopenand I heard hermumblingin a sortofsleepy sing-song fashion.Thewords I finally madeoutare among the things about her that I shall never forget."Theyear obJubileeiscome..." She gave a sudden snore, a sudden jerk, and I scampered away rabbit fashion. Sheopenedher eyes and smiled at us, and fromthatmomentwe children lostourfearofGrannie Bell.Wehardly left her alone after that.Wewouldsurroundher, sitonthearmsofher chair, sit in her lap, stare up at her, surprisedtofindthat

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22GrannieBellone so old could besostrong, couldseesowell, could laugh so loudly, could move about so heartily. And she told us stories.Oh!such wonderful stories.Ofdays in cane fields.Ofslaves.Ofrolling calves, and debbil-ghosts. She knew every one in Falmouth Barrett Town, she called it and she knew to which slave owner their parents had belonged. But itisaboutthenightshe diedthatI amtotell.Thishappened somefiveyears after we first came to know Grannie Bell, and she must have been over120years old then. She had been dying all day. At least,that'swhatwe children heard the old people talking. All the family seemed to have been gathered in the little home; everynowand again I would creep into theroomamongthe grown-ups andunseenand unheard, take sly peeps atGrannieBell and listentohermumblingsasshe lay there on the bed on which she was spending the last momentsofherlife.Thesun had long since fallen below the horizon when she finally caught sightofme. She called me to her. I had always been her favourite. "Little man," she used to callme.Hervoice was weak, extremely weak.Itsoundedliketherustleofslight breezes along dried, fallen leaves in a wood. But you could hear itgatheringstrengthlikewhenyou hear rainrushingdownfrom the mountains; and somehow in a strange far-away manner, while the light fromtheold oil-lampthrewflickeringghostsofshadows against the walls, I seemed to hear the creakofox-carts, the cursesofbook-keepers,thegruntsofblack people bawling,Lawd!Lawd!LawdIin unison with the crackofwhiplash, the soundofmournful voices singing mourn ful songs. A shiver raced up and downmybody, and nowthatI am older I won derifit was racialmemoryrisinguptomymindthatmade me hear these things,orifit was the look I saw inthedying eyesofmy great grandmother.Inthoseeyesthatwere glazed withdeathwas alookthatbrought

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UlricSimmonds23cold, clutchingfearto my eleven-year-old heart. They seemed to be look ing backward,backward, backward into faraway days, into awful faraway days. I began tocry.Grannie Bell seemed togatherstrength in relation tothevolumeofmy weeping. She raised herself onthecrookofan arm and placedtheother on my bowed head. "No cry, little man," she said, her voice in a hoarse, croaking whisper. "No cry." Itwasliketherattleofa crow-picked skeleton in a dark cot ton tree. "No cry, little man.Dedays ob crying am over. De days ob freedom amhere." But I continued to cry, and I know nowthatthetears will not stop, andsomehowI will be crying in my heart, for I hadcaughta glimpseofsomethingIhad never known before. They triedto"hush!"me.Grannie Bell turned thefiercelightofher eyes on them. "No hush him 'tallif'imwan'fecry!"Itwasqueer how she was all on my sideofa sudden. "Eberybody obfecrysometime." And while her hand stilllaytrembling on my bowed head, she began to talk inthemanner in which I had alwaysknownher ro talk. And while she talked my tears dried, and I opened my eyes and followed the move'mentsofher toothless mouthasshe spoke in her high-cracked voice. I could hearthekeeningofthe wind in the high trees andtherustleofthe dried leaves about the house. And deep, deep down in my con sciousness there wasthecrackofwhiplash,thecreak of ox-carts,thesoundofmournful voices singing mournful songs, the deep familiarrefrainofblack people bawling, "Lawd! Lawd!LawdI" "I usedtocry," Grannie Bell said."Deep,deep down in rna heart, I used tocry.Sometimes Ifeellike my belly was a-buss." Her voice trailed off, and she lookedasif shewasabout to cry agam, while the wind kept keening in the high trees, and the dried leaves kept rustling against the shingles on the roof. But shedidn'tcry.And sud denly I knewthatGrannie would cry no more, for she had usedupall her tears.

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24Grannie Bell Shemusthavelostthetrendofherthoughts,forshelapsedintoa shrill falsetto."Thirty-ninelashes. Blackpeoplegettingthirty-ninelashes. Thirry-ninelashes. Black peoplegettingthirty-nine lashes.One...ahtwo...ah.,.three...ahfour ah...five...ah...six ah...seven...ah...eight...ah nine JesusIBlack and red. Red blood a-turning rivers on black people's skin. Red blood making patterns on black people's skin." I shivered. I could feel my heartgoingthump,thump,thumpagainstthebonesofmy chest; andinmy head I could hearthesoundofmourn ful voicessingingmournfulsongs,thecreakofwagon wheels,thelashofwhips, and black people's voices bawling,Lawd!Lawd'LawdIGrannieBell's voice grew stronger."Yes,little man, everybody obfecrysometime,butnobodyeber cry like we black people.Nobodybutwe black people will eberknowhoweye water can fall behindtheeyes,howscreams canscreamwithinde heart.Nobody,yu hear me,little man) Nobody 'tall." She stopped speaking and nobody else spoke. Alight,thindrizzle racedoutfromthefar dark,trippedlightly overtheroofand was gone. Far away adoghowled.Quitenearby there was the croakofa frog in a tree. GrannieBell's eyeswenttothewindow,andoureyes all followed hers. Peenie-wallies were flirting inthe dark of the night,their flashing fires like slave-lights bobbing in a dark canefield, likethelightsofwhite folks seeking ahidingslave, like cane firesburningona riot night.Whenshe looked at us again, the peenie-wallies were in her eyes."Ahgain'tell yu a story, littleman," she said."Igoin'tell yu a storythatisastrueas de Lord, astoryofwhathappenedjus'beforethatmanKnibbdonefreed we black people.Ithappenonedarko'nightin this verytownonMarse Barrett's land. De oberseer, abigred-faced Scotchman,himwas bexed becausethefreedom was a-come.Himdidn'twantitfecome.Himwas tearing bex,thatman, tearingbex' Me 'memberhimwidhimcane-trash mustache andhimbig red-face gettin' redder and redder, likewhencane-firebunstrong'gainstbigbreeze.And de more

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Ulric Simmonds25fehimfacegetred, demorehimcuss black people.Demennordewimen,forhimlike de big srrapping black galdemoMe'memberrhenightit happened, when him come a house-slave quarters a lookfea big black gal whey carch him eye.Lawd'Mewineber feger dar nighr, Iirtle man, neber, neber, neber.Degal no like him 'rail. She gor her husban', a rail spanking bwoy, wirh de lighrobheaven in him eyes.... Her voice rrailedoffagain, and rhe far-away look returned. She seemedtobelookingonvast spaces and far distances, on anunendingspiralofmemories, bitter sweetwithsing song voices and the harsh, acrid soundofwhiplash under aburningsun.Whenshespokeagainitwas in a softer voice, aSOrtofwhisperingmonotone,likethelightpatterofa heavy drizzleonshingled roofsorrhe playful rushofa summer-day's breezethroughleafy plantation fields."Delightobheaven inhimeyes," she repeated, andthenshe roused herself. "Like I tell yu, lirtle man, dis oberseer corne looking fer dis black gal and, shedidn'tlikehim'tall, and she bawled and lick him and him bex."Letme go, Busha," she cry out, "Let mego,"andfeher husban' hearhera scream and comerunningcome lickdownBusha.Whendat red facemanpickhimselfupadutty,himredderthanPoinsettiarose inJune.Himcusssomechin'awful,an'de mocehimcuss, demorehimgetbex.Wellwha'happen?Himdecidefepunishde gal andfeher husban'.'Noniggermustn'tlick white man,'himroar, and order de galfestripnaked an' lash to wagon wheel.Denhimorderfeher husban' fegibde thirty-nine lashes."GrannieBell stopped speaking again, and she closed her eyes and the peenie-wallies were gone. In their place wasthewrinkled faceofan old,oldwoman, looking like a shrivelled star-apple. I could hear the breathingofmy mother. I could hear the soft weepingofmy aunt, and I could hear the restless shufflesofBrotherJimand Sister Kate, andthekeeningofthewindinthetall trees,therustleofdried leaves aroundthehouse, whiletheoillampthrewflickering black

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26GrannieBellshadowsagainstthewalls,shadowsthatplayedhopscotchwitheach other, and leap-frog, and hide-and-seek. She re-opened her eyes so suddenlythatit tookusall by surprise, and I sawanotherofthethingsaboutGrannieBellthatI shall alwaysrememberaslongasI live, so longasI have memories.Thedeepestfiresburnedinthose near-dead eyes.Themost mournful things wereinthose near-dead eyes. I have never seen eyesthatlooked justthatway since, and I can't describe it, but for always I'll remember it.Whenshe spoke again, her voice was weaker, and we had to bend low to catch her words. "Dey did it, little man. Dey did it. Deydidn'twant butdey did it.Theoberseerha'twObookkeepers wid him, and dey ha' biglongguns widdemoDey did it, sonny, dey did it.Whilethe redfaceScotchman counted slowly uptothirty-nine, de gal's husban', with thegunsapointponhim,himbeat him naked wife whey dem tie her to de wagon wheel, while shecryan'she twist, an' she wonderifde baby in her bellywoulda die. An' all de while de beatin' went on, dey ha' wood-torch dey alightup de place,an'de black people alookonan' a moan'...ooh-a...ooh-a...ooh-a..." "When de beatin' all finish, an' de gal lookasifshe dead, de whitepeopledem mek dem rub saltpetre in de blood'ponher body,butshedidn'tcry no more. She near dead. She no know whey happen den,butlater dem tell her, when shesobetter she could talk an' understan'. Dey tell hersayshe husl1an', dat tall spanking black bwoy, begin cry, an' denhimmust a get mad, forhimtek up a cutlass whey lie nearby, an' him mek one spring, one chop, so cut off de Busha head.Denhim run like de debbil back o'himfede woods.Demnofinhim 'till nex' day him a hang byhimown rope tiebyhim ownhan' from a cotton-wood tree." Grannie Bell lay backonthe bed and began to breatheasifher strength was spent. But only for a while. She stared ourofthedark window, drew back her eyes insidetheroom, looked around at thosewhowere standing by her dying bed, and quite suddenly she turned herself over on her face, liftedupher clothes above her buttocks, and with a quiver in

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Ulric Simmonds27her shrill voice, said: "Dere am de marks0'that night0'beating! Dere am de marks!"I stared withmye1even-year-old eyes at the angry weals that a lifetimeof living could not erase, andasI stared I felt the blood welling up to my head, and afierceawful beating began to beat atmyear drums. Grannie Bell wasnow lying on her back again, but she was weak.Her strength was spent. Her voice was.nowthe rustleofcoconut cakes against coarse brown paper. "It was me, little man. It was me dat cried dat night, just a day be fore de night0'freedom. It was me own spanking husban' who hang himself a look fo' de freedom him neber get before, just adaybefore de black people dem all agoa Baptist Church fe listen Knibb, de parson man, a tell dem datwepeople amfree.I cry that night little man, but I neber cry again 'tall. I neber cry again. Fo', little man, I know from dat night datweblack people neber ha' need fo' dat day ob freedom 'tall.. We always free,little man.Wealwaysfree.Is dem people dat mekwehusban' dem beatwedat wasn'tfree.Is dem people, little man, no'we.Weam freefecry.Weam free fecry.Weam freefelaugh.Weam free fesing." The last smile I ever saw on Grannie Bell'sfacemade its feeble appear ance and she began co sing, averythin voiceofsong: "De dayob Jubileeiscome." And while she sang she died. But the song continued inmyhead like a record that would notscop.While the others cried, I could not cry. I could only stare our of the windows at the peenie-wallies flirting in the dark, like canefiresburning in the night, and I could hear the keeningof the wind in the high trees, and the rustleofdried leaves around the house, and somewhere insidemyconsciousness, there was the creakofox carts, the crack of whiplash, the soundofblack people's voices saying, Lawd! LawdILawd! And above all, like a flashoflightning, like the burst ofa rocket,was the sound of a single word..."Freedom."

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LOSTINTHESHUFFLEMONICA MARSHITwas oneofthose gray, foggy November mornings that Moygula appeared onourdoorstep. Newly arrived fromWestAfrica, the weathermusthave beenasgreat a erialtohimasit wastous Jamaicansbuthe radiated such good cheer! Eyes all lit upwith friendly, easy laughter.WhenMoygula arrived inLondonthatmorning,he had contactedTom,the onlyotherAfrican he knew in London, a suave, sophisticated, Nigerianofmixed African and European parentage who occupied a bed sitter in the flat above ours.Tomwasn'r at all happy at purringupMoygula when he scornfully describedasanignorant African, an expres sion, I remember,thatamused me ourofall proportion comingasit did from a fellow African. After making it quite clear that Moygulawasnot a friendofhis,Tomagreedthathe could come andbunkwithhim.Tomwasplanningtoleave shortly fortheUnited States and even said most graciously forhim-thatMoygula could perhaps take over the bedsirrerifmyWestIndian friend Kathryn, who owned the flat and who also lived there, had no objections.EverythingaboutMoygulaintriguedme.Hisnamefor instance an impressive, almostgutturalMoy-gu-Ia, followed by James. I never tired ofsaying it.Hecalled me Monicah and I found myselfmakingopportunities forhimtosayit.Infact, I now spent nearly all my spare time upstairs hearing all abour Moygula's latest social blunders from an irate and volubleTomwho was frequently stopped in mid-speech by mygentleandunderstandingfriend Kathryn.Butmostofall, I enjoyed talking to Moygula, hisfacebeaming like the sun. In those early days, it seemed to methathe was always smiling. Moygula intrigued me because he was the first real AfricanthatI had met.TomI neverthoughtofasAfrican. He looked like aWestIndian and behaved like one and his frequent disparaging remarks about Moygula only served to emphasize his difference.Tomhadgrownup in Lagos, was a city man in fact. Moygula had been there twice in his life, living in a small native village 400 miles away.

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Monica Marsh29Moygula was so anxious to please and be liked!Henever made anoriginalremarkandagreed enthusiasticallywithwhateversentimentswere being expressed, his eyes opening and closing rapidly the while.Toplease Kathryn, whowassoproudofhim, Moygula started going to Mass every Sunday and on so manyoccasionsthatI lost count, I would hear his voiceashe ran down the stairs: "JUSt goingtoMass, Kathryn." In evitably,Tomtook ruthless advantageofthis willingnesstoplease and in no time at all, Moygula was saddled with all the domestic chores, cleaningtheflat, cooking, making innumerable trips to the grocery, the butcher, the tobacconist. Each time he ran past my door, he would cheerfully callout: "Just goingto the corner,Monicah."Itwasasifhe neededourapprovalofhis everyanion.Looking back now, I realizethatat that time, I saw Moygulaasa primitive African, devoidofanySOrtofculture,thatI was judging him byWesternstandards.Thetruthofcourse beingthathis wayoflife, incorporating an ancient, unadulterated culture, wastoOalien for metounderstandit. I cannowappreciate the reason forTom'sfurious out bursts at Moygula's social lapses.Havingexchanged this pure African culture for a Westernized one, any reminder constituted a threat toTom,an outrage, against which he had toprotecthimselfatallCOSts.Twoincidents in particular serve to illustrate this. Moygula andTomsharedthebathroomwithKathrynand,atKathryn's startled request,Tomfuriously andatsome length pointedoutto Moygulathatthis wasnothis village and that one was expected to pull the chain before leaving thebathroom.Hedidn'tgetthe message andKathrynand I undertooktoenlightenhim. I'll never forgethowpained he lookedashe explainedthathe was only trying to "conserve" water -a great necessity at home where one had to carry water for milesonfoot.Thenthere was the famous farewell partythatTomgave.Hewas about to leave for America to take up a scholarship in Drama.Tomwas a very clever, versatile chap who had originally come to England to studyLaw-butthat'sanotherstory.Hehad, however,puta lotofeffort into making the parry a success, and among his guests were Winnifred Atwell,twovisiting American celebrities and aplaywrightlately "discovered" whose current play was making headlines in London'sWestEnd. Kathryn

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30LostintheShuffleand I were hostesses, and were kept very busy seeing that everyonewasfedand happy. Someone had persuaded a girltosing -aWestIndian who was currently appearing in a cabaret show and who had just happenedtobring her guitar along.Asshe startedtosing,Tombeckonedrome from the doorway. I rook one look at hisfaceand went quickly over to him. Speech failed him.Hecould onlypointto where Moygula sat, erect in a straight chair in the passageway, just outsidetheroom wheretheguests were assembled, draped in an enormous white towel while a fellow African, wielding a shining pairofshears, worked solemnly and with great concentration on Moygula's head...Tomleft for America and Moygulawasin sole possessionofthe bed sitter.Heseemed to gain in self-confidence. His once diffident:"Justgoingto the Monicah"nowtold methathere was a man who knew wherehewasgoing.Hebegantoentertain. Iwasinvited to tea on several occasions alongwithsome African friends he had acquired.Weall behaved very cor rectly and passedthecake and sandwiches in approved mid-Victorian manner. Moygulawasbecoming westernized.Thenhe acquired a cheque book and his joy was complete. Thiswasthe open sesame to all his desires.Thiswasalsothebeginningofhis troubles. For Moygula dispensed with ready money and wrote cheques with great rapidity, several times a day, with no provocation, and on every imaginable occasion.Hepaid his rentbycheque; he paid his schoolfeesbycheque; he paid the grocerbycheque; he paid bur with great dif ficulty for four recordsbya cheque which hadtobe certifiedbyhis bank.Hereached the limit the day I arrived in time to rescue him fromthewrathofaLondoncab-driverwhowasbeingoffered a cheque foreightshillings forthefare.Ofcourse the inevitable end was in sight. Cheques written at such a rate require an adding machine to keep a proper balance between expenditure and income. Moygulahadn'tan adding machine. Fortunately for him, the first one that bouncedwastoKathryn for his rent.Heappeared so amazed and puzzledthatKathryn readily forgave him.Hewrote another.Thatbounced also,burbythis time,

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Monica Marsh31others were coming back and Moygula was in troublewithhis bank. I could never understand how anyonewhowas studying accountancyaspartofhis course could get himself into such a hopeless financial tangle. Some people said that Moygula wasn't halfasdumbaswethoughtandthatthis was all an act to give us this impression.Buthe appeared so naive and so bewilderedthatI could never bring myself to believe him capableofthis duplicity.Bynow, Moygula's once cheerfulfacebegan to wear a worried, serious expression and it was obviously an effort for him to be gay.Hewasnotdoing wellinhis studies. Had just failed an examforthe second time in fact and, coupled with his financial difficulties, this was very seriousindeed. Moygula, let'sfaceit,wasnotvery bright. I often wondered how he evergotadmitted to the Polytechnic School at all. His ultimate aim was to study Law,butat this stage he wasdoingEnglish, Latin and a specialized accountancy course which looked to me like simple bookkeep ing. All these subjects were more than he could cope with.Oneevening, I went upstairstosee him and found him very glum in deed. "You know, Monicah", he saidtome, "I will never go back home unless I get throughmyexams. I am the first from home who they sent to England to study. They weresoproudofme. Gave me presents and money...I told them then, I said:'Youwill neverbeashamedofme.' I must remain here until I get through." In the sudden silence, I shiveredasIthoughtofall the long, cold winters facing Moygula. Later,hesaid something else. "You know, Monicah, you people from theWestIndies, Idon'tunderstand you. Idon'tthinkyou understand me either. You like me...yes,butnotasa friend.Whyisthis? At home I am Moygula James. My grandfatherisa Paramount Chief Some day I may be one too." I had read a book lent me some months beforebyTom,called Trial bySaswood,writtenbyan American who had spent a great dealoftime in Africa. Certain words fromthebook spokenbyan African came back to me now: "To beaChiefisa wonderful thing indeed,butwho so greatasaParamountChief?" Forthefirst time, I really looked behind the smiling mask at the powerful, proud tiltofthe

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32LostintheShufflehead and for the first time, in his presence, Ididn'tfeel like laughing. I left England shortly after. I learned from KathrynthatMoygula had moved to cheapet quarters andthathe had taken a job and wasgoing to school atnight insread offull time.Thissummer,three years later, Ireturned to Englandjusr in time to heatthatMoygulahadhad asuddenseizure at his workplace and had been rushed to hospiral. Kathryn, who had kepr in touch with him, wentwithme for news, to theflatwhichhe sharedwithtwootherAfricans.Welearned that Moygula had died the day before. They insisted that wecome to themorguewiththem to payourlast respects apparently an acceptedcustomand, reluctantly, we went. There,ona cold marble slab, Itookmylast lookatMoygula,themanwhohad travelled so far to assimilateWesternculture and had succumbed in the effort.

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MADAMR.L.C.AARONS ,f .lYlADAM."Thatwas her name, she said.Justthatandnothingmore. ClaraHarmsworthandherhusbandstoodlookingdownuponrhe miserable littlebundleofwet ragshuddledontheirfrontverandahandwhoin response to theirenquiriesas to hernameandwhatshewantedwouldgivenootheranswerbut"Madam." "Madam'" sherepeated,bendingoverthechildandtryingtorouse her. "That isn't a name. youmusthavesomeother.Cometell uswhoyou are andwhatyou wanr."Inreplythechild began to whimperafresh andtocowerfurtherawayamongthe shadowsoftheverandah. Mrs.Harmsworthstoodandfaced herhusbandwitha gestureofresig nation. ''I'm afraid I can donothing,Jim,"she said."You'd better try."JimHarmsworthremovedhispipefrom hismouthandregardedthewetbundlebeforehimcritically.Unlikehis wifewhowas ciry bred,hehadspenthisboyhoodinthecountryandknewrhepeopleandrheir ways. "If I were you," he rold her afrer a little, "I wouldn'tborher abour rhe name. In fact it's justthesortofthingshe's likelytobe called. A sortofpetname. I'll even ber she has a sister named 'Princess'orsomethingjustasinappropriate." "That mightbe so for all 1 care," his wife assented a trifle impatiently, "but inthemeanwhilewhatare we to dowithher?" She inqicatedwithamovementofherhandthestareoftheweatheroutside.Ithad beenrainingheavily earlier inrhenightandevennowit was srill drizzlingslightly.Aninky darknesshemmedtheminonall sides. From nearby treetopscame the harsh discordantcroakingofinnumerabletoads. Mr.Harmsworrhshruggedhis shoulders. "A bitawkward,yes," headmitted.Thenasifsrruckby asuddenthoughtadded,"supposewe feedir.Probablythepoorthingishungry. 'Twill talk after rhat I'm. sure."

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34 Madam Betweenthemtheyliftedthechildtoits feetandled her acrossthewidepolishedfloorofrhediningroom. Balancing herself nervouslyontheedgeofamahoganychairwhileMrs.Harmsworrhsetbeforeherbread,cheese,coldbeefandsomehotcocoa,theyhadopporrunitytoobservetheirguestthenighthadbrought.She was blackascoalandprobably notmorethannineOtten yearsofage.Herthinbodywasobviouslyunderfedandthelegsthattwinedaroundthebarsofthechairwerelongandspidery.Theywerecutandbruisedin many places. A tear-stained face entirely inkeeping'withthebodysurmountedthewhole,lightedupby a pairofunnaturallylarge eyes which gave her a curiously solemn and aged appearance. For clothessheworeanondescriptsorrofdresswhichmighthave beencutdowntofit herorjustas likelybuiltupoutofsmallerones.Therewasnotelling.Hatshe had none. Forsomeminutesshe satinsilenceandate ravenously."Finished?"Mrs.Harmsworrhaskedasshe boltedthelast bitofbreadandlooked nervously around."Yes,ma'am,"she repliedina peculiarly tearful sing,song. "Had enough)Sure?" "Yes, ma'am." Again the suggestionoftears. She'd begin crying again if they weren't careful. Mrs.Harmsworrhleanedacrosstherableandpattedher reas suringly."Come,don'tbetrightened,"shesaid."Nobody'sgoingtohurryou.Nowdoyouthinkyou can tell usaboutit)Imeanwhoyou areandhowyou cametobeoutsidetherelookingall so miserable?" At first the child seemed disinclinedtoanswer the guestion. She looked wide-eyedandsilentfromonetotheotherasthoughtryingtodecidefromwhichofthetwoshecould expeer moreprotecrion.Thenatlast between sobs it came out.Itappearedthatshe wastheeldesroffive children, the youngest beingnotmorethana year old.Overthisbroodofbrothersandsisters it washerdutytowatch and seethatnoharmbefellduringtheirmother'sab-

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R.L.C.Aarons35sence.Theirmother,whoworkedoutasa domestic servant,oftenleftthemat timeswithscarcely any food, and they had tomanageas best they could until her rerum in the evenings.Onthis particularevening,theirmotherhadbeenmuchlaterthanusual andasall the smaller children were crying forhungershe hadgoneintoa box where she knew hermotherhadputaway afewbitsofsilver and had taken a threepence to buy some bread.Asill luck would have it the threepence dropped from her andgotJoStwhile on her way to theshopand hermotherwhen shegothomewouldn'tbelieve her story. Said she had stolen it. Moreover had flown into a terrible rage and called her a thief; had beaten her dreadfully and told her that shedidn'twant to see her again and finally had driven her awayhungryas she was.Notknowingwheretogoshe had wan dered around the village and when the rain came had creptontheir ver andahroshel ter."And,"she wound up piteously, looking up ro them, "Ah doan't know" whererogo." Mrs.Harmsworthcalledthechild to her andputan arm protectively around her."Nevermind about that, Madam," she said. "We aren't goingroturn yououttonight.You'llsleep hereandinthemorningwe'll seeifwe can find your mother.Whatsayyou to that?" "De Lawd will bless you," shebroughtoutunexpectedly and with allthemarure gravityofone who, within the spaceoften years had already experienced mostofthe major tragediesoflife. Benefitedbya hearty meal and agoodnight'srest,Madamappeared to better advantage in themorninglight.Herface still showed thin and wan,butit had lostthepinched expressionofthenightbefore.Withgoodfood and care there was no tellinghowshe would improve. Mrs.HarmsworththoughttoOthat she seemed intelligent and hermindwentonto dwell excitedlyona little scheme she had been planning.Itwas no other than this. Ever since her husband hadboughta property inthecountry and they

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36Madamhad come here to live, she had wanted to get some litrle girl who inreturnfor her board and keep would make herself generally useful in the home.Whatused to be called 'a school girl'.Noneofthose she had seen had sofartaken her fancy, then justasifheaven sent, Madam had rurned up.Ofcourse, she realisedthatnothingcould be definitely de cided upon until she had seen the child's mother. She wasn't a bit either when an hourorso later that lady announced herself."Mornin',Mrs.Harmsworth,"she beganwithoutanyotherprelim inary. "Ah 'ear say dat Madamis'ere." For amomenrortwo Mrs.Harmsworthmade no reply. Instead she surveyedthenewcomer. She saw a surly, barefootedwomanin a none too-clean dressofcoarsebluematerial, wearing a dirty straw hat. Shecouldn'thave beenmorethanabouttwenry-six yearsofage,buthad noneofthemature freshness peculiar to that periodoflife. 'Brutalized' wasthethoughtthatcame to Mrs.Harmsworthasshe watchedthepur poselyputon insolence with which the woman stared about herasthough expecting to see her child's headorfeet protruding from some hiding placeasin some clumsily performed conjuring trick. "Yes, Madamishere," Mrs. Harmsworth replied at last with elaborate coolness. "Do you think I'd try to hide her'" Caughtoutasit were,thewoman's carefully prepared assurance for sook her almost at once. She shifted her feet about uneasily."It'snotdat aht'inkyou 'ide her,ma'am,"she hastened to explain,"butshe run 'way lastnightand dis mornin' ah 'ear say she's 'ere. Dat's all."Whydid she run away?" pursued Mrs. Harmsworth relenrlessly. She was playing her hand for all it was worth. "Pickney too rude an' tief, missis," wastheemphatic reply."An'when dem wanr beating you mus' beat dem.""Butsurely thereissuch athingasover-doing it. Ithinkit's a shamehowyou flogged her.Thepoorchildisall cut up.Womeniike yououghtnever to have children. Youdon'tknowhowto carethem.""Whenweispoor, missis, an' 'ave plentyofdem, it's hard," Madam's mother replied in surprisingly conrrite tones.

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R.L.C.Aarons37"Thenwhydon'tyou try and get someone who would take them and look after themforyou?"Thewomanhungher head amomentasthoughabashed, then sud denly raised it and looked at Mrs. Harmsworth."Ahtell you what, ma'am, you want take Madam?" Her lips parted in a nervous smileasshe waited forthereplytothe daring proposal she had made. Mrs. Harmsworth looked at herfora moment or twotomake sure the womanwasin earnest, then quickly nodded her head. "All right, I'll take her." And thatwashow Madam came to live with them.Themonthswentby.Notonce during this period did Mrs. Harms worth ever have causetoregret the sudden impulse that had caused hertotakethechild. She proved a perfect marvel.Quickand intelligent beyond her years, she soon made herself indispensabletoher mistress. She learned howtosew,towait at table,todolighthouseholdwork and she proved justasapt at learningtoread and write. Clothed and wellfedshewasafardifferent persontothe pinched and hungry Madam they had found on the verandah some months before. She rounded out, became a child again.Norin her present prosperity did she forget hermotherand younger brothers and sisters. It would have been perfectly understandableifshe had now refusedtohave anythingtodo with her mother.Onthe con trary, however, she frequently asked permissiontogo and see her and many an evening wouldbeseen sneaking off carrying with her someofher own supper she had saved.Timewentby.Inafewweeks it wouldbethe annual Sunday School picnic. Mrs. Harmsworth had promised that if she kept onassplendidlyasshe had begun she would give her a pairofshoes and a new dress to wear fortheoccasion. Madam had never yet worn shoes andtheglee with which she received this announcementwasboundless.Tobe the possessorofa pairofshoes was the highestlimitofhe.rambition. A

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38Madamdozen times a day she could be seen attentivelyexaminingher feet andthenall at onceshewouldsuddenlyhugherself and skipaboutthroughsheer joy.OntheseoccasionsMadamwhoordinarilywas aquietchildwouldgrowexpansiveandtalkative. Shewouldnever leave her kind mistress,shesaid. She would remain with her untilshebecame a big, big woman sheopenedher arms widetoshowhowbigshewouldbe so that when Mrs. Harmsworrhgrewold she would be theretotake careofher.Andmany other such childish nonsense she would talk.ButoneeveningMrs.HarmsworrhnoticedthatMadamseemed un usuallyquietandrhoughtfulafter her visittoher mother.Toher questionifthere wasanythingwrong,she answered in her shrill treble: "Nurrin', ma'am.""Areyou quite sure, Madam'" she asked, drawingthechildtoher and tiltingupher chin. "Shehasn'tbeen scolding or flogging you, has she?" A lookofpain flickered acrossthechild's face."No,ma'am.""Thenwhatis it'" She wriggled herself free."Nuttin',ma'am."Oneeveningabouta week later, Mrs.Harmsworrhthoughtshe heardthewoman'svoice attheback gate.Madamhadjustreturned from her usual errandofmercy and hermotherhad walkedhomewithher. Mrs.Harmsworrhwasaboutto move awaywhenshe was struck bythemenacingtoneoftheother.Sheseemedtobethreateningthechild. She listened, amazed. She knew now why Madam had been so downcast after her last visittoher mother.Thewomanwas actuallyproposingthaton a statednightthechild should contrive to steal someofher mistress's coffeeoutdryingonthebarbecue and give it to her.Ifsherefusedshewould be given asoundbeating, besides which, Mrs.Harmsworrhwould be toldthatthechild was in the habitofstealing coffee and sellingit.

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R.L.C.Aarons39"For,"rhewomanconcludedwirh a bruralchuckle,"shewill believemeforshewill say dar ahwouldn'rrell lie'ponmeownchile." Mrs.Harmsworrhmovedawayfromrhewindowquierly.Shehadn'r observed.Whara wrerchMadamhad as amorherIShehadhalfamindcocall rhe child rhen and rhere and rell her she had overheardeveryrhingandsuggesrrhar afrer rhissheshouldhavenorhingrodowirh so unnarural a parenr. Bur asuddenimpulseresrrained her. She was curiousCOseehowrhe child wouldanin rhe faceofrhis lirrle black mailing scheme.Wouldshe allow herundoubredaffecrion for hermorherroourweighallconsiderarionsofhonesryandgrarirude?Orwouldsherake rhe harder course? Irwouldbe inreresring ro see.ArrimesMrs.Harmsworrhwouldgrowsuddenlyaware rhar rhe childroowaswarchingher, furrively ir seemed.Andrhenshewouldcall romindhownororiouslyungrarefulchildrenweresupposedro be.One'sownsomerimeswere,howmuchmoreso a Errlewaifpickedupso ro speak fromoffrhe srreers.Inorhermoods, however,shewouldgrowashamedofher suspicions. Madam was differenr.Irwasunrhinkableshecould ever prove so wicked and ungrareful.Thenonrheeveningbefore rhelong-looked-forpicnic, Mrs.Harmsworrh inherroom wriring Ierrers heard a sofrly urrered callcomingfrom somewhere by rhe back gare."MadamIMadamI"Madamsirringonrhediningroom floorplayingwirh rhe car evidenrly heard ir roo for all soundsofplay suddenly ceased. Again rhe sofr call."MadamIMadamI"Thechild dropped rhe car and wenr our.DimmingherlampMrs.Harmsworrhrip-roed quierlycorhewindowand lisrened.Thewoman was rhere askingina brearhless whisperifshe hadbroughrrhe coffee.Ina surprisingly firm lirrle voiceMadamreplied rharshehad norandhad no inrenrionofso doing."WharI"rhe woman choked, raken aback."Youdidn'r bringir! You

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40Madamreally mean tosaydar younotbringin'it?" Madam remained silent.Ina sudden fury the woman grabbed holdofthe childbythe collarofher dress and shook her savagely from side to side. "Dat will teach you!"she hissed, letting her go. She fell with a little cry ofl'ain against the iron gate.Thewoman stalked awaymutteringoaths and voicing threatsofwhat she would do on the morrow. Mrs.Harmsworrhwatched Madam crosstheback yard and return tothehouse. She heard her lock thediningroomdoorand make her way tothelittle room at theotherendofthe passage where she slept, and it seemed to her that Madam rook rather a long timerotake her thingsoffandgetintobed.Butshethoughtnothingofit.Thefollowing morning, the dayofthepicnic -theday Madam had been looking forward to formonthsbroke fine and fair butofMadam there was not a trace.Thedoorofher littleroomstood wide open, andheapeduponthebed were allthethingsMrs.Harmsworthhad evergivenher: slate, pencil,books,hats, dresses hernewpairofshoes.ButMadam herself had disappeared completely. Slowlytherealizationofwhatit allmeantdawnedon Clara Harms worrh.Madamin herowntragic little way had forestalled hermotherand decided the issue. She had run away rather than be bulliedintostealingfrom her mistress and benefactress. Something suspiciously like a sob caught in Clara Harmsworrh's throat, for she knew she would never see Madam again.

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POINSETTIA-FORCHRISTMASH.V.ORMSBYMARSHALLAMELIAMARTINglanced uneasily toward the entranceofthe restaurant where she worked.Wouldthe incoming crowd ever lessen?Whereweresomany people coming from she wondered, even although she knew the great sizeofLondon? And she was tired now -sotired.Itwas a goodthingthatwhen, at length, she could outfor herhomeshe wouldnothavesolong a wait on her 'busasbackhomein Jamaica. Amelia liked the big double-decker 'buses that came alongsofrequently. Seated on the upper deckofthese she had managed to see quite a bitofLondon since she had come to England a coupleofmonthsearlier. She had a fairly long runtoher home in Brixton.Itwas nice to be abletosee all the lights and the houses, and the shopsthatwere now being so elaborately decorated for Christmas. She knew thatasthe Season advanced the sights would be even more wonderful."Hurryalong Amelia.Thattable over there in the far corner needs a waitress.Thisisno time for day-dreamin'mygirl!" Amelia's boss, a fat, florid woman, whispered this advice in her ear as she passedbyon herwaytothe kitchen from which standpoint she usually kept her hawk's eye on the outside scene. Amelia endeavouredtohurry at these words. Having deposited the contentsofthe tray thatshe was carrying on the table she was serving near by, she went across to the one indicated by her boss. At the table sat an elderly lady and gentleman. "Please Ma'am, what can I do for you?"thegirl enquired politely, as she had been instructed always to do.Thelady who had been scanning rhe menu card. gazed intently at Amelia for a few momenrs before she said, "Tell me,mygirl, where do you come from?" "Please Ma'am, I come from Jamaica," Amelia answered. "FromJamaicalOh.thenitreally must beyou'"Thelady's ejaculation caused her companion to sit forward with a sur prised expressioninhisface. "My dear,whatonearth are you talking Whodo you thinkourwai tress is?" he enquiredofhis wife."John,I am almost certain that sheis ule maid who attended our suite

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42PoinsettiaforChristmasatthe Arawak when we were in Jamaica last December. Tell me, young woman, am I right? Are you Amelia? And do you not remember us, SirJohnand Lady CardelP" Amelia's eyes lighted with recognition.Ofcourse, now she rememberedthem,thoughin the confusion around her and in her own perturbed stateofmindshehadnotdoneso.Nowshe said,smiling,"Yes,M'lady. I'memberyou well now. Please if you areboth welP""We are very well indeed,thankyou Amelia,thanksrothesunnyWinterthatwespentwith you last year.Weshouldliketobe back inyourlovely island again now." "Wecertainly shall be backnextChristmas,"SirJohnsaid. "Where are you living Amelia?" Lady Cardell next asked,makingher choice and handing rhe menu card onroher husband, "I understandthatliving quarters are very hardrofind when you all come across ro us fromtheWestIndies." "Please Ma'am, I live in Brixcon," Amelia replied. "And why did you leavethatlovely landofyours to comeovethere Amelia?Youwere in a good position attheArawak." A shadow, perceptibletoLady Cardell's searching eyes, crossed Amelia'sface. "I did cometothe fatherofme little girl Ma'am. I did dowhatI didthinkwas the bes' for her." "Oh! And did you bring your childwithyou Amelia?" "Not yetMa'am." "But you arewith...her farher?"Theshadow deepened and settled itselfinthe depthsofAmelia's lovely dark eyes. "No, Ma'am.""Why,Amelia?" Amelia hesitated perceptibly.Thenin a low voice barely audible abovetheclamourinthe restaurant she said, "Because him tekupwith a Eng lish girl Ma'am."

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H.V.OrmsbyMarshall43"Youpoorgirl. But never mind. Iamsurethatyou will soon sertledownhappily and be ablerosend for your little girl.Ifyou are ever in needorin trouble Amelia, telephone or writetome here, attheaddressonthis card.Thisiswherewelive," Lady Cardell said,handingthe girl her card.Ameliareceived it graciouslyandplaceditin her pocker.Thenshe hurried back to her employeratthekitchen door, feeling her sharp eyesbentuponher. Before they lefttherestaurantSirJohnpressed a large tipintoAmelia's hand."We'llbeinagain beforeChristmasfor some moreshopping,"he assured her.Butonthe daythatthey did comeinAmelia was nowhere to be seen. Lady Cardell made enquiriesofthe restaurant manageress. "She's in 'orspital M'lady.Downwith the pneumonia, she is." Lady CardelJ sighed."Poorgirl, thisisall that she hasgOtfor coming over."Onlearningwhichhospital Amelia was intheCardellswenttovisit her rhat afternoon beforereturninghome. Amelia was overjoyed to see them. She had been roo ill to let themknowshe explained, but now she was improving. Before they left Lady Cardell spoke to the M;ltron. "Thegirlisto have every care. She must want for norhing. Thisismy address.Doyou think that she will be wellenoughtoleave the hospital beforeChristmas'"TheMatron showed surpriseatthe concernofthese titled people foroneofthe darkimmigrants,butshe replied yes,thatshethoughtso."Thenplease telephone me themomentthatI can come and rake her our. I shall keep her at myhometorecuperate.Willyou tell her this for me please?" Amelia's surprise and thankfulness at this message aided her recovery asnothingelse could have at the time.Truetotheir word, SirJohnand Lady Cardell arrivedarthehospital for her in their cartwodays before Chrisrmas.Theglimpses thar she hadofLondon arrayed in irs Chrisrmasgearastonished rhe girlasshe spedthroughrhe crowded streets. She had never before seenanythingso wonderful.Themantleofglistening snowthathad fallen only that morning converted the scene into a living Christ mas card.

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44PoinsettiaforChristmasAmelia was given a warmedroominthemaids' quarters atDaintonManor, and oneofthe Cardells' maids was placedinchargeofher."NowjuStyou rest yourself Amelia," Lady Cardell instructed her before leaving," and tomorrow we'll come to fetch you to show you our great hall r1ecorated for Christmas beforeourguests arrive."Trueto her word Lady Cardell came herself for Amelia.Thegirl was feeling stronger now andwasabletowalk down ehe long corridorslowly,her distinguished hostsoneither sideofher. At the entranceofthe hall a chair had been placed in readiness for her to rest in. At the doorway Amelia paused, gazing in dismay at a sight that astonished her beyond words. Forming the centrepiece on the huge dining-table under the crystal chandelier were red poinsettiablooms,asfresh and beautifulasif they had just been picked from the garden. Clus tersofrhese lovely Chrisrmas blossoms were in evidencealsoin manyotherpartsofthe long chamber. Amelia uttered alowcryatlast."ButMa'am,please how did they reach here?" she questioned eagerly. Lady Cardell laughedindelight."Wehad a florist in Jamaica sendthemtous by air Amelia," Lady Cardell explained. "Afrer seeing theminJamaicalaseyear wefelethat wewantedall oue friends heretoexperience thedelightwe felt in seeingthemat this Season.WefeelthatChristmas will never be Christmas again for us without poinsettia blooms." Suddenly Ameliaknewthatassoon as ever she was wellenoughtotravel she must returntothe landofthe red poinsettia.

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RIVERMANLLOYDA.CLARKEIFyou askedhimhis name, most likely he wouldn't say:"GideonThomas;"that'showhe had beenchristened.Mostlikely he would answer: "Riverman," juSt plain: "Riverman."Heknew mostofthe RioCobtewhere it ranthroughtheGordonPen area in St. Catherine...knew itasyou and I know our own backyard.Butthen, that partofthe river was Riverman's backyard. His wattle-and-daubhutstood on the high bluff overlooking the valley where the river forked at thesPOtknownas"TwoMeetings." Riverman's canes and corns thrived on the fertile slope. Betsy, his dun-coloured cow, grew fatonthe lush grass along the riverbank. Usually, you would find Riverman working in his field.You'dhear him swopping jokes with the village women who washed clothes in the river, spreading themouttodryonthe stony islet across from Riverman's field. Eversooften his hearty laugh wouldboomand swell along the slope; and the ground-doves drowsing in the bushes would rise, scatter ing in fright. Often, too, while Betsy contentedly cropped grass, Riverman squattedonthebank, his eyestwinklingat the anticsofthenaked boys who splashed and swaminthe river below. After a while, though, he wouldcautionthem:"Comeoutnow. You wi'getcrampifyou stayinde water too long. Badifyougetcramp in water, ver' bad..."Thenthe boys would clamber, dripping,upthe bank, and listen wide-eyed andopen-mouthedwhile Riverman toldthemstrangetalesabouttheRio Cobre.Oh,yes, he was a great one for talking about the river.Hecould tell youanythingyou wanted to know about the Rio Cobre.Hewould,tOO,ifyou asked him...Perhaps you'd saytohim'"Hey,Riverman, I hear youknowa lot about the river. Tell me something about'GoldTable' Hole. They say a gold table comes up there at noon sometimes.Isthat true, Riverman?"

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46RivermanThegleamofwhite teeth would lightup his dark faceashe answered:"No,me nevah see nogol'table dere,butme ketch plenty fatmulletinGol'Table'Ole. Plenty fish in dat'Ole;it nevah dry."Ifhe wasinthatmood,andthewater was low, maybeRiverman'droam upstream with you. Seeing him plunge his hand into a rocky recess you'dwonder what Riverman was doing. You'd wonder...until he withdrewhis hand, and you saw rhe far crayfishsquirmingin his grasp. Andwhenhe scoopeduphandful after handfulofshiny shrimps from undertheslime-coated srones in rhe shallows, rhen you'd beginrorealise rhatRivermanreallyknewthe river.Norasyou or Iknowa river.No.WithRivermanit was different.Tohimrhe RioCobrewas alive.Ithad moods, fickle and unpredictableasa woman's.Theriverspokero him, roo...so it seemed to Riverman.Whatdid rhe river say?Whatcoulda river say?OnlyRiverman could have told you; he understoodthelanguageoftheriver. Sometimes he had seen itrushingalong in flood, strerched from bank tobanklike ashimmeringsheetofcorrugatedcopper. RioCobre...Copper River, indeed. Times like that Riverman would shake his woolly head and say:"Huh,she vex today...wonderwhoshegoin'tek 'way distime..."Tohimtheriverwouldseem to roar awarning:"Stayaway,Riverman.Iamangrytoday.Stayaway."And standing, helpless, on rhe slope, Riverman would watch the foaming Rio Cobreasit overflowed its banks,uprootingthecorns and levellingthecanesinthelower parrofhis field. Afterwards,though,the river would glide leisurely by, clear and calm, seeming tomurmuran invitation:"Comeonin,Riverman.Iamgentletoday.Comeonin,andforgetthatIfloodedyourfield."Jusrlike thar irsoundedto Riverman: like apenitentmothersoothinga favourite child she had scolded. Today, working on thehighgroundbackof hut,Riverman knewthattheriver was angry.Fromtimerotimehe restedonhis hoe, his

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Uo),dA.CLarke47head tilted co one side, listening.Thesullen roarofthe water from below rold him that the river was rising.RivermanrememberedBetsy,buthe wasn't worriedaboutthecow. Luckily, he had pastured herhigh..thewatercouldn'thave reachedheryet. She'd be allright,unless she strayed...Rivermanpaused atthethought.Come co thinkofit, a cow does stray sometimes...he'd better see abou t Betsy.Trottingbrisklydowntheslope,Rivermanpulledupsharplyashe neared the spot where he had pastured Betsy. There was no signofher.Hisanxious eyes swept the slope in vain...where sould she have gone? Riverman rounded a bend in the trail, and hurried farther down cowards the brimming banksofthe river.Itwas thenthathe saw Betsy, and Riverman's heart began co hammeragainst his ribs. Betsy had wandered upstream ro graze on the grassy mound that scooJ our in midstream, rearing itssummithigh above the surfaceofthe waterwhentheriver was low. Shemusthave crossed beforethewater had risen. Riverman recalledthatearlierthatmorningthestream had beenshallowenough co wade atsomeplaces. Ie wasnotshallow now.TheRio Cobrewaslike that: gentle and shallow this hour, and the next, fierce and flooded with rain from the hills. Betsy was trapped onthemound. She was astrongswimmer, River man knew;butshewouldn'tlastlongif she venturedintothe wide stretchofwater that boiled between her and the safetyofthe bank. Betsy seemed co sense her helplessness,coo.Mooing plaintively, she shied away from the water that seethed up the steep sidesofthemound cowards her. Bleak thoughts rose swiftly, insistently, in Riverman's mind...he had roiled hard sweated inthesun, shivered intherain co buy Betsy,gauntand underfed though she had been.Hehad tended her long, lovingly, and his eyes had shone with possessive pride at the way Betsy's flanks had filledoutfast and her hide had become sleek, until now...well, now she was a fine animalthatany manwouldhate ro lose. Riverman's jaws set resolutely.Hecouldn't just standbyand watch the river takeawayBetsy.Hehad co do somerhing Racinguptheslope co his hut, Riverman hurried back with a coilofstrongrope.Hewould havetotry a swift cast a forlorn hope...

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48RivermanBetsy had always been shyofropes;thedistance, roo,wouldmakean accurate throw difficult.Withluck,though,hemightmanage it.Thenoosed endofthe ropeshotswiftly from Riverman's hand, hissedthroughthe airtofall some distance from the cow. Riverman tried anotherthrow;Betsy backed away; theropefellshortofher.Rivermanhastily hauled intherope, his heart heavywithapprehension.Hewouldhavetotrysomethingelse.Butwhat... I Thesilence and a strange senseoflonelinessweighed heavily on River man. Laterontheriverbankwouldbe noisywiththeshoutsofvillage boys bickering over coconuts andothertreasures salvaged from the swollen stream;butjust then there was nobody neartooffer him any suggestion, any help. And the water was risinghigherandhigherupthemound.Riverman'seyes,rovingdistractedlyabout,gleamedatthesightofa sturdytamarindtreestandingontheslope. A plan rook swift shape in his questing mind. Tying one endofthe rope around the tamarind, Rivermanhastilyslippedoff his clothes.IfhecouldswimouttoBetsy with the other end, he might be abletorope her, then work her gradually tOwards the bank. A risky plan, he realised; bur what else was"theretodo?Thewater closed coldly around Riverman's bare body.Theloose endofthe rope wasgrippedbetween hisstrongjaws,givinghim full useofhis hands. Even near the bank the current was swift and strong.Nomancouldswimupthatstream...notevenRiverman;burhe was wise in the waysofthe river, was Riverman.Hestruck a slanting course tOwardsthemound,twistinghis body snake-like to escapethefull forceofthe water.Outin midstream, the current clutched greedily at Riverman.Thewaterchurnedmuddily under his flailing arms andplunginglegs.Itwas awk ward,swimmingwiththeendoftherope in hismouth.Graduallythetreacherous tugofthe current begantotellonRiverman.Itwas power ful,tOO.powerful, for him.Hewas borne steadily, relentlessly, backwards.Theropetautenedandstretchedtill it wasjerkedfromhis jaws. Hisclutchingfingers found the end, gripped it. Betsy's terrified voice reached Ri verman. A swift glance upstream showedhimthat the rising water would soon sweep her from the mound.

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Lloyd A.Clarke49Riverman's heart was a cold, leadenlumpin his breast.Hecould do nothing for Betsy now...the river would take her;buthe wouldn't let it take him. No.Hewould fight the flood...Work-hardened muscles cordedinRiverman's arms and shouldersashe inched his way, hand over hand, up the rope.Hewas glad that he had tied theotherend so securely around the tree on the slope. Riverman strove strongly,butthe bankwasstillfaraway,and hewastiring. Maybe you'd think it wouldn'tbedifficultforRiverman to pull himselfoutofthe river. Maybe you'd thinkthat...ifyou had never seen the Rio Cobreinflood.Theriver-devils fastened powerful,icyfingers around Riverman, trying to tear him loose from the rope. His fingers grew stiff with strain; his body began to getnumbfrom contact with the cold water.Hefelt the rope slipping through his weakening grip...the torrent tore him loose, whirling him swiftly downstream. Rivermanwastoo water-wise to struggle against the rushing forceofthe swollenscream.Catching holdofoneofthe huge logs bobbing along, he rested, letting the current carry him. He couldn't force a landing then...perhaps he might make it farther down where the river narrowedbetween its banks. He could no longerseeor hear Betsy. Wasitpossible that she had reached the bank after all? Hope stirred for a second in Riverman, then faded. No. Betsy couldn't have made the bank...more likely she had perished upstream. Riverman wordlessly cursed thl" Rio Cobre.Theriver bore him rapidly along...past Philpott's Fording, past Pile with its steep, frowning banks. A knotofcurious villagers coweredfarback up the banks, awed at the furyofthe flood. Their excited shouts floated faintly after Rivermanasthe water swept him around the bend into Naseberry Hole.Hopesurged suddenly again in Riverman's heart. A thick vine over hung from a milk-weed tree on thelefrbank. The endofthe sturdy creeper trailed tantalisingly in the water, notfarfrom the bank.Itwasnow or

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50 Rivermannever, Riverman decided, his eyes gleaming wirh determInation...cohebutreach that vine, hemightyet thwarr the Rio Cobre. hebutreach that vine, hemightyet thwart the Rio Cobre. Riverman kicked free from the log, and srruckoutstrongly towards vine.Theriver was wide there.Heangled hiswayagainst the retard rugofthe cross-mrrenr. His muscles strained in aching struggleagaithe srrengthofthe stream.Thedistance lessened...the vine was ne: now. A few more strokes and Riverman would have reached it...if cramp had not seIzed him then, knorring,numbingthe over-ta: musclesathis thigh.Noman...noteven Riverman...can fighrerain a flooded river.Thewater buffetedhimbrutally away from the vine. Riverm: struggles beca:me weaker, and the devilish roarofthe river roseinhis e mockinghimwith the memoryofhis own words: "Bad ifyouget m in de water, vel" bad. ."TheRio Cobre raged along, racing down the straights, blustering arm bends, thunderingthroughgloomy gorges.Couldhe have heard angry voiceofthe river then, it would have seemed ro Rivermanrobe ing: "You arerash, Riverman. IwarnedyoutostayawaywhenI'mangryI'mangrytoday, Riverman." JUStlike that it would have sounded toRi'man...ifhe could have heard. There was another crearure, though, that could hear the scoldingofriver...a cow wandering, frightened and forlorn, along the bankwi:a strange capriceofthe current had swept hertosafety...a dun-colou cow it was that lowed piteously into the evening.

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SPRINGPLANTINGCLAUDE THOMPSONITwas not until after her father's digging match that Liza Ann knew which man she would choose. When you married itwasforkeeps.When you married sometimes you discovered you had made a mistake too late. She could hear her Aunt Hepzi "Min' yu'self and dem manLiza Ann Min' yu'self. Sweet wud can't full bellygal.Seemeahone ting come libahhouse wid meisanuther." AndLiza Ann wasafraid; afraidofherself lest she could not wait and thenbebound forever nowayof breakingfreeperhaps noway.She could hear her Gran'paw "Never been a divorceinthis fambily yerrie.Weisfrom good srock andwebreed with good healthy stock. Never been a tief in this family either -Nosah."Whatwould you do? Get a man that would let down your people? You could not go back home.Whenyou called on them they'd all be silent and they'd speak only for speaking sake "Long time don'tseeyuh gal-""Yes sah." "Er-r-r-m-p-h-""Good weather down your way?""Nomam-"and you'd know they wanted you to go to go back where you now called home to lie in your bedasyouhad made it and after youhad gone they wouldsay"OnlyLawdknow howwecould hab a ga11ike thatinde fambily-""Who'sgwine swearfia 'ooman? LawdGod!Whatdem want dem tek. Bred to a no-count follow-line -!"and they would spit in disgust ashamedofyouand gladtoberidofthe sightofyou and if youdIedthey would I,e glad; for at last God had serrIed the bill. Her father had been a-warningher. Nothing open just a hinting "Don'tlike that dere BigJoeBoy.Hear he been drunk and in a fight down totownlastweek.Alwaysa-wanting to fight someone hegoing get dead sudden oneofthese days.Nocount raskil same like his paw." and sheknew what he meant sitting there as calmasa rock and

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52 SpringPlantingpuffing his chalk pipe with his hands hanging dead over his crossed legs. "he's gwine dead sudden." And he'd stare across the barbecue into the night. "Yes," said her mother, "dose who livebythe sword." "Powerful trueisde wordofGod," said her father, "One cannot gather figsofthistles."Youwould hear the toads callingintothenight;you could see the 'peenie wallies' flying about andnightwas made for love and desireandfor a galtochoose her man -thefatherofher children.Ifthenightbreeze rouched her cheek it was the fingersofher unknown mate and with itwasthe smellofthe land -oflifeasyet unborn.InDecemberthelignumvitae had blossomed and it was like a ladyinblue.NowinMayit blossomed again but the rains were coming, after the drought, and the pale blue blossoms were beatentothe ground and it was a timeofdecision for planting and shewasremindedofthe beautyofa woman heretOdayand tomorrow Shewasremindedofthe choiceofa girl -joytOnight and tOmorrow ***InDecember BigJoehad been making passes at her."Comingup to see yuh gal-""Notunless you wanttodead sudden." "Strong man nevah wrong.Who'sgwine stop me.""Yuhheerd about my paw?""Who'safraidofTata Higgins. He an his old gun -" "lit yun not scared what's StopplO' yuh?"''I'm takin'mytime gal and need noneofdem boy in the district set eyeponyuh. Yuh belongtome. I gwine to come acourrin'-""Death"she had said and flouncedoff.Anddayafterdayif he met her hewasat her. BigJoehad awaywithwomen-boldand brassy.Theothermen she knew weretooquiet especially Fred.He'djust sitthereandlookat herand he'd have no wordstosay andsomehowshe had narrowed itdowntooneofthesetwoandoutofsheerperversity perhaps BigJoewould win because theotherone was afraid to move.

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Claude Thompson53"Niceboy dat dere Fred" her father would say "
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54SpringPlantingparson when he preached spokeofrain -he prayed for kindly showers and the people understood rhat rheir rain-makerwasinterceding withGodand when they cameoutthey looked for a miracle from the iron skies. They knew it would come it must come but when? And a girl seeking in her heart asked herself orher questionsoflife some day I shall live but when? But menseekwater. The earth and rhe green things thereofmaywitheranddiebutman andtheanimals musr have water. Man seeks it and finds it. Man musr have love too.Heseeks it and then suddenly ourofa clear sky -irisall around. "never a drought like this."***Easter Sunday is always a day ro remember. Allthewomen are in white; white the symbolofpurity andofrhe contrire heart whiteastheslain Lamb. And hereisthe familiar spiritofGodtheonly rhing thOit the common man over the worldmayhave and the peoplearefilled with the aweofit that a man should die for them; even for rhem rhe black people! But whatiscolour? Black people are likeallother people. They have the good points and faultsofall other peoplebutabove all people they have had and still have rhe burdenofgreat suffering and outofthis has come their great spirirual capaciry. Bur thisisofthe spirit.Whatofthe flesh? The black people are strong. Black women are beautiful.You can ask BigJoehere in churchorFred. There is nootherwoman for constancy thereisno other raceofwomenofsuch con trolled desire and satisfying approach and even here in churchLizaAnn knew her fatherwaslooking at her and praying to God to give her what it was beyond his power to give her; peace and happiness and the loveofa good man for shewasbeautiful. You can ask Big Joe andFred. The. parson will tell you the SongofSolomonisanalogous to rhe Church. BigJoeand Fred will tell you itisa love song to a black woman.ItisLiza Ann sitting in Church on Easter Sunday; itisrhe lovely black columnofher neck itisthe ebonyofher skin like unto velvet. You can ask Big Joeand Fred.Whyshould BigJoegoto church and keep away from drink?Whyshould Fred go ro church? For a man who died for you?Domen die in timesotpeace for strangers? For a man you do not know when in this

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Claude Thompson 55 .gethereisonlyselfishness and greed? A man shall gotochurch to look.ta lovely young black girl and through loveofhertrytofindthe beautyhatthereisin life -tofind faith; for women believe.Howelse can hey live? And they cannot live unless they love and loveiscrust. But vhat shall a young girl believe? The SongofSolomonisan analogytohe Church! Lookoutover the parched commons to the earth; look out over the ,lackfacesofthe black sheep;feelthe wind on your cheeks and listen o its whisper in the pimento trees andseethe sun -"OhLambofGod who takethawaythe sinsofthe world. Havemercyupon us."** *After the serviceLizaAnn had come out into the sun and her father nd her mother had had her right along with them. And everyonewasaying "Howdy TataHiggins-""HowdyMissRosa-""HowdyLizaAnn-" \nd the old men chucked her under chin with their calloused fingers nd saidtoher father "Tata ah whey de gal ah grow good looking ah ;o?" and her father had been proud; and theyhadsaidtohermother-"-she tek after you Miss Rosa," and her mother had giggled. "Gwan wid youMassJoe and youMassAlec-"rhe old men had chucked her under the chin and the young men had Ireamed dieams. They had said "HowdyLizaAnn-""HowdyLiza Ann -"and the restwasin their eyes "Some tomor ow you'll be mine." And all the while she knew her father was watching them herself nd the young men. He would shoot stone dead the man who 'advan aged' her. Hewasa God-fearing man but for his familyhewould fight n Church and she had been thinking."Whichofyou all?Icannot make upmymind.Whichofyou all? f you wantmecome and getmetakeme.Make upmymindforme." lnd she had laughed to herself "Come and takeme!Ha!Ha!Notwith Paw around Ha! Stretch

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56SpringPlantingout your hand and takeme!My God! Paw would have afit.And it had made her eyes crinkle with hidden laughter and the young men and the old men had smiledthemselves-andanold man hadsaid"Whata happy gal!"Andnow her father had spoken and everyone had listened men and women."Itmustrain please God.Orwe'll be starvin'. Ah never see a drought like this in allmyborndays.Last weekahbeen down to Savan nah and demisalready starvin." The sinsofmanisheavy upon de earth anddehandofGodisfallen uponus-"And the old men had shaken their heads They had puffed at their chalk pipes and had been lost in thought andthewomen too had heldthesilence -pregnantwithhope. She had smelled the landinrhe tobacco-filled air; she had heard rhe land in rheir voices; she had seen the red earthintheir dark bodies her country, her people, herself waiting for rain. InMaytherain had come suddenly.Whenthetamarind tree in thecommonopposite their house had appeared almost dead -whenher father had decided to sell his stock -therain came. Suddenly in thenightithad come. Firstasa hesitant patter andthenit had become a steady tattoo borne on agustofwind hastening totheearth. She had known rhen how the earth mustfedand the darkfacesofher father andgettwObotdesofrum.Nowwegotrhe rainwemusr keep mavin' "Inthemorningtheworld appeared new. She had comeoutonthe barbecue and gonetothe tanktosee how much water had gone into it.But first, before she did that, she had turned her eyes acrossthesavan nahs tothesea hadturnedher faceintothewind andthento the stone wall, now wet, on which a bird had been singing.Herfather had comeoutfilledwithrenewed lifeasiftherain had poured it into him, and over his coffee in the kitchen he had announcedthathe would have a diggin' match the next week Wednesday. He had said _."Gwinetoplant out the three acres 'cross the common and onlywayto doitquickan'ketchtherainisto have a diggin' match. Ah'lI telldemman on Sunday and oonu 'ooman must look afterthefood. Ah'lI

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ClaudeThompson '57 gettwobottlesofrum.Nowwegottherain keepmavin'."Hehad been fullofplans and he hadspentthe day inthe"buttery"looking over his tools and mending a pack saddle.Hermother had saidnothing.After breakfast she had tied up her skirt in a pokopanya and had taken a hoe andgoneouttotheland behindthekitchen and com mencedtoplant corn.Youcould see her digging a hole in the groundandthendroppingthecorn initfrom a pocket in her apron and then'moulding'uptheholewitha bare fooe.The earch was receiving itsownto give it forch again many fold and she what had she been doing? She was still waiting and it wasasifher father had known her dissatis faction.Oncepassing her he had taken his pipe from hismouthan.dspokenasusual apparently to no one "Everything comes in God's own time."** *Itisstrange how time appeared toflywhen one looked back at it. You spent all the days in the expectationofan event and it seemed a lifetime away and then after it had come and gone you discover that it had come too quickly. Wednesday morning had been upon them before they knew it. Theyhadhardly set alighttothelarge blocksofdriedpimentowoodthatformed thefiresbeside the stone wall and put on kerosene tinsof'chocolate' and water to draw coffee before the men had commencedtoarrive sing ipg and shouting. All the women who were helping with the food had been there already and now came the men singing 'Bringmehalf-a hoe' Come gimmeya'Bring me half a hoe-'and she had heard BigJoeroaring abovetherest with his hoe over his shoulder. 'Bring me half -a hoe' And where had Fred been? He had been standing inconspicuously inthecrowdand hehadn'tbeen singing.Youneverknewhowthese digging matches, giving free labourtoone's neighbour, evergetunder way.Onemoment they are drinking large steaming mugsof'chocolate' and coffee and then they areoff.A great lineofmenis across the

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58Spring plantingfield. They are digging potato hills in one mad, frenzied srruggle right across the field.Thehoes are rising and falling with all the strengthofthe wielder. You never knew that men could work so hard. And out in front had been the singing man singing and dancing and controlling the match. Singing fast songs togetthetempooftherace making his own words -. 'Gal oh! Gal oh! They had gone across the field like mad leaving a straight lineof potato hillsbehindthemandnowthey werecomingbackandthepace had begun to tell. They had begun to string out panting, sweating, strain ing every muscle and out in front had been BigJoeand behind it had seemed impossible Fred.Thespectators were shouting and the men were coming along with a desperate hurry BigJoehad never been beaten in any match for a year now and herewasa challenger to the champion diggerofthe district.Tothe people it had been only that--the champion digger and a challenger.Toher it had been much more than that. The battlewasforher. It had been asifat the end she wouldbethe prize and thatwaswhat she knew they hopedto get the yrize ofher self-esteem. The pace had told.Thesame two hadgonefar out in front and BigJoehad become desperate.Hehad hurried his strokes and put too much into the down swingofthe hoe and Fred had comeupabreast.Thentherace had commenced in deadly earnest.Oneman had to collapse. Hill for hill they had come down the line and the old people had come to stand on the finishing line. Hill for hill they werecomingandthenimperceptibly Fred had come ahead and strangely she had been glad. A hill ahead! Could he hold it' Herfather had spoken -"Thegreatest diggin' match I have ever seen in the district." AndOld'Custos', the oldest man in the district said "Only once afore ah ever seen ah match like this and the winnah dropped dead." Fear had seized her heart. They bad come on and on then therewasa great cheer forthenew champion. They had beenpantingasat theendofalongrunningrace. They had only been able to lean on their hoes whilst the sweat had run down their dirt-begrimedfaces.And then it had happened. Someone had laughed at Big Joe and in movinghehad

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Claude Thompson 59 bounced against her and she had drawn away and BigJoehumiliatedbefore her eyes, had said "Who ther-you drawin' way from? Sincewhenyou become so damn stocious?" Fred had dropped his hoe and hit him so hard, BigJoehad rolled on the ground. Then BigJoewasup roarin'."Hellyah tiday-"She had stood petrified and her father had rushed BigJoeand BigJoehadhithim and her father had rushed for his gun. The men had heldbothFred and BigJoeand over all she heard her mother shouting "Jesus Christ! Tek him whey before Tata comeoutwid himgun'Ah,don'twant Tata hengfimurder!"Andthenthere had been a roar fromthehouse and there was her father rushing fromthehouse and bringing thegunto his shoulder "Jesus Christ! MassTata" "Mass Tata-"Everyone except her mother, Fred and herself had run, desperately for the stone wall, BigJoewell up in front and she not knowing what she did had taken Fredbythehand and suddenlythegunhad spoken. "Lawd Jesus-"Everyone had fallen flat on theirfacesand BigJoehad crawled behind the stone wall. Everyone had beenscreaming-"Mass Tata-""Mass Tata-"and her father had stood there and he hadsaid"Dat one was in de air togetyuh peopleoutofde way. I am just waitin' forthatsonofab-toshow his head."Andeveryone had trembled flat ontheirfaces onthered earth.TataHiggins wasknownfor his gun.Thegreatestgunman'inmiles and he nevermissed-nota target the sizeofBig Joe.Andeveryone had moaned.Itwas a saddening sound going acrossthefield to behind.thestone wall where BigJoewas hidden itwastheendoftime and no one moved for fearofTata Higgins turning hisgunon them instead and all the while she had been holding Fred'shandand he hadputhis hand around her and neitherofthemhad

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60Spring Plantingrealisedthatthey weredoingthis and even hermotherjuststood there waiting. Everyone waited for BigJoeto break from coverbutBigJoehad lainbehindthewall -Atlast her father hadlaughedand lowered hisgunandshouted-"Everybodygetup.AhnotshootinganyonebuttellthatBigJoe boy" togetoffmy place."Andthen he hadcomeuptothemFred and herself and said "Dropin at de house anytimeson." Andthenshe knew.Itwas as simpleasthat.

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THEMERMAID'SCOMBHARTLEY NEIT ATHEDornoch River startsasa large poolofwater at the foot of tall cliff near StewartTowninSt.Ann.Inthe daysthewomen from the nearby districts come to the pool with large bundlesofclothes to wash in the water, and while they scrub and tinse, they keep a waryeyeon their young ones swimming and splashinginthe water downstream. .. Butat nights now, in spiteofits inviting peace, no one goestothe pool for the peopleofthese districtsarefearful. And their fear is bornoutofa legend that has come downthrough tme years from parent to child that has made this river-source a poolofmystery.Noone knows where the water that forms this pool comes from, butwhatthey do know is that it is bottomless. And thereisa strangeness about this place. There the trees grow tall and tower towards the sky, andifyou look up into the lacework of branchesfarabove your head you can see the leaves trembling when the breezes blow and sweeping the sky cleanofclouds. And the treesarethick with leaves which shadow the pool,sothat the sun never finds itswaythrough except at the odd moment when t thin beam lights this quiet and secluded spot.***Once a rock stood at the edgeofthis pool. A rough, white massofstone that on moonlight nights glowed with a strange light which brightened the pool.Thisrock, the people said,wasthe throne.ofa mermaid called Dora. Today the rockisgone. It tumbled deepinrothe pool many, many years ago, but the people who believe the legend y,rill showyou where it rested its weight during the lifetimeofthe legend. Theysaythe spot will remain there until the endoftime, for no bladeofgrass, no shrub or tree will ever take root on this bare patchofearth. Yet, the peopleofthe neighbourhood have never seen Dora. Theysaythat long ago she swamawaydown the Dornoch and into thesea.'Since then, peopleinother partsofthe island have seen her combing her long, silky, green-tinted hairasshe sits on rocks in various rivers, inthe-Martha

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62TheMermaid'sCombBrae, the Rio Grande, the Black River, and in more recent timesonPim RockintheRioCobre.Thelegend saysthatonmoonlightnightsDorausedtositonthiswhiterock near StewartTown,and becausethelightshiningfromtherockgavethepoolalookingglass appearance,shewouldlookather reflection in the pool, andhummingsoftly to herself,wouldcombher hair.Thesongshehummedwas strange, and it lilted acrosstheriverandthetrees, sothatpeoplearoundcouldhear ir.Itwasstrange,yet beautiful, and it hadsomethingabout it ::hat was sad and haunting.Therune shehummedhad no words,butto all thosewhowanted andhopedfor thethingsthey never had, themeaningofthesong was clear. h was aninvitationtocometothepool andfrightenher, andiftheywantedthesomethingbadlyenough.thenDorawouldleapintothe pool and leave hercombonthe rock. Andthoughdeep underthewater, helsongwouldstillcontinueintheearsoftheluckyone,andthewords weredear."Takemycombhomeand I will cometoyou in your dreams, and anythingyou askofme, I will give youifyou will only return my comb." This was the song.***Nowin StewarcTownthere lived a girl named Hazel.Herfather was wealthy and Hazel had everything she wanted.Herdolls weretheenvyofeverymotherinthetown.Theywalked, cried andsomeeven spoke saying"Mama,Mama."Hazel hadnocause to play dirtyPOtasdidtheotherchildrenofStewart Town.Ohno, she had a real kitchen set, with a small stove, potS and pans, knives and forks, and even cups and saucers.IfHazel wanted anything, shegotit.Butthere wasonethingher fathercouldnotgive her, andthatwasthethingshedesiredmostofall.Herhair wasshortandsrubbyand she longed for hairthatcould restonher shoulders and tickle her when i: shookasshe walked.Sowhile the children envied an her possesSIOns, here was something they could tease her about. Andtheyd.id.Hearthem:...Eh picka-pecka head ..Howisthe cane row? .

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Hartley Neita63...Child,ishow you head look so likewhenfowl done eat coconut meal ... Eh, Hazel?...Thiswas her torment. Shebought patent oils from Kingston's best srores. She tried all the things the old womenofthe village suggested, coconut oil, toonah leaf, banana root, single bible, policeman oil...a.lland everything, until sometimes her head stank with the mixtureofherbs. Butinvain. So when one night Hazel heard the mermaid Dora singing, it seemedasif thesongwas for her a.lone.Thepool was nearly a mile from her home, but to Hazel the song cameasif from below her window It was clear and sweet, the invitation strong and fullofappeal. And Hazel left her bed softly, for fearofdrowningthesongfrom rhe pool, and once outside she ran straight for the river and the rock that was Dora's throne.Itwas Hazel's hastethatfrightenedDorathatnight.Asshe neared the pool her feet tangled with somebrushwoodand as shetumbledto the earrh she screamed.Thescream shocked Dora inro terror, and like a flash she dived inca the pool.Whenshe heard the splash, Hazel knewthatDorawas gone, leaving her comb behind.Jumpingand forgetting her bruised knees she ran re wards the rock. And sureenoughthere was a comb,thatcould only bethemermaid's comb And it was too, foramongits finely carved teeth were afewsilky strandsofthe mermaid's green-tinted hair.Thedreamdidn'tcome that night; it never comes the first night. But on the followingnightHazel was hardly asleep beforeDoraappeared in '1 dream,aspromised.Themermaid was beautiful, more beautiful than Hazel had imagined, but she hardly saw the flawless perfectionofDora's face, for her gaze was fastenedonthehairthatflowed softly over rhe shoulders, below the waist, and down,downuntil it sheathedthemer maid'sfins.Dorawas the colourofchocolatethathas beentwOdays sweating its juicy coat in the boiling sun.Herfacewas almost full-moon round, and the green gloryofher hair framed it with gentle curves and waves. And Dora's voice was soft, sweet, and caressing. "What do you wish for mostofallmychild?"

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64TheMermaid'sCombHazel chokedwithemotion. "Gh. I want hair, beautiful and longasyours, dear Dora", she begged. "This you shall havemychild. Come with metothe pool. Sit on the rock that ismythrone. Look down into the water, and comb the hair you now have.Thelovely hair you seek shall be yours."Thedream ended, and Hazel woke suddenly andwasoutofbed and run ning through the woods straight for the pool. She scrambled up on the rock, and sat looking down at her reflection in the pool. And she begantocomb.Sosoft were the teethofthe combasit passedthroughher hair that she was remindedofa knife passing through soft butter. Each time the pull-through was longer, and looking down Hazel saw her hair reachingnowto her neck, tickling it with such a strangenessthatshe felt her blood curdling with cold. Then her hair was stretching past her shoulders, anditwas soft and brown, like the tuftofhair at the endofan earoffull grown corn. Soonitlayin thick tresses against her hips.Thenthe rhythmofthe combing became a command.Itwasasifother hands werehelpingher ro comb.Thehairgrewheavier and heavier, and her neck bent under its weight towards the pool. Hazel saw her hair spreading on the surfaceofthe pool, andasit soakedupthe water,itbegantosink, further and heavier. Thenthere was a splashasthe hair dragged her from the rock and deep down into the pool. Her hands lostthecombasshe triedtograb attheedgeofthe rock,buther fingers slipped helplessly on its moss green surface. And then she was grasping at empty air, and then water.Nextnight Dorawasback on the rock, singing her wordless, haunting melody, and combing her hair with her comb. And she was smiling now, smiling.

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THESOUNDBERYL MARSTONITcame like a tiny shiver. A soft, timid, trickleofsound.Asthougha child threw some grainsofsand against a window pane. Yet, its origin was impossible to locate.Theboy and girl looked at each other, then measured the possibilitiesofthe room. There was the table around which theysac.A bare deal table, burdened with a morley assortmencofbooks.Thebeamsoflightfrom the single kerosene lamp placed in its centre, hardly reaching beyond the edge.Thereme shadows took over. Tall ill-shaped shadows cast by the chairs on which they satbytheir own bodies andbythe sofa in the cor ner nearest the outer door. For there weretwodoors.Theoneleading incothedarknessofthenightand the other inco the room beyond. They hadthoughttherewasnothingmore exceptofcourse the silence.Thenoisy silenceofa coun try night when when the crickets chirped or the night owl hoored.Nowthey knew berrer. There weresomany things more. There was the night wind whisrlinginthe bamboo trees. There was the same wind sighing through the cotton tree. Ahlrhe corton tree'Iewas a convenient place for robbers. Added to all these there wasTheSound. But, most importancofall was their mummy's absence.Whenshe wenc through the door she had told them to sit at their studies.***Outoftheseaofaloneness the boy said."Thereisnothingthere!"Hespoke aloud.Hespoke too loudly because he was afraid. He neededcore-affirm his faith in the saferyofthe nighc."Thereis!" his sister whispered hoarsely. "I just know there is."Thefingersofonehandcaughtin her mouch, she pushedtheotherbetween her tiny legs hugged together. "Letuslook," the boy said.Herose, hesitanrly drawing one reluctanc hand acrosstheedgeofthe table.

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66The SoundThediamonddropsstoodinhereyesandin awhimperingvoiceshesaid: "Take me with you then!""Come!"the boy said.***Heheld the lamp inonehand and withtheotherclutchedtheshade, keeping it in place. His curly head peeped round itashis eyes combattedtheshadows.Thegirl, stillwithher fingersinhermouth,heldtightlytothe seat ofhis pants. So they began those myriad miles acrossthattiny room.Thenitcame again.Thesame slitherofsound.Only,nowit wasaccompaniedbytheswish,swishofbambooleavesfightingagainstthewind. It seemed more companionable.Thegirl tOok her fingers from hermouthbutshestill held firmlytoher brother.Theymoved very slowly.Heknewfearbutit wasbettertopretendhewas accommodating his stepstothoseofhis sister.Theyreached the inner doorway.Thelimited rays fromthelamp prickedatthe darkness beforethembur could nor pierce it. It neededbuta momentfor thegatheringofcourage andthentheywouldgoin.Theboylookeddown at the girl and smiled. A slow, secret smile that said he wasnotafraid."Now'"he said and stepped forward. PLOP!** *Thescream came tearing from their throats andthedarkness was entireandcompletebecausethelamplay in pieceswherehe haddroppedit.Theirbare feet weredrippingbloodasthey flung themselves backintotheroomfrom which they had come. "Mummy'" they screamed."Mummy'"on a risingnoteofterror.Batteringthemselves,clutchingat eachother'sclothes,fallingandrisingagain, theystumbledtowardsthelighterdarkthatwasthedoorleading into the night.

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BerylMarston67"Tommy'whatisit?" the morhet's voice split the darkness and broughtthemback to sanity. "There issomethingthere,"theboy sobbed.Thegirl awhimperingcuddle on her mother's shoulder wouldnotso muchaslift her head. Voices cameinthen andwiththemastronglight.Theystepped across the room whichbuta shorr while ago seemed a myriad miles.Thedark nessofthe room beyond became the friendly daytime room.Therewas the bed they usually shared. There wasthestory book theirmummyhad leftopenwhenshe readthemaneveningtale.TherewasTommy'ssilvergunand beside itthelittle girl's teddy bear.** *Voices went past the open window and the bambooleaves swished, a soft friendly sound. Even the cottontree was searched.Theraysoftheseveral lights belted itsgirthso they saw there wasnothingthere.Andthen they searchedtheroom again.Theboy and girl held tightly to their mother's fingers.Theymoved the table which had held the lamp.Thegrotesque shadowsshiftedtheirshapesasthepositionofthechairs waschanged.Thesofa nearthedoor was moved.Butthey had forgotten the window.Itstood closedasit had done for years.Itwas besidethedoorand had been closed becauseofits super f1uity.Nowthey came to it and what lay beneath.Onthesoiledwoodenfloor they saw the heapofwhitemarl.Ithadtumbledfrom the Spanish wall which made the house.Ithad left a tinyholewherethewoodenframeworkofthewindowandthewall parted company.Theysawallthis andthenthemotherfoundIt.Itsquattedbesidetheheapofwhite marl, its well developed legs ready forhoppingagain.

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68TheSoundItwasassurprisedasthey were and seemed to garher brearh for another leap after its fall. Its riny sides heaved and itsbright,grotesque eyes looked sreadily ar rhem.Itwas themotherwhosawirforwhatit was. "See," she said, "it isa frog.Hepushedthroughrhe Spanish wall andrumbledwith irtothefloorl "

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HARRYTHE HUMMERLAURICEBIRDHARRYthehummetwas feeling low in spirits this special Sunday morning.Formany seasons past Ermaandhimselfhadbuilttheir nests inthenotchesofan old-fashionedhanginglantern inoneofthe country churchesofJamaica.oweach notch encircling rhe lantern had theremnantsofa firmly embedded in it Harry wasthoroughlyagainstdoingany further 'repairs', and wanted an entirely new nest this season.Hehad a special reason for this.Theday before he hadrushedwithgrearexcirementro Erma, assheflirted here and there inthechurch,quietlylookingforanothersuitable placetobuild. "Listen tothis, old girl," he burst our. "Jusr heard rharI'vebeen chosen as rhe narional birdofJamaica! Can you bear rhar:>""Oh, Harry..." Erma laughed indulgently. "You mean it's your species they've chosen noryouinparticular." "Eh ...whar did you say:>" Harry quietened down for a moment, a bir raken aback. "Oh, well, rhar includes me, anyway," he saiJ grandly, buzz ing his wings a bir faster."You've heard rhar theNatureClub youngsters are camping ouratJohnson'sFarm?" he continued. "Young Bertie pointed ar measI hovered around.Hesaid,'Thischap has been chosenasnarional bird, because heisfoundonLyin rhis island.' Boy, rhar means we're reallyimportant!"Nowirwas nearly rime for peopletosrartcomingin formorningser vice. Harrydidfeelannoyedthatrhey had no new nesr readytoshowrhe important people who would be rhere for rhe service ofThanksgiving,tomark rhe island's independence.Hoveringin mid-airbymeansofhis loudly vibraring wings, he voiced his complaintstohis lirrle spouse,whowas notasbrilliantly garbed ashe was, neirher had she his long and elegant rail. "You know, my dear," he said fussily, swishing his scissors railashe followed herroundthebuilding, "I can'rrhinkwhar we'regoingtodo

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70Harry the Hummeraboutthishousingshortage'Wecan't find a suitable site, and building materials aresoscarce.It'sreallybotheringme.""Don'tbe silly, Harry," answered Ermawithomconviction. "The heavenIyFatherknowsourneeds, andHewillshowuswhatro do.Inthe meantime," she added drily, "may I suggest that from ro-morrow yougoa lirrle further afield, and seeifyou can't find any silk cotron? Failing that, you must search forthedownofasclepias seeds." Erma always looked on thebrightsideofthings. She knew that Harry hadspentmostofhistimemoping,and had scarcely beenfurtherthanthe churchyardtolook forthesoft silk cotron which they neededtobuildthenest.Thisseemed ro be inshortsupply,and he hadvolunteereda few ideas as tohowtoobtain some. "We might,ofcourse,lookoutforotherbirdswhohavegotsomeandnabit."(Hewouldn'tsay'steal';'nab'soundedmoterespectable). But Erma hadputhetfootdownon that one. "We will do no suchthing,"shesaid firmly. "Call itwhatyou will nab, pilfer, borrow, bag it's just plain stealing." Harry had the grace rofeelashamed;butthen he came up withanothersuggestion. "You knowwhat,Erma,supposewemakea fatherofa fuss tillthechurchpeople feel theymustdosomethingaboutit?OrI tell youwhatthe membersoftheNatureClub are the oneswhooughttoassist us!" "Oh, geton with you, Harry," Erma replied a bit wearily. Shedidwish her husband would make more efforthimselfandnotdwell somuchonwhatothersoughttodo to help them. She herself, like anyhumanmother,had already beguntothinkabouttrimmingsforthenest. She knew just wheretofindthescrapsoflichen and fine ferntodecoratetheoutside.Tomakethenestshewouldskilfully weavethesilk corronwithher beak into a beautiful egg-cup shape.Whenthe nest was half-finishedshewouldsit downinit, and withherbreast press it intO shape. Erma never allowed any slip-shodsonofjob.TruthtotelJ,shespentagreatdealofperspirationonit, whilstHarry'sjob was mostly admiration'Thechurchbell began ro ring,andHarryflashedaroundtoseewhoandwhowereoutthis morning.Hecutquitea dash in hisbrightmetallic

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LauriceBird71plumage,ofshimmering greens and blues and darker shades.Therewasthefat ladywhodressed to beattheband,andwhosanglouderthan anyone else. Sitting at rhe back were those horrid boyswholoved to tease him.Hewished theNatureClub wouldgetholdofthem.Thespecially invited guests werebeginningto arrive, and Harry cut his capers through the church and made sure that they all noticed him. After all, was he nor a national figure now? Presently hisattentionwas turned to thechoircomingin, and with a cheery "S'long, see you later!" to Erma, he dashed lower down to watchwithinterest as theytooktheir places. Harry knewthemallquitewell by now, including the boywhopumpedthe organ.Justunderthehanginglanternhe couldspotMiss Esmie,thenice old ladywhokept the villageshop,and...ah yes, there were his favourite family, the Johnsons, in their pewasusual. They filledupa second bench today, havingastheir guests membersoftheNatureClub, to which twelve-year old Bertie belonged. Besides Mr. and Mrs.Johnsonand Bertie, there weretwodaughters. Audrey was a year older than Bertie, and Rita was quite a bit younger.IfHarry the hummer had a special liking for them, there was no doubt that theJohnsonstook a lively interest in the doingsofHarry and Erma.Therewas ananthembyrhe choir, andthenthecongregationsang ahymnthat Harry had often heard.Hefelt ashamedofhis former peevishmoodashe listened to the verses."Throughall the changing scenesoflife,Introuble and in joy,ThepraisesofmyGodshall still My heart andtongueemploy.amagnifytheLord with me,Withme exalt HisName;Whenin distress toHimI called,Hetomyrescue came. FearHim,yesaints, and you will then Havenothingelse to fear: Make you His service your delight,Yourwants shall be His care."

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72Harry the Hummer"Huh...I guess Erma's right," Harry told himself, "It reallyisbetter to praise than topout.Ifeven asparrowhastheFather'scare(andhedidn'tthink muchofsparrows) I reckonHewill look afterourproblems."Nextcame the sermon, and Harry felt even more ashamedasthe Jamaican minister seemedtoknowjustwhatwasgoingonin hismind.Harryliked the first text he quoted."Trustin the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding."Heknew that Erma would ap proveofthe next."Whatsoeverthyhandfindeth to do,doitwiththy might."Theminister repeated an old saying which he urged everyone to apply to himselforherself as amottofor Independence. "We must trust asifwe had no needtowork;andwemustworkasiftherewasnoneedtotrust." Erma had been listening intentlyasshe sat motionless on an eave above the pulpit. Harry, however, couldnotbe still for long and, glancingroundthe congregation, he spiedthebrightartificial flowersthatcoveredtheentire crownofAudreyjohnson'shat.Downswooped Harry thehummeruponAudrey's head, and stuck his long red beak into the flowers,butalas, there was no nectar for him to sup! Audrey quickly brushedhimaway with her hand,butHarry was only the more eageranddeterminedtogetatthelovelynectarhe was sure those beautiful flowers contained. Again and again he returned to the attack until a veritable boxing match wastakingplace Audrey and himself, assisted byenthusiasticmembersofthe Narure Club. Harry was a fighter like allofhis species, and was determined to gain his objective, whilst poor Audrey'sfacegrew crimson under her swarthy skin. She became more uncomfortable each moment,aspeople rurned round to look.Thechildren giggledoutright.Therewas a peculiartwitchingatthe cornerofMr.Johnson'smouth,as he sat attheotherendofthebench. Mrs.Johnsondecided that somethingmustbe done."You'dbetter take your hat off, Audrey," she whispered hurriedly.OnlytoOhappy to take her mother's advice, Audrey quickly grabbed it off her

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Laurice Birdhead and stuck itunderthebench, whilst Bertie flipped away his friend for the last time.Ashe flew back to Erma topourouthis rage, Harry bounced against oneofthe old nests and dislodged it right ourofits notch in the hanging lanrern. Erma gave a gaspofdelightasshe saw it flutteringdownonthe shoulderofMiss Emmie. "Look, Harry'"she almost shouted, her very annoyed and indignanr husband fluttered round her. "Do you see what's happened' Why,there'll be no need for us to look elsewhere to buildournest'"Ittook Harry amomenrortwoto colleCt his wits and allow his tem per to cool off; for really, it had been provokingnotto be allowed togetatthatneCtar.Ashe saw the empty notch in the lantern, he stuttered in amazement, "Now whyhadn'tIrhoughtofthat before'""We may be nitwits, dear," Erma said joyfully, "but again we've provedthatourheavenly Father really does make 'allthingsworktogetherforgoodtothemthatloveHim""Asthepeopletroopedoutofchurchand greetedoneanother, Harry hovered within earshotoftheJohnsons,pretendingtogathernectar and insects from the honeysuckle vine nearby.Hereally wanted to hear allthelatest news. Bertie drew theattentionoftheNatureClubto the way Harrythrusthis long, slender beak into the flowers. Audrey joined them, havingthrownher offending hatintothecar. "I'm madwithhimstill'"she said, as Bertie with agrin,continued his lecture. "A hummingbird'stongueislike two tubes laid side by side," he ex plained, "but itisjoinedhalfway, and separate fortheremainder." "Yes, he sucks up from the lowersthroughthese rubes," Mr.Johnsoncontinued, "and the tips, which are splitintotiny, irregular pieces that turn backwards, he uses for catching andentanglinginsects." "Why ishe called the 'doctor' bird?" enquired Rita. "I know'"exclaimed amemberoftheClub. "It's because hislongtail reminded peopleofthe frock-tailed coats that doCtors used to wear." ''I've beentoldit wastheblack crestonhis headthatmadepeoplethinkofa doctor's top hat," said another.73

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74 Harry theHummer"Really, ir's rime we weregoinghome,ordinnerwill be lare," chippedinMrs.Johnson."Mummy,wair forme'"calledourlirrle Rira, assheran ro a bedoffern where, before rhe service,shehad lefrsomepodsofsilk corron. "I broughrrhese for Erma andHarry;whereshall Ipur them/ sheasked,lookingaround. "Here, underthe honeysuckle," ordered Berrie. "Then rhey'll be sure ro seerhem."Erma was alreadyhavinglunchfroma redhibiscusflower,whensherurnedcoseethemdepart.Hereyes fell on rhe silk corronasRira placedironrhesparindicared by Bertie. Hardly able ro conrain her joy, she called"Harry!Harry!Twomiracles inoneday! Firsr we canbuildagain inourdearoldlanrern;andnow,justlook ar whartharrhoughrfulchild hasbroughtus."Harry too was thrilled,andhe loopedtheloopandturnedsomersaults rill his wife wasalmostdizzy.ThenErma called himcoorder. "Lisren, old rop," she saidinher bestlecturemanner, "make upyourmindtharfromromorrow Independence Day your'egettingdown ro somegoodhard work onthatnest'"

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"When flybodder maugermuLe nobodysee,but whenhim kick, dem sayhimbad."CARMENMANLEYMRs.SPIDERwasknownbyeveryoneinthetownas atroublemaker. Shewouldcarry news and gossip fromonehometotheother. Uninvited,shewouldmoveintoany house inthetown,weave her web,and settle downonthe ceiling for an indefinite stay. From her positiononthe ceiling,nothingthatwentonin the house would escapehersharpeyes. She was alwaysboastingabouther famous grandfather,Anancy -thewonderfulwebshehadwovenandthehundredsofflies hehadcaughtinthem.Mrs. Spider had juStmovedintoMaugerMule'shouse. She had heardthatMaugerMulewashavingatryingtimewithflies.TheFly family were squatters; theywouldnever settledownbutwouldswarmintohomes,eating,andsleeping,andplayingmusicanddancingallovertheplace,untilthefood was finished.Thentheywouldmoveontoanotherhouse and starr all over again.Theirbehaviour was a disgracetothetown.Theywould hang aroundshops,onthestreetcornersdrinkingandsingingattopsoftheir voices. Traps had been set forthem,butthey weretoOclever to becaughtinthatway.MaugerMule was a worriedman.Heprancedaboutall dayswishinghistail,tryingto clear hishomeofthesquatters and as ifthatweren'tbadenough,Mrs. Spiderkeptup a steadystreamofchatter,tellinghimhowuseless hismethodswere."Why,"shewouldsay, in herhighsCjueakyvoice. "Mauger Mule,you are a fool.Yourtail is missingthemby a mile everytime." "Oh, shutup!"MaugerMulewouldbray "What wouldyou haveme do' Standstill anddonoth1l1g'" "Oh, no,"Mrs. Spider said. "I knowexactlywhattodo." "What,then'" stampedMule. "Oh," smiled Mrs. Spider. "[ had better nottell you, for it is a secret mygrandfather,Anancy,taughtme.""Yourgrandfather,"gtuntedMuIe, "was a. "Was a what'" snappedMrs. Spider, inhermosticy tone.

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76 When FlyBodderMaugerMule"Oh,forget it,"Mule said, asaflynippedhimonhis hind leg."Ifyou aregoingro talk disrespeCtfullyaboutmy ancesrors," Mrs. Spider said, drawing her web around her,"Iwill be forced to takeupresidence else where."Mulewasshockedby rhis remark. Forcedtotakeupresidence else where, indeedI!IThiswoman had moved inro hishomeuninvited, had dirtiedhisceilingwirhher web, had calledhima fool,laughedat his efforts to deal with theflymenace, and now had the nerverostand there,onhisceiling,andsuggestshewasdoinghimafavourby remainingIThenerveofsome peopleITheysroodglaringateachother.Mrs. Spiderchangedher tactics. She realised Mule, who was normallyquiteapatientman wasgettingangry."Mr.Mule," she said sweetly."IfI rold youwhatrodorogetridoftheFly family, youmustpromisenotro say where yougotit from.""Come,now, woman," said Mule. obody has ever suggested beforethatIcannotkeep mymouthshur.""Oh,I know," said Mrs. Spider."Theyall say you are a verystubbornman." "'li/ho says I amstubborn?"brayed Mule."Oh,MulesyWoolsy,"Mrs. Spider said,tryingtolook coy."Cutoutthenonsense,woman,andtell mewhattodoabouttheseflies,"he said."Well,JUStoutsideunderthecorron tree,HerMajestyQueenBee hasherhoneycombs.Ifyou stealoneandputit in abox,alltheflies will rushinfor the honey. They will stick in it and then you could easily slamthelidonthe box.Thenyou can taketheboxdownrothesea and kickitintheoceanasfarasitcango.""Butthatsounds agoodplan.Thankyou," saidMr.Mule, andouthetrottedro stealtheHoneyComb.Heslowed downashe came tothe cotron treeonwhose barkHerMajesty kept her honeycombs. There were the drones, the men bees, idling away the time,doingnotonestitchofwork."Goodmorning,drones," saidMaugerMule."Niceday,isn'tit)""Buzzoff,"thedrones said rudely. Mr.Mulethoughttohimself. "They arenotonly lazy,butvery rude

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CarmenManley77indeed. Anyway,iftheyhave been left here toguardthehoneycomb, I will have no difficulty." "Is HerMajesty at home?" asked Mule.Thelazydrones looked at eachotherand pretended not to hear. Perhaps he would wantthemto take a message in, and they really had no intentionofmoving.Inany case,HerHighnesswas at thatmomentgiving audience to a deputationaboutMr.Owl'snew order which decreedthatall sharp weaponsshouldbeputaway andnotused except in timeofwar.Thiswas a grave matter indeed forthecolony asitseemedthatallstingswould havetobe removed.HerHighness had made it clear that she should nor be interrupted. Mr.Mulerealisedthatthe drones werenotgoingto answer his question,so he moved nearer totheHoneyComb.OutcametheWorkerbees. "Now thisisa problem,"thoughtMule. "I have gOt rogetridofthem." He hurried backintohis house to ask Mrs. Spider's advice. "Mrs. S.," he said, in his kindest voice. "It isvery niceofyou to tell me how togetridofthe flies,butfirst I mustgetridofthe worker bees, togetat the honeycomb." "Use your head, man, and rhink," said Mrs. Spider. "You are adumbmule.Goand borrowoneofMrs. Jackass' ropes. Lie under the tree and smoke it. You know smoke makes the bees vety sleepy. They won't even noticewhatyou are doing." "Thank you kindly,mam."Mule said, bowing his way out. "Mule," caUed Spiderashe reached the door."Wouldyou like me toshowyou howrostealaswell?" Mr. Mule pretended not to hear. "That womanisgoingtoOfar," hemumbledto himself.Goingacross to his neighbour's fence, he called to the Jackasses. Mrs. Jackass stopped her workofdrying grass and turned to her hus band. "Jack," she said, "I didn'tknowMr. Mulesmoked." "You know now," brayedMr.Jackass,whowas a manofvery Fe}\' words.Healways complained that he was roo tired to talk. He handed Mr. Mule a lengthofJackass rope, and Mr. Mule thankedhimgratefully.Hewas always very politewhenhe didnothave to pay forwhathegot.Mrs. Jackass brayed,"Youaremostwelcome,"butshe

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78WhenFlyHodderMaugerMulethoughtto herself: "I hopeyou will buy yourowncigars nexttime"(forthatwas reallywhatJackass rope W3S). Andso Mr.Mulemade his way backtothecottontree. Lyingonhis back, he crossed hishindlegs, andwiththerighthoofoftheforeleg puffed away attheJackass rope.Theheavy cloudofsmokenotonlymadethebees sleepy,butit also gaveoffa smellthatwas hr from pleasant. Soontheworkers cameshouting:"Runfor cover, itisastinkbomb",and they all movedoffin a daze to warnHerMajestythatwar had been declared.Assoonasthey wereoutofsight,Mr.Muleremoved thehoneycombandhurriedintohishousewithit. "Mrs. Spider," he called,ashe entered. But there was no 3nswer. Look ingupinto the ceiling, he could find no traceofMrs. Spider's web."Well,well, well," said Mr. Mule happily to himself."Itseems I havegotridofherat last.Thisisindeedmy lucky day.Nowtoattendtotheseflies." Finding a box, he laid thehoreycombgentlyinside, then hidingbehindadoorwitha cover for theboxin his hand, he waited smilingly fortheflies to find this treasure. Mrs. Spider, however, troubll':-maker thatshe was like hergrandfather,Anancy,had packedherweb and leftthehousesoonaftershehad seen Mulegetridofthebees.Nowshewashurryingdowntheroad spre,d ingthenewsoftherobberyandofthe trick Mr.Mulehad playedtogetridofthe bees. Mrs. Jackasssupportedher story, braying: "Disgraceful.Tryingtogetmeintroublewiththe Bees. Using mygoodcigars for such apurpose."Shewas really angry forintellingthesrory, Mrs. Jackass hadnot failed tomentionthatthebees hadthoughtit was astinkbomb.Soonthewholevillage had heardthenewsandwereontheirway to Mr.Owl,the leaderofthe country,toseethatjustice was done. Mr.Mulehadinthemealltime succeeded intrappingtheflies and had taken theboxdown to the sea as Mrs. Spider had suggested.Onhis wa)' home,he was met bytwopolice dogsandescortedtoCollege Proper thepublic sCJuare whereallmattersofstate were dealtwith.Mr.Owlwas indeed very fair as he listened ro allthewitnesses, Mrs.Spiderbeingthechiefone.Indeedshesolovedtheideaofbeingthe

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CarmenManley79centteofattentionthatshetalkedtoomuch. AndasMr.Owllistened, he realised thatpoorMule was more sinned againstthanwronghimself. Still,ofcourse, he had to be punished for his crime. Before passing sentence on him, Mr.Owlsaid: "When fliesbotherMaugerMule, nobody sees,butwhenhe kicks, you all say heisbad.ThispoorMuleisblamed becausehehas at last tried ro dosomethingabout his continued sufferings."Thevast crowdhungtheir heads. They felt ashamedoftheir behaviour.Oneofthebees came forwardandsaid: "Mr. Owl,IknowthatifHerMajesty could be here now, shewouldaskthatMr. Mule be freed. Un fortunately sheisunable to leavehomejust now,butshe asked metosay :hat shehas heard muchofthe story andthatanytime Mule has any troublesofthis kind, she would be pleasedtolet him have a bitofhoneycomb."Alltheanimals cheered. "Mule," Mr.Owlsaid. "You are free rogonow. And you, Mrs. Spider,muststopmaking trouble in this countryoryou will be deported tothelandofyour ancestOrs." "I didn'tmean any harm," shesCJueaked. "It was a harmless little joke.Howwas Itoknowpeople would believe everything you tell them?" Bu t she soon realisedthateveryone waslooking at her in anger. Shewouldfind great difficultyspinningher webaroundthemall for alongrimetocome.

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EXTRACTFROMSANGLORIA(Act3 Scene I)Ontheshoreasbelore,Columbussoliloquises:Moansonthereefthedeepsea'shatedvoice;Surgingandsappingontheroughreersrim;Itspeaksofdeath,dead faces andofwoes,Unnumbered, past.. and sorrows yettobe;Itisthepulseofsadeternity;It istheprophetvoiceofgriefandpain;Itisthejudgmentvoiceofthingsto come,When,athighheaven'sthrone,thedead shall meet,And,small and great, make answer fortheirdeeds;Inthose sadmoaningscomethewidow'stears,Theorphan'sanguishandthehopelesshopeOfwatchers, fromthewhitesands, far to sea. Mendez,whatfateisthine? Perchance,now,nowThebodythatenhousedthysoulisflung,AndtumbledO'erandO'er,amidthewrackAndslimeofocean'sbottomlessabyss.Here,it was here,onsucha day asthis,Thesea-surgesoundingintheself-same wayThtoughthese wind-whispering trees,thatyouryoungheart Leapt totheservice; once did you essayTheperilous passage, and were driven back Allburyourself killed bythesilent hateOfstaringsunsupona stirless sea; So thirst to fury grew; to frenzy past;Andmadness whirled to death. Again you tried,

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San Gloria extractThen,fromtheseasweptback tostorms,you came,Butyet,undaunted,forthethirdtimedaredTocrossthatseaoflurkingdeath;longweeksHavedraggedtheirslowwaytowardsEternity.Thesea smiles,moans,andkeeps its secret.Wherearcthou?Myheartmisgives me,dead;thereisadirgeInthesoftwhisperofthesemovingcrees;Thesungleamscynicunconcern,andthesadreefSends itsdeepmurmurfloodingthroughmymind,As iftherecreptashadowslowlyon,Anddark-robed mourners trodthroughMemory's halls.SuddenlyI feelold;thewearybodylags;Painclosesonthebrain;thoughtfoot-soregoes;Thelong,longway trailsbackwardintogloom;Diesintodarknessthere;'tisnightbefore.(Through(he drowsy stillnessof(heday(he soundat the reefcomes monoconouslt,; dovesin (he wood coo now and again plaincivcly; there isthe sudden sharp scream of a hawk wheeling over-head.)I see a visionofthosesavagemenIn furyrushingonus,tramplingdarkBytheirbrutenumbers,Life,Killingits flame, EachsparkofevidencethatinthisplaceWesuffered; soourstory, it will pass Likecloudsthataimlesssinkin shapeless air. A darkforebodinghauntsme lest I dieAmidthecareless beal'tyofthisisle,Andthesegreatheights,blueforest-garmented.Thatwaveslowsignalstothemightydeep,81

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82SanGloria-extractCalloustosmallerthings,acrossmygraveStare;whilethegreenthingstangleontheplain;Whilethesoftwaterslipthes3ndyshore;Whiledawns,arriving,spreadtheircrimsonflag.s;Andpassingdaygivesallhertentstofire,Seekinganewencampment;doveswillcooWhen,into Jeep oblivionsunk,mygraveLies inthefloodoflifethatblotsoutall,Whilethegreathillsstareon,o'ershrubandvine,Heedingmyresting-placeandmenomoreThanslowgreylichensheedthe rock theystain,Orthishuge twnk theymoistentodeC3Y.(He rists and pacts >Iowly, ,htnslOoping picks up lhe body ofa small dead bird.)Thenwill InotbeintheworldofmenWorthmorethanisthislittlesilentframe,Thisemptyhutoffeathers,whencehathlifeEvictedbeenbysomechanceflickofFate.True''tisanemptyhouse,itstenantgone,Mytentofflesh,yetwouldIhaveit lieInsomedear,well-lovedandfamiliarspotOnearth'sV3sramplitude.TomRedcam

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ONNATIONAL VANITYSlowly we learn; the oft repeated line Lingers a littlemomentandisgone;Nationon nation follows, sunonsun.Withempire's dust fate builds her great design, But we are blind and see not; inourprideWestrain toward the petrifyingmoundTosit aboveourfellows, and we rideTheslow and luckless toiler totheground. Fools are we forourpains;whomwe despise, Last come, shallmountourwithered vanities,Topmosttosituponthevast decayOftime and temporal things for, lastorfirst,Theproudarrayofpictured bubbles burst, Miragesoftheir glory pass away.j.E.Clare McFarlane83

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STREETPREACHERTheyare the daughtersofmusicOnthe pavements Beating their drumsWhenthe Sabbath sun goesdown.Whocan sayIfthe goatskin drumsPoundtheirmonotonousrhythmOntheheartofGod?Dothe tambourines Make a joyful noise in His ears?Edward Baugh84

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ANCESTORONTHE AUCTION BLOCKAncestorontheauctionblockAcrosstheyearsyoureyes seekmineCompellingmetolook. I seeyourshackled feetYourprimitiveblack face I seeyourhumiliationAndturnawayAshamed.Acrosstheyears your eyes seekmineCompellingmetolookIsthismeancreaturethatI see Myself:! Ashamedro look Because ofmyselfashamedShackled by myownignoranceIstandA slave.HumiliatedI cry rotheeternal abyss ForunderstandingAncesrorontheauction block AcrosstheyearsyoureyesmeetmineElectric IamtransformedMyfreedom iswithinmyself.8S

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86AncestorontheAuctionBlockIlookyou intheeyes and seeThespiritofGodeternalOfthisonlyneed [ beashamedOfblindnesstotheGodwithinmeThesameGodwhodweltwithinyouThe same eternalGodWhoshall dwellIngenerationsyetunborn.AncestoronrheauctionblockAcrosstheyears IlookI see yousweating,toiling, sufferingWithinyour loins I seetheseedOfmultitudesFromyourlabourGrowroads,aqueducts,cultivationAnewcountryisbornYourswasthetasktoclearthegroundMinebethetask co build.Vera Be//

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HISTORY MAKERSWomenstone breakers Hammers on rocksTiredchild makers Haphazard frocks Strong thigh Rigid head Bent nigh Hard white pilesOfstone Under hotskyInthe gully bed.NosmileNosighNomoan.Womenchild bearers Pregnant frocb Wilful toil sharers Destiny shapers History maker> Hammersand rocks.George Campbell 87

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HOLYHolybe the white headofaNegro.Sacred betheblack flaxofa black child.HolybeThegoldendownThatwill stream inthewavesofthe windsAndwill thin like dispersing cloud.Holybe HeadsofChinese hair Sea calm sea impersonalDeepfloweringofthe mellow and tradi tiona!'Headsofpeoples fairBrightshimmeringfrom the richesoftheir species; HeadsofIndiansWithfeelingofdistance and space and dusk: Headsofwheaten gold, Headsofpeoples darkSostrongso original: Alloftheearth andthe sun! GeorgeCampbell88

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I SHALL REMEMBERAndinstrangelandsWherethefog pressesdownAndeventhestreetlampsare faintandmisty, IshallrememberThebeautyofournights,Withstars so near That one couldalmoststretchanJtouchthem,StarswinkingandflashingMagnificentlyin a skyofvelvetblue. I shallrememberWalkingdownlongavenuesoftrees, The blackasphalt flecked withpalemoonlightPouringthrough the acasia leavesAnd the softlaughterofgirlsLeaningback, coolandinvitingAgainst the trunksofflamingpoincianatrees.Andin the longdaywhenrain fallssuddenlyAndnosunshinesAndalltheearthlies in a wearystuporIshallrememberThesplendourofoursunThebrightnessofourdays.Andhow the rainpoureddownUpona passionate thirstyearth,Swiftly,unrelentingwithimmeasurablepower,89

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90I ShallRememberThen vanished suddenlyina pealofchildlike laughter And all the earth was green and light once more. I shall rememberThewarmth of our island seas,Thesparkling whitenessofthe' breaking waves And the blue hJze on our hills and mountains With their noisy cascading down Sheer cliffsincloudsofincandescent spray And deafening sound. Andinstrange cities Among unaccustomed people Whomove palefJced with tired, staring eyes I shall rememberThewarmth and gaietyofmypeople,Thepolyglot colour and varietyoftheir fJces, Thehappy fusionofour myriad racesInthecommonlove that unites and binds us to this land. And I shall yearn for the sightOffaces black and bronzed, People with dark, sparkling eyes Withready tongue And bughter loud and unashamed.H.D. Carbe,ry

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FUGUEHaveseenthesummerconvexofthewoundedsky want to catch it and clutch it and make it singofthe wild wind's whisper and the hard-boiled sun andtheblue day kissing mymountainaway wherethehawks dip wing-tipped diving. Have seen the curved maneofthe wind-whipped canewantto snap it and squeeze it and make it rain ontherootsofthe summer-tree withering where mymountainmouthslie sleeping andthehawks dip wing-tipped diving. Have seenthecurving prismofthe rainbow's shaftwanttopluckit and plait it and make itbendtopattern in the brainofthemountaintopwhere mygriefissighinglike a fingeredstopwherethehawks dip wing-tipped diving andthegraves are green attheworld's end.Neville Dawes91

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EXPECTNOTURBULENCEExpectnoturbulence,althoughyou hold me fast, For this, where late my love lay, beats no more, Confute, perplexnot;only shield me fromthepast,Whatmighthave beenislost,notgonebefore.Thoughinthenightyoursurgentneed impelsYourbody to seek comfort, bruising me awake, I willnotshrink,thoughall your flesh repels;Norsanctuary deny, while wecommuniontake. For we,twolost,twohungrysouls, will meetAtcommon board, with common need for bread.You,inthewood, willgatherberries sweet;I,inthedark, tastethesalt fleshofthe dead.BarbaraFerLand92

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ATHOME THE GREEN REMAINS..In EnglandnowI hearthewindow shakeAndsee beyond its astigmatic pane Against black limbsAutumn'syellow stain Splashed about tree-tops and wet beneaththerake.NewEngland's hills are flattenedascrimson-lakeAndpurple columns, allthatnow remainOftrees, stand forwardashillocks do in rain,Andupthehillside ruined temples make.Athomethegreen remains: the palm throws back Its head and breathes abovethestill blue sea,Theseparate hills are lost incommonblueOnlythe splendid poinsettias, trueAndcrimson like the northern ivy, tack,Butlate,theyearly notice to a tree.JohnFigueroa93

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PORTROYALSeeknotherenowthestartlingincident,Fireonflashing brass,theformalsplendour,Norviolenceclustering,suddenlyatstreet corners.The me:lsured ebbandflow Leavesnoobstructionintheoyster shellRoundwhichtobuildyourpearls.Heregloryisburiedunderthefallen stone.Inthedimt'wilightoftheocean bedOnly thr: sea crabs crawlthedarkenedstreets,Andinthesilent hallsThemany-branchedcandle.sburnaroundthesleepingForeverquenchless,sheddingtheirfitful light.Andthebells toll,Andthebells toll, forever calling,Callingforthefinalapprobation, C:llling forthegarlandsoffresh flowers,Theshedtearandthemelancholymusic,Callingforburialintheafternoon,Sleep inwarmearth,withthelongshadowsslanting.owhitearetheflowersthewindthrowsonthe W:lter, Blossomingsuddenlyandassuddenlyfleeting,Andgoldenthetendrilsoflight,andvarious its roses.osad arethefeetoftheseaontheshore intheevening,Mournfulits songs,theirmusic amurmuringprayer.OnlythenarrowlanesrememberThesecret assignations,94

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PortRoyalThesilksandsatinsspurningthefilthandmud,Themusicandthelaughter,ThehastydaggerandtheredbloodflowingAndminglingwiththespiltwineinthegutter.Thebright day fallingonthebrokenhousesDiscoversonlyTheginger-lily'sunexpectedbeautyBlossominginthefesteringdesolationPerfectionofyoungfleshgrowntallandstraight,Suckedupwardsbythesunandfulloflaughter,Andmouldedtothesea's will.Discoversonly these,Andoldwallsstainedby athousandafternoonsRememberingtheirglory.G.A. Hamilton 95

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ACROSSCOLDSKIES(ToMyWifefrom an Aircraft) Across cold skies I, travelling un moulded pathsofair send swift messagestoyou; for love's immediate voice speaks instantly and needsnortime nor spacetobear itsgentlewords.Nowin thenight'scontiguousdark my silent songisheretransmitted;you willknow,a hemisphere away, its fond andconstantmusic; I will receive your certain lovethathelps my voyagetoprosper yet beckons my return.Andif,mostprivatecompanionand friend,theterrible conceitofseparate ways assume itsgauntand lonely shape,challengethatphantomwithyourshiningthought,defeat its subtlety with your pureintent,and measure by these linesofloveourfaithful bond, my only dear.A.L.Hendriks96

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ROAD TO LACOVIAThisisa long,forbidding road, a narrow, hard aisleofasphalt under ahighgothicarchofbamboos.Alongita woman drags a makeshift barrow in slanting rain, and thunder: athinwomanwhowears no shoes.ThisisSt. Elizabeth, a hard parish to work;but..when you are bornonland, you wanttoworkthatland.Nightfallcomes here swift and harsh and deep,butgarish flamesoflightningshowuptorn cheapclothingbarely patched, and a face patterned by living. Every sharp lineofthis etching hasthemarkofstruggle.Totheeye, unyielding bleak earth hasbroughther closetofamine; yetthroughthis wild descentofdark thiswomandares to walk, and sing.A.L.Hendriks97

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ATVILLAFLORAIfIdreamuponthis lea,Thewater spritesshouldcapture me,Pullingme fromthebanktowhere The water bubbles joyously IthinkthatIshouldknownofear.Fartofits beauty Ishould be And hear its deepersongand see Itsdarker depths where silvers gleamOutofthe rushes timorouslyWithtreasuresofthegentlestream. Pebbles assmoothassilk and glass Blueastheglidingwavesthat Overtheir surface constantlyAndwherethethicker reeds amass Secretsnohumaneye can see.Nymphs.ofthe river, as I sleep, Rise from your playing inthedeepTowherethelittle wavelets stirThewater-lilies, softly creep And take a happy prisoner.Vivette Hendriks98

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LEDAANDTHESWANLeda, her naked bodyonthegrass,Watchesby stealth beyond the river's curve, Agiantswan come slowly down the stream. She sees it pass,Andfeels in every nerveThefaultless passionofits snowy throat,Andofits perfect eyesthatgleamTowardtheshallow where her fingers float.Thewater swirlsbeneatha sudden turn, Majestic, purposeful,thegloriousswan Alters its course and glidesintotheshore.HersensesburnToputherhandsuponThetoweringsoftnessofitsshiningbreast,Andlet delightful kissespourOntothefeathers where its heartmustrest.AndnowtheurgentbosomplungesthroughThereeds, and with its cloud-like wings outstretched,Thebird descendsonLeda.Throughher cries She knowsat last Thepowerofhis head,Thesensuousweightofbreast andthroatand bill, And inthecoldunmovingeyes,Thetriumphofahunteratthekill.Vivette Hendriks99

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YELLOWI will sing asongofyellow onthisyellow day Allthelovelinessofyellow passes in a swift array:YellowofbrightbuttercupsinKingston'sdazzlingfields YellowofchrysanthemumsthatAutumnlavish yields, Sun-flowers and primrosessparklinginthesun Thesheenofchildren's hair like sunbeams golden spun. I cansingofyellow -almostendless -therefrainButbestofall areaLamandasdrippingintherain. I willsingofbutterinthedairy cleanandcool I will singofgold-fish inthecrystal pool -Orofamberin a necklace carved,ofbeauty rareOrtopazshining,witha light, deep, softandclear.Ofhoney in a jarthatletsthedaylightthrough,Oforanges and limes and brilliant mangoes too.Thereseems noendto alltherapturousyellow trainButbestofall areaLamandasdrippingintherain.Sulphurand saffronlightthedrug-storethatI pass.Canariesflitandsing-thisgold-finchgleamslike glass100

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YellowThepumpkinisso rich and luscious in a pie;Thepaw-paws, with their black seeds,withgolden apples vie Siena Marble isa golden glory I darenotcompareWithany other yellow -butI name it here. Yellows flameonyellows Cockatooandcrane But bestofall arealamandasdripping intherain. I can sing offairy cassia and cosmos in a ring,Of"LittlePages"inthesand-ofcowslipsintheSpring -Ofcheese and cream andshiningyellow cornOffiscus blossoms sweetpotatoes-sunshineinthemorn.Theyellow jeweloftheeggset in its crystal bandAndalltheyellow beautyofEnglish sea-shore' sand.Bringall your yellow glories;notonewill I disdainButbestofall arealamandasdrippingintherain. Yellow Poincianaslightthis dew-wet gladeHoldingyellow black-eyed Susans in their shade. Like candyisthis vaseofdeep Venetial gold, And yellow gleams this feather-robeofchieftains old. Idreamofyellow yacca, ivories and shellsOfTemplemusic andofmellowweddingbel1s.101

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102 Yellow Iknownotwhatis lossorwhatmencount as gainButbestofall arealamandasdrippingintherain.ForalamandagathersuptheyellowofeachlivingthingAndstores it in itsgoldencupsfor glad remembering.Itisnohoardingmiser it spillsitfarandwide Itpoursitonthegardenandonthebleak hill-side. So deeply yellow are theflowers,theirchalices heldupI oftenwonderthattherain doesnotdrip yellow from each cup.Yellowisagoldenbounty,vast Iknow-but stillAllyellowsfive in alamandas dripping in the rain.ConstanceHollar

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CHRYSANTHEMUMInthewhitemorningsunlightThewhitechrysanthemumIS a strangeshock-headeddoll;Awildraggle-tagglegipsyFlirtingwiththewind.Look'Howsheshakesherwildwhitehair.. Hoop-la'It'sasonganddancetoday.ButatnightWhenthegroundisfresh-dugandfresh-dunged,Andtherich smellofthehumushangsheavy intheair,ThechrysanthemumscomeoutlikeshootingmeteorsFallingintheupperair; AIIheavenisstreakedandstarredAndthewarmearthliespantingUnderthebarredandraggedmoonsAsraggedas amidnightgipsy fair. AndthedelicatelittlewhitebudsDrawclosewithinthethicknightairFlickeringlike stars, flickeringonthebrinkoftheunbornday,TillintheearlymorningtheytoowillburstforthSilver-flakedandflamed,Meteor-likein amoon-deathHoop-la'Theshock-headedgipsieshavereturnedtoearth.K.E.Ingram

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THESONGOF THEBANANAMANTouris',whiteman,wipin'his face,Metme inGoldenGrove m:uket place.Helooked atm'01'clothes brown wid stain,An'soaked rightthroughwid de Portlan' rain.Hecas' his eye,turn'uphis nose,Hesays,"You'rea beggar man, Isuppose)"Hesays, "Boy, getsome occupation,Beofsome valuetoyour nation." I said, "By Godand dis bigrighthan'Youmus'recognize a b:lOana man. "Up in de hills, where de strtams are cool,An'mulletan' janga swim in de pool, I have ten acresofmountainside,Ana dainty-foot donkey dat I ride,FourGrosMichel,an'four Lacatan, Somecoconuttrees, and some hillsofyam,An'I pastureondat very Samelan'Five she-goatsan'a big black ram,"Dat,byGodan'dis bigrighthan'Is de propertyofa banana man. "I leavem'yard early-mornin' timeAn'setm'foottodemountainclimb, Iben'm'back to de hot-sun toil,An'm'cutlass rings on de stony soil,

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SongoftheBananaMan105Ploughin'an' weedin'diggin'an'plantin'TillMassa Sundropback0'JohnCrow mountain,Denhome again in cool evenin" time, Perhaps whistling dis likkle rhyme,(SUNG)"PraiseGodan' me'bigright han' I will live and die a banana man. "Banana dayismyspecial day, I cutmystemsan'I'monm'way, Loadupde donkey, leave de lan' Head down de hilltobanana stan'Whende truck comes roun' I take a ride Alldeway downtode harbour side -Datis denight,when you, touris' man,Wouldchange your place wid a banana man. "Yes,byGod,an'm'bigrighthan'I will live an' die a banana man. "Debay iscalm, an' de moonisbright,Dehills look black for de skyislight,Downat de dockisan English ship, Restin' after her ocean trip,Whileonde pierisa monstrous hustle, Tallymen carriers, all in a bustle,Widstemsondeir heads in a long black snake Some singin' de songs dat banana men make, "Like,(SUNG)"PraiseGod an' m'big right han' I will live an' die a banana man.

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106Songof the Banana Man "Den depaymentcomes,an'we have some fun,Me,Zekiel,BredaandDuppySon.DownatdebarnearUnitedWharfWeknockback awhiterum,bus' a laugh,Fill de emptybagforfurther toil Widsaltfish,breadfruit,coconutoil.Denhead backhometom'yardtosleep, Apropersleepdatislongan'deep. "Yes, byGod,an'm'bigrighthan'I will livean'die abananaman. "So whenyou see dese01'clothesbrownwid stain,An'soakedrightthroughwid dePortlan'rain,Don'rcas' your eyenorturnyour nose,Don'tjudge amanby his patchy clothes,I'mastrongman,aproudman,an'I'mfree, Free as desemountains,freeasdissea, Iknowmyself,an'Iknowmy ways,An'willsingwidprideto de end0'my days,(SUNG)"PraiseGodan'm'bigrighthan'I will livean'die abananaman."EvanJones

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THELAMENT OFTHEBANANAMANGal,I'mtellin'you,I'mtired fo' true,TiredofEnglan',tired0'you.ButIcan'goback toJamaicanow...I'mhere inEnglan',I'mdrawin'pay,gotodeundergroundevery day Eighthoursis all, half-hour fo'lunch,M'uniform'sfree, 3.n' m'ticketpunch Punchin'ticketsnothardtodo,WhenI'mtired0'punchin',I letdemthrough.Igeta paid holidayoncea year.01'agean'sicknesscan'touchmehere. Ihavearoom0'mown,an'aironbed,Dunlopillounderm' head, AMorphy-Richardstowarmdeair, A formica table, 3.n easy chair. I havesummerclothes,an'winterclothes,An'paperkerchiefstoblowm'nose. My yokeiseasy, myburdenislight,Iknowa place I cangoto, anynight.Displace Englan"I'mnorcomplainin',

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108LamentoftheBananaManIfit col', it col',ifit rainin', it rainin'. Idon'min'ifit's mostlynight,Dere'salways inside,ordesodiumlight.Idon'min'whitepeoplestarin'atme,Deydon'want me here?Don'tisdeir country?Youwon'catch me bawlin' any homesick tears,IfIdon'seeJamaicafor at'ousan years! ...Gal,I'mtellin'you,I'mtired fo' true,TiredofEnglan',tired0'you, Ican'goback toJamaicanowButI'dwanttodie there, anyhow.EvanJones

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ARAWAKPROLOGUEWecrossmanyrivers,buthereisnoanguish;ourdugoutshavestraddledthesaltsea.Thelandwehavefoundisamountain,magicalwithbirds'throats, and inthesea are fish.Intheforests aremany fleet canoes.Andhereisnoanguish,thoughsrormsstillthebirdsandfrightenthefishfrominshoreshallows.Andonce,itseemedthemountainmoved,groaningalittle.Inthesunlesswet,afterrains, leaves inthetangledunderbrushglisten(likecoolhandsofchildrenonfaceandarms).I am notonefor society,andthinkhowthehousesthrobwiththenoiseofwomenuptotheirelbowsin cassava milk,whenthedovegrey sea'sbreastissoftintheloweringlightandtheland we found fairestofwomen.Thatbrightday,thelightlikeclustersofgoldfruit,alone,unknownofall,thedugoutandI fledtheshore'sburningbeauty;thefirst wave'sshockan ecstasy likesinging,oh,andthe sea's strengthenteredthesearms. All day weclimbedthehillofthesea.leseemedIdiedandfoundthatbleakCoyabaofthewise.Thedugoutfaltered in alongsmoothswell. Therewere houses109

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110ArawakPrologueonthewater,aglowwithlightandmusicandstrangelaughter.Likegreatbirds,withominousmutteringsandpreenings,theyhoveredonevery side. Flatonthedugout'SbottOm,I pnyed deliverance.Wherewastheland,thehousesthrobbingwiththenoiseofwomenuptotheirelbowsin cassavamilk)Thetowering floatedmajesticallyon,draggingmealittlein(heirfabulouswake. I tellthisstoryintheevening,after(hesmokeofpipeshasaddledtheelders' brains,an.d Iamassuredatleastofthechildren'srespectful silence. Iamnolongercertainithappenedtome. Basil McFatiane

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BANANASRIPEANDGREENBananas ripeandgreen, and ginger-root, Cocoa in pods and alligator pears,Andtangerinesandmangoes and grapefruit, Fit forthehighestprize at parish fairs, Set inthewindow,bringingmemoriesOffruit-trees laden by low-singing rills,Anddewy dawns,andmystical blue skiesInbenediction over nun-like hills. My eyesgrewdim,andIcouldnomoregaze; A waveoflongingthroughmy body swept, And, hungry for theold,familiar ways, Iturnedaside andbowedmy head and wept.Claude McKay

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FLAME-HEARTSomuch h:we I forgorten in ten years, Somuchinrenbriefyears' I haveforgotWhattimethepurple apples cometo Juice,Andwhatmonthbringstheshyforget-me-not.Ihaveforgotthespecial,startlingseasonOfthepimenro'sfloweringandfruiting;WhattimeofyearthegrounddovesbrownthefieldsAndfillthenoondaywiththeircuriousfluting.Ihaveforgottenmuch,butstillrememberThepoinsettia'sred,blood-red,inwarmDecember.I still recallthehoney-fever gnss, ButcannotrecollectthehighdayswhenWerootedthemoutoftheping-wingpathTosropthemadbees intherabbitpen.IoftentryrothinkinwhatsweetmonthThelanguidpaintedladiesusedtodappleTheyellowby-roadmazingfromthemain,Sweetwiththegoldenthreadsoftherose-apple.Ihaveforgotten-strange butquiterememberThe poinsetti3.'s red,blood-red,inwarmDecember.

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FiameheartWhatweeks,whatmonths,whattimeofthemildyearWecheatedschooltohaveourfling attops?Whatdaysourwine-thrilledbodiespulsedwithjoy Feastinguponblackberries inthecopse?Ohsome,I know! I haveembalmedthedays, Eventhesacredmomentswhenweplayed,Allinnocentofpassion,uncorrupt,Atnoonandeveningintheflame-heare's shade.Wewere sohappy,happy,Iremember.Beneaththepoinseccia's red inwarmDecember.CLaudeMcKay113

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MENOFIDEASMenofideasoutlivetheirtimesAn idea heldbysuchamandoesnotendwithhisdeathHislifebleedingawaygoesdownIntotheearth,andtheygrowlikeseedTheideathatisnotlostwiththe waste ofasinglelife Like seedspringingupamultitude.TheyhangedGordonfroma boorri RiggedinfrontoftheCourtHouseTheyhangedhimwith eighfeen othersfor company AndJesushadbuttwOButtheideas forwhichGordon lived DidnothangwithhimAndthegreatsocialrevolutionforwhichJesusdiedDidnotdiewithhim .. /"wo, menthey n<1itdJtsl!!sitle by si;l-e Eighteenwentto hang-Gcrrdon fromthenewriggedboomButtheideaofequalityandjusticewithGordonWentintothegroundandsprunguplike seed, amultitudeAhundred ye
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Men o!ldeaJAndthetimeandtheseasonforeachgrowingthingIstheway,andthereisnootherThetimeandtheseasonofitsgrowing :lnd bearingfruitAreinherentin the natureoftheseedAnd inherent initis itsgrowthandits fruitAndthisisthewayandthereisnootherAhundredyears isnotroolongFortheseedtoburstitshuskunder the groundAndcleaveapathandpressupwardAndthrustagreenbladeintriumphatthesunDonotbeanxiousforthehousethatisa-buildingFortheunsownacresundertheploughFor allthings :lwait atimeanda season.ThedreamgiventoonemaninthenightNotnightnordarknesscancall itbackagainTheyhangedGeorgeWilliamGordonforthedreamHehadbeengiveninthenightThathecarriedinhis brcclSt Thinkingtoputthedreamto death WiththemantheyputtoshamefuldeathButtheygiveimmortalitytothedreamThattimethemanisputtodeathForthedreamis allItisallofamanthatthereis and immortal115

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116MenofIdeasAndallof immorr::dity ofa manthereis. AlongtimeagotheyhangedGeorgeWilliamGordonBu tnotsolongAlongtimeagoTheyputJesusontheCrossButnotsolongFor allthingshave atimeanda season AlongtimeagoThepea dovesrookthesweetwoodseedsAndletthemfallonthevalleybottomsThatarenow the virgin forestofthegreatbacklandsOfnewtimber,alongtimeWerethebarerock-spuregrowingThatisnowamattedforest floorWherethewild birds rookanddroppedThelittlesweetkernelsofthetalltimbersAlongtimeago,butnotsolongForallthingshave atimeanda seasonAndahundredyears isnotroo long Andahundredyears isnotroo soon.TheyhangedGordonwitheighteenothersTheynailedJesusbetweentwothievesButtheideas thesemenlived for did nor diewiththemAsinglegrainofcorn will yield an earofcornAndanearofcornintwogenerationswillsowa fieldAndthesethingsbefallbetweenamoonandamoonAllthingsawait atimeanda seasonAndtwice ahundredyearsisnotroolongOrtwice ahundredyears roo soon.RogerMais

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JAMAICAMARKETHoney,pepper, leaf-green limes, Pagen fruit whose names are rhymes, Mangoes, breadfruit, ginger-roots, Granadillas, bamboo-shoots, Cho-cho, ackees, tangerines, Lemons, purple Congo-beans, Sugar, akras, kola-nuts, Citrons, hairy coconuts, Fish, tobacco, native hats,Goldbananas, woven mats, Plantains, wild-thyme, pallid leeks, Pigeons with their scarlet beaks,Orangesand saffron yams, Baskets, ruby guava jams, Turtles, goat-skins, cinnamon, Allspice, conch-shells, golden rum. Black skins, babel andthesunThatburns all colours into one.Agne.rMaxweli-Hall117

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THEDAYMYFATHERDIED The day my farherdiedIcouldnorcry;Mymorher cried, or1.Hisfaceon rhe pillowInrhedimlighrWroremourning COme, Blackandwhite. We sawhimstruggle,Sti ffen, relax;Theface fellempry,Deadas wax.I'dreadofdearhButneverseen.Myfather's face, I swear, W3.S notserene. Topple rhatlie,Howeverappealing;Tharface wasabsenceOfall feeling.Mymother'srears were my rears, Eachsobshook me:The painofdearhisliving, The dead are free. For me my father'sdeathWasmother'ssorrow;That d3.y was her day, Loss was comorrow.118MervynMorris

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ACERTAINBEGGAR,NAMEDLAZARUSLazarus liesatDives' gate, Content with crumbs from Dives' plate Hisservitors are sisterstwainSweet Poverty, andtheSybil, Pain. Lazarus lies atDives'gate, Porhimtheskies unfo-Id theirstate,Andirridescent hours rtin Thegoldengamutofthesun.Foldinggreatwings,TimesitswithhimUntilthelaggard day grows dim,ThroughwakefulgloomsthespheresuniteInstarrysongfor his delight.Hidden redes ofthedusty grass He learns, and marksthewiseantspass;Or,in a brief, Spring-chancedhour,Freguents the shrineofa wayside flower. Trees are his tutors,noddinghighIntranguiltalk against the sky;Therainishis interpreterOfdoubtsthatwake,ofdreamsthatstir.Gossipofwinds that rovetheearthAndtown-bred birds,ishis formirth;Andancientwisdom,strong,profound, He gleans from cobble:stones around.119

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120ACertainBeggarNamed LazarusHistheanswering lovethatliesWithina dog's adoring eyes;Thesympathising tendernessThatwells within a mute caress.God'salmonerheoftreasure rareToeach street-urchin paused to stare;Whencrude young laughter yields its place Before Compassion's holy grace. Lazarus lying in Abraham's breastHathwonofeither worldthebest, And provedthepromise sent from Heaven "To himthathathshall more begiven."BarbaraS.Ormsby

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THEMAROONGIRLI see her on a lonely forest track,Herlevel brows made salient bythesheenOfflesh the hueofcinnamon.Theclean Bloodofthehunted,vanished Arawak Flows in her veinswithbloodofwhite and black. Maternal, noble-breasted in her mien; Sheisa peasant, yet sheisa queen. SheisJamaica poised againsr attack.Herwoods arehungwithorchids;thestill flameOfred hibiscuslightsher path, and starredWithorange and coffee blossoms in her yard. Fabulous, pittedmountainsclose the frame. She standsongroundfor which her fathers died; Figureofsavage beauty, figureofpride.W. Adolphe Roberts

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EXTRACT FROM nJAMAICA SYMPHONY"Thereisa freedomboughtwith blood and time; blood and time anywhere mixed, time, any time, blood and timerocurved heads, bloodbenr, dragging at dead myths like used up leaves, not knowing the macheteispoised, like, like kikuyu's kicking feet, Kikuyu's screams, Kenyarra's calls; roo full can bethis task, roo pressing, like like the needofthe grasspatchrothe mango, that, that only time and time alone knowsofthe step takeninher cavernous bellyasher slime records yet another move. Prepare a path,oGraciousSea. Caribbel, Hear us now.***In this our strideisseen, our nearing the pathiswitnessed, scored in more ways,Inmore ways than one across a phoenixbreast,122

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JClI7IClicei S)'l7IphOJly-extractacross a pathploughedwith itsownbitter prongs wateredbyits own crimson jets, \'er like, like Caribbea's m1lachircC\'l'S,glistening, lightingrhe way up from ashcs to,torhe limirs beyond ourimmediate green;oCaribbea, from your blue grace, marernal. elegant, ler shine those cold malachire eyes, blue dyed, true, blueinfreedom's blue store,AndrewSaLkev123

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ONIMMORTALITYThemeaningofawellrememberedprayerIsheardsometimes(withinone) ofr"ener BysenseofrhyrhmrhanrheactualwordsOfrenuneasy co reAecrupon(Forgiveourtrespasses asweforgive)Themelody of:1 forgorrenhymn Haunts rhesubconscious,nowseemingclearNowourofreach allburrherhythmLosr inrhefactandruleofrhinking.(ThechildreninherirrheKingdom).TimerusrsrhekeenbladeofremembranceAndmakesamirrorofrheglasshidingTo-morrow wharwecallrhefurure.ow,isrhesorrowandthepainwekeepTojusrifyrhepeace,thejoy,rhelaughrer.Weareimmortalyou :1nd INotboundbynarure CO belongToearthorsky -co livingforsolongAnempryspanwirhinavacuumA localrimeofbriefawareness.Thisrimeof present beingis Bur aphaseincontinuiry124

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OnImmortalityOfan existence universal As acosmicray as timeless asThegrowthofHomosapiensfrom algae.Andmortalsleep,divisorofthephasesDoesnotenddoesnotbegina life, Astheeternal seasons siftthesandsHeticksonemomentin a timeless age,Andringstheangelus.K.B.Scott125

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JAMAICAN FISHERMANAcrossthesand I saw a blackmanstrideTo fetch his fishing gear andbrokenthings,Andsilentlythatsplendidbody cried Itsprouddescent fromancientchiefs and kings, Across the sand I sawhimnaked stride; Sang his black body inthesun'swhitelightThevelvet coolnessofdark forests wide,Theblacknessofthejungle's starlessnight.Hestood besidetheoldcanoe which layUponthebeach;sweptupwithinhis armsThebrokennets and carelessloungedawayTowardshis wretchedhut.....Norknewhowfiercelyspokehis bodythenOfancientwealth and savage regal men.P.M.Sherlock126

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MY FATHERINTHENIGHTCOMMANDINGNOMy father inthenightcommandingNoHasworkto do.Smokeissues from his lips; He reads in silence.Thefrogs arecroakingandthestreetlamps glow.Andthenmymotherwindsthegramophone;TheBrideofLammermoorbegins to shriekOrreads a storyAbouta prince, a castleanda dragon.Themoonisglitteringabove the hill. IstandbeforethegatepostsoftheKingSo runs the story -OfThule,a'tmidnightwhenthemice are still.AndI have been inThule.Ithas.cometrueThejourneyandthedangeroftheworld,AllthatthereisTobear and to enjoy,endureand do. Landscapes, seascapes...wherehave I beenled) Thenamesofcities Paris, Venice,RomeHeldouttheirarms. A featheredgod,seductive,wentahead.Hereismyhouse.Undera red rose tree Achildisswinging;anothergravely plays.TheyarenotsurprisedThatIamhere; they were expectingme.127

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128My Pelther in the Night CommandingNoAndyet my father sits and reads in silence,Mymothersheds a tear,themoonisstill, And thedarkwind Ismurmuringtharnorhingever happens.Beyondhis jurisdierion as ImoveDoInorprovehimwrong?Andyet, it's rrueTheywill nor ch:mge There,onthesrageofterrorandofJove.Theactors in rharplayhousealways sirInfixedposirionsfather,mother,childWithpaintedeyes.Howsaditis to bea lirtlepuppet!Theirheads arewooden.AndyouonceprerendedTounderstandthem!Shakethemas you will,Theycannotspeak.Dowhatyouwill,thecomedyisended. Father, whydid you work?Whydidyouweep,Mother?Wasthestory soimportant? "Listen!" thewindSaidtothechildren,andrhey fell asleep.Louis Simpson

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JAMAICAI saw my land inthemorningAnd0butshe was fairThehills flamed upwards scorningDeathand Failure here. I sawthroughthe mistsofmorningA wave like a sea set free Faith to the dawn returning Dark tide bright unity. I saw my friends in the morning They called from an equal gate "Build now: whilst timeisburning Forward before it's late"TheoldGodsa wake Past and Future breakOnasthevoices roll Moveas a singlewholeForward Forward Forwardocountry to your goal.M.G.Smith.129

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130Extract fromTESTAMENTA dayendsand a way endsanda worldendshere A dayendsanda way ends and aworldendshereAndyet so surethepeace So surethepeace A dayendsanda way endsanda worldendshere In self-created blindness waits thisearthAndallthepeoples lost and shel terlessStumblingamongsttheruinstothebrinkOfutmostruin.Andtheworldends here.Andyet sogreatthepeace,thiswindsosureSostrongso fullofvisionthatthefaith Loses in last awarenessofthesourceThegreatpervadingstillnessoftheroot.obe this pure, 0 be this free from faultOfaffectationordistrustorfraudo ,be this like a fluteuponthy lipsPropheticnight,topourthymightyhymn.Oldwomeninthegardens weeding grassOldmenalongthequayside fly.theirrodsThecinemas,theslumsandpalacesDeclareandspawnthedozendeformedgods.Thebuilderplies his trowel. Ages pass.Thesearch receivestheseeker.Timestill nods.obe for all thisnightthebirthoffaith.Andlighttheroad,andlongthetravelling.

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Testament-extractThereisa limittoallhumanwaysThereis a limit to allhumanloveAndagreatdarkness in allhumanlightYetfaith flowsdowntheriver, peace fills trees,Andglory lightsthemorningwhen she comes All wet and radiant fromthegolden cloudsAndwalks uponthemountainslike a bride. For there is promise in allhumanpainThereis amorningin allhumannightAndlife and birth and beauty beyond death.WehaveconstructedTimewithfearandgreedWehave imprisoned Space with avariceAndmurdered Life,thevision,withourslothWehaveconstructedTimeConstructedTimeWehave created Deathin allourwalks.oseas rush over seas rush over seasAndmountainsovertopthemountainsofourdaysAndwindsthatfollow windsthatfollow windsAndlightthatleadsthelightthatleadsourways All to the darkness flowing, flowing on Declare thismovingoceanwithout praise TheHomeofpresence,thegreen,luminousAnduniversalMomentofall days.ThisisthesplendidsunlightofourbirthThisistheday in which we were conceivedThelightandislandsofthehomewe leftThisisthemountainofthegiven grace131

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132Testament extractAndpeace and nescience andtheliving couchOfaspontaneouspresence flowingthroughTheearth,thewater,windandlightandtrees,Thishumanvillage :lnd these humanways.Thisisthegloryofsuch a steep ascentFromwhich we werebegottencobegetWithintheseaofvisionbrightnewislesBeyondthemidnight'sconquests;thisthelightWhichnevercanbedimmedwhileyet love moves.UnroawarenessofthesynthesisWhichdothsurround,investandlift sohighInco its stillnessthisoursplendidsun.odanceandlettheglorybegreatSinganddisrribtlCedownthislivingdayAndthroughthequiveringcorridorsoflightAllofthesurgingocean,allthespray,Thatfromthedarknessofcontention passed Free,andforevet freeofdoubtandcareAndallconstructionsthatshutoutthelightAndblindthepower,breedingfearonfear.odance, 0sing,0Glorybe for allThissunlightsplendidwiththefulfilled prayer.Wearywithlongandfruitless search wesleptTowakeatdawnwithpainbetweentheeyesHeartsthat had knownnopeaceandlipsathirstForthelostvisionDumbparchedblack loneliness.

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Testament extractOurspiritswerelikewinter'strees,withouta leaf,Ourbodiesmoved,butknewnotwherenorwhy,ThiswasthedawnofsorrowattheendOfthelongnightofwoewehadinvokedToshieldandhideusandshutoutthelightAndbuildaboutuscities fulloffear.Thisworldwasourcreation,usthegodsAnddeclarationknewnohomebutthisAndbitterwasthewinterdwellinginourheartsAtimeofgriefAgrim,blindhomelesstimeAllwasteAlldarknessTornwithdoubtandshameAplacenofeetmayvisitSelf-inclosedAndfilledwithsorrowsshiveringinthecold.This was thewellofdarkwedailysunkDeeperanddeeper,todescendatlastUntoameetingintheDark GodUntOaterriblemeeringintheDark.YetaswestrovetobuildDeathforthistombAndwallsofblindnesstoshutoutthedawnGodsawAndshookthissplendidsunlightfrom his hairAndsmiledforgivenessinthisperfectday ..M.G.Smith133

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134IHAVESEENMARCHI have seen MarchwithintheEbony breakIngolden fireoffragrance unsuppressed; And April bring the Lignum-Vitae dressedIndusty purple; known pale rust awakeTheMango's boughs; the Poinciana takeImmortalwoundofSummer. I have pressedTheCassia's spendthrift yellowtomy breast: I could love Earth for one tree's royal sake...I could find faith,abandoningdespair For all Time's unfulfilled, unblossomed hopes,Watchingthe long, green patienceofa tree,How,undiscouraged, uncomplaining, bare,Itwaits until the vernal secret gropesUptotheefflorescencethatshall be.VivianL.Virtue

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THEHOUR135Thiscrowdednightmy People's kindling pride Is onewithall thethrongingstarsthatdartTheircrystal lightnings down the uttermost partOfbrave Jamaican skies. Here in the wide EmbraceofFreedom mettostem a tideOftyranny,therapture and the smart, Allthelarge patienceofyour suffering heart I feel, my Country! and love stands justified.Yournonage now is over. You must up, Gird in the calling morning, set your faceWithgranite purpose tothemountainway. Prepare your bosom for the bitter cup: Steel for endurance inthewearing race: Yoursisthetriumphing,ifyours the stay.VivianL.Virtue

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EXTRACTFROM136SUSANPROUDLEIGHH.G.deLISSER KNOWI 'ave enemies," said Susanbitterly; "I knowIamhated in this low neighbourhood.ButIdon'tseewhatthemshould hate me for, for I never inrerfere wid anyofthem.""Themhate y'u because you arebenerthanthem,and because y'udon'tmixwiththem,"sagaciously answered Catherine, her second sister."Thatthey will nevergetme to do," snapped Susan. "I wouldn'tmixwitha lotofpeoplewhoarenotmy companions, evenifthemwas coveredfromrop ro roewithgold. Ie is badenoughthatI have ro liveneatthem,butfurtherthanthatIamnotgoing.Itis'goodmorning'and'goodevening' with me,an'thatisall." "Then themwill always hateyou,"saidCatherine, "and ifthemcan injure y'uthemwill try todoic."Catherine referredtomostofthepeople livinginthei mmediare vicini ry,betweenSusan andwhoma fierce feud had exisred forsomemonrhs.Iewas bornofenvy and nurtured by malice, and Susan knew rhat well. She dressedbetterthanmostofthegirls inthelane,shelived in a "fronc house," while mostofthemhad ro becontentwithotdinary yard-rooms. She frequently went for rides on the elecrric cars, whereas rhey couldonlyafford such pleasureonSundays and onpublicholidays. She cartied herselfwithan airofsocialsuperioritywhichwas gallandwormwoodtotheenvious; and oftenonwalkingthroughthelane she had noticed rhecontemptuouslooksofthosewhom,wirh grearercontempt,shecalledthecommonfolks and treatedwithburhalf-concealed disdain.Onthewhole, she had rathet enjoyedthehostilityofthese people, for it was in its way a tributetoherownimportance.Butnowa discomfortingdevelopmenthad taken place inthemannerinwhichthedislikeoftheneighbourhoodhabituallyshoweditself.ThiseveningSusan sat byoneofthewindowsofthelittlehouseinwhichshelived, andwhichopenedonthelane.Ircontainedtwotinyrooms:theinnerapartmentwasherbedroom,hertwO sisters sleeping with her;theouteronewas a sirting-room by day and abedroomatnight,

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H.G. de Lirser137when it was occupiedbyher farher and mother.Thehouse had originally been painted whire and green, bur rhe dusrofKingstonhad discolouredthepainting somewhat; hence its appearance was now shabby and faded,thoughnotso much soasthatoftheotherbuildingsoneither sideofit.Oppositewas an ancient fence dilapidated and almost black; behindthisfence weretwolongrangesofrooms, inwhichthepeopleoftheservant classes lived.Thecomparison between these and Susan's residence wasaUin favourofrhe latter; andasrhis house overlooked the lane, and was derached from rhebuildingsin rhe yardtowhichitbelonged,its rental value was fairlyhighand its occupants were supposed to beofa superior social position. The guttersonbothsidesofthelane ranwithdirty soap-water, andbananaskins, orange peel and bitsofbrownpaper were scattered overtheroughly macadamised ground. Lean dogs reclined in the centreofthe patch,orprowled about seeking scrapsoffood which they never seemed to find. Inthedaytime, scantily-clad children played inthegutters;a few slatternly women, black and brown, drawledouta conversation withoneanotherastheyloungeduponthedoorsteps;allduringthelonghoursofthesunlightthesoundofsingingwasheardassomeindus trious housewives washed the clothesoftheir families and chanted hymnsasrhey worked; andnowandthena caborcart passeddownthelane, disturbing for a little while rhe peaceful tenorofits way. There werenosidewalks,orrather, there were only the vestigesofside walks to be seen. For rhe space which had been left for these bytheoriginal foundersofthe city had more or less been appropriatedbyhouse holderswhothoughtthatthey themselves could make excellent useofsuch valuable territory. Here a house was partly built on what was once a porrionofthe sidewalk; there a doorstep markedtheencroachmentthathad taken place on public property; between these an empty space showedthatthe ownerofthe intermediate yard hadnotasyet been adventurousenoughto extend his fence beyond its proper limits. Mostofthehouses thar opened on the lane wereofone storey, and builtofwood, withfoundationsofred brick. An airofslow decayhungover nearly allofthem,thoughnowandthenyou saw a newlypaintedbuildingwhich looked a littleoutofplace in such surroundings.

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138SusanProudleighSusan sawthathers was bynomeanstheshabbiestofthese houses,andSusanknewthatshe wasthefinest-lookingyoungwomanin that sectionofthe lane in which she lived. It was her physical amactions that had helped her to comparative prosperity. In the euphemistic languageofthecounrry, she was"engaged"coayoungmanwhowas very liberal with his money; he cameroseehertwo or three times a week; andthough of late he hadnotseemed quite so ardenrasbefore, Susan had not troubled ro inquire the reasonofhis shorrened visits.Hehad never failed on a Fridaynightro bring for her her weekly allowance, andthatshe regardedasa sufficienrly substanrial proofofhis conrinued affection. But now she felt that she must take somethoughtofthe future. Thriceduringthecurrent week she had been openly laughed atbyMotherSmith, a peculiarly objectionable old womanwholivedabouta hundred yards farrherupthe lane.MotherSmithhad passed her house, and,lookingupatthewindow, had utteredwithamalignantairofrriumph, "if youcan'tcatch Quaco, you can catch his shirr." Meaninglessasthewordsmighthave appearedtotheuninitiated, Susan had immediately divined their sinister significance. She knewthatMotherSmithhad a daughterofabout herownage, whose challenging attractiveness had always irritated her. Because Maria,thoughblack, was comely, Susan had made a poine ofignoring Maria's existence; she had neverthoughtofMaria as a possiblerival, however, so confidenr was sheofher ascendancy over her lover, andsocerrain was shethatMaria could never be awardedtheprize for style and beautyifSusan Proudleigh happened to be near. Still. there could be no mistaking the triumphanr insolenceofMother Smith's glance orthemeaningofher significant words.Tom'sgrowingcoldnessnowfoundanexplanation.Thebaseplothatchedagainst her stood revealed in all its hideous details.Whatwas shetodo? She didnotwantroquarrel withTomoutright,and so per haps frightenhimaway for ever.Thatperhaps was preciselywhather enemies werehopingshe would do. Afterthinkingover the matter and finding herself unable ro decide what courseofaction ro adopt, she hadpurtheproblem before her family; and heraunt,Miss Proudleigh, happeningto come in just then, she also had been invitedcogive her opinion and suggest a plan. Susan soon begantorealizethatshe couldnotexpect much wisdom

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H.G.deLisser139from their united counsel. They all knewthatshe was not liked by theneighbours;unfortunately,MotherSmith'sdesign was a factorinthe situation which seemed to confuse them utrerly. They had gone over the ground again and again. Catherine had said the last word, and itwasthe reverseofhelpful. For a little while they sat in silence, then Susan mechanically repeated Catherine's words, "If themcan injure me, them will trytodo it." "They does dislike you, Susan," agreed her aune, by wayofcontinuingtheconversation, "an' ifthem canhurtyou,themwill do it. But, after all, the Lordison your side." This remark proved to Susan that at such a crisisasthis her familywasworse than hopeless. She turned im patiently from the window and faced Miss Proudleigh. "I don'tsaythe Lordisnotonmyside," she exclaimed; "but MotherSmithisagainst me, an' rhe devilison her side,an'ifI amnotcareful Mother Smith will beat me."Asno one answered, she went on, "Mother Smithwouldn'ttalk like sheistalking if shedidn'tknowwhatshe was talking about. She wantTomfor Maria, herbig-mouthdaughter. She an' Maria tryin' to takeTomfrom me -I know it. But, Lord' I will go to prison before them doit'"She had risen while speaking, and her clenched hands and gleamingeyes showed clearlythatshe was not one overwhoman easy victory could be obtained. She wasofmiddle height, slimly built, andofdark brown complexion.Herlips werethinandpouting,her chin rather salient; her nose stoodoutdefiantly, suggesting a somewhat pugnacious disposition.Herhair, curlybutfairly long,wastwisted inco several plaits and formed asoreofturban on her head; her eyes, large, black, and vivacious, were the featuresofwhich she was proudest, for she knewtheusestowhich they could be put.Asher disposition was naturally lively, these eyesofhers usually seemedtobe laughing. But just now they wereburningand flashingwithanger; and thosewhoknew Susan well did nor caretocross her when oneofthese moods came on.Herfather saw her wrath and rrembled; then immediately cast about in his mind for some wordofconsolation thatmightappease his daughter.Hewas a raIl,thinman,lightbrownincomplexion,and possessedof

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140SusanProudleighthatinabilitytoarriveacposicive decisions whichissomecimes descnbedasa judicial frameofmind.Hewasmildlyfondofstrongliguors;yet evenwhenundertheir influence he managed tomaintaina degreeofmenealuncerritude,a sorrofil'ltellectualsittingonthefence,whichcaused his friendstobelievethathismentalcapacity was distinctly above the average. Bythesefriends he was called Schoolmasrer,andheworethecidewithdignity.Bywayoflivinguptoit he usually cook chree minucescosay whac anocher person would have said in one.Thatiscosay, he delightedinalmostendless circumlocution.Itwas even relatedofMr.Proudleigh that,onenight,nolamphaving yet been lit, he surrepticiously seized holdofabotdehe foundona table andtooka large sip fromic,chinkingcheliquoricconcained was rum.Ichappenedcobe kerosene oil; buc such was his self-controlchac,insceadofbreakinginco scronglanguageasmostochermenwouldhavedone, hemutteredchac che miscake was veryregrettable,andwas merely sadanddepressedducingcheremainderofcheevening.Suchaman,it is clear, was noc likelycoallow his feelingscocriumphoverhis judgmene,choughuponoccasion, andwhenicsui red his inceresrs,hewas readytoagreewiththestrongerpartyin anyargument.Thoughhenowfeltsomewhatalarmed by Susan's suspicions, andknewit was a marcerofthe firstimportancethatTom,her lover,andespeciallyTom'swages,shouldberetained as an asset inthefamily, he couldnotquiteagreetharSusan had verygoodcause forseriousapprehensionasyec.Upconowhehad said verylinle;he was convinced chat he hadnotsufficient evidencebeforehimonwhichtopronounceajudgment.Hechoughc,tOO,chachishopefulwayoflookingacche sicuacion mighchelpheracchis momene; so, his mild, lined facewearingaprofoundlydeliberacive expression,hegavehisopinion. "I don'c chink you guice righc, Susan," he observed; "buc, mind, Idon'tsayy'uiswrong.MocherSmichisawomanI don'c likeatall. BucdeScripcure cold us, judge not lest we be judged,an'perhapsMotherSmithdon'tmean you at all when she calkaboutQuaco."Onhearingchis, Susan's mocher, a silent, elderly blackwomanwich a belligerenrpast, screweduphermouchby wayofexpressingher disapprovalofherhusband'spoincofview. Mrs.Proudleighwas a firmbelieverin che unmicigaced wickednessofher sex, buc judgedicbestco

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H.G.deLisser141saynothingjust then. Susan, however, annoyed bytheperversenessofher father, burstoutwith:"Thensee here sah,ifshedon'tmean me an' my young man, who can she mean?Don'tMother Smith always say I am forward' Don'tshe passthehousethismorningan'throwherwordson me' Don'tMariacaBout'Lookat her' when I was passing her yard yesterday' Tut,me good .sah,don'ttalk srupidness co melIfyoudon'thavenothingsensible to say, you better keepyou'mouthquiet. I amgoing CO Tom'shouseconight,co-night. AndTomwill 'ave co tellmeat once what him have to dowithMaria." "I wiUgowith you," said Catherine promptly. She was a sturdy youngwomanofnineteen yearsofage, andnotherselfwithouta sneaking regard forTom.Hence,onpersonalaswellason financial grounds, she objected to Tom'sbeing taken possessionofmyMaria and Maria's mother.Theold man, rather fearing that Susan's wrathmightpresentlybeturned against himself, discreetly refrained from making any further remark;buthis sister, an angular ladyoffifry, with a great reputation for intelligence and Christianity, seeingthatSusan's mind was fully made upasro Maria's guilt, and being herself in the habitofpassing severe commentonthe conductofthe absent, determinedcosupporther niece. "Bur some female are really badI"she observed,asifin a soliloquy. "Some female are really bad.Nowhereispoor Susan not interfering wid anybody. Shegother intended.Hetake his ownfoOtan' he walk down the lane,an'he fall in love with her.Itis true shedon'tmarryhimyet,butshe is engaged. Sheisengage, and thereforeitisan unprincipled sin for anyotherfemalecotrouble her intended an' take him away from her.IfMaria wane ayoungman, whydon'tshegoan'lookfor one' Whyshean'her motnerwane cotroubleSusan'sonepoorlamb,whenthereisninety and nine otherstopickan'choose from? Really some femaleiswicked'"A speech like this, coming from a woman whose lackofphysicalcharmswas morethanmadeupforbystrengthofmoral character, was naturally hailed withgreatapproval by Susan, Carherine, and their mother.Theold man himself, never willingCObe permanenrly in aminority,now wene so far ascoadmirthatthewholeaffair was"very

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142SusanProud/eighprovocating,"and added tharifhe was a younger man he would do severalrhingsofa distinctly heroic and dangerous character. Bur all this,thoughin its way was veryencouraging,wasnotexactly illuminating. It onlybroughtSusan back to the point from which she had srarred."Wharam I to do?" she asked for rhe lasr rime, reduced to des pair, and sinking back into her sear despondently."IfI was you," said Catherine ar lasr deliberately, "I would carch holdofMaria, and bear her rill she bawl."Thisadvice appealed to Susan; ircorrespondedwiththewishofherownhearr. Bur she doubted rhe efficacyofphysical force in dealing with a difficultanddelicate situation.No;abearingwouldnor do; besides, in the eventofan encounter, itmightbe Mariawhowoulddo the beat ing! Susan saw plainly rhat no wordofa helpfulnaturewouldbe forthcoming from anyofthe anxious group,whousually appealed to her for advice and assisrance. SowhenMiss Proud1eigh was again abouttogive some further opinionsonthe general wickednessoffemales, shegotupabruptly, saying that she wasgoinground toTom'shouse to see him. Catherine roseroaccompany her, and afrer purring on rheir hars rhetwOgirls lefr the room.

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NEWDAYCHAPTERONEv.S.REID143FORrhree years now, no rain hascome.Grass-piece and yam-vines are brown wirh dryness, cane leaves have nor gor much green ro rhem. Thirsr andhungerwalkrhroughour land, four hundredthousandpeople have noosnaburgs ro their backs. For three years now,norain has come and only rhe rich laugh deep.Itis rhe year 1865. For rhree years, rhere have beennocrop-rimes in our fields. In America, brorhers0'rheNorthhave jusr done warred wirhbrothers0'theSouth,andsonoclippershipsareridingtheoceantobringflour and codfish forourempty beliies.Nogrowrhontheland,noshiponthesea Lord0' Bur rhereissuffering' For three years, EdwardJohnEyre has been a-sir in rhe Queen's House at St.Jagodela Vega parishasGovernorofour island.Withdrynessontheland and a shipless ocean we rum ro rhe manwhosrands for MissisQueenVicroria. Men ha' losr rhe skin off their feettrampingwith Peti tions ontherocky roadstoSt. Jago. Bur always rhey are met wirh muskets and bayoners, and always rhey come home wirh foodless bellies bur vexation curdling their bowels. Bur now, badnessiscoming. From Wesrmore!alld parish in rhe wesr to St.Thomasparish in rhe easr, men are ralking in secrer under heavy corron-rree roors. Mr. George William Gordon and his friends in rhe HouseofAssembly ask for the recall0'JohnEyre.Goodpastors from their pulpits plead say we musr be calm.Buckraplantersongrearesrares and pastors0'rhe Esrablished Churchsayhooray forGovernorEyre, curse rhe Baprist pas tors and laugharrhe hungerofourpeople. For soon then, bye-and-bye, labour will be cheap. But at length and at lastWestminsterishearing. Ragt and birterness walk wirh Eyre's voiceashe rells his CouncilofDoctorUnderhill. Underhillis0'rhe Baprist faith and he has penned a lettertotheSecretaryofSrates for rhe Colonies relling himofour suffer ings. Rage and birterness walk wirh rhe voicesofEyre's ChurchofEng land clergymenasthey deny that men are very hungry. And same rime,

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144New DayCHAPTERTWOnow, they are calJing with heavy voices for more and more tithes from the poor. And same time, now,theEstablished Church sends a narc to theQueen;but still we wait in hope onWestminster.Is the year 1865, and pastors0'the Baptist faith stir againtohelp the poor. A Petition has gonebypackettothe Queen, praying that starvation should no' rakeus.Wewaitinhope on Missis Queen. But when the packet returns, andthe Queen's Adviceisrakenroevery vilJage church and mailedro every constabulary station, and on marker day we gather around and read it with lips0'stiffness aie,bra"ThenweknowtheChurchofEngland has won the fight, the BaptiSt lerrer has no' been credited. Hear theQUEEN'SADVICE:THEMEANSOFSUPPORTOFTHELABOURINGCLASSESDEPENDONTHEIRLABOUR.HERMAJESTYWILLREGARDWITHINTERESTANDSATISFACTIONTHEIRADVANCEMENTTHROGHTHEIROWNMERITSANDEFFORTS.Wait.'plead good pastors from their pulpits,HerMajestyhasbeenwrongLyadvised.'Wait,says Mr.Gordonat his Underhill meetings,wewiLLtakethecasetoW hitehaLLourseLves.Wait?Paul Bogle asks at StoneyGut,[5war it,orpeace,theywant?Itisthe year1865.JuneandJulyand August gone, and no rain comes with October. Brown onouryam-vines, the earth a-crack with dryness, thereisnoosnaburgtomake clOthing for our backs, four hundred rhou sand are a-moan.God0 there are tearsallovertheland and onlytherich laugh deep. This Sunday morning, day-cloud nas no' peeped, but my fatheriscalJing: "Manuel0'Davie! Ruthie' Get up and come all0'you, prayer-meet ing time."Thereisstraw a-rustle and yawns fromtheotherrooms. From my kitty-up in the same roomasFather and Mother, I hear when Davie grumbles something. You always know when Davie grumbles something 'cause everybody giggle. Everybody, 'cept Manuel.

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v.S.Reid 145 PaJohnandMaTamahheard ir roo, for intheyounglight0'dawn,sawhimstiffenandlookatMother."Youhear thac boy,Tamah)Hearhim)"Then me fearful forDavie,for myfatheris vexed. Myfatherleapsfromhisbedandrushestowhere the trace-leatherhangsbackofthedoor,butMotheris9uickafrerhimandisholdingto his arm. She whisperedandWhisperedtomyfatheruntildeepbreathpushedangerfromhim.Someoftheworry-marks left mymorher'sface.Shecalled:"Hurry,all0'youpickneys-yourfatherisa-wait!"Thenme,less fearfulburmoresorry,forniceit isandyetnotnicewhensomeoneelseisgetting the whip.Daviemustha'heardwhenFather went forthecrace-leather, fornowheisfirstintothehallandonhiskneeslookinglikeovergrownlambkin.All0'us are in the hallonour knees now,Emmanuel,David,Ruth,Samuel,Ezekiel,Naomi,and me, Johnny.Fatherstruckalucifer-matchforthelantern,raisedtheshade,andput flame tothewick.Younglightswelled9uicklytomanhood,andFatherpuffedoutthematch.Allofuswatchaslight (Jaws clown Farher's face. Blue eyeswhichbeddeepclown in his headlooksonetimeonDavieandthenonalIa'us.Anger-marksarestillonFather'sbrownforehead.Funnything,butwhenFatherisvexed helooksmorelikewhitemanthanbrown.Whenheisatpeace,thereis softness inmy father's face.Ruthiesays itis Qt:cause Scotchmenare alwayswarringandbrown people are alwayssinging,sothatwhenFarherisvexedhe looks like his Scottish sire,andwhenatpeacelikehismorherwhohadbrownbloodin her.Mustbetrue it. FathetrestedthelanternonthetableandopenedtheBook.Butnowordscomefromhim,andMotherlooksonhisforeheadandseethereare still anger-marks there. Sothen, feel, I feel herarmshugmyshoulderandsametimeshebeginsSweet HoltI' 0/ Prelyer. Inthelongmetreshesingsthehymn,anclalia'ustakeitupwithher,'ceptDavieandmyfather. But afterFatherlisteneda little he raisedhisheadandlookedatDavie-eh,9uickmybra'Daviecommenceda-singtoo.Bye-and-bye,Fathercamein atthesecondverse.Thenwecametotheend.

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146NewDayThroughachinkoverthedoor whichMotheralways covers whentheChristmaswindisnorthing,day-cloudispeepingnowat me.DownintheBay,theseaiskneelingfor early matins.Thereisthewhisperandtheroarofthechantwhen groundswells creepoutand then come in likethunder.I amthinkingsay the spray must be near up to the barrack thismorningand I wish saytheprayer meeting was over. Is nice, it, ro have sprayonyour face and you withnorhingon, rollingonthesand. Agoodlight isonthe Book now. Farher says heisreading fromtheBook0'Isaiah. Idono'hearmuchthough,for Iamwatching Davie. I love Davie. I saw when Sammy rouched himwithhis shoulder.WhenDavie lookedupfromunderhisbrow,mybro'Sammyshookhis head asjfro say: Do not make Fathermorevexed. IknowthatSammy lovesDavieroo, sowhenDavie's and my eyes make four, I shakemyhead roo. But I am eight, while Sammyisfifteen and Davieisnineteen,soDavieformshismouthlike sayingShutup,and I seeNaomigrin. aomi isten.I want rorubsea-sandinherhairbutFatherisreadingfromtheBook.FOR THOSETHATWAlTUPOTHELORD SHALLRENEWTHEIRSTRENGTH.THEYSHALL MOU T UPWITHWINGSASEAGLE.THEYSHALLRUNANDNOTBEWEARY,THEYSHALLWALKANDNOTFAINT.Thereisiron and heavy wind in my father's throat.AllofusknowthePsalm whichMotherrecites; all, 'ceprNaomiandme,butIknowmorethanNaomi.Agood.Igotothesecond versebutNaomisrops at the first. Isaythe second verse loud and sheisvexed. A good.Wesingahymnand prayer meetingisover.Outsidein daylight, and sea-breezeis purring anger-marks on the faceoftheBay. It isOctobermontb,and all over Salt Savannah silver arrows waveaboveourcanefield ro saythatthejuiceisripe. But cane leaves arebrownandtheearthisdusty, and Iknoware bad, these. Davie says cane leaves should be green and the earth should be mouldyifhunger, thirst, and nakednessmustno' beontheland. My friendsTimothyM'LarenandQuackooM'Larendownatthebar rack willbereadytogo into thesea. Sothen,I wasrunningdownrhe

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v.S.Reid147hill [0 thebarrackwhenMothercalJedmeback.ShesaidthisistheSabbathmorningandshewilJ ha' peace on Salt Savannah.NaomigrinsandsaysAgood.Iputtwofingerstothefat0'herbut[Ocksandcry,sheiscryingnow.Howsoever, Mother has goc me bythearmand IS haulingme insidethehouse. Sheputsonmetheosnaburgpantaloons which are[00shorr for Zekieland[00longfor me.Motherturnsupthebocroms so theyfir.Sunday clOthes, these.Motherand me were insideour roam when I heard Father call Manuel and Davietothe hall-room. I saw her cock her ears, a-listen [0 what was in my father's voice.Thenshe told me rogooutsideand keepthepantaloonsclean forIwill wearthemtoChapel.Butmeforoutsidewhen Iha'juSt heardwhatisin my father's voiceandsee trace-leather IS nothangingback0'the door' So I saynothingroMotherbutgorothecorner near my kitty-up.Thereisa boxkite under my kirry-up which IswoppedfromQuackooM'Laren yesterday-day for abuntungmangoand acroaker-lizardskeleron.Agoodkite, this,withonesingerrom;agoodkite, this,butQuackooisalways hungry.Croakerskeleronisabmwta.QuackooisaJewin business, alwayswantingextrawhenthereisaswap,sonowhe has mycroaker.But Iknowwhereaniguanadied last week,andaniguanais very bigger than a croaker. Agood. IamsittingontheAoorwithmyboxkiteonmy knees and form like Iamlookingontheromsinger whileMothermakes her bedwithclear. Sunday sheets and pillow cases. Rurhie and Sammy are gonetowoodlandtolookfirewood forourbreakfast,ZekielandNaomiaregoneto the streamfor water, onlyMotherandmeare here. Soon I hearPaJohn'svoice:"Manuel,David, I wanttosee youboth."Father's voice has heaviness like when he recitesthePsalmwhatasks:Howlong,0 !.JJrd, howlong?I heardtheboys move their feet a little bur none made answertoFather.Motherhassroppedmakingher bed,standswithears a-listen, worry-marks on her face.WhyisMotherworrying sowhenshe willno'begettingthewhip?Motherisfunny,though.She lovesManuelmorethan DaVie 'causeManuelreadstheBook on Sabbath-day. But my bro' Davie? Ehl

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148New DayDaviegoestoStOneyGutandlistentoPaulBoglepteachsecession.WhenmeetingStOpSforeating-timeand after we ha' hadtheroast pig,Daviejumpsthewall at PastorHumphrey'sestate and eatsNumberElevenmangoes.Know,Iknow,foroneSabbathDayIwent raSraney Gut with him. How come)We raid PaJohnand MaTamahthatthere was a she-goat which hadstrayedfromourcompoundandsay we willgotolookfor her.But'stead0'that,we were off for theGutand rhe bigmeeringthere.There,themen sang heavy rhatTheYear0'JubileeIsCome,and Deacon Bogle preached sayGodisrighrandGodismighrandifwe ha'Godweha'mightandright.Andeverybodyshouted Ameni and Alleluia'! andJubileeiMe,too.Afterwards,Davieandmeclimbed PastOrHumphrey'Swall andfedonhis cane andNumber Eleven mangoes. I love Davie."Davie,Iwantto see you. Is whar kind0'wickedness, this)" Idono'like rhe iron in Father's throat. Peeprhroughknotholeincot'otherroomand see Father and Manuel and Davie. Father Stands inthemiddleoftheroom,twOfistsdoubledand restingonthe table.ManuelandDavie areont'othersideoftherabIe, a-face my father.Thereisthe rrace-leatheronthe table 'sideofmyfather's hand. Davie'sbreathiscoming9uick-9uick; same way his chest leapswhenPaul Bogle cries:SecessioniSecessioniTotalfreedomiWorryisonManuel'sface,butnothingonDavie's face.SmoothandflatisDavie's face and thereisnothingtill you look inro his eyes.Thenyousee a watchfulness there, like sayinbarrack peoples' eyeswhenCustoSBaron Aldenburgispassingonhis way to courrhouse."DidIno'tell you StoneyGutis nor for you)" Fatheristalking again. I seeDavie'smouthbeing stubborn like CustoS's mule. My fathertookthetrace-leather in hishand;coconutrreea-tremblein Marchwindismy father now.Thereis a groanback0'me and I know itcomesfromMother,butI canno'rumfrom myknothole.Hear Father with loudness:"Answerme, boy' Answer me!" Barrack-carr going to marketonSaturday-daysometimeshas no grease

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v. S. Reid149ontheaxle, andthattime,theironrubsonmahoewoodand so is Father's voice.Mybro'Manuelis apeace-maker;hetalksthroughtreacle:"Father,beg,Iambeggingthatyou take time, sir."Now,Manuelhasturnedtwenty-one,andhis eye is sameheightfromthegroundasisFather's,butthereisnotanythingmoreofmy father inManuel.For such a way he favorsMother,does mybro'Emmanuel!ButDavie?Nowthereyou seeFathera-face hisownselfacrossthetable,'ceptthatonefaceissmooth,whilet'otherhas seenmanymangoseasons."Answerme now, boy!" WhenDavie answered, his teeth were tied together."Yes,is thatwhatyousaid." "But yougoallthesame and listentowickednessftomthatPaul Bogle' Listen to amanpreach'gainstw hattheBook says?" "How youknowIha'beenroSroneyGut?"Davieasked. "Bro' ZaccyO'Gilvietoldme0'yourwickedness'"Fathershouted.Now,asmartway Davie has fixed for StoneyGur.Hehas rold Fatherthatwithdrynessonthelandall0'usshouldno'gotochurchonSabbath,foriftheanimalsgetintowhatlittle cane weha'onSalt Savannah,whowillbetheretodrive awaythe animals' So,then,Daviestays;butwhentherest0'us areontoChapel,gone,heisgonetotheGur.Bro'Zaccymustha' heardofthis,andtold it to Father yesterdaywhenwewere atMorantBay marker.Thunderheadfor day-cloud andthesunpeepingthroughblacknessongraywaterintheBay, soisDavie's eyes.Fatherin atemper,Daviein atemper,Motherworrying, Manuel worrying. And me' Whenanothermightgetthewhip,and youknowyour conscience hasnothingonit, itisnice, and yetno'nice.Hearmyfather: "Is whatit youwant?Change,youwantto change:: God's order' Youandthoseotherscanno'waitforJehovah'splan?PaulBogle's wickednessisbetterthantheordinance0'Sr.Paul?"Temperbursts in mybro'Davie.Therehavea fallinthePlantain

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150 New DayGardenRiver,wherewarerrumblesdownIndeep-voicequickness;soDavie'swords are a-rumble."Wickedness)Wickedness)Youcall ir so' Wickednessro wanr even rice and flour andosnaburgwhilebuckraEnglishmanears bacon and wearsShanrung silk' Whydorheyno'makeusgovernourselvesandseeifwewouldno'ear bacon coo?Whyrhey willno'giverhe vore ro all0'us andmakeuschooseourownCouncil'''I can see worry riding Manuel. I see him lookonmy farher and frighrcomesro his eyes. I lookonFarher roo, and seethereislightningcomingdowntheBlueMountains,a-lick all sides0'Yallahs Valley.Noworry is worrying Davie.Wordsare a-hiss and a-foamrhroughhis reerh. "Wickedness' You say PaulBogleispreaching wickedness)WharhasGovernorEyre saidabourourPeririonrotheMissisQueenVicroria)Wharha'rheygoronrhepaperwhichhangsfrom PasrorHumphrey'Schurchdoor)Forgor, you ha'forgotten)"NobodyhascorellmesayirisrheQueen'sAdviceDaviemeans. 'Mem ber, I "femember rhemorningwhenBogle readirar SroneyGur,and allrhemenrheylaughed.Bur frighren rakes youandyou feelcoldwhenrhemen0'SroneyGutlaugh thar time. Hen Davie:")sthal whal v.iIl bacon wt) Andwine ""e) And Shanrungsilk Wt? And you sayi(iswickedness to listen toDeaton Bogle)Timenow,IreJ]you, (har we shouldswap Ptlilion forpowderand Godstrikeusifwedono'rhat'Thunderheadopensin my father's eyes.Whar (f)mcs out)an no' look at. I see his hand moves.Upgoestherrace-learher anddownonDavie's back."DavieCampbellISwearinginmyhouse'SwearGod'snameinJohnCampbell'shousein fronr0'his veryownface)" Fatherisa cane-band shaking in sea-breeze. Trace-Iearherisa cassavabeater flailingonDavie's shoulder."BlasphemeJehovah'snameinmy house' Eh,Davie Campbell'''CHAVIEN IQUIlIknowwheretofind Davie.Therehavea place inrhemango-walk

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v.S.Reid151wherethewatergoestobed.Wecall It MaroonHole.Thereare trees allaround,branchesbendlow to whispertoit,andyoudono'seethewater-hole till you comerighton ir. Davie says it islikethewild Maroonswholive in the Blue Mountains.But it doesno'springonyou andcutoffyourhead likethewildMaroons0'the mountains. Coolandsweetisrhe water, and you takeoffyour pantaloonsandswimfrombanktobankandrhe warerhugsyou close. Like say when youdream at night that duppy-ghosrisa-chase youandyou cryoutandMotherhugsyouandyouwakeupandherbreasts are a-kissyourfaceandthereis peace on you.IssoMaroonHole. I creepthroughthetreesandcometotheHole.Davieis layingonthebank,onhis back,withhis feetincool water. I say softly:"Bro'Davie)"I laydownlikehimwirh my feetin the waterandsay:"PoorDavie." Davie quiet;then he turnedonhis faceandlookeddownonme for alongtime; looking like I amno'there. Bur presently his eyes made fourwithmineand he laughed and said:'Cho.man,nothing."I turned on my side and looked ar him roo and said:"Cho,man, norhing." Laugh comestoDavie'seyes,summermoonshineonMaroonHole. "You werepeeping)" he asked. I nod me head."Prom where)" "Prominourbedroom."I tell him. Heavy laugh rolls from my bro's belly. Isgood,this.Thereisa small quier, rhen I ask:"Youwillgofor StoneyGur)"Aie bad, thar; for nighr-clouds cover rhe moonshine.Wrong.I amwrongand feel to holler; butDavieJumped ro his feet andhoistedmetooandsaid:"Come,we willswim."Thereisa pull at rhe srring0'mypantaloon.Hisowncomesoffroo.andover we aregoneand are in rhe warer before you cansayJack Malldol"a. Whenmy head comes up, heis rhere beside me.Weswim from bank robank,thenwe areoutand flat onourbacksonthebank. Feelgoodandquietnow, me. Allofa sudden I hear Davie: "Johnny.rou old how)" "Eight,"Isayquick, for I heard fromNaomi yesrerdar when we were a-rowaboursomeramarinds wegarfrom Ma KariearGuanaboa Vale.

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152New DayNaomihadsaidherportionshollldbebigger,forshewastenandmeonlyeight."Eight, Johnny' Well,you will live (Q see ir." Livetosee what'Bur Iclono'ask, forthatishowDaviesays funnythingssometimeswithhiseyesgone to becldeepin his head.ButIdono'like it, for clouds arebankingonMaroonHoleagain. Idono'wanttotalk.Hemakes apillowwithhishandsandlaylooking through theleaves atthesky, so Idoso (QO. Leaves lace'gainstthesky liketheedgingonMother'sSundayshifr wirhblueperricoarunderir."Youeverhearaboutslavery, Johnny' Youknowourparentswerebornin slavery times'" Daviedownonmefor ralk, sowhatmusrJohnny cia' So I say: "Yes.Ruthiesays PascorHumphreysays-"Wayah.'Hisfeet slap water, and cold sprays my face."Humphrey'Pig, tharlDono'call his name!" Teethare mixedwithhisvoice."Pig,that'Amanwhoknowshowpeoplearehungryandyet taxusformoney co buildhisnewchurchar Morant Bay-andno'onlythat,butrakes rhe conrracrhimself co do rhebuilding! Is a burteryhog,thatman. Machete in ,he belly for him! Youknowwhar,Johnny-'"ButDaviesees I amno'happy,sohesitsupandraisesmeroo.owhetalkswithoutteethin histhroat."Listen,Johnny,eightyouarenow,timeyoushouldknowaboutthings."Thereisa naseberry rreehangingfaroverrhe warer. DaViegoes ro his feet like a yearling and pulls in abranchwitha full ripe fruit attheencl. IamwonderinghowTimothyandIhadno'seen itbefore; bur thatishowDavieis.Evenguinea-fowlcanno'lay indeepestmangrovebutDaviewill findtheegg.Naseberrypulpyandrhick,andwhenyouha'finished wirhtherich ness,yourolltheseedsaroundyourmouthsotheyclickagainstyourteeth.Frighthasgone,conrentmentisarMaroon Holt. Welaydownagain.Heplaced a dead bamboorootunderourheadssowe were likehowFathercatchesupthepillows on his bed nighr-rimewhenhewantstalkwithMother.Coolitisunder rhe trees. Ajohnto whitisa-dance in a guineptreeandmakingmusicwithwhistlesin histhroat.Tome, itsoundslikemilitiamenmakingskirlwiththeir fifes atMorantBaywhenrheydrumdowntheJack at sunset.Ifmybro'Sammy

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v.S.Reid153washere,therewouldbe shine in his eyes.Funnyhowmy bra' Sammy likessoldiering.HearDavie: "When slavery was run outof [hecounrry.!){Ickra Englishpromisedthepoorland and wages. TheYgavetheland. but all rocks and swamp,andnothingwillgrowthere. Theygave the wages. butman can no'liveonsixpence ada)'." Heistalkingquiet now. andtherearcthe nasebelTY seeds at myteeth andjohn-to-whita-skidlikemad overhead. "Isrrueit,thatourfamily are no' badly off. fornear-whitewe are,evenifpoor,andha'beenlandownersforthreegenerations,andnowFatheris anesrateheadman.Butno'-the-less,Johnny, and listen welltome, we areallJamaicanssix0'oneandhalfdozenoft'othertothebuckraEnglish. "For threeyearsnow,therehas beendryweather.For five yearsnow,Americansha'foughtwithAmericans.Bra'AbrahamLincolnhaswonhisvictory,andslavery hasgonefrom hisland,butstillnoclippershipshavecomesouthwithAour and codfish. GovernorEyreistherefat at St.Jagowithgoodliving,and the MissisQueen says wemustprosperoncaCtus and.iguana."Davie'svoicesinkslowasifheisa-talkwithDavie.[turnmyheadonthebamboo rOOt and seethathis eyesaregonetobed. So,istrueit,thatperhapsheistalkingwithhimself."Whathappens when hardtimecomeson us' Somepoorpeopleborrow money ontheircrops from bucha estareowner. Even before pay-backtimecomes,estateownertakesthemtocourt.Bur since poorpeopleha'norgrowanymoney,sincedryweatherisheteandnocaneswillgrow,buckramagisrratetellsbuckraestateownerthathemusttaketheland,fatpoorpeoplewillno' par"So, then, rurnbuck"a turnshiscattleontothelandandhavethemrrampledownyam-hillsandcanecultivations.Thepoortakeback buckl'a tothecourt,and another bllck"amagistratesays rheorderhasbeenmadeandtheland does no'belongtothepooranylonger. "And ifyoueverralk0'injustice,istoprisontheysendyou.Some

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154 New Daychargewirhoutfoundarionsendsyoutothecrankandrhetreadmill,oryougetrhegallowsfortreason."ThereisdeepbreathfromDavie,burit doesno'pushrheangerfromhim,andDavieisstilltalkingwithDavie. "Look backonlasr year.Youwill see awomanin a family way rravellingtoherculrivarionwithherhoeonhershoulder.OnrheBathRoad iris.See, you will seeJudgeBoltinpassing,ridingonhis horse. BarhRoadisnarrow,and the hoetouchesrhenose0'thehorsesoirshies wayah.'DownJudgejumpsfromhishorseandflogsrhewomanwirhhissupple-jacksoshemustfallIike deadIGod0' me.'" Davie0.'Come,quietagain.'Daviecamequietagain."Later,shelosesherbaby forthebearingshegets.DeaconandhisCouncilmengivehermoneytofight incourt.CustosisrhereontheBench,andhe putS itoffandputsitoffandpursir offsorharBoglemustsendPeririontoSr.Jago.Eyredoesno'wantMissisQueenhearofit,sohehastalkwithCustos.Monrh,gone,market-day, CuStoS meersDeaconandrellshimhehas finedBolrinfiveshillings."Davielaughedandhis feet stirred water. "If ir was in slavery days,Boltinwouldha'paidabiggerfine formakingawomanJose amanchild Godstrike him.'" Youever take abullwhipandthrowthelash forwardandbringirbackquicksothecowskin fringe curlsupandralkssharpto you? Is so,Davie'svOice. "But, tell, I rellyou,Johnny,none0'thesewouldha'happenediffortrueweweregoverningourselves."Davieblasphemesalittlemore.Goodir istohearhimblasphemeandFarherno'around,so Iblasphemeroo.Daviegrinnedonme.Hearhim:"Johnny,youknowabourWilliamGeorgeGordon?"Inodmeheadandsay Iha'heardofMr.Gordon.

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Extract fromCREOLECHAPTERILUCILLEIREMONGERROSAhadgone tobed. Herfarher was in hisbedroom,in his pyjamas.Hewas cross-examining her younger brocher onhis knowledge ofthefactsoflife, purring himrighrwhere he hadgonewrong.HeroldAunrErra, toorhless and irrirable, was sirring in her cubbyholeofaroomin rhe dark. She wasmusingon rhe pasr,androckinghersel f into a rremble ofvexarionandregrer, to rherune of rhe squeakingof rhe unoiledjointsofher chair. .Therewas alighroninrhelowerparrofrhehouse.Rosa'sred-headedmorherhadpurhersewing-machineon rhe dining-room rable downsrairs,andrhehousewas filled wirh irs whirr.Suddenlyrhere was rhegrindingnoiseofa carsroppingourside rhe gare.The sewi ng-machinehaIredabruptly. The woman seared ar ir hasrily covered ir, hid ir in acorner,andsweptherwork intoa drawerbeforehurringour.Herunexpectedguesrswere alreadymountingrhe srepsofrhe fronrverandah.'Abony,yellowwoman,wirh srraighr black hair,camefirsr, arms ourrhrusr.ShesweprDollyCutlerplumplyinroherembrace,kissingherloudlyonborh cheeks.Herlirtle palehusband,consumpriveand narrowboned, came next. Afterhimfiled alonglineofmales and females,apparentlyofrhesamefamily rree,ofvarying ages;burallsrupid,bony,awkwardandsilent.OnlyMrs.Prarrcharrered,burshespokeforrhe eleven.Onebyone rhey shookhandswoodenlywirhrheirhosress,rhen,srillwordless,burcomplerclyarhome,rhcydisappearedi nrorhehouseanddraggedoutinco the verandah'sheavily-creepereddarknesschairsofalldescriprions,wicker,woodandcane, sraricorrockingar a couch. Evenwirhrherevolving piano-scootrherewerenorenough,andrhevisitorsrroopedofffarrher afield to bringbackdining-roomchairs.Thesmallesrchild,acorkscrew-ringleredgirlwirhablankwallofa face, saronrhethreshold.Finally rhey were all seared.Dollyherselfsubsidedinco arhrone-likewickerchairdirectlyundernearhapink-shadedsrandardlamp,andswirchedirslighrfullon to herred head.Shewassurroundedonall

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156 Creolesides by Pratts.Onher right,onher left were Pratts, and peering coldlyintothestretchingshadesshesawsilentPrattfaces,srrangereplicasofrhoseabouther. Bythistimeherhusband,Alvis,hadpuronhistrousersoverhispyjamas,since hehadrecognizedhisvisitorsasoldfriendsbydarringreconnaissancesoverthebanisters.Nowhecamestampingoutin hisshorr-sightedway, along,stoopingman,withameanred faceandscrewed-up,inquisitiveeyes. As he paused in rhe doorway,swinginghisheadblindlyfrom side to side, he seemed to be counring his guests.HehadnevergotoverhisastonishmentrharPrarr, smallest,weakest,mostsimperingboy in his class,shouldhaveacquiredsuchakingdom,andsuch apopulationofhis own.Againsthisbenerjudgmenthe ratherenviedhim. Cedric, a dullboyofaboutrwelve,withhisfather'seyes, and a lockofhairdanglingoverhisforehead,followedonhis heels.HewentstraightrothecorkscrewAltheaandpinchedher.Thotwolordsofthesefamilies,havingsaidtheir"How-are-you-old man'" and"Not-too-bad-old-manl "asifit were a marreroftheutmostimporrance,sat back co lisren to theirwives'gossip.Mrs. Prarrenquiredfor Rosa.Hermothershruggedhershoulders.Shespreadoutherhandsandturneddownrhecornersofher lips:"Bed.'""Thatwon'tdo,medear'Imustseethegirl'Whar'sshedoing,going co bed so early' Make usgoupandsee her,shall we'" Dolly,shorrandsquare,herlarge noseonherlarge head held prowhigh,ledtheway.Stumblingover unexpecced feer, she reached hernowalmostbare drawing-room. She swishedthroughthebead curtainswhichseparated it fromthestaircase(wirhouttroubling co holdthemapart forherguest,sothatMrs. Prarr wasalmostblindedbythemas theyswungbackather,)climbedrhedarkflighrofstairs,andmarchedineoRosa'sbedroom.Shesnappedonrhelight. "Look who'scomeeosee you,Rosa'"Adark-hairedgirlwassitringupinanenormouswoodenbed. Shehadbeen asleep, and was obviouslyputoutby this invasion. She looked from Mrs. Prarrtohermother,struggling co saysomerhing.Mrs. Prarr,sherealized, wasnotheronlyvisitor.ThePrantribe,followingtheirleader,hadmountedthestairsin silence,andwerecrowdingintorhe

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LucilleIremonger 157 bedroominherwake.OverMrsPrarr'sshoulderRosacouldseethesheepishfacesoftwobulkylads.Behindthemstoodasolidyoungwoman,and,attheendofthefile,herfatherandMe.Pratr.Somewhereinthecrowd Althea yelped."Whatyoubawlingfor)"Cedricsaid. "I'm notdoinganything'"Suddenly,andstill before Rosa had found words, her oldauntappearedroundthecornerofanotherdoor,frowned atDolly,andsaid horly:"It'snotdecentin ayounggirl'sbedroom'"Thenshedisappeared again. Aminuteafterwardsshereappeared, thistimewithsteel-rimmed spec taclesonher nose, andshookhandswitheveryoneshecouldreach, tillshecametooneofthebulkyyoungmen.Shepeered at him."Andwhoare you?"Apparenrlyhe was astranger.Nooneelseseemedtohavenoticed.HewasnotunlikethePratts,exceptthathe was very muchberrerlooking.Hisname,he saidobligingly,smilingdownatthe fierce littleoldwoman,wasJohnny.JohnnyPengelly.Thegirlinthebed wasfollowingtheexchangewitheyesandears.Shewasatrempting co coverhershoulderswiththebed-clothes, andtosmoothherrumpledhairinconspicuously."Comeon, now,"theoldauntmarshalledrhem,shooingthembeforeheruneguivocally,"downsrairs'"ThePrarts turned dutifully,uncomprehendingly,andsomehowAlvis and histhin lirrle comrade were proddedintoaction. Meekly they ledthewaybacktotheirverandahrocking-chairs.JohnnyPengelly lingeredtothelast,slippingbehindMrs. Prarr(whowasadmiringthenewcurrainsat2j.lld.a yard),untiltheoldwomanpushedhimoutwithherownhands,muttering:"Shameful'Agirlofsixteen'Idon'rknowwhat'sthemarrerwithDollysometimes'"2HughBradleyhadfallenintothehabitofscrollingby Fort Outlookonhiswalksaboutthecapital.Thesea waswithineasy reachofhisuncle'soffice,andhe very oftenchosetoreach it by wayofthericketyoldgiantof a house.ThetoptwostOreysofdilapidatedwoodenskeletonwiththepaint

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158Creolepeelingfromirrowered over rhe garden.Tharwas alltharhecouldsee,exceptfor apatchofweedy lawnrhroughtheironcurlingsofrhegate.Itwasnormuchtogoon,butthehousemaintainedthatairofpride, fallenburuncaring, which he had felr sosrronglyduringhis firstsightofit.Oneafternoon,as hepassedbyratherearlierrhanusual,hehadatantalizingglimpseofawomansittingaloneatawickettablelaid for reaonthelawn.Shewas red-headedandplump,andeveninrhosefewsecondshenoredthatthechairshesatinwasofwickerlikerherabIe,andsurprisinglylarge,andrharthewhirehandspoisedabovethetraywereindolentandsmoorh.Thenextday he hastenedfrom his office, hopingto catchthewomanagainattea.Hesawonlytherable.Itwas laid for tea,butnoonewassittingatit.Hecouldnothangaboutthegare,sraringin,andso hewentonhis way.Hiswholemindwasoccupiedwithsurmisesaboutthehouseandthewoman.Hetookthetroubletoreturnhomeby wayofit,butagaintherewasonlyanemptytable,thistimecoveredwiththedebrisofrhetea hehadseen laidearlieron.Thestrengrhofhisdisappointmentamazed him.Thehousebecameanobsession.Hedidnotsay rohimselfrhatir was his lonelinesswhichwas atthebottomofit,butifhe had itwouldhavemadenodifference.Hethoughrofir as hishouse,andhis desiretoknowthedetailsof the livesofitsoccupantsgrewgreatetthemoresatisfactionwasdeniedit. Inevitablytheday camewhenhe again found rhe red-haired womanathertable.Thisdayhadmoretoofferhimthanthat.Standingbythewomanwas a tall,darkgirl.Shehadherbacktothegate,andHughcouldnotsee her face.Somethingseemedtohimtofall neatlyintoplacewhenhe saw her.Hewas 'Juite surethatshewas beauriful. It didnorevenoccurtohimthatshemightnorbeso.Certainlytherewas something-somethinginthewayshestood,perhaps-somethinginthewayherhairfelloverhershoulders....Hedidnotputittohimselfthathehadsightedrheprincess inhismysteriouscastle, he said merely:"That'sinterestingI"Hemadeuphismindtoenterthelittlegate.Hedevotedagreatdealofthoughttohowitmightbeaccomplished.

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Lucille Iremongerl59However,whenitdidcomero pass,itwas inanaccidental oralmostaccidental fashion.CHAPTERIIOPPOSITEPortOutlooksroodaramshackleshop.Itcarriednosignboard,burfrom a polethrusthorizontallyintothedoorposttherehunga blood red flagofcoarsecloth,andeverynegrowhopassedknewthathecouldbuyaquattie'sworthoficethereifhe wanted to.Insidethedoor,in a rocking-chair, oldTabitha sat, asalways, her eyes fixedonthelargehouseopposite.Allherlifeshehadsoldice,boiledsweets and bulLer,theever-stalebrownspice-bread.Whenithadnotbeenthisshop,ithadbeen anmher, fartherwithinthecity, noisier,shakenwiththejarringsoftramsandhugedrays,butsmellingthesame,andfilledwiththesamethings.Herpresenthiggler-shophadstoodinthisplacelongbeforetheCurlerfamilyhadmovedintOthehousefacing it.Tabithahadsatthenasshesatnow,aswithered,asself-contained,herclaypipeinhermouth,herbandanaonherhead.Herwashed-outcottonblousehardlyseemedtohavechanged.Thefullskirtstripedincrimsonandblackmighthavebeenthesameasshehad wornthen.Ather feettheblocksofice, set insawdustandcoveredwithhessianhaddrippedthenas slowly, as delectablyastheydidnow,tricklingtoherhornysoles intheirthonged,woodensandals.Tabithaherselfsaw the yearsgobywithoutmark.OnlyJeremyhersonmarkedthedecadesfor her,Jeremybornfifty yearsago.Shehadalmostforgottenthemuscular,musicaldraymancalledGeorge,onlysometimeswhenshelookedatJeremyshethoughthowthatdimfigurelookedlikehim-neverthatJeremyresembledhis father.Jeremyhadbeenher passionandoccupationtheselongyears.Herlife had beengivento a dream.Theromanceofwhitepeople had tOuched her earlywithan acid finger. Bitternessgrewin herthatnothingonthisearthwouldevermakeher white.HerancestOrs had been slaves.Thegoodrhingsoflifehadbeensnatchedfromtheirgrasp,andhadgonerothewhites.Tabitha'spridemighthaveledhertohatethem,butittOok adifferentturn.Herson,atleast,shewasdetermined,

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160Creoleshouldhave all rhar rhe whires had all rhar shecouldger for him,arany rare. hwas ahopecommonenoughamongher people.Irwas only her longeffonrobring rhar hoperofruirion which was uncommon. Tabirha had hoped for a whire lover. A half-whire child was half-wayroher goal, so sherhoughr.Ir was tjuire usual for whire mentolive wirh black women, androgive rhem children. English soldiers lefr rheir progeny behind rhem in dozens when rhey sailed back ro rheir pink-and whire wives and children. Tabirha had no use for poor soldiery. Such whires did nor keep rrackofrhe offspring rhey lefr behind She wanred a man wirh characrer and srandinginrhe communiry,onerowhom shecouldpointwirh prideasrhe farherofher child, andone'who would give her a pound nore occasionally. She never mer one. She came across only whire menofrhe slums, hard-working Syrians and Jews, mosrofrhem, impoverished and tuber cular, and a few clerks and shop-assisrants srealing an occasional Sunday away from rheir wives. She did nor like rhem, and rhey did nor like her.Torhem Tabirha was onlyanorherblack roo black, roo skinny, roo rarrofrongue. They rook rheir pulpy fingers and rheir patronizing eyes elsewhere.WhenTabirha wasrhinyshe abandoned her dreamsofa whire lover, and rookjeremy'sfarher ro her flar bosom.Theoldnegress, sraringarrhehousewhichtoher enclosed all her worldlyambirions,nodded. Chinese-whire clouds slid across rhe sky, driven by a fresh sea-breeze. A coconur palm rhrashed irs branches derisively, and at irs foor a speckled hen clucked to and fro, her fearhers ruffling against rhe wind. Suddenly a shadowfellacross rhe doorway, and a figure srepped inro rhe shop.Tabirha had creaked to herfeerand moved behind rheCOUlHerbefore she recognized her visiror.'Mawnin',"he said, and she saw with displeasure thar itwasher son.Hewas very diny, and he dragged, a much-bandaged foor behind him.Therewas a running sore on rhe dark skin, and one rrouser-Ieg had been rolled up ro displayir.Hisface was pock-marked, and when he smiled slack lips spread wide over afewyellow stumps. His busy fingers neversroppedscrarching. Hiswhiningrones were rhoseofrhe professional

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Lucille lremonger161 "Well, Jeremy, whar you wanr ina meshop roday'" Tabirha demanded,andadded vindicrively, "You good-for-norhing blackguard,you'""Doanrabuse mewidour calise, me dearmudder!Can'ramancomeandseehimowndearly-beloved mumma'" "YouknowIdon'rwanefeseeyou.""Tharmay be. Bur 1 wanrfesee you. Andwhoisgoingro srop me'""You only wanrfesee ef you can ger anymoremoney ourofme. Bur I can rell you, youwon'r." "Yu neverknow,"Jeremyreplied,smilingaffably,andlifred abufferfromrhecounrer,rhen recoiled sharplyasTabirhadarredarir."Now,I jusr wonder..."Theresrofhissenrencewas losr inrhecrumblingbuLLer.Heeasedhimselfoncoa wooden bench in one corner. Presenrly he began ro sing,andas he sanghesuckedrhe sweers he wassrealingonebyonefrom a large glass jar, raking a noisy suck arrheendofeachlineofsong: "Me nebberdid-agoro nomangowalk,tonomangowalk,Menebber did-agoronomangowalk,An'menebberthiefnoNumber'Leven."Tabithareturnedtoherchairatthedoor.Oncemoreshelookedat thehouseopposite. Shethoughtofthelinen sheetsonthebeds,ofthebrightmirrors,ofthepiano,oftheembroidered,tasselledclothdrapedoverit,of the currainsatthewindows.TherewasnotaproperbathroomatFortOutlook.Tabithaknew that, andsheknewwhatoneshould look like. There should be tiles, white and green, andhotand cold water tapsshiningbrightly, and showers, and a china basinaswellasthewonderfulwhitebathforwhich the roomexisted.Whitemenshavedwithlittle safety razors, nor cur-throats.Theyhad shaving waterbroughtrothemin mugs.Theyworepyjamas,andbedroomslippers.Theycutmangoeswitha knife.Theydrankwhiskieswithsoda.Sometimesthey dressed for dinner orthe theatre, in blackthatmade their shoulders widerandrheir longerand their faces redder.Whiremen had whire wiveswirhsoft skins,withpainredlips,withsmooth,ferny hair,withsilken frocks.Whitebabies She saw Jeremyasa litrle black rumbler.Hecamerunningtoher. She heard herself forbidhimro playwiththeotherblack children,whosat, ragged and plastered wirh mud,surroundedwithflies, in rhe streets. She saw herself belabour himhalfa dozen times a day for disobeying her. She

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162Creolesaw his big boy's feet squeezed inro shoes against hisblubberingprotests.Heshouldhavebeen awhitemanin allbutcolour.Hehadhad every chance. Andlookat him! "EveryJohnCrow t'inkhimpickneywhite'"shemutteredbitterly, andJeremy,undersranding, laughed.Hugh'sonlyrelaxationswere an occasionalcinemaandthosesolitarywalksaboutthecapital.Nobuildinginthecity was far away fromthesea,andwheneverhe was free he had taken rogoingdownrothebeach bytheshortestroutehecouldfind.ThisamazingCaribbeanfilledhimwithdelight.That,at any rate, wassomerhingyoucouldnotgetin a smalltownathome,andhewasgoingtohave hisfillofit. Yesterdayafternoonhe hadbeen feeling depressed and resentful onceagain.Afterworkhehadmadestraightforthebeach. Insidetwentyminuteshe wasstandingontheshore, a brisk breezeblowinghis trousersagainsthis legsandliftingthefretfulnessfromhim.ow,he saidtohimself,hecouldthinkinsteadoffeel.Thatwasthetroublewith. thisdamnedisland.Youforgothowtothink,because youremotionsalwayshadyou bythethroat.Threemonthswerenotalongtimeinwhichtojudgea place,butalreadyhewas sure rhat he disliked the island. Everyone said that it was a paradise, andofcourse he could seewhatrhey meant.But nor for him. Ie was beautiful,ofcourse, incredibly beauriful, surelytheloveliest placeonearth,wirh rhe beautyofmoonlightand palm-leaf and shadows dancingonthesands,andlightandcolourandwarmrh,butalso beautiful withanother,and forhima berter, kindofbeaury.Hecould see it, eventhroughhisloathingfortheplace.Therewasnotonlythecolouredcalendarsorceryofthatgreatsilverorgoldcheeseofamoonriding over black seas,ofcrimson and gold sun sets and a curtainoffalling blossoms under hewily-scenred trees,notonlybandannaednegressesandhalf-nakedpiccaninniesinthesunshine,buttherewas aninsidiouseveryday beauty, which wasmoredangerousandenduringinthelong run.Itwasthebeautyoftheoddlittle things whichmademenfall in lovewitha place, sothattheycouldneverlive anywhereelse.Itwasrhebeautyofthequierercolours,whichslippedintoyourconsciousnesswhileyou weregazingatthefanfaresplendoursofsunsets.Thesudden,peacefuldawningswere loveliertohismindthantheflamboyant ones,withtheirhighbugle-blasrsofcolour.Heused to

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Lucille Iremonger163getupearly andgooutinca thegardento watch the palemorningglory,tight-shutand asleep in the hedge,whichexpandeddelicately, like awomanstretching,openinganddeepeningincolourwiththeseepingsoflight,untilthelittlerolledumbrellaofchillyice-bluehadbecomeapurpletrumpet.As the sky lost itssplendourandthesuncameraging forththeflowerclosedgentlyagaIn,furling Itself, limp ancl LCumpleu, vpins swollen and dark, maltreated bytheheat.Oh,he'dgrantthebeautyallright,anykindofbeauty, a thousandkindsofbeauty!Onlyhehad a feelingtharhewouldonlybeabletoappreciate itfullywhenhe was quire away from it all, back in rhe colour less place fromwhichhe came.Then he couldcalluphis picturesofrhe scarlers and golds,ofthe singing,dancingblacks,ofthetumultuouscrowds,ofthemountainsandmoonsandstarSandseasandwindsandgardens,andforgetthesticky, prickly heat; andthethin,seekingmosquitoonthebackofhis neck; and rhegentlesrreamofswearrunningdownunderhisarmpits;andtheunpeakabledistaste for acrionofanykindwhichassailed hi m.Perhapsthenhewouldbeabletoforgetthesmellofthesopicturesqueblack passengers intheovercrowdedtramcars.andtheway hisuncle'sclerksspoke,andrhoughtandrirrered.Nodoubthewouldwishhimselfbackagain,too.Andeveryrhingwouldseemvery ea.sy,asitalwaysdidafter a lapseoftime,andhewouldwonderwhyhehadnotdonemore,andmademoreofit all.

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BROTHERMANROGERMAISTHEtonguesinthelane clack-clackalmostcontinuously,goingupanddownthefull scaleofhumanemotions,humanfolly, ignorance, suffering,viciousness,magnanimity,weakness,greatness,littleness,insufficiency, ftailty, strength.Theyclack on street cornets,whetetheice-shophangsoutattiangularred flag,undertheshadowofoverhangingbuildingsthatlean precariously,teeteringacrossthedingy chasmofthenarrow lane.Aroundtheyam-sellet'sbarrow,andthetripe-seller's basket,andthecoal-vendor'scrazypush-candrawnupagainsttheseamy sidewalk, they clack, interspersingthehawkingandthebargaining,andwhat-goes-on inthecasual, earnest, noisy, meaningless businessofbuyingand selling;andwherethemango-seller setsdownher country-load.Theyclack wheretheneighboursmeetintheChinesegroceryshoponthecorner,leaningelbows againstthecounterwith its saltfishodourandthespilled ricegrainsandbrownsugargrains,andamidthedustingsofcornmeal and flourunderthesmirking two-faced scale, waitirig for change. Mis'Brody's clubfootbwoygetrun over...-Youhearwha'Bra'Ambosay'Say we isgwinegetnodderbreezeblowdis year yet... ChoMissis, nomindBra'Ambo,afterhimnoeena Big Massa council... Coal-pticegoneup since todder day... Ee-ee Ma,himdoan'getrunover.-Oonulissen hearwha'Bra'Ambosay...Behindthepockedvisageandthetoothlessgrin,behindthewrinkledskingatheredandseamedaroundthelips andundertheeyes,behindthefacadeofhaltnessandhale ness and cursingandlaughter,slander lurks in

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Roger Mais165ambush ro rake rhe weakesr and rhe hindmosr, and rhe rongues clack upon every chance. Cordy's man ger rek-up fa' ganga...Bra' Man show de gospelway...Me-gal srill wi' hold wid Bra' Ambo Coal-pricegoneup since rodder day Lawd Jesus,po'Mi'Brody.Nomind, Godisoverall. _Hushyawrna', you' mour',lip favour. NoGod do dem r'ing dearall ,. There are sadfacedold ones, and sleek-faced young ones, andall wal'S inberween; and rhere are rhose wirh an accountingofrroubles rhe same and equal ro and over and beyond rhe ones rhey rell; and rhere are rhose roo who have missed rhe accounting, ducking and dodging and purringbyfor anorher day; bur all, all are involvedinrhe same chaprerofcon sequences,allare caughr up berween rhe coversofrhe bouk ofliving: rhey look wirhshudderingover rheirshoulderpasr rhe imageofrheir own secrer rerror. feeling rhe shadowofirover rheminanorher'sfare,Po' Cordy onefeminddepickney..Lissen good wha' Bra' Ambo say. Cho gwan wid I'OU' Bra' Ambo..Bra' Man know de gospel wal' Papacira bear up him gal las' nighr .Isa shame dewaydem rwo de-li\'e Gal waan fa' himanshe ger married. Papacira know ",har 'married'gi\e.Over wash rubs innoisome \lards where rhe drip-drip tlf rhe leaking srandpipe makes wasre inrhe sunnackcd.concrc:re cisrern, and under rhe ackee rree or rhe cu,c;lrd-apple (feetlrrhe: Spanish.

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166BrotherManguavatreeortheSevilleorangetreebehindtheJean-ro pit-latrineintheyard, they clack-clack ecernally ceIling cheirownhungerand hair ness and lameness andnighrnessand negacion, like fliesbuzzinganopenunremic ring sore, tasting again, renewing, andgivingagain,thewounds chey havetakenoftheworld. Flyin' Saucer tek-in Mercedes...-CholA-swing her tailupan'downde streetI.. Howshe-onemanageketchso-muchsailor)... Mus'be black-gal somec'ing sweecl...Heardem say-say Papacitademek eye after Bra'Mangal...-MekBra'Manfindout'..-Hm!jus' waitbwoy'...Massa Jesus!gwinebe hellINightcomesdownandtherongueshavenotceasedtoshuttleandtoclatter,they still carrytheirburdenofthetaleofman'swoes.Itis theirownscoryoverthatthey tell in secrec,overlayingicwichchelikenessofslander,lickingtheirownancientscrofuloussores....oEGirliewas idlyturningthepagesofamagazinewhenPapacitacame in chroughthedoor. She didnotlook up.Heclosedthedoorguierly roo quietly -behindhim,wirhomtaking his eyes off her, came cat-foOtingacrosstheroom.Henoriced that a cornerofthepagepicturingIngrid Bergman inKodacolortrembleda littlebetweenher fingers.Somethingtickledhimatthebackofhisthroat.Hewantedtocough.Hesaid: 'Hm." tryingtoclear it. Sheturnedthepage, slowly,puther Otherhanduptoher back-hair.Hewentpast her, across ro chewindowoverlookingchelane,threwitopenwitha bang, and said, angrily:'It'slike a fumace in here.'Shewentonturningthepagesofthemagazinesheheld acrossherknee. Sheputa fingeruptoher jips, wettheripofitwithherrongue,raisedhereyesslowlyrolookathim,asthoughawareofhispresencefor the first time, saw himwithourrecognition,withomchangeofexpres sion,andbroughthereyes back slowly rothepage.

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RogerMais167Heleanedagainstthewindowandstoodlookingatheramoment,shrugged, turned away,wentacross tothebed, sat down, started pullingoffhis shoes. 'Lousybum,'shesaid, casually,asthoughshewas speakingtoherself, justturningherthoughtsouttoair.'What'sit?' he said.Butwhen he looked up, quickly, challengingly, readytogeton with it, wasn't looking athimat all.Hergaze had returnedtothe thumbeddownpageofthemagazine she heldopenacross her knees. Sheputher head a littletoone side, andmightJUStaswell have been addressing her selftothehalf-lengthphotographofHumphreyBogart.Hepulled off theothershoe, massaged his toes a little, let the shoe fall to the board floor with a clatter, heaved himself over, and rolled into bed. 'Allright,'he said,'mightas wellgetstarted. Iknowyou're jus' bustin'withthingsto say.Whyn'tIcomehomelas'night, hey) Don'tyouwantto know)" Alittlebreezecomingthroughthewindowflutteredthecalendaronthewall. 'Lousybum,'she said again,almostconversationally,withoutraising her voice at all.'Allright,'hesaid,'butifyouwanttoknowitwasn'tanywomanI waswith.''Wasawomanyou waswithIwouldn'tcare,don'tgiveyou'selfnofancy airs, could have men friends ontheside a-plenty, if I wanted to give youtherun-around,I'mtellin' you.'Ignoringthe second parrofher st.atement he said:'No,youwouldn'tcare, like hellnotyouwouldn't,onlybescratchin' eyesouttogive you' han'ssomep'n to do, I guess. Awe' lemme alone.''Ain't([oublin' you,gotsomep'nelse on you'mind,mus'be.Wasn'ta gal you was with,mus'be you wasinchurch.''Don'tgimmethatstuff. I've hadaboutenoughofit, alwaysnaggin'ata man,don'tgeta chance to turn.''Gotosleep,' she said,'ketch-upyou'strength.Yougota hard day before you.Hm'nowonderyou too tiredtowork.' 'If youwant to know,honey, was ajobAh waslookin'las' nighr. A job, see?'

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168BrotherMan'Whatkindofa jobdat'ightwatchman,mus'be.Gwinegermeselfa job likedat roo, you waitan'see.''Don'tgimmenoneofyou'lip, gal.GimmedarkindalipAhupan'slap you down.''Slapmedown,you trydatagainAhchopyouupfine.Youknowwhat'sgoodfo' you, youdon'teven chinkie,muchless calkie,see"'Awe,comeon, honey.Wasonly jokin'you.Ah'mgerrin'meajob,don'tworry.Goin'go ro wukfo' you an' me.'Hepattedthe sideofthebed, slowly, suggestively,withthehandthatwasn'tholdinguphis head, said softly,rhrowingthewords at her as hemightacushionOtoneofthosebigsoftindiarubberballs:'Comeoverhere.Comeonno,honey,comeoverhere.''Papacita,you'reabigover-grownpickney,shesaid,poutinga littlewithvexation,lookingathimsloe-eyed,lettingthemagazineslideoffherlap to thefloor,'youthinkyou cangetaroundmethatway, you foolin' you'self. Tellme'boutthejob you was allnightlas'nightgettin'you'self, tell meboutit, eh, why youdon't"Hisbtowscametogetherever so slightly, as yet scarcely a frown, asifhewas puzzlingsomethingoutinside his head, trying co makethean wercomeright.'Thejob,' he said, slowly,takinghistime,'Aw,honey,Ah'mkeepin'thatas abigsurprisefor you.Yeh,that'swhat,goin'beabigsurprise.Goin'gotowukfo' youan'me.''Thatshore will surprisemepleney,' she said,thecornersofhermouthcurlingwithcontempr,'goin'bustmeshore.Yougeryou'selfajob,Papa-boy, Ahgetmeself wingsan'fly.''Allright,'he said,hurr,offended in his ptide,'Youdon'believe me, hey, you jus' waitan'see. Lissen,themoneyAh'llbemakin'will take you lap to hold it in.'Hismouthpuckered like a sulkyboy's.'YourhinkAh'mkiddin', youthinkAh'mjus'no-good,kiddin'you allrhetime.Jus'wait, baby,goin'showyousomep'nmekyou'eyesbung-upwid surprise.'Hermouthmade asthoughit wanted to laughbutshewouldn'tlet it.'Goin'surprise me,don'tit, honey? Look, you starr me laflin' so soon intheday...''Bitch'Laffno'Whydon'tyou la!f?'

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Roger Mais 169 Hesaid itwithoutheat,withoutantagonism,a little hure only, his lipspuckeredlikeanobstinateboy.Hesaid:'Haveamindgetupan'walkright our on you, you'd deserve it.Goddamnit'Ah jus' have amind.''Youwalkoutonme,honey,whereyoueat?Walkoutonme,eh,whyyoudon'getgoin',Godhear me, I'd like to see yougetupan'startwalkin'rightthisminute.Haveamindis'boutall youeverdo.YouthinkI'mscaredofanythingyou say)Haveamind!'Theskinlikeparchmenraroundhis eyestighteneda little, and let go.Andthenhecame all conrrite, all treacle andmelting burter again.'Aw,comeonoverandsit here, will yah,honey?Jus'can'tstand co see youtakin'onthatway.' .Aaw,comeon,honey,comean'sitondebed,'Papacitaurgedin atonethatwas likewarmbutterscotch.Girliesrood bythewindow,looking ourinto thelane.'Youdon't want anybreakfast)'shesaid.'Youdon'tworry you 'sel fIwiIIgetbreakfast.''Don'tworrymeselfisright,an'Ahain'tworryin'. All de same if youdon'tstopholdin'upde stteet cornerchattin'rodat iitcle gal Bra'Mantek inoffdestreet,gain'betroubleoneofthesedays. youmarkmy words.''Wha' dar youtalkin''boutany at all,meholdin'upstreet corner widMinette)Youmus'becrazy.''Crazyno? LikeAhdidn'tsee you inmeowntwoeyes.''Cho,nomind,nobodderwiddatnow,comesiddungside me.'Sheleftthewindowand went across co thedoor.Shesaid:'Goin'downro dekitchen,gain'getmeselfacupofcoffee. you eat breakfastyet)''No.'Wewantedro tell hernotrogiveherselfthe (["ouble. thar he wouldgodownrothekitchenandmakebreakfast,butshewasgone before hecouldfetch rhe wordsoutfrom inside him.Hesatonthe sideofthebedandlit a cigarette.HehadJUStoneleft.Thatwoulddoforafterbreakfast.Afterthat-Well,perhapsGirliewouldbe abletofindsomechangeinherpurseHehad nearly finishedthecigarettewhenshe returned carrying a coffeepotandthingsfor breakfastona tray.Shehadtomakeanoiseonthe

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170BrotherMandoor,using rhe rocof her shoe,forborh her handswerefull,shehadcomeall rhe wayuprhesrairs rhar way.'Whyyoudidn'rcall me rohelpyou)'Shebrushedpasrhim,serringdown rhe trayon arable. 'Sirdownan'havesomebreakfast,' she said.'Elseyougain' be hungrylater. GOt rolooka job,Ah'mgain'in [Own.'Helookedar her, starred roopenhismouth,butdecidedirwasn'ttimerospeak. He satdownar rhetable andsrarred ro ear.Hewashungrierthanherhought. JeezlHe didn'rknow he wassohungry. The excite ment, everything,hadputrherhoughtoffood cleanoutofhismind.Watchinghersecretlyhesaw aflysettleonhernose.Shedidn'tevenbotherbrushiraway.SheJUStwrinkleduphernosewhereits feet tickled her.Irbuzzedof(,andsertledagain.Irdidrhartwoorrhreerimes,butshedidn'tstopeatingin thar mechanicalway,didn'ttakeherhandupfromthetable robrushitof(.Herfaceseemedro have losr allexpression,asthoughrhe will ro liveandlaughhad diedwithinher,andnothingmarreredanymore.Hefelthurr,affronted,asrhoughthiswas a personalaccusation., asrhoughitaccusedhimofthingshedidnorfeelguiltyofinsidehimself. It madehimcross.'Whatyoumopin'aboutnow?Somebodykillyou'white fowP' 'Youshouldask.Anybodykillmewhitefowl itwouldbeyou;youshouldask, yes,an'Ahshouldleave you roansweryou'self.'Hesaid,witha feelingofsuddencontrition,'Nomind,everyt'inggoin'beallright.Jus'waitan'see.'Hescrapedbackhischair,sroodup,wentandstoodbehindber,laid ahandonthetOpofherhead.'Don'ttOuchme.''Eh)' 'Ah saydon'ttOuch me.Lemmealone.'Herurnedaway, huffed..Allright,'hesaid,'ifthat'sthewayitis.'Hewentovertothewindow,leanedanelbowonthesill,lookedoutoverrhe Jane. 'A mancomehome,an'no little happinessinthehouse.utt'nbutnaggin',naggin'alldetime.''Whyyoudidn'tstaywhereyouwas,whyyouboddercome home

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RogerMais171'Itwasn'tanyt'inglike dat, Ah tell you.Wasn'tawomanoranyt'tnglikedararall.''Youcan tell dat to somebody else, maybe they will believe you.Whatyou tek me fo', a firsr-of-April-born"'WasthisjobAh was after, anyway.' 'I know;wegain'berich.Don'tmek me laff.''Allright, you can laff.''Ah'mlaffin',don'tyou see"'Ah,you mek me sick.Nolittle peaceinde home,nufftomek a manpick-upan'walk.'Hewaited,asthoughtohear herretorttothis,butshesaidnothing,so hewentonon his own.'Gain'getmeselfoutathis,though,you waitan'see,can'tstand it any more.'HesawJesminagoingdownthe lane. She wascomingfromtheshopwithabottleofhealingoilinher hand.Hemade her alittlesign with his hand.SheJUStraised her headandsaid:'HowGirlie)Giveherhowdyfa'me,'andwentonquicklydownehe sereet.Girlielookedupfrom picking at the threadbare tablecloth.'Whodat"Hewantedcosay, whydon'tyou comean'see for you'self,buthe said instead: 'Jesmina. Saycogiveyou howdy.'Andshe said:'Oh.'Shegotup, cleared the used breakfastthings off thetable,started dustingand tidyingtheplace. Shehummedalittlecoherself.Hecouldseethatherangerwascooling,littlebylittlethawingoue.Shewantedto re-establishtheoldrelationshipbetweenthem.Hewas crafty, caueious,madenomoveromeetherpartway;onlystoodthere,lookingoutthroughthewindow,lettingthingsflowthroughhis mind.'Whatyoudoingover bythewindow)'she said.'Yougonero sleep?'Hegruntedewo syllablesthatsaidnothingat all. She startedsingingsoftlycoherself. She stoopeddown,pickedupsome crumbs from the floor, straightened,lookeddownaetheboardsunderher feet,wentbehindthedoorforthebroom.

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[72 BrotherManHe watched hersweeping, tidring. makingtheroomlikenew,without lettinghet know thathewas watching her; hewatchedhereverymovement,feelingdeepdownthathungerforherthatkepthimcomingbackaftereverescapade-thatdeepdownhungerthatitseemedcould never bealtogetherassuaged.Shewasdustingthefurtherendoftheroom,workinggraduallyover co where he was. Allright.hewouldsmokethatlastcigarettenow.Hewatchedherlike a catwatchinga mouse,withoutherseeingit.Theoldpassionforhercameupinsidehim.madetheinsideofhismouthseemdry.Hepressedhistongueupagainsttheroofofhismouth,broughtdownsomesal iva withit.Hecleared histhroatgendy,tentati veil' asthoughfearfultomakethe least sound.BrotherMansatathiscobbler'sbenchbeforetheopenwindowlookingoutuponthelane.Heworked guietly, efficiently.hi head bowedoverhis lase. Hewas ofmediumheight.mediumbuild.Thehaircrisped and curled allabouthishead,aroundhismouth.overhischin.Whenhelookedupfrom his work his eyespin-pointedthelight,and youcould see almostaJJofthepupils. He had a far-away,searchinglook,asthoughtheintensityofhisbeingcametofocus in his eyes.Manylookedawayand were embarrassedbeforethe guiet intensityofthatgaze.Hehadnow,as he alwaydid,anopen Bible onthestoolbesidehim.HewaspUllingheelsto a pairofslippers.and Minette satonalowerstool,at his feet, blacking apairofshoes. Everynow and thenshestole a glanceathim.andwentback to blackingtheshoesagain.Fromtheyard next doortheycouldhearvoicesofpeople.talking,laughing.guarrelling.Beyondtheycouldheartheyam-vendorhawkingdownthelane.BrotherManbelongedtothatcultknownastheRasTafarites.andsome people said he was mad.Othersagainthought he was a holr man anda healer, andmanycametohim. secretly. because theyfeared gossip, to heal their sick.andforadviceand encouragement whenthings were gOingwrong.

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RogerMais Somerimes whenchey heard ocherpeopleabusingandcraducing Brother Man,theystoodupin his defence, chepeople whomhehadhelpedinrimesoftroubleandsickness,butat other timestheythoughtbetterofit,becausetheyfearedwhatcheirneighboursmighthaveto sa)' aboucthembehindtheirbacks, lacking thecourageoftheirconvictions. Somerimestheyforgot,someofrhese people, that he hadhelpedandcom fortedthem,andhealedtheirwounds.Sometimes they secretly despisedhimthathecaredsolittleforhimself,andsomuchforothers,thathewouldgivewhatlittle he hadtosuccouranotherwhoseneed hethoughtgreaterthanhis.Minetrehelduptothelighrtheshoeshewaspolishingtoseehowirshone.Shesighedandsetitdownonthe floor besideherona pieceofoldnewspaper, and tookuptheorherone.Fromtheyardnextdoorcamethesoundofsomeonesinging,'Jesu,lovetofmy soul....'Shesaidsuddenly,'Whatis love?'BrotherMansaid, 'EhWhatyou say, child-' 'Saywhatis loveBra'Man,'sherepeated.Shelettheshoerestonher lapandlookedupintohis face.Helookedather,earnestly,asthoughweighinghisanswer,andpres ently she let her eyes fall. Shetookuptheshoefrom her lap, and srarredpolishingir again.'Loveiseverything,'he said, simply.'Itiswhatcrearedtheworld.Ititwhatmadeyouan'me,child,broughtusintothiswotld.'Andsomehowthewordsdidn'tsoundbanal,comingfromhim.Hespokewirhsuchsimpledirecrnessrharirseemedtogiveanewimporttoeveryrhinghesaid. Ir was asrhoughrhecommonwordsofeverydayusagemeanesomethingmore,corningfrom his lips,rhanthey did inrhecasualgivingandrakingofchangeinconvetsarion,rhewayirwaswirhotherfolks.'Whyyou askYoulovesomebody, child-' 'Yesan'no. I love pleney-plentypeople,butnonelike you.'Helookedathergravelyandsaid:'Peacean'love.' 'Wh)' you always saythal?'she asked, one eye, asthoughthebettertostudyhis face.'Iristhesalutarion.Itistheway rhebrothersshouldgreer eachother.

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Brother Man Irislike sayin' good morning. howdl'do. Burirismore rhan rhar roo,irisrhe affirmarion ofour fairh. rhe Jesus-calk, whar you call rhe way.' She didn'r undersrand a wordof all this. Ir showedinherface.'DidJesusralkirrhar way. rhar \vharyou mean. Bra' Man)' He nodded his head. gravely. 'Hegiveusrhar word, sisrer: peace anlove.' A birdAew smack inro rhe window glass wirh a dull rhud.IrfeIlro rhe groundwith a fainrcry.srunned wirh rhe impacr. BrorherMangor up, wirh a murmured exclamarion, went our rhrough rhe door. and presently came back wirh rhe birdinhis hands.lrAurrered a linle, scared. rhough conscious. almosr dead. A single dropofblood congealing ar rhe side ofirsbeak glowed like a jewel againsr rhe dark grey-greenofirsfearhers.Irwasgoingrodie.Mineneknewir.and she had an insrantofim parience andvexarion wirh Bracher Man for cryingcobringicback.co make irlive. She didn'r know why she felc rhis. only knew charircame up inside her. unril she wanted ro err our ac him.bucirsroppedinher chroar. She wacched him ashe srnod chere.holdingrhe bird in his cupped hand, his head bowed overit.'Don'rrrouble you 'self overir.Bra' Man.' she said. 'irnocgain'live.' he cameup and srood by his elbow. her body jusc touching his. andfelchim move away instincrivcly. andashe did so she knew a sharp pang. savage and srrong. and wirh a surgeofexhilararion; bur she could nor have raId whatiswas allabour if somebody had asked her. 'Maybe,' he said, still holding the bird, and looking downatit. Irlayonirsside now. and irseyes were shurindearh. 'Ir's dead,' she said. And she could scarcely hear his whisper, 'Yes.' Bur he srill held rhe linle dead body cuppedInhis hand,asrhough he could nor beartopart wirhir.'Wharyougain'do with it)' And she moved jusr rhar brearhing space nearer, so rhar when she drew her brearh in, long, rhe nippleofher breast resred againsr his arm an insrant, and came away wirh respirarion.Hesrood srill, like someone losrin a rrance, andasrhoughhewasnor consciousofher presence.

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RogerMaisHe wenr and sar down on his srool. ler his handrl:sr on rhl:bench. relaxed his fingers. Hesar rhere looking ar rhe dead bird a longish rime.asthoughinrruth he did nor know whar ro do wirh it. Heser ir down on rhe bench, and rook up his lasr again. She came up, srood behind him. s:1id almosr fiercely: 'WllI'rou don'r rhrowirour into rhe srreet, whar you keepin'irfor)' He looked uparher. and she met his gaze wirhour ninching. 'Whar'srroublin you,medaughrer)''Whyyou wanrrokeepirbefore you)WIlYyou don'r rhrowirour side)''ItisoneofGod'screarures, andir was alive a littk while back. and nowirisdead, an'irdidn'r do no harm.Lerirresrrhere.eh)'he said. And shefelrrebuked. She said: '[amsorry.' He pur our his hand and rouched her arm. He said: 'Peace an' love.'6Her back wasrohim, and she flicked him lighrly ",ith rhe Jusrer.as she reached uptogetar a cobweb. asrhough she didn'rknow hewasrhere. Andallrhe rimeheleaned againsr rhe ,,;indow. ignoring her Presently wirhout a word, wirhour any warningarall. he pur his hand our and grabbed her abour rhe waisr, drew hertohim. She ceased sing ingimmediarely, and srarred ttlfight. They made no sound, berween them. He pulled her closetohim and wrestled her acrosstorhe bed. and she resisred him wirh all her srrengrh,allofrhe way. He couldfeelher hor brearh againsr his check, andirinflamed his passion, fannedirtoa grear hear. He bent down and rriedrolifr her clear off rhe floor,torhrow her across rhe bed, and her clothes came up above her waisr, andhecouldseehow rhe musclesofher legs were srraining, and rherewasa kindofdewy moisrure on rhem, andirwas rhe sameasrhe moisrure rhar beaded around her rhroar and wenr all rhewaydown, andwaslosr berween her breasrs. She rhrusrarhis head wirh her hands, bringing borh hands up under his chin, andpushingwirhallher mighr, pusing his head back. The muscles on eirher side of his rhroar srood our like manilla rope. and his -guller, blue-blackarrhe ripofir, stuckourarher like rhe poinrof a

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176BrotherManrongue,madeasuddenvolupruousmovemenrup-and-downashe swallowedhard. Heceased rrying ro lifr her by rhe legs now.Shewasstrongas aman,and she foughthim,thrustingathimwithall her strength.Itwasn'tplay, eirher; irwas all in deadly earnest.Andirhappenedlikethiseverytime he played fastandloose wirh her,chasingotherwomen.Every timehe hadtoforceher,as he was forcing her now,as he hadhadtoforce her tharfirsr rime, rhe very firsr timehe had raken her,beforerhey hadcomero liverogerherasmanandwife.Andeverytimetheylived again rhe deep physical sarisfacrion rhar waslikenorhingelseon earth, rharacreduponrhemmorerhananaphrodisiac,tharofhisforcingher,andthatofhersufferingbeingforcedbyhim.Itacteduponthembothlikewhips,goadingthemontoakindofdeliriumofsexual indulgence, thartorhem,ofal1pleasures,hadnorirs paral1el intheworldof experience. Butthislove-play wasneverfaked; always it wasindeadly earnest.Ifheshould ever beunablerooverpowerher,Godknowswhatotherexpediencytheywouldhavecomeupon.Butstrongas she was, he wasthestronger,hadalwaysprovedhimself the stronger,hadenhancedhisholdoverherinthatway.Hehadtoshifthisholdnow,lockbotharmsaboutherwaist roholdhertohim,or let her break loose from hisgrasp,andlike asnotrunoutthrough the door,down the stairs,leavinghimro hischagrinandhumiliation.Orshewouldcomebackandlaughathimro his face andsnapherfingersunderhisnose,andcallhimnames,until he couldfindothermeansro appeaseandwinher.Heheldhersocloserohimrharrhebreathcamegaspingfromherbody,andit was asthough herbreath wentaway from her and she couldnotcarchitback.Soshe let gowithonehand,andthefingernailsofthathandraked the fleshon the sideofhis face,bringingbloodwiththem.Andstillnowordwasspokenberweenthem.Hehadroloose one armfromaroundherwaisttocatchhold,with thar hand,ofhers. He thrusrhishipintoherside,uneil she wasbentrightacross it,and he wasablerothrow her onthebed.Butshe bouncecJ

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RogerMais177up again, before he could throw himself ontopofher and pin her there by sheer brute force.Hecaughtherbythewrist now, and pulled her back to him, so that for amomentshe wassittingastride his knee,withhimsittingonthe sideofthe bed. Hewrungher wrist, twisting it, to bring her overonher side, and she shut her teethtightwith the painofit, and never letouta sound. She layonher side for an instant like that,panting,and he felt somethingcomingupinsidehim,for he hadconquered,almosthad her at his will. But she twisted right over him, cameupkneeling in the middleofthe and she had broken his holdonher. They closed again like two wrestlers. She was as agile andstrongasa man. Ittookall he had to hold her.Whenhe had herdownonthebed and wasabout ro cover her, shebroughther kneeupand set it in thepitofhis stomach, and he had ro wriggle like a snake ro break through that defence andgetin close to her.Andat lastshelayonthe bed,panting,and it was likethatthathe had her this once again, for he had broken her resistance.Hehad overcomeher again,ashe haddonebefore, many times, and he knew therewouldbe no talk about what had happened before, after thar. Andnowfor the first time since they clinched there was asound be tweenthem. Shelaughed,andtheirmouthsmetin a savage kiss, and shetookhisbottomlip between her teeth andbitdownonit until she tasted blood. And she laughed again when his face shuddered away from hers, and she said: 'Hurt me like that hurt me Love me and hurt me' Hurr me hard!'

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EXTRACTFROMTHEAUTUMNEQUINOXJOHNHEARNENICHOLAS STACEYNOWADAYSI sleep lighrly. Perhaps my body, apprehensiveofrhe long sleep balefully hovering just beyond the horizonofmy days, mefrom obliviontoregard every passing wind, restive leaf, footfall, raised voiceoramorous dog.Thebody never learns:itfights blindly, ludicrously. hideouslytothe last unconvinced rattle, tryingtorally an army long since scattered, deadorsurrendered, certaintothe endthatit can pull off some cunning ambush and surprise deathasit waits in massed batralions along the road. I lie awake in tmS long night, listening to the light rain that has roused measitadvances fastidiously across the foothills and taps at the roof...myroofand Eleanor's.No,hers alone. As everything I have and do now adays is for her alone.Howridiculousrotrytolive for another; and how impossiblenotto.Thebody again:withlow, animal craft seizing this last chance for assertion, deceiving alltheaccumulationsofexperience; holding your inteUigencetoransom with thethoughtofher aloneinthe world.Asifwe werenotall solitaries.Despitemyself,reproachingmyselffor a flabby, senile coward, IroJ!outofbed, feel for my slippers, andgoalongthepassage roherroom.Tohalfopenthedoor and reassure myselfthatsheissafe and warmly asleep.AsI usedtodo when she was a child.Thenbacktomy bed;tolistentothethinrainblowingourtosea, leavingasitdoes so a faint, self-centredmurmurstretched tenuously between me and it, like the Jiminishing voicesofstrangersasthey pass under your window and down the road.Whatsound is more nostalgic than the elegant, prim fusilladeofrain on your roof at night? You lie hypnotizedbynostalgia;themind lulled subrlyalonga thousand apparently unconnected corridorsofmemory until they meet at some wrenching sadness. "You can have her," that lost savage creature who was Eleanor'smotherhadtOldme nearly twenty years ago. "She's JUStwhat you need -atyour age." She discatdedthisharsh andprofoundtruthwiththe same indifferencethatshe had discardedeverythingelse: a second after178

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JohnHearne179itwas utteted she had probably forgottenitand returned ro thatdesperate, solitary cave in which she passed her life. It was grotesque,buther mind less isolation had in itsomeelementsofsanctity.Nodegradation,nougliness,noemotioncouldrestonher. ShehadhiddentoOfar fromthem. "But whatisthe child's name?" I had asked. "What do you call her?" "Call her what you like," she had answered. "The neighbours call her'Baby'."She sat therewhenIwentintothenarrow, airlessbedroomand rookthesmall, grimy, indifferently nourishedbundlefromthesoiled sheets.Therewas adamp,cardboardcanonbeside rhe bed,ofthesonusedtoshiptinsofmilkorfruit juice, and Isupposedtharwas whereshepur the child whenever shebroughta sailorupfrom theporro "What aboutyou?" I asked her."Don'tyou needanything?Can I help in any way'" Onethin shoulder twitched rather than shrugged.Herblank face, erodedbyindifferencetosomethingfar lesshumanthan a mask,shonein the ghastly poolof the yellow flame belchingupfrom the tin lamp."Youcan give me some money if you like. IthinkI have syphilis and itCOSts roo muchcogetit cured." She said thisasa person mightsay, "I thinkImusthave caught a cold.""GoodGod.Thechild...?""She's all tight, I think. I haven't had irlong."I gave her everything in my waller. She rook it and heldthenotes in herlapasifthey wereoldnewspaperco starr a fire.Goingourofthedoorwith the baby held against me, wrapped in my jacket, I asked: "Do youknowwho the father was' Itmightbe useful to have that informa tion when I takeoutadoptionpapers." A rippleofwhatIthoughtwascontemptpassed across her face,butI may have been mistaken; itmighthave been simplytheinvoluntaryirritationofananimal'shideasitisstungbya persistentfly.I went out,then,underthedusty, anaemic banana trees, leaves whisperinglike old, tubercular women inthesteady sea breeze, to where I had leftthetaxi attheendofrhe lane. I coldtheman ro drive me ro the hospital. Eleanor -asI had already named her in my mind washalf

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180TheAutumn Equinoxasleep all the time the doctoronduty was taking a blood sample."Ofcourse Icannotsay definitely," he cold me."Notuntil I do the full test in the morning,butIthinkthechild is clean, senor." I was staringOUtofhis office window, downthejagged, black, moongihwaterofthe harbour. There were two ships in and the wharves werewhitein the steady, arctic glareofthe lamps. A long,Hatworm, jetting red sparks andwindingswiftlythcoughthebush fromtheinterior, wasthebananatraincomingupfromtheplantations.NoLatin Americantownever seems to sleep and, now, with banana ships in pore,the little city was brisk and loud. Even at this distancethenightwas dotted with irregularpunctuationsofnoise fromthecantinasand brothels along the waterfront.Thewhole world seemed tome, at this moment, inconceivably ugly and meaningless.Ifthe gentle-faced manwhohad taken Eleanor's blood had not given me some hope,ifhe had confirmedwhathad chilled my heare all the waycothehospital, I believe Iwouldhave hurled thechildthroughtheopenwindowto itsdeathdownthedry river-course tha t ran below tJ,e hospi tal. "You can have her," Eleanor'smother had said."She'sJUStwhatyou need at your age."Howtcue. And yet how incomplete. I was aware as I gathered that damp urine-scemed body to minefcomthe narrow bed that my life had taken on a significanceofwhich she was theagent. Evenourpurest actions would be unimaginable unless we sensedOUIsingularity inthemandfulfilledsomeprivateunshareableneed.Butwebecomeprisonersofevenourpurest,mostselfless actions. Every action carries in it thegermofitsowndecay, itsownlackofmeaning. Sterility will oue. Does that explain, perhaps, whythemareyr saints have such a par ticular hold onourImagination? I needed Eleanor,butshe,ashungrily, needed me. At least I have the memoryofher almostinstantaneousillumination;in my care she shed, miraculously, horrible layer after layerofdeadened soul.Ofcourse, anyotherperson would have doneaswell.Nowshe nolongerreally needs me.IfI werehonest,Iwouldask myself if I really need hee. But the body never learns.Orisit the heart) Something within us, at anyrate, will not resign itself to solitude. I havegotthe habitofloving her, watching for her, choosing for her, shielding

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JohnHearne181her with the small experience I have acquiredofthis treacherous life thatispredictable only in its capacity for beuayal.Howcan Iabandonhernowasshe needs to be abandoned)Howcan I abandon the luxury that has filled the last twenty yearsofmy life with meaning? I tell myselfthatI only.want to seehersafely married.ButI seebeyondthat, I know,toher child,whowill truly be my grandchild. Idonotcarewhetherthe childisa manora woman.Theexcessive importance attachedtothe birchofa son has always seemed to me vulgar, primitive and alien.WithEleanor married, perhapsmybody and heart would resign them selvestouselessness, as theynowsostubbornlyrefusetodo. Bur how can I encrust her ardene, untutored spirittothe raw, self-cenered gropingsofthe young men she accumulates like small changeonherway.Ofall the men near hergenerationshemighthave chosen, Carl Brandt is the onlyoneinwhomI discern nobilityofsoul. And Brandt aside, there is only young Robey, who has gentlenessofheart. Anyofthe othersmightdestroy her.Ashermotherwas destroyed. Perhaps if I had really learnt from life,asI sometimes pretendtoEleanor, I would retire; allow her to play the scenebyherself, with what ever bad actor she will choose. After alltoimpose even my approvalordisapproval will, in a sense, limit a choice she wouJd wishtomake freely.Howmonstrously unfair, I tell myself sometimes, for me to participate, even remotely, in an event for which Icannotenvisage much future res ponsibiliry. And yet I had already participated in her future, right up to her very death,themomentthatI lifted her fromthosesemen-stained sheetsinthatsmall, horrible kennel where she already spent nearly two yearsofher life. She was, from the first, an invincibly cheerfuJ child.Neglectand mal nutrition seemed to have left no deep traceotherthan a squalid thinness,whichfilledoutovernight.Indeeditwasasiftheverydeprivationofnourishmentshe had suffered had left her with a spiritthatkindledinco love more easilythanmost. SometimesasIwatchedtheutrer candour and simplicityofher affections Iwouldbe appalled.How,I would ask myself, will I dealwiththatwhensuch combustible scuffiscarried in awoman'sbody?

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182TheAutumn Equinox"Youcan'tdoit youknow,Nick,"KathleenSlade, my closestthoughnotmyoldestfriend, bad saidtomethemorningafter Ibroughtherhomefromthatbeautiful half-savagecountryontheMain where everything,it seemed,thatcould happen to a man and yet leave him alive had happenedtome.Thatcountry where truly, theOldWorldand theNewhad locked forever in an imperceptibly flowering explosion: two cannibals,theSpaniard andtheIndian, devouring eachotherthroughthecenturies, their brutal mealasyet only half-digested.Thecountry where my youngmanhoodand middle age had been successively gorged and torturedwithexperience,like aflyinhotjam,andtowhichIhadreturnedonlytobringEleanor away. "I can'tdowhat)"I had asked Kathleen.Wewere sitting, I remem ber,underthegreat Bombaymangotree in her garden, watching Eleanor as she crawledonrhe lawn berweentheample, frozen jetsofcolourthatKathleen Slade could coax fromtheearrhsomagically. Janice, Kathleen'sdaughter,waswatchingthebabywiththehalf-suspicious, half-maternal concentrationofa six-year-old."Youcan't bring rhat childup,"Kathleen said."Nowcan you)Whatwill youdowith her, alone inthatenormoushouseofyours over intheBay) Leave herhere with me.Youdon'tknowwhatit istobring up a girl child. It'snothinga man could learn.You'llmakethemostawful mistakes. Nick."Herhuge,dark eyes wereturnedon mewithalmostunbearable bril liance; they burned andglitteredinherworn, ineffablygentleface.BUlforthemagnificent integrity, whichshebroughtto every relationship, Iknewthatshe would have allowed rhe yearningofheart foranotherchild to showinhervoice."We'dbe goodtoher, Nick. Sheisbeautiful.Ifyou are thinking thatHectorwouldn'twanther you're mistaken.Itwashewhosuggesreditlastnight,after I hadputhertobed.""No,"I said. "Shemuststay wirh me. Youmusrn'task for her again." Iputmy hand over the long, fragile fingers she had placed, unconsciously I am sure. on my sleeve. "She musr stay with me."Therearemomentswiththosewhomoneloves as I lovedKathleenandHectorSladewhenitisbettertobeuncompromising;more honesttowithholdany explanation.Doubtlesstheythoughtthatwith Eleanor

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JohnHearne183I was trying to replace somethingofmy dead wife and daughter. I couldnottellthem,then,why it was I hadtohavethechild. Ih deed, for me,itwasonlyan instinct. I liketothinkthattheintuitionlaydeeper and purer than the selfish need for a little meaning in my lifewhichthe child represented. I was only awarethatifI gave Eleanortothe Siades now her hearc would learn an unforgettable, unassimilable les son in rejection.Nolove with which they couldfillher life and whatpeoplecoulddothatbetter -wouldevercompensate.Every life has severalmomentsoffateful arrest:pointsofdeparcurewheretheheart stands tiptoe on a high platform gathering balance andmomentumfor its next breath-taking rush across the wire. At such moments thereisalways someoneperson whose weightisvital. Eleanor, I knew,asshe alternately crawled and tottered between the cannas and the gloxina, was alreadyonthe wire. I was the weight. She couldnotputme aside, now, for another.Ofcourse, another would have doneaswell if he hadgotto her first. As for me)WasI notonthe high wire also) Did I not needtheweightofthatsmall,luminouslydebonair, infinitely courageous child?Toneed anotheriscommon:tobe neededbyanorher generares an incal culable resonancethatcan sweeten awholelife. I had learntthatearly.Forwho,whenI was a child, had needed me inthatgreatbrownand greyhouseupin rhe foothills,notadozenmiles from where I finallybroughtEleanor to live) Imusthave slept, for itisthesoundofEleanortakingthecar fromundertheporchthathasreturnedmetomyself.Myroomis still very dark,butI am awareofrhesunthatisslowlypushingits pale tonesoflemon and rose above rhe grey peaks inland.Downin the bay, the fisher men will be jusr emerging from the metallicgloomofthe open sea, theirboatsblack andsharpagainstthedense, glimmcring,blue-greyof the dawn. I can hear Sonny'spctulantrumble.Heisa manbornto sullen protest.Halfmad, Ithink,butitisadacmonthatwill carryhimfar.He has courced failureineverything I have tried for him, so that he will have fuel for some terrde ana giganticresentmentlarcr on. Ineluctably,helearnsJUStenoughsothathe willoneday succced in mesmerizing awholepeople. Perhaps heiswiserthanI imaginc. Pcrhaps he ha de liberately sidesteppedaJlthe comparativelyhumblesphercsofmastery hccouldhave enjoyed withmyhelp, sothathc can leavc himself pure for

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184The Autumn Equinox thevast power he willatsomestage surely exercise.Howmany times since he was fourteen and left school havewenot seen him returningupthe drive, perverselytriumphantwith some defeatasifit had been a vic tory.Theapprenticeshipatthe garage...thedraywithwhichhe wasgoingto haul for half the merchants in town...the boat, at an agewhenmanyofthe young men inthebay are glad to he takenoneven two nights a weekwiththe regular fishermen.Heisfitfornothingother, really, thanthedeceit, treason andunctuousbrigandageofparty politics.Inthattwili t landscapeofthe half-men he willoneday beoutstanding;buthe will have to suffer further failuresofhisineptandbtutalnature intheworldofreal people before he learns his rrade. Isometimesask myselfifI havenotpaidmydebttothe memoryofthe old woman who was hisgrandmotherandwho,in heryouth,asmy nurse, gave me such an un gualified measureofenergy and devotion.Itwouldnotdo to call it love, for after all she was hired to do it, and ir was a mere accidentofcircum stancesthatI was the child givenintoher care. Nevertheless it must be difficult to care for any childwithoutloving it somewhat,andifwhat Igotfrom Serena was not the real thing, it did for me.When,inthathuge,haphazard grey andbrownhouse,withits randomwings and deep, casually added verandas, set back in a thick standofcinchona rrees above the long, steep pastures did I learn the bewilder ing lesson that I was unnecessary?DidI learn itthedaythatmymothertold methatI was not her son,butmerely my father's bastard? "Where would you like to go, darling?" she asked my brother, Lionel."Oxford?Or Cambridge / Wehad, Lionel and I, been riding sincedawnandcomeback to late breakfastonthelong,polishednorthverandawithourmother,aswe always did afterourmorningrides during the holidays.Totell the truth, since I was only ten and Lioneleight,theguestionhadaboutit a great dealofthatunrealisticbutcompulsiveplanningfor the future which makesupso muchofthe conversation between parents and children. Perhaps itisourinstinctivemethodofteaching the veryyounga senseoftime. "I don'tknow," Lionel said. "I want togotothebest one.Whichisthe best / "

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JohnHearne185"They'rebothverygood,darling," she said, and squeet:ed, gently, a handfulofhis thick fair hair. "Of course, your father has a friend at Cambridge. You remember Dr. Parr who stayedwithus last summer?He'sthere. Heiswhat they call aWarden." "Do you have to do lessons at Cambridge?" Lionel asked. "No. You read in your rooms and when your mother comes toseeyou then you send a servant our fortea and cakes." "My word," Lionel said, "that doesn't sound much like school. I'd like that.Whencan I go?" Sogentlyinconsequential, soinvitingare the approaches roourmo mentsofdisaster and appalling pain."WillIgotoCambridge, roo, Mama?" I asked her."IfI did, then Lionel and I could share rooms.We'donly needonesetofbooks,because when he was reading one, I could read another andwecould swop."Herwidely spaced, bronze flickered slightlyasshe turned from her habitual devouringofLionel's countenance. "I don'tknow where you'llgo,"she said. "It hasnothingtodo with me.Thatmust be for your father co decide. You arr: not my child."Itwas done with the detachment and expertnessofa bull-.fighter or an assassin.Notfor many years did I come to see that it had been planned. But,no'I must have sensedmyredundancy long before this.Asthe bull smells his fate rising from the sandsofthe arena, orasthe assassin's vicrim learns ro flinch,longbefore themomentofdeath, at every street corner or profferedcup_Howelse can I explainthedesperate and concentrated hours I spent studyingmymother's every gesture about the house; the rise andfallofherundulantdrawlasshe entertainedtheladiesofAllSouls parishtotea; the precision and confidence with which sheswungherself into the saddle from the locked handsofthe groom: everyanion,in short, whichmighrgivemesome clue ro her essential pattern.Todefine her needs and anticipate them obsessedmefor long before the morning that she dis missed me and forlongafter. Even now,asI rememberJudithStacey, I involuntarilythinkofthat cruel and fantastic womanasmymother. Even nowmyemotions drown

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186 TheAutumn Equinox in a deep incestuous heatasI recall herhip-thrustingslouch, so fullofprofoundand graceful power,thegreatbronze eyes,theblunt-featured, wide-lipped face,thedark red braidsofher hairturning to mahogany as she was flung backinher chair,outofthelamp'sfulllight,by her soft,explosivelaughter. Above allthelovely and sardonicgrowlofher voicesoundingincessantly in every cornerofthe great, shadowy house as she performed painful miraclesofdominionover her husband and her son. Shemusthave been gifted wirh an astonishing astuteness.Onlya womanofgrear cunning, or diabolical self-control, could have used the consequencesofmy father's infidelity to such advantage.Theproductofadultery me -brought to live ar the house before she had conceived her own son.Theinstrumentofadulrery rhe disconsolare and bewildered widowofa Scottish private soldier paid handsomely andshippedfromthehotand alien countrythathad taken her husband and in which, afrerwards, she hadturned,like rhemangledsurvivorofsomeaccidenr, ro rhe firstgesturerhat promised her relief from pain.Andyet my father wasnota dissolute man. In rhe irresponsible cantextofOUIseignorial communiry he was remarkably chaste.Therewere no illegirimate Staceysrunningabour rhe hills as rhere were Brandt bas tards rhreaded like beads along every road in Cayuna. I see his lapse withrhatpoorstupefiedwomanwhowas mymothernotas lecherybutasa single, uncharacteristic extravagance. Amoment'sindulgenceofsenti mental'piry. Poor devil, he probably rook ir for compassion.Hepaid for it, though.Hepaid for ir in all rhe years that Judirh Stacey keprmebefore his eyes like anIOU."Edward," she would say, "he grows more like you every day.Heisa real Sracey."Orwhen that becameimpossible to maintain, forasI grew older my features quite lost any traceofrhe squa.re, lion'smuzzlelook of rhe Sraceys, she would invenr similarities berween me and the family por rrairs in rhe drawing-room.Throughme, my farherfedher regular instalmentsofhimself.Inrhe end, I suppose, he musr have grown accus tomed ro ir;wouldhave felt himself incomplete wirhout that daily burnt

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John Hearne187offering.Theheatofher raging possessiveness became necessary to theinvalid's soul she had refashioned in him; his unacknowledged resentment manifested itself only with me. And thennotgrossly,butin an eXGuisitely painful constrainr and furtive unease. Between the agesoften and twenty Icannotremember his ever being alone withmeexcept by accident; and from such chance encounters we both madeourescape roothercompany, like men clawing their way from a trapofquicksand.Wasitthewretched ambivalenceofhis feelings towards me, Iwonder,thatcausedhim to die intestate?Tombetweentwohorsesofguilt! She used me, also,astheshadow whichemphasizedthesubstanceofourbeloved Lionel.Asmycoming, I am sure, had stimulated her barren ness into life, so my presence served to sharpen her need to possess utterly those she loved. It would be superficial, indeed, to see her onlyasobsessed with power.Whoin that house would have ever denied her sovereignty?But tormented bysometerrible desertpatchofsolitudewithin,sheconsumedblindly allwhohad love to give her.Wastingalltheloveofwhich they were capableonit, as I once saw a soldier,gonemadwiththesun, empty hisbottle into the sand.Theopaque glitterofher eyes, the serene sconeofherface,the passion. less,growlingvoice as she expounded to usa dry analysisofwhy Lionel didnotlove her. And Lionel his fourteen year-old heart revolted and terrified bythatjudicial,apparentlyobjective accusationwouldcroak a shaken protest.Howoften,inthose years when we were boys, have I seen her lead his eager, unsuspecting nature along intimate andstimulatingpathsofcon versation straight to that fatal indictment, concealed, like a mine, with meticulouscunningatthemostunlikely place in their talk. Helplessly, aswewere all helpless beforeJudithStacey, I watchedthatbeloved brother impale himselfontheguiltshe had so carefully pointed for him.Watchedas the intrinsic and overflowing poweroflovethathad been his most mar vellous endowmenr became dismal and confined.

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188TheAutumn Equinox"Youknow,"he saidtomenotlongago,"whenJudithdied, I was able to hate her for the first time. I hatedheruselessly for years after that. I couldn't bear even to go to her grave.ThenI began to dreamofhet and had a periodofterrible loneliness.Notmissing her, youunder stand.Notin the ordinary sense, at least. But a haunting, physical emptiness.ThenI set myself to try and understand her." "Didyou)" I asked."No.But simply crying to give a name to what had moved her, seemed to make her more manageable somehow.Laidher ghost. The onlythingthatI could hate her fornowisher destructionofwhat you and I had togetheraschildren.That'stheonlythingI really regrer inmylife, you know: that Ididn'tknow you when we were men. I am almost grateful for this," he gestured brieflytohis withered, quite useless legs. "At least itbroughtyou back to me." We were sitting on the coarse grass, on the $teep rockshighabove the thick, swirling waterofColumbus Head, with the coconllt fronds above us rasping like foils.Twoor three afternoons a week, now, I bring my brother here asI have done for three years, ever since infantile paralysis freakishly attackedhimwhen he was over sixty. I take an idiotic prideinthefactthat,atmyage, I can still lift his heavy, half-crippled body from the car and carry it twenty yards overtherough, stonygroundtothe cliffs edge. "It was her doing,ofcourse," he said now,"thatourfather died intestate. His conscience would not have allowed him to make a will without leaving you a shareofthe property, and he could notfaceshowing her a will like that.AsTcouldnotfaceherwhenIshouldhave signed over ro you whae was rightly yours.Itwas her silencethatI feared.Thoselong, terrible silences after she had trappedme.Whatwassheafraid of,Nick?Itcouldn'thave been ehe money. There was plentyofthat. I wish I could understand her. Even now, when ie's roo late." "She was afraidofsharing you with me,ofcourse," I told him,"butthat's only partofthe answer. I don't understand her any more than you do. Yes, perhaps a little. I could watch her from the outside,soto speak.

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John Hearne189But Idon'tknow much more about her now than 1 did when Iwastwenry.It'srather humiliating,don'tyou think?Oneofthecompensationsofold ageisthat we are supposed to know evenifwecan't acr." Lying awake that night, watching themoonlightdiffusethroughthe jalousies and inch across the floor, IthoughtofJudithStacey. Was she, perhaps, onlythemost intimate example I hadknownofafacewe all sense and refuse to acknowledge?Thatloveisa prisonasvastas death' A keep where each captivehashis own special torment to maim and stunt his truest self.Thoughwecallthese tortures ecstasiesoffulfilment. Re membering that cruel and fantastic womanwhomI loved so completely and in such anguish, it was impossiblenOtto ask myself this question.Itwas impossible and it ",as useless.Withlove,aswith death, itisthe answers to whatwemost need to know thatareforever unfathomable.Thesun has shown me my room once: more. Outside I can hear the servants: a clinkofchina on rhe breakfast table, the harsh protestofiron on iron, the comfortable unhurried murmurofrheir voices. Iaminfinitely grateful for these snug familiar sounds. They give me the same reassurance they gave measa child.IfI risenowI shall have time to look ar my bees before Eleanor comes back from the bay with the fish. The golden, silky sweet heavinessofhoney, those glittering, succulent creatures thar Eleanor will bring back from the sea, the elusive fragranceofcoffee: how much pleasure I get now fromgoodfood. I relish the simple, untrans latable secrets it conveys to me from the earth. Basic, uncomplicated foodsarerhe fairy-talesofthe old. And really, except for our accidenral burdensofunusable knowledge, wearelittle different from the very young.

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HOWWARCAMEIN1914W.ADOLPHEROBERTS(Extract from"TheseMany Years",anautobiography still in progress)THEfoliageofthechestnuts and plane trees was unusually dense that 'summer,andthesky had never been clearer inthesoft climateofthelIe de France.Allthe stately parks cook on added charm from the dappled shadethatenticedtheworldtolinger, buenopark more than the Luxembourg Gardens near which I lived, with its statuesofpoets andnymphsand queens.OntheothersideofrowntheChamps Elysees seemedtheperfect urban avenue, bearing an endless tideofhorse-drawn carriages and a few mocor cars,thepromenade on either side overarchcdbygreenery and bordered by the terracesofcafes. I was a familiarinan apartment on the left bankofthe Seine from rhe windowsofwhich the view was magical; the windingstream inthemiddle, rhedomeoftheInvalidesononehandandtheArc deTriompheon the other. But every boulevard had sorcery, in the bland sunlightorthe blue duskofParis. I lovedtheplumes and gay scarves wornbythemodels on Montparnasse,theopalescent tintsofabsintheintall glasses, the bright nosegaysofthe flower-vendors. These and much else....I am glad that I sawthatBastille Day (July 14) in 1914.Itwas com pletely nineteenth-century in character, because only national catastrophes alterthewaysofParis. Since 1914, Bastille Day hasnotbeenasit wasthen.Thegeneralityoftheworkmenworecorduroytrousers, peaked caps and sabots. Manyoftheir women also hadonwooden shoes, with black cotton stockings and voluminous skirrs.Thenational fete has always beenofand for the people in the fitst place. I had a feeling thatthewell-co-do joined in it and were welcomed, just that. All classes danced in the screets to the music from little bandstands setupbythe municipality, sang patriotic songs, provided ready-made audiences forimpromptuharangues, and knew howrobe friendly with every strangerwithoutdegenerating into rowdyismordrunkenness. Informal parades marched and countermarched, and therewasofcourse a huge tormal military review. Fireworks began at dusk, to lasr allnightin the Place delaBastille itself and other centres.Thegendarmes were createdascarnival190

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W.AdoLpheRoberts191heroes.Theirdignity broke down at times, and they danced with the tesc. Thecity was vibrant with thetempoofa festivalthatactually prolonged itself fortwOmore days.Thejubilee ended, and generalEuropeanaffairscamebackintoper spective.Warcloseddownremorselessly,butonlytheheadsofnations and cabinets expected it and notallofthem....Saturday,August1,Germanydeclared waronRussia.Thenews was followedalmostimmediatelybytheannouncementofmobilizationin France, to begin the next morning. I left the office at dusk, and as I turned from the boulevard delaMade leine into the Rue Royale Isawa man affixing a white poster to a wall. Isteppedupbehindhimandread."Mobilization Generale," succeededbythecurt, clear termsofan orderthatcalled tothecolours everymaRuptotheageofforry-eight. Agenerationafterwardthatveryposterwas still to be seen in its original position, framed in bronze and under glass.Ithappened to have been chosen for preservationasa war relic from among rhe tensofthousands like itthatwentupthatAugust afternoononcity walls, in municipal andothergovernmentbuildingsandonevery post office boxthroughoutFrance. Irspromptavailability showed that it had been printed hours,ifnotdays, earlier as a precaution.Thewords I heard oftenest from thosewatchingthepostingwere col loquial and pithy, "ea yelt.'''which can be rendered in English as, "This isit'"They rang true. Mobilization meant war. France would never have faced so costly adisruptionofherlife unlessshehadknownthatwar had become unavoidable. I found the cafesofMonrparnasse overflowing. A constant interchange ofpatrons went on between the Rotonde and the Dome, which ordinarih didnotoccur.Groupsmet inthemiddleofthestreetandStOod then: arguing.Thetalk wasnotloud. Isought our myfriends and tOok back myopinionsoftheeveningbefore,butnownoonewanted tobelieve me. Foreigners insisted that the citizensroundaboutwere calm enough. [ answeredthatrather they were stunned,thatforthemthis was a tran quilquartercowhich the full significanceofevents hadnotyet penetrated; a tOuroftheGrandsBoulevards wouldshowa different attitude. It was

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192How WarCametoParisagreedthata small parryofuswouldgoaftersuppertotheothersideoftown... We left ataboutnineo'clock. As weemergedfromtheMadeleinestationofthe subway we were besetbynewsboyswithextras.Thepapers had beenputtingoutspecial editions all day,butforthefirsttimethe headlines turned onthequestionofwhether England would supporrFranceagainsttheTeutoniccombination.TheEntentehad been discussedineditorials, to be sure. But what was anentente?Nothingwasdownin black and white. I wasnotastonishedtoseethoseheadlines.Theycountedfor little inthe streets as yet. Werurned on co the boulevards and encounteredpandemonium.Men had swarmeddownfromaJ]theoutlyingquarters, fromMontmartreand Monrsouris, from Passy and the Porte de Vincennes, fromthefashionableenvironsoftheBois deBoulogneno thanfromtheslumofBelle villeTheyhad formed processions and carriedtheflagsofEngland and Russia along withtheTricolour.Notthefaintest echooftheInternationaLewastobe heard.The MarseiLLaise came full-throatedasthedemonstrators passed between tight-packed mas es. Personsofborh sexes ranoutoftheir shopstojoin them. I saw some waiters at the Cafe de la Paix leave their customers and place themselves attheendofoneofthemostardenr columns.Therunningfireofcheers included, "ViveL'Angleterre.' Parisians believedintheir allies,thoughhere and there on the pavementI heardtheanxiousmutter:"Whatwill England AtdawnonSunday,August2,a c
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W.AdolpheRoberts193ditiontobear the early shocksofbattle. Few fathersoffamilies left that Sunday,but many sons and many lovers.Theycrowded the subway trains,the'omnibuses,thetrolley cars, the cabs, all the meansoftransportationleading ro the Est,Nordand Austet litz tailroad stations, fromwhichtrooptrains were beingdispatchedtothe frontiet everyfew minutes. They wete dressed in their shabbiest suits, robe thrownaway when they received their uniforms. Each man carriednothingbutthesmall parcelofpersonal effects specified by the military regulations.Admirableorderprevailed. Contrarytothepredictionsofenemynewspapers, the machineryofmobilization functioned like a srop watch. Onthefollowing day the early afternoon extras teporred violationsofbothFrench and Belgian soil. HLesAllemands ontFranchislaFrontiere"I see the black typeyet -"The GermansHaveOverleapt the Frontier." A fewminutesafter 5 P.M.theimperialambassador,von Schoen, demandedhis passports and gave in exchange a formal declarationofwar.Itwas an after-climax. Paris was already keyed rothehigh noteofwar, had knownthatthepeace wuld notbe saved.Andthen,thebusinessofmobilization had beengoingonall day,dominatedbythedepartureofartillery and the Red Cross.Thegunswenteastward like arunningtide. Always whenthegunswere passing the atmosphere was bombastic and gay. I wondered, withoutfinding an answer, why the artillerymen should take this war lightly, while the foot soldiers seemed austere and sad.Therewere roses inthemouthsofthecannon,andbehindtheeatsofthejauntygunners. "A Berlini"was chalked on the sideofcaisson after caisson.Asthe long pro cessionof 75s thundeteddowntheboulevard du Montparnasse and dis appeared from view, I heard an American voice exclaim from the terraceofthe Cafe duDome:"There'sa thrill in this. But wait till they hear from the dead. There'f1 be a heavy vote from the dead." I glanced aroundtoidentify the speaker.He was the humourist Gelett Burgess, frommy uld San Francisco days.Ambulancesstreamedby incolumns,withlay nurses seatedonthecross benches, and casesoflint, medicines and disinfectants piled high.

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194How WarCametoParisSistersofMercy wete leaving,toO,butforsome reason invariably by train.rsaw a groupofyoung priests and monks,incassocks and shovel hats, passin co theMonrparnasse starion.Theywerenotgoingaschaplains,but co shoulder the rifle, co assume the blue coat and kepiofthe common soldier. France didnOtexempt the clergy. Yet some over-age priests now themselves. Agreatstir was causedbya cleticofimpressive stature whosuodeatthebridleofa colonel incommandofreservists.Thisvolunteercouldnothave been lessthansixty-five.Hishair was snow-white, and his eyes werearrhebouomofhollows in his bony head. Aquiline, relentless, he looked like a cardinaloftheChurchMilitant in a mystic age.August4 wasthesupremedayofdoubt.Thequestion, "What will happen if England doesnotmarch)" had become pre-eminem. Promises,honour just so; these were only words, useless ro France unless trans muted instandy inco deeds. God alone knew what was happening on the fromier. German warships had shelled Algerian pores. Therumourofanultimatumfrom LondononBelgian neutrality made England seem less calculating. But suppose this were nothingbuta bluff' Englishmen were butconholed on themeetsand held personally responsible for the decisionofthe sale ally whose fleet could commandtheseas.Theciry cominued co answer the call co arms.Theolder reservistsWetegoingnow.Theycameupfromtheworkmen'squareers in droves catpenters, bricklayers, masons anddaylabourers, carrying their small equipmenr in cool bags, in piUow slips. Groupsofthe very poorest tramped past me imerminably in the Place delaBastille, dressedinbaggy corduroy trousers and blue shires, and wearing the wooden shoesofthe peasanr. Except for their stern faces, they lookedasthey had looked on Bastille Day. Middle-aged men came, roo, from easy bourgeois homes, from shops, from studios, from laborarories, from rhe srage.Noone was exempted. And so rhe nightofAugusr 4 fell. Powerful searchlights swepr the sky, becauseofa canard thar Zeppelins were approaching. A lone sentinel air plane circled aboveNapoleon'sTomb. Forthefitst and last time during the crisis Paris wenttobed sombrely. Inthemorning,thestreets were a rurmoilofroaring citizens. England had declared war on Germany.The

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W.AdolpheRoberts 195 parry was as goodaswon. It would be over by Christmas.Commentssuchasrhese were rossed frenziedly frommouthto mourh.Womenwept.TheflagofEngland was cheered wherever seen. Lirtle by little rhe capiral calmeddownand became,byproclamarion, an entrenched camp behind rhe firing lines. Thar was ParisasI sawiron rhe eveofcombat. For me,asformillionsofothers, no later experience in life could ever be so dramaricasrhe launching.ofrhe firsr ofrhe century's great wars. Subsequent conflicts had been drearily expected. In 1914thelightningbroke fromtheblue,orwehad rhe illusion rhar ir did.Wharwedid nor know was rhar a libertarian period was dead beyond recall. It rook rhe eventsofthenext few weeks in1914tomake rhe rruth clear to differenr menindifferent ways. The green time was gone.

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SpanishTownCLINTONV. BLACKTHEOLDCAPITALNOWHEREinJamaicadoesthespiritofthepasrlingermorestronglythanin Spanish Town, and nowhere else are the physical survivalsofthatpastasrichly congregated. Here intheisland'sancientcapital (andthecapital stilloftheparishof Sr. Catherine)isrobefound rhe finesr collectionofhistoricbuildings,rhemostsignificanrmonuments,thecountry's Archives and irs chiefest church.Here, roo,onesensesanatmosphereand a characterwhicharethepeculiar heritageoftheplace.Builtonthe westbankoftheriverCobre,therown lies rhirteen miles fromKingstononthemain road along which all journeys westward musr proceed.Theroad now rakes its name from Spanish Town,butoldresidents still call irthe'KingsronRoad' as their ancestors did, for SpanishTownhad long been established before rhe firsrproperparh was opened across rhe plain andthroughrhe swampstorhe new and struggling sertk mentofKingston,destined intimeto supplant rheolderplace.1.ItsHistoryTHESPANISHPERIODThe hiStory ofSpanishTown,alongandfascinatingone,goes baCK almosttotheearliest daysofsettlemenr.Thecolonisrs from Spain builttheirfirst rude shelters atthenorthcoastponnnwknownas Sr. Ann's Bay thefirstJamaicanporrintowhichChristopherColumbussailed his caravelsin1494. They called the rown SeviLLa faNueva,a rowndoomedto early failure because, saystheKingofSpain,'nocitizen prosperednorkepthishealthfor a day...byrea,onofthesite.'In the twenty yearsofSevilla's existence rhe settlers hadnotreared ten children.Theplace was untenable.Meanwhiletheisland's Treasurer, Pedro de Mazuelo(amongstothers) had made his waysouthacross the islandwhereonrhe qanks ofa great river,ona widefenileplain clearedandculrivated .:Jong ages before hiscomingby the aboriginal ArawakIndians,he fouhd--the-perfect si-te-fclr thenew capital.Hehimselfwashighlypleasedwiththeplaceandsetaboutbuildinga sugar mill there,becoming,asa result,oneofthefirsr196

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ClintonV.Black197citizens(known to usbyname)ofrhetownrhatwassoontoriseonthespot.Hisnext task was to convincehis sovereignofrhemerirsofrhe place andtosue successfully fortheabandoningoftheold rown and rhe buildingofrhe new.Othersertlers had followed hismovesourhandsoonhecouldwriretorheKing-'thelandisplentifulin bread and beef,andishealthy and...allwhoreside rhere have a healthy and easy life because itisa landofverygoodwater, without mounrainsorrangesofhills, and has verygoodportssuitable for navigationtotheprovincesofSanta Marta. Car tagena,themainland and PeruandHonduras.'Forwhichreasons, andotherswhich he adduced, Mazuelo begged rheKingroorderrhat a licence be issued for the new town to be built close to his sugar mill.Hefurthersuggestedthatthefirst settlersshouldbe thirry or forry married Porru guese farmers and labouring people,'sorhar culrivation and stock rearing may be more quickly done fortheuse and advantageofrhe personswhomightgo to settle and liveinthesaid town.'TheVilla de faVegathey called their new settlement,'TherownofthePlain'.Itisclaimed rharDiegoColumbus,sonoftheDiscoverer, was concerned with its establishment,buthe had been dead some years beforetheroyal decree was issued. However, his son Luis,thethird AdmiralofrheColumbusfamily,whowas createdDukeofVeragua, bore alsothetitleofMarquis delaVega afrer rhe island's new capital. In Spanish documentsrelating to Jamaica the nameSt.Jago (Santiago)defaVegaisnever used forthetown.Theadoptionofthis latter form bytheEnglish was probablyowingrothefacr rhar rhe Spaniards calledtheisland itself San tiago inhonouroftheir country's patron saint.ThenameSpanishTownisofstill later date.FromirsfoundarionSpanishTownbecamethefocusoflifeontheislandandits historyduringrheSpanishregime,andindeed forsometimeaftertheconquesr bytheEnglish in 1655, was for all practical pur posesthehistoryofJamaica.Althoughothersettlements sprang up,nonerookroorasSpanishTowndid. As lare as1611theAbborofJamaica, in a lettertotheKing,could writeofitastheonly sertled rown in (hewholeisland.TheSpaniards had hopedthatJamaica would have yieldedmuchgold,butin this they were early disappointed. Becauseofirs straregic position,

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198Spanish Town however, it proved valuable as a supply base and during the periodoftheConquistadores arms and food, men and even horses were shipped fromtheisland to help in the conquestofthe Main. AfterthatJamaica's im portance waned. Little was done to develop its natural resources, and theinhabitants,never large in numbers, were forthemostpart poor. And yetthereare, especially inSpanishTown,persistenrlegendsofburiedSpanishJarsfullofgoldand rich jewels.Whentheinhabitantswere forced to withdraw from the island with the comingofthe English, they were confident that in rime they would recover the island, so,weare told, rhey buried mostoftheir money and drew up an official lisrofthe caches, each disringuishedbya special mark, to establish the various claims later on. Edward Long in his Hiltory ofJamaica(1774), says rhat 'large quantitiesof[copper coins} have beendugup in Spanish Town, the hills adjacent to it, and orher parts; bur no gold nor silver coin was ever found,thatI have heard of'. Washe being naive?Thelegendspersist....LongknewSpanishTownintheeighreenthcentury,butiristothe early chroniclers and adventurers that wemustrumfor contemporaryaccountSoftheplace in Spanish times.TheCarmelite missionary Antonio Vazquez de Espinosa, writing about 1628, says:'Ithas a marvellously at tractive site, contains 500 Spanish residents, andisvery well built and laidout.Thereisa collegiate churchwithanAbbotandsomeclericswhoreside there and serve ir; there are two convents, a Dominican and a Ftan ciscan, the two shrines which serveasparish churches,OurLadyofBelen and SanJeronimo,in which Massissaid forthepoor people in rhe en virons.' From Espinosa also comes an interesting accountoftheartackonthetownbyChristopherNewportinJanuary1603.Theresidents, led by rheir governor, Fernando Melgarejo, fought so vigorously that the English werefOIcedback to their ships.Thetownsfolk felt rhat their success wasowingtotheintercessionofSt.James,'accordingly,'writes Espinosa, 'from rhat time on the town sends its prayers to him and has himastheirpatron;onhis day they hold a fiesra there and a general celebration, incommemorationofthis victory.'Butsuch artacks did nor always end victoriously for the Spaniards.InJanuary 1597, SirAnthonyShirley, the celebrated Elizabethan adventurer,guidedhitherbyanIndian, marchedonSpanishTown,which he plun-

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CLintonV.BLack199dered and burnt, being, while he stayed, 'absolute masterofthe whole' Unlike Newport, ne met almost noopposition-'thepeople all on horsebacke made shewofgreat matters, but did nothing.'Theexpeditionremained for a month, provisioning their ships with beef and cassava.'Wehavenotfound in the Indies a more pleasant and holsome place,' de clared a memberofthe party.Theprivateer CaptainWilliamJacksonalsoplunderedthetown in1643.Forewarnedofhis approach, the people managed to spirit away thei r valuable possessions and he and his men had to be content with 'Hoggs, Henns,andothergoodprovisions'.Itis'afaireTown',he wrote laterinhisBrie/eJournaIL,'consistingoffour orfivehundred houses, built foryemost part with canes, overcast with mortar and lime, and covered with Tyle. Itisbeautified withfiveor six stately churches and chappels, and one MonasteryofFranciscan Fryers.' Such attacks were not confinedto Jamaica, bur formed partofa general effortbyvarious European nations to loosen Spain's strangle-hold on the area.WhereJamaica was concerned, raids likeCaptainJackson's wereopeningthe eyesofmore and more peopletothevalue and attractionsoftheisland: in fact, he had toturnadeafeartotheentreatiesofhis men who 'desired to sett up their stacon here'.Asit was, many desertedthefleet.Itwas oneoftheconditionsofthecapitulation in 1655 that these deserters should be handed overbythe Spaniards. These attacksalsohad a demoralizing effect on the Spaniards who,according to a report made in 1644, became 'so nervous and terrified thatiftwoships are seen off the port, without waiting to know where they are from, they remove the women and their effects rothemountains.Thetime they waste in doing this gives the enemy the opportunity to return and occupy the town without resistance'.On10th May, 1655, an EnglishexpeditionaryforceunderAdmiral William Penn and General Robert Venables dropped anchor in Kingston Harbour (as it was later to be called).ThepeopleofSpanish Town pre pared,asbefore, foranothermarauding raid. But this time they were

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200SpanishTownwrong:theexpedition's object wasthetakingoftheisland, and its ap pearancethatMay day spelt the beginningofthe endofSpanish rule.THEBRITISH*PERIODAlthoughthe island was captured without the lossofa man and with scarce a shot being fired, thefinalconquestwas ro takefiveyearsand costmuchblood.Inmostofthe eventsofthis period SpanishTownplayed a central role.Findingontheir arrivalthattheinhabitantshadturnedtheir cattle loose and escaped acrosstheisland to Cuba with their valuables, the in vading troopsburntand pillaged mostofthe town in angry disappointment,even melting the church bells down for shot.When,later, with more settled conditions, the island begantobe colonized, they repaired mostofthebuildings worth the effort, bur itisdoubtful if any Spanish work exists to-day, exceptinthe formoffoundations. SpanishTownrook a long timecorecover from this devastation, timewhichgave Port Royal a chance ro exceed it for a whileinsize and im portance.Nourishedby the wealthbroughtinbythebuccaneers who made it their headquarters,PortRoyal rose during the latter parroftheseventeenthcenturycobe the richest and wickedest city intheworld. SirHansSloane writingofSpanishTownin 1688, describeditasnext in bigness to Port Royal. At the same time he noted that itwasinSpanish Town rhat the governor usually resided, the CourtS and Assembly sat and the island's Archives were kept allofwhich, he predicted, make this place in some time very considerable'. And he was right. On7thJune,1692, mosrofPort Royal was swallowed up by an earthquakr and Spanish Town reigned once more supreme, a reign which wascolast for nearly two hundred years. Even though Port Royal was the buccaneer pOrt, the effects which :he activitiesofthis wildBrethrenhad on the lifeofthe times was strongly felt in Spanish Town. Here, in the Record Office, may still be seen rheIn 1706:i11nACT ofUnion wup:uscddec12ringthoUEngbnd:lind Scotland (whichhadbeen united underone sovereign Since:1603) should h20VCa united Puti:amc:ntas from lSt 1707.From thilttime itis proper to spe2k ofBritish f:llther rh2nEnglish activities in the WestIndies

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CLintonV.Black201willofSirHenryMorgan,thegreatest buccaneerofthemall,whorose to be four times lieutenant-governoroftheisland. In rhe Cathedral churchyard sleeps his great friend and abettor SirThomasModyford(governorfrom 1664-71), describedonhistombstoneas 'The soule and lifeofallJamaica,whofirst madeirwhatitnowis'.Andhere it was, towardstheendofMorgan's fantastic career, that many a night, whenthecandles were lit and maps and charts unrolled, he and his crony from Londondays,theDukeofAlbemarlenowgovernoroftheisland (they weretodie withintwOmonthsofeach orher), 'gobletsofrumor wineintheir fists...leaned, wigged head to wigged head, over their maps, and damn.edtheAssembly while in spirit they dredgedthegoldfromundertheseas, asthecandlelight winkedonthe jewelsontheir velvet coats andonthetapestries and curtains andthegoldand silver plate,lootfrom Panama'. Sloane(mentionedabove) cametotheislandasAlbemarle'sprivate physician.HealsoattendedtheailingMorgan.Hewrotetwo famous worksontheisland, and, while here, made animportantbotanical col lection, which on his death was presentedtothenationand formed rhe nucleusofthe British Museum'sNaturalHistory section. His house, 'an old Spanish fronted building', stood on the siteofwhatisnow14NugentStreet.Itwas here in SpanishTownthattheisland's new eraunderEnglish rule began. At first a sad, unsetrled era.Theunaccustomed climate and tropical diseasestookearly tollofthe newcomers.Tothis was addedthemiseriesoffamine,broughtlargelyuponthemselves bythesoldiers who, nor wishing to settleinrhe island, refusedtoplant any crops in the beliefthatiftherewasnofood theywouldbe recalled.ButasCromwell was determined onthesettlementoftheisland, here they remained, and here many died, crying with their last-breath, 'Bread, for the Lord's sake!'ThedepredationsoftheMaroonsaggravatedthedifficulties.TheseMaroons(theirnameprobably derives fromtheSpanishword cimarrtm, meaning 'wild') werethefreedorescaped slavesofthe Spaniards who hadtakentothethick woods andmountainsonrhecomingoftheEnglish.Theretheywereorganizedandarmedbyrheirfleeingex-mastersandencouragedtoharrytheinvaderswithguerillawarfareuntilan army could be assembled in Cuba fortherecaptureofthe island. Someoftheirencampmentswere neartheEnglishquarterswhichtheyoftenraided,

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202SpanishTownfiringahouseinSpanishTownirself.Soldiersventuringoutsidethetownwere frequently cur offbyprowlingbandsofMaroons,andefforrs whentheyweremaderocultivateusuallyendedintheslaughteroftheplanters and destructionoftheircrops.TheEnglish eventually won overoneband under the chiefJuanLubolo(hisname,corruptedto Juan de Bolas, livesoninmanyplace-names intheneighbourhoodofSpanishTown),and this proved a significant factor inthefinal defeatoftheSpaniards.OfthemilitaryCommissionerssent our totheisland,fourlosttheirliveswhiledoingtheirutmosttohelptheunfortunateinfantcolonyduringthisdesperateandunsettledperiod.Thelastofthese,GeneralWilliamBraynewhodescribed his stay in Jamaica as'onecontinual sickness',diedinSeptember1657,andthecommandofthecolonyfelltoEdwardD'Oyley,a colonel in rhe armyofinvasionwhohad acted rwice before in this position.Hegoverned by court martialwhichmet regularly in SpanishTownuntilJune1661, when, withthedeathofCromwell andtherestorationofCharlesII tothethrone,he received hiscommissionas first civilgovernoroftheisland.Itwasfortunatethatthecommandfellwhenitdidtoascapablea military officer asD'Oyley,for he had barelytakenoverwhenthelong. expected Spanish invasion begantomaterialize.TheresourcefulD'Oyleymanagedtostormsuccessfully astockadetheSpaniardshadbuiltnearDunn'sRiveronthenorthcoast, and so foilthatattempt.ThedecisivebattlewasfoughtatRioNuevoinJune1658andwithintwO'years allSpanishinfluenceinJamaicahadended,England'sclaimtotheislandbeingfurther confirmed bytheTreatyofMadridof1670,ThedefeatoftheSpaniardsremovedthedangerofforeigninvasion,butinAugust1670camethethreatofinternalrebellion-andanimportanteventinthe storyofSpanishTown.Itrook the formofamutiny of thetroops,led byColonelsRaymondandTyson,thelatterhavingatthetimethecommandofoneoftheregimentsquarteredatGuanaboaVale, nine miles from SpanishTown.Thereasons forthemutinyarenotclear.DislikeofD'Oyleyandhisironmethodsplayed apart,asdidrivalrybetweenthosewhofavouredtheMonarchy andthosewhopreferredtheCommonwealth,Buttherootcausewasprobablyimpatienceatthecontinuationofmilitaryruleand

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ClintonV.Black203alonging rosettle downas colonists, especially asprovisions wete nowplenriful, trade increasingand thegenetalhealth of the communityimproving. D'Oyley asusual acted promptlyto meet this new danger. Hetried fairwordsfirst,but these failing, he brought reinforcements inrothetown.Withmuchtact he atlength persuaded thetroopstohandovet theirleaders anddispersein exchange for a complete pardon.Acourtmartial was quickly convenedwhoadjudged the colonels worthyofdeath,and,without delay, they were executedinsightofbothpartiesunderthebigtamarindtreewhich,accordingtotradition,stoodunril 1951 inMulberryGarden,MonkStreet,now the siteof the PoorHouse.'Raymondexpressed noconcern,butdiedwithahaughtykindofResolution,'saysoneaccounr;'Tysonbehavedin a mannermore becoming,and seemed penjtenrfortheparthe had acted.'Aftertheexecutionthetroopswereorderedtotheirseveral quarters,butthey had bynow grown so insolenrthatD'Oyleywas forced to allow them toplunder the town houses of the twO rebellious colonels andany others thattooktheirfancy before he could persuadethem ro rerurn to their precincts. Twelve dayslater news of the RestorationinEnglandarrivedandwithina year D'Oyleywasappoinredgovernotthe firstofmorethan sixtyadministratorswhoweretoguide thedestinies oftheislandfrom their headquartersinSpanishTown.Fromthispoinrunrilat least 1872 whenthe removalof the capitaltoKingstonwascompleted,itisdifficult ro treatof the storyofSpanishTownin isolation, forthatstory is in large measure the storyofJamaica.Itwas here, inCouncilandAssembly,thatlaws weremade,amended,repealed, bitter barrles fought over rights and privileges, and constitutionsframed, defended andabrogated.Near the Assemblysat theSupreme Courtthe twO bodies thuscircumstanced,affording(saysLong)'astrikingpictureof the legislativeandexecutive departments ...eachharmonizingtheother ever actingandre-acting; various, yet concurrent'.ItwasthestreetsofSpanishTownwhoseverynamesrecallthecity's hisrory,which knew thequicksoftstepofSpanishsenorita,thereflectivetreadofsandalledfriar,theshackled ;;hume ofbarefoorslaveandtheheavytrampofblunr-roe-bootedPuriran;streetswhichechoedtothemarchingfeetofmilitiamenoffonanexpeditionto tracktheelusive

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204Spanish TownMaroon, to crushsomeslaverevolt,or to mantherampartsatCarlisle Bay in adesperateandbrilliantlysuccessful aCtionagainsrrhemightoftheFrenchAdmiralJeanduCasseandhiinvasionforce in 1694.Irwas in the Square whosebuildingsthemselves reflectthecity's story,thatLewisHutchinsonrhe perverred, red-hairedplanterofSt.Ann,whowelcomedvisitorstohistinycastleonlyrotorturethemtodeath,was, itissaid,hangedonegusryday inMarch1773.'Hisrecklessgazeuponrheinstrumentwhichwastoconveyhimbeforethetribunalofhis Maker, findsnoparallel inthehistoryofcrimeorpunishment:writestbeprosyRev.MrBridgesinhishistory(1827),'norcanrheannalsofhumandepravityequalrhe facr rhat, ar rhe fooro(rhe scaffold, he left an hundredpoundsingoldcoereer amonument,andcoinscriberhemarblewitha recordofhisdearh.'

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THESELF-GOVERNMENTMOVEMENTFromTheDaily Gleaner, May10,1955H. P. JACOBSDURINGtheperiodof1938-1953,Jamaicaunderwentfourimportantchanges.Themost obviousoftheseisthatwhile in 1938 the participa tionofJamaicansinthe Govern mentoftheircountryhad reached the lowestpointsince the restOrationofan elective element in the legislature,in1953 the country became virrually self-governing in internal affairs. Secondly, while in 1938thewage-earnersandsmall farmets exercised no significant influenceonaffairs, the workers have since developed institutionswhich are exclusively theirown(unions)andthesmalJ farmers have a powerful voice inthegreatcommodityassociations, the creation of which would have been impossiblewithoutthem.Thirdly,the economy has assumed a more varied arrdmodernaspect.Fourthly,the feeling has developed that Jamaicansconstitutea"nation."Thusthe country changed its constirutional system and its relationship to Britain; new forces came into exiscence to affectpublicaffairs; theeconomychanged; and there was a significantchangeofoutlook.Obviously these four standsofhistory are interwoven.Lecuscrytosee how.Thedefectofall systemsotpersonalgovernmentischacso muchdependsonthe persons involved.Inthe twenty years before 1938 there was110Governorexcept Sir Edward Stubbswhocounted verymuchperson .lily with the peopleofJamaica. Moreover, the more complicated systemofadministration which developed inA:he post-earthquakegenerationcalled for rigidcontroloftheadministrative machine.Ifthis rigid control wasnotapplied,thesystem randownand public scandals occurred.Iftherigid control was applied by people who neither understood the moral purposeofthe machine nor considered theircivilservice subordinates ashumanbeings, there would be a feeling that the country was subjected to tyranny.Inorderroensurethatsuch a system works,borhtheGovernorandtheColonialSecrerary have to be well abovetheaverage in ability.Thiswasseldomthecase; andStubbs,forexample,hadtobeconstantlysmoothingthings over andputtingthe best frontonawkward happenings.205

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206TheSelf-GovernmentMovementStubbs wasgenuinelyliked.Hewas rherefore ablecofollow a policywhich,whileir mainly benefired rhe menofpropercy, did bescow real benefirs on every class. Moreover, he made people anxiouscohelp rhem selves; he creared a warm beliefinrhe councry, which was diffuseddownwardsin sociery and creared new ambirions. After Srubbs,the wasoneofflatness and disillusionmenc.Theold banana co-opera rive cracked and hadcobe reconsricuredasan ordin ary company.Therewere narural calamiries, which desrroyed crops. Ten rhousand reparriares, mainly from Cuba, creared new problems and ralkedofthewaythingswere done in republics.TheGovernorwhoreaped rhewhirlwind,SirEdwardDenham,was awareofthe dangersofthesituation:buthis remedy contributedcothecollapseoftheregime. A loanofm. was raised;buttocover the cost rhe basisofcuscoms dury colJenion was changed, so thar indirecr raxation was increased. Moreover, the allocationofthe funds caused little satisfaction. A large bodyofrhoughtwas opposedcoall increased raxarion; burthemoreenlighrenedregrerted rhar indirecr raxarionshouldbe increased, while rhe more progressive elements in the propercied class felt that the expenditurewas for the most partunproduniverhat the moneywouldserve as a pallia rive norasa meansofdevelopingthecountry'sresources.Therewasthusa generalatmosphereofratherquerulouscriticism,whichwas communicated downwards amongsr the masses,whobelievedthatevery increase in thecOStofirems incommonconsumptionwas duecotheGovernor.Denhamthusbecame asymboloftyrannycothe massesatthe same timethathe ceased,owingcoaudible criricism fromorherclasses,robe regardedasa magical figure.Notallthecrirics were merelyquerulous.Somerookrhe viewthatthere must be a better organised public life: hence, in 1937, the formarionoftheNarionalReformAssociation(withwhichsuchpeopleas N.N.Nethersole and Ken Hill were connected) and the successful campaignofrhe FederationofCirizens AssociarionscosecurecontroloftheKSAC.Othersstressed the economic side, and this ledrothe Economic Con ferencesummonedearly in 1938byMayor Oswald Anderson an efforc in which peoplewhousually had lirtleconcanwith eachotherwere foundworkingtogether.

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H.P.Jacobs207There was agooddealofoverlapping inthetwOmovements: fewofthepolitically-minded were opposedtotheconceptionofthefirst claimsofeconomic progress.Thelink betweentheideaofpolitical progress andthatofeconomic progress was the recognitionofthefactthatjamaica's resources weretOofeebly exploited. Those who heldthat"jamaica's problems are primarily economic" tendedtorhinkthatthedevelopmentofresources called for a vigorous co-operationofall able jamaicansofgoodwill with government in securing markets for exports and in encouraging the acquisitionofland by a thrifry peasantry.Thosewhoheld the theoryofpolitical action believedthatthe co-operationofall ablejamaicanswithanadministrationconrrolled by the Colonial Office was unnatural. Faced with the argument that the Colonial Office represented Britain,and "we are British,aren'twe?" they were forcedtodevelop the "national" theory thatis,the view that thejamaican peoplehavinghad acontinuoushistorical existence for overtwOcenturies, was anat;on.Thetheoretical formulationofthis view was influencedbyrhe jamaica Progressive LeagueofNewYork, and in particular by such membersofirasAdolphe Roberts,thefounder;W.A.Domingo,and Ethelred Brown.Thefirst local exponents, suchasFrank Hill and O.T.Fairclough, attemptedtoworkoutprinciplesofaction whichwouldleaduptoDominionstatus.Theystudiedjamaicanhistory after 1865, examined rheevolutionofself-governingdominions,modernSocialism,andthemenaceofFascism. They were awareofthe significanceofthe proletariar, and rhoughr in termsofa more liberal franchise.Inthelate'thirtiestherewas considerable restlessness in the labour forceofsugar estates. Banana workers struck in St.jamesin 1937.ThejamaicaWorkersandTradesmenUnion-theseedgroundofall laterunionismhad appeared in 1936,andwithit were connected several menoftypes till then unfamiliar intheunionismofjamaica:W.A.Bustamante,P.A.Aiken,A.G. St.C.Coombs(thefounder).Buttheunionmet with little success in 1937. Bustamante'sea.rlyefforts at i-.

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208TheSelfGovernmentMovementorganisingsugar workers were rebuffed.NonethelessBustamantekepthimselfin the public eyebydenouncing theconditions under which rhe workers lived.TheappearanceoftheWestIndies SugarCompanyin 1937 actually increasedthetension, for itmeantrelative prosperity inWestmoreland,wherethenew Frome Central wasbeingbuilt,and so attracted a latgenumberofunemployed persons. Hence the first explosion was at Frome, where riots tOok place early in May, 1938, and several people were killedbythepolice.TheFrome riots were a leaderless disrurbance, the protestofthe masses against unemployment, and therefore directed, with inverted logic, againstthechiefsourceofnew employment.Inprecisely the same way a tense situation developed in the capital,notoutofunemploymentalone,butoutofthe effortstorelieve it.Workerson a housing scheme were driven awaybyctOwdswhosaid there must beworkfor all, and it was increasingly feltthatthecityunemployedwere a power.ThespellingofworkamongsrPWDdaily-paid employees did an injusticetothe old handwithoutsatisfying thosewhogOttwO dar, worka week insteadofunemployment. A waterfront strike in KingstOnbroughtmatrerstoa head.Thecitywenttobedonenightin an uneasy, feverish quiet; it awoketothe activityofmilling crowds in a sortofspontaneous general strike. Bustamante was thatday, for the first time, adominantfigure; and amid the confusion the police rookitincotheir headstoarrest him.Heand St.WilliamGranr were hustledofftogaol.Thearrest wasthesimple deviceofstOpping an agitation by artesting an agitatOr; logically, therefore, bail was refused.Theappointment of a BoardofConciliation, however,broughtoutsharplytherealitiesof rhe situation. IslandTreasurerHodges,theChairman,feltthatthegeneral rateofwages wastOOlow.TwoPrivy Councillors were membersofthe Board, andbothwere convincedthatchanges in the social order were desirable.

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H.P.Jacobs209TheBoard, therefore, inevitably assumed the funCtionofconvertingbothprivate employers andGovernmentrothe ideaofhigher wages. Bur whilethewarerfront employers were quickly inducedtooffer wage increases, it wasanothermattertogettheworkerstoaccept them. Mr.N.W.Manley, Mr. Bustamante's cousin,whowas in close contactwithboththeBoard andthestrikers, carriedtothementhe offeroftheemployers;butthey unanimously declaredthattheywouldnotreturntowork until Bustamante andGrantwere released.Itnowbecame the busi nessofbothManleyandtheBoardtoconvincetheGovernorthatthepolicemustno longer objeCt ro bail.Denhamwas already strickenwitha mortal illness,buthe let no signofthis appear. A little beforetheriots, he had been half-persuadedthatsomethingwas radically wrong,andthis vague feelingofvast events,orpride,orhumanity,hadledhimtoresistthehysteriawhichcalled forsharprepressive measures.Hewasunwillingro appeartocapitulate, burhewas preparedtolisten. In a noerurnal conference he was non-commit tal,butreadytosee a newpointofview.Inthenextfew days rook placethereleaseofBustamanteandGrant,on bail,theendofthewaterfront strike, thedeathoftheGovernor,andtheinstallationofMr.(nowSir) CharlesWoolleyas ACting Governor.Whathad happened was the first successful organisationofa trade union, and with ittheemergenceofthemilitantproletariatasa force.Thetremendousspreadofunionismamongstthesugarworkers began.Atnostage was this working-classmovementpolitical.Bustamantewas less politicalthanGarvey.Hisobjeer wasthecreationofatightorganisationunderhis sole control,withnoopportunityfor subordinatestocreateindependentorrival authorities.HedidnotthinkofenteringLegislative Council, orofextendingthefranchise.Thetrendofhis evidence before the Royal Commission at the closeoftheyear showednospecial interest in self-government. In September, 1938,N.W.Manley and others formed a political party. After much hesitation, the founders rejeeredtheterm"LabourParry" and

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210The Se/f-GOllernmentMovement chosethatof"People'sNationalParty".Thisnamewas intendedtoshowthattheParty wasnottobe the partyofany particular class,nottorepresentanyparticulareconomictheory:it wastobe a meansofmakingthecountry's politics into a serviceableinstrumentofsocialandeconomic progress,withall citizens identified with its political life and seekingnationalgoals.Thiswastheeffectivebeginningofthenationalmovementfor selfgovernment.Themovementrestedupona smallgroupofpeople, mainly middle-class and largely professional,whoconsideredthattheconditionofthe masses must be improved andthatthis couldnotbedonewithouttheactiveandintelligent participationofthemasses.Thiswas-thefirsttimethata political partyhadbeen formed,anditwasnotaccompaniedbytheformationofany rival party, because therewerenottwoopposingprinciplesorpersonalities.TheP P, bytheirstressonpolitical andeconomictheory, createdtheconditionsfor a second party,butonly gradually.Thetypical reaCtionofthe educated classse in Jamaicatopolitical crisis wasnotpermanentorganisation,buttemporarycombination-thatis,nota party, butafronde,to atrack theGovernoroftheday. Membersofthefrondemighthave no close conneCtion at allwitheachother,andonegroupmightattack anunpopularGovernormerely because a rivalgrouphad alreadydoneso andmustnOtbe allowedtogetall the credit. A/rondemightpenetratethecivil service,andcouldinfluence every sectionofsociety.Groupsand individualswouldgradually withdraw theiroppositiontotheadministtationiftheyreceivedornetecognition,orgainedrheir immediare objects,orbecame afraid. Afrondemightacceptsomecommonprinciple, burfrondeurJ never proposedtoaccept responsibil ity,asthePNPdid.Thepoliticians would have been inclinedtowelcome the party, for they res red on appealstoorganisations, and a powerful island-wide organisationcouldhelpthem.ButthePartyrequiredthatitscandidateshouldbefreelychosenbytheParty -shouldbe itsowncandidates-andthatevetycandidateshouldpledgehimselftosupporttheprogrammeofthe

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H.P.Jacobs211Parry. This seemed intolerabletothepoliticians andthefewwho attached themselvestothe Party drifted away. Naturally,thePNPhoped for suPPOrt from Busramante's new unionism.Theyargued thar rhey could be rhe politicalwingofa reform movemenr wirh the Busramanre IndustrialTradeUnionas irs indusrrial wing.Butthevarious reasons including chargesofMarxisr conspiracy levelled ar rhePNP-ledBusramantetofeel rhar rhePNPmeantrousehimand rhen rake over his power.ThusrhePNPdrifred inco hosrilirytorhe only grear mass movemenr, while rheir rheoryofadult suffrage was anathematorhe propertied, salaried and professional classes.InFebruaryof1939theposirion altered for a while,Bustamantemade a bid forunionsupremacy in Moncego Bay, and in pursuanceofrhis called adisastrousgeneralstrike,whichwasutrerlybrokenbyGovernorSirArthurRichards.Itseemed certain rhar rheBITUwouldbe destroyed, as employers begantorefusetorecognise it.ThePNPleadersnowpersuadedrheGovernortouse his influencetoprevenc rhe desrrucrionofUOlOOlsm.As a preliminarytorhis, Bustamance joined aTradeUnionCouncil inwhichallunionswouldworktOgethertoevolverecognisedunionpro cedure. Several smallunionswiththePNPsympathies joined rheTUC.All these had democratic constirurions: ir was expected rhar Busramantewouldmodify rhatofrheBITU.Henever did,andina few weekshewas once morearodds wirh rhePNP.Theparty in rhar year rejected rhe ideaofrepresentativegovernmenrandcalled for responsible government.Theyhadnowpractically no sup pOrt. Such wastheposition whenthewar broke our in Seprember, 1939;Bustamanteand rhePNPwere complerely isolated from eachorherand from rhe rraditional controlling andguidingforcesofthe country -' politicians, planters, traders.ThePNPhadsomestrengthamongstteachers, and hadnotyet broken wirh the FederationofCitizens' Associa tions,asit did soon after.Thewar ledthePNPtosuspendtheiragitationfor self-government.Whenit became clear, however, rhat rhere was ro benohighly organised local war effort,thePartymovedgraduallyintoopposition.In1940itdeclared itself Socialist.

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212The Self GovernmentMovementThisweakenedthePNPstillfurther,butpreventedit fromgoingupa political blind alley. Many PP supporters wishedtomodel their PartyonthelndianCongress Parry -tomake national independence the Partygoal,towhichotherconsiderationsshouldbe sacrificed. UnderJamaicanconditionsthiswouldhavemeantcryingtocreateapermanentfronde,whichisa contradiction in terms. ByforcingthePartytodefend specific policiesandptOgrammes,by creating organisedopposition,andbybuildingupsupportftOmtheBritishLabourParty,thedeclarationofSocialism was beneficialtothePNPintheperiodof1942-8, afterwhichSocialismbecameamillstonearoundirs neck.Onsomepoints,theParty was inagreemenrwithrheGovernor.Itwasnecessary for farmorerevenuetoberaised,andtheonlymethodavailable wastoincrease direct taxation.Woolleyhad increasedincometax ratesin1938; from the endof1939 they begantorise steeply. Excess ProfitsTaxfurther reduced business incomes.TheprocessbroughttheGovernorintO conflictwithbusiness interests,andtheP P,whilesupportingtaxationmeasures, succeeded in effecting a parcial alliancewithrhe businesscommunityover civil liberties.TheColonial Office in 1941 offeredtheo-calledMoyneConstitution,which was a formofsingle-chamber repre entativegovernmentwithadultsuffrage.Thiswas accepted by thePNPwithqualifications which would in fact have turned it into responsiblegovernment.Theelected members rejected it entirely.ThePNPwere in considerable difficultiesontheconstitutionalques tion,asthe elected membersofLegislative Council were virtually a hostile parry,andtheHon.J.A.G.Smith,thedoyenoftheHouse,wishedtohark backtosomethinglike theoldpre-1866constitution.In 1941,BustamantewasinternedandthePNPestablishedthemselves as caretakers in charge ofhisunion,whichbegansuccessfulbargainingforthesugarworkers. AllattemptstoinduceBustamantetomodifytheau tocratic characteroftheBITUfailed,andonhis release from internmentin 1942 helaunchedanattackontheP P,whichdidnotfeel it wisetomaintainan open struggle.TheTUCunionsremainedwiththePNP.

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H.P.jacobs213MeanwhiletheJapanesewar had starred,thehardships ot' life grearly increased, andthefallofSingaporeweakenedBritish prestige.AtthispointthePNPunexpectedly withdtew from their positionof"self-governmentnow"and declared themselves ready to accept a formoftwo-chamber responsiblegovernmentwithadult suffrage.Thishadimmediateresults.SmithabandonedhIs objectionstoadult suffrageandhis ideathata modified formofrepresentativegovernmentwasthegoal.TheBritishGovernmentwas facedwithaunitedcall forconstitutionaladvance inthedirectionofresponsiblegovernment.Forthefirst time,twOelected members were made Privy Councillors (1942).ThePNPsucceeded inwinninga by-election,purringintoCouncilDr.Ivan Lloyd,whohad joinedtheParry in 1941.Thefailuretoensurefood supplies inthecapitalandtheinternmentanumberofPP leadersstrengthenedthejrondewhichthusinevitablyappeared. Self-government was in factwonbythejrondeof1942, whichincludedthemostdiverseelements.Thedissolutionofthejrondewas comparatively slow,butthis wasduelesstothenew national spiritthantotheshufflingofthe Colonial Office, which kept allgroupsloosely united.Nonetheless,therebegantobe a crystallisationofopinion.ThePNPwas a Socialist party, andthemore progressive non-Socialists decidedthatself-government was certain and that a conservative parry must be organised.ThisJedtothefoundationoftheJamaicaDemocraticParry.ButBusta mante, ponderingonhis prospectsifeverthePNPgained power, formed hisownJamaicaLabour Parry, and sinceBustamantewas anti-Socialist,muchofthesupporrgiventotheJDPwasnowshiftedtotheJLP.Thenewconstitutionprovided for aHouseofRepresentatives elected byadultsuffrage, for a Legislative Councilwiththreeex-officioand twelvenominatedmembers, and for an Executive Council,withmostofthepowerofthePrivyCouncil,inwhich there weretobethreeex-officioandtwonominated members,butfivepersons elected by theHouseofRepresenta tives, whilethe Governor was chairman.Thefirst general elections were inDecember,1944,andtheJLPwon an overwhelming majorityofseats.Theideaofthe self-governing nation,presentedbythePNP,had far less attractive forcethantheideaof "Labour", ofthebondunitingall, wage-earners and small farmers alike,whoworked with their hands.

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214 The SeifGovernmentMovementIfwe look carefully attheperiod 1942-5, we shall findthatallthepeoplewhoadvocated self-government lost our.Notonly werethePNPdefeated byBustamanre,whowas a litrle afraidofthenationalmovemenr,buttheadvanced secrionofthe properried class, suchasD.J.JudahandR.L.M.Kirkwood,were pushed inro the background by conservatives like O.K.Henriguesand SirRobenBarker. Similarly, the elected memberswhovored for adult suffrage were mosrlysweptawayintheelecrions by candidateswithnorecordedopinionsatall.Thiswasduetothefacrthatself-governmenr wawonby afronde,notby a mass movemenr guided by nationalist leaders;thoughtheP P, by abandoning their uncompromising stand in 1942, had created thefrondeandgivenittheuniquecharacterofademandro be allowed to accept responsibility.Thefrondeof1942 wasthefrondetoendfrondes.

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EXTRACTFROMANANSITHESPIDERMANPHILIPSHERLOCK215ANANSIANDFISHCOUNTRYTHEREwas famine in the land. For months there had been no rain. Day after day the sun rose and setina cloudless sky.Thegrass changed from green to yellow to parched brown.Theparched leavesofthetrees criedoutfor water.Theplants in the fields withered away. There was famine in the land. Anansi was hungry.Hefeltasifhe had been hungry for weeks, formonths,forever.Nowhe mustgooff to someotherplace to find food. "If I only had a bag and a long coat," he said to himself, "I wouldgoto FishCountryandpretendto be a doeror.That'sit,"hethoughtto himself: "the onlythingthatadoctorwantsisa black bag and alongcoatand alongface."Nosooner said than done!BynextmorningMr. Anansi had his tall hat and black bag and long coat.Thenhe setoff.WhenAnansigotto Fish Country hetookan office and outsideofitheputup a signboard: HM. Anansi, Surgeon."Thefirst patient was a very large, fat fish. She had many children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren.Nowher eyes were troubling her. CouldMe.Anansi help her' Anansi looked at her eyes from every angle.Hespent a long time look ing, andashe looked he talked to himself. Sometimes he shook his headorstoppedandcoughedashe had seendoctorsdo.Heseemed to bethinkinghard. At last he said, "Yes. Youreyes are very weak,butIthinkthatI can help you.Willyou do what I tell you?" "Yes, doeror, I wiJl," said thefatold fish, whowasnow very frightened. "Very well," said Anansi. "Go tobedassoonasyougethome.Seethatyour maid makes up a bigfireinyour room and putS a frying pan beside it,alongwithsomecoconutoil and asharpknife. Call mewhenyou are ready."Thefat fish hurriedhomeasfastasshecouldandtoldthemaidtomake afire.Soon everything was ready, and she sent to call Anansi.AssoonasAnansi came to the house he saidtotherelatives:

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216Anansi, the Spider Man extract"Allofyou muSt leave rheroom.I willlockrhedoor.Donor try ro lookinside,butlisten carefully.Whenyou hear rhe fryingpansay 'fee-fee' you musr allsrampon rhe floor and sing rhis song: 'Bim, Bam, my grannie's eyes are well,oh,Bim, Bam, my grannie's eyes are well,oh,Bim, Bam, mygrannie'seyes are well,oh.' "Make a Jor ofnoise."Quicklythefishes learned rhe tuneand rhe words.WhenAnansi was sarisfiedtharrheycouldsing rhe songwirhouthishelphewent intorhe room.First he lockedthedoor,andthenheputthefryingpanonthefire and pur the oilinthe pan.As rhe oil gOt honer the frying pan sizzledandcalledout'fee-fee.' Quickly Anansi purthefarfish in rhe fryingpanwhile ourside all rhe othersilly fish sang asloudlyas rheycould'"Bimham.AndwhilerheysangAnansiate rhe fish.Whenhewasnolongerhungry,he began ro rhink abourgerring away. Bur wharwas he ro do?Quietlyhe pur all rhe bonesandscales inthebedandwiped hismouthwiththesheer sothatno crumbs showed; and rhen he covered rhe boneswirh rhe sheet.He rook uphis bag, pur onhis longesr face,opened rhe door,and faced rhe crowdoffishes."Alliswell," he said. "The operarionwas very successful. Leavethefish alone for rwo hours. You have beenmakinga lorofnoise, burnowyoumustbe sril!.owyoumustpay me my fee."Thefish paid Anansi rhe money he requesred,andaway he wenr. Hemeant ro leave FishCountryasquicklyaspossible.Therewas ariver ro be crossed,however,andwhenAnansicame ro rhe riverhewas horrified ro findthatit was fullofalligarors.Howwas herogetacross? JUSt arthatmomenrAnansisawbrotherDogontheorhersideof rhe river."Ah,BrotherDog,"hecried,"areyou'glad ro seeme?""No,"barkedDog.

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Philip SherLock217"Ah,butyouwouldbegladifyouknewhowmuchmoneyI have here," said Anansi,shakingthebagofmoney."Bringit," barkedDog. "But I must cross the river'" said Anansi. "Cross now," barkedDog."Thealligators will eat me," cried Anansi."Lookhowhungrytheyare." "Leave thattome,"barkedDog.Hebegantorunalongthebank, away from Anansi,barkingashe went.Thegreedy alligators followed him,thinkingthathe wasgoingtojumpinto the water. And while they chasedDog,Anansi dashed across the fordandwassoonsafe ontheotherside.Heknew thatDogwas stronger than he was, andsohe left the bagofmoney bythefording.Dogwas very pleasedwithhimself.Whenthefish cametothebankofthe river,whichwastheboundaryoftheirkingdom,they saw Anansi. Butwhatcouldtheydo?Hewasrunningthroughtheforest singing,"Bim-bam..."

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218ANANCYANDSORRELLOUISEBENNETT ONCE upona Chrisrmas Evemorningir wasGrandMarkermorningandBredda Ananey srood by his gareway warchingalhhepeoplegoingdown ro marker.Thebaskersonrheir headsandrhehamperson rhedonkeyswere laden wirh fruirs and flowers andgroundprovisions. Anancy calledour,"HappyGrandMarker, everybody.""Thankyou, Bredda Anancy," replied rhe people. Anancy said [Q himself,"Wara crossespanme, irlooklike say everybodypickoffeveryrhing offa every rree an carrygawnaGrandMarker."Anancy groaned as a carr-loadoforanges and grapefruirs wene by. "Massi me massa, demdon'rleave a ring ena de field demfeme ro scuffle." Anancy waired unei! everybody had passedonrheir way ro rhe markerandrhen he wene from field ro field in searchofscufflings. "War a hard serofpeoplesah," Anancy grieved, "dem cleanoureveryrhingauradefiel'dem,norachenksa scufflingfeme."SuddenlyAnancy exclaimed, "War a sineing sored."Andhe broke alongsralkofalongred plane and heldir [Q his nose. "Ie don'rgarnosweer smell," said Anancy, "bur ir prerryfelookpan.Iwonderwarirgoodfor?"Anancypicked a fewmoresralksofrheredplamandsruckrhemin his rrousers waisr,mumbling ro himself. "Well den,since youisrhe only ring I can sc;uffle, I scuffling you,'RedSiming',Idon'rknowwar Igoing ro dowid you yer. Idon'rknowifyou can ear,burImighreven haffe earyou."Anancylaugh, "Kya, kya, kya, kya."Hedancedandsangall rhe way co rheGrandMarker.WhenhegarrhereAnancylookedaroundar all rhe beauriful sralls, fulloffruirkind,andfoodkindandcookedfoodandfoodcooking.Anancy aid co him self, "I will have ro workupme brains and find a way co raisesomerhing."Hesroppedinfromofa srall wirhplemyoraheiri apples, poi need ro rhered plane in his rrousers' waisrandsaid rorhesrall keeper, "Hi, missis, swapmesome afiyou red ringsfisomeafemered rings."

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LuuiseBmmll 219Thewomanaskedhim, "Wat fiyou redtingsname?"Anancy said, "Swap me first."Thewomansaid, "Tell me first."Thewomanreplied, "Tell me first an I willswapyou." Anancy said, "Swap me first."Thewomansaid, "Tell me first."Thewomaninthepumpkinstallnexttothewoman'sotaheitistallshouted,"Missis, if yuwantdi red ting, whydon'tyou juStgrabit away from dilittleman."Anancylaughed, "Kya, kya, kya, kya,"andshouredback, "Grab itifyoubad."INTOTHEPOTThemangrabbedafter Ananey, Anancy said, "Slip," andran.Theman chased AnancythroughtheMarket.Severalpeoplejoinedinthechaseshouting"Tief, rief, catch de tief." Anancykeptslippingthem,dartinginandoutofthe stalls until he reached thehominystall.Thehominy-lady had a big jester-par fullofboilingwater onthefire.She was just about todropthe hominy cornintothePOtwhen Anancy flungthebundleofredplantintotheboilingwater.Thehominy-ladyscreamed "wat datyouthrowintomePOt)"Thecrowdrushuptothepotandoneman exclaimed, "It red likebloodIItfavourwine."Anancy lookedintothepotandlaughed, "Kya, kya, kya, kya, itdon'tonlylooklikewine,"heshouted, "is wine.""Winelwine!"the crowd exclaimed, "make me taste it."SO realAnancymumbledtohimself, "Poor me boy, ahopeisnotpoison."Themanwhohad started the chase rushed forward,grabbeda spoon and tastedtheli9uid.Hemadeuphis face and said, "It don'tgotno taste." Anancy said, "It don'tfinishbrewyet. ItwantsomesugarAIi [[Ie gingerA pieceofcinnamonAndthenyoustirsoAndthenyou stir so."

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220 Anancy andSorrelAndAnancy rook a littleofallthespices fromthehominy-lady's stallandthrewthemintothepot.Anancy tastedthebrew, "Kya, kya, kya, kya," Anancylaughed."Itraste nice, like real-realwine."Thehominylady said "I tsmellnice."AnancylookedfondlyinrothePOtandwhispered inwonderment. "How you so real, so real, soreal'"Somebodyinthecrowdshouted,"ItnameSo-real'Sellmetm-pencewutaSo-real!"Thecrowdrookupinchorus,"Tru-penceSorreal, trupenceSorreal." Anancy brewedandsold so-rcal all day,itwasthemostpopulardrinkattheGrandMarket.Bytheendoftheday intmeJamaicanfashionSo-realhadbecomeSorrel.Andfromthatday ro coday Sorrel is a famousChristmasdrink. Is Anancymakeit.Jackmandoremenochosenone.

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EXTRACTFROMMEINKAMPFA. E..T.HENRYWICKED LANDLADY I was nineteen I was offered aclerkshipwitha firmofsolicitorsnotfifty miles fromKingston.UponreachingthetownI was toldthatboardandlodgingarrangementshad already beenmadewith"aprominentlady." Ihavesincehadachronicsuspicionofallpersonscallingthemselves"ladies."AndI will tell youwhy:I was paid fiftyshillingsper weekoutofwhichthe"lady"tookthirty-five.Andforthethirty-fiveshillingsI wassuppliedwithafurnishedroomwhichIthendescribed astheMeccaofall mos
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222 JHeinKampf extractofrice wasaccompaniedwitha finger ofbanana.As forthebanana,itseemsthatattheshootingofthesremofwhichmy finger was ajuniormember,therootwasattackedbyeitherLeafspotorPanamadi easeorboth.Consequentlymy finger ofbananawassufferingfroman acute attackofarresteddevelopment.Itwasthe SOrt ofbanananaythetypeofphenomenon-whichwouldhavemadeabotanistexclaim:"Thiswouldhavebeenabananabutforthevagariesofnature."ThosewerethedayswhenIboasted a goodappetiteandIlongedforthesolidifyingpropertiesofoursturdygroundprovisionsafaJamaique.ButofthistherewerebuttwOrepresentativeswhose attitude inmyplatewassoinarticulatethatlike RachelofoldIweptinmy heart andwouldnotbecomforted.ThetwOgroundprovisionrepresentativeswereonematchbox-sizesliceofyamoftheSaintVincentvariety-commonlyreferredtoas"come-to-help-us";andrhe neckandthroat-secrionofa giraffe-look.ingcocoaofthe"Iefr-man"variety. As forthemeat,it wasundeniablethatacowhadbeenslaughteredinthose parts recently.AndI ampreparedtograntthatthe"lady"accepted at least inprinciple-myentitlementtoatouchofanimalprotein,fortherewas apretentiousslabofbeefon a platterbeforeme.ButI was, itseemed,regardedastheleastoftheapostles,andwaspermittedneithertocutnorto carve. So,ofmeat,myportiontooktheformmoreofsmellingthanofeating.Albeit,thelady'schinaware,crockeryandcutlerywereasimperialisricadisplayas I ever saw.Thesettingwas majesticandawe-inspiring.Therewere fish forks,butno fish; desserrspoon,butnodesert;a vasewithflowers artificial flowers.Therewaselaborateandeloquentgraceaying.I,ofcourse,refusedtojoin in any formofthanksgivingontheimpleandhonestgroundthatthefood mylandladywasthankingtheLord forhavingreceived was, in realitymyfood, forwhichI wasgivingninehoursperdaytoa firmofsolicitors;andIcouldnotconscientiouslyjoininanyvoteofthanksfor her havingbeenpermittedtorobanddefraudme.No'thrice ahundredtimesno'Thewomanwasobtainingmoneyby falsepretences-a samfie -andwasaskingtheLordtoratifyhermethods-toblessherill-gottengains.

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/:/. E.T. Hem)' 223Therewas a litrle foodshopin (Own, whichIsoon discovered. The meals were robust and buoyanr, hale and hearry -Jamaicanin every sense. Crisp and inviting spratslaysidebyside with Imposing and elephanrinc jacks; huge bowlsofrice and peas with Raw-flaw and bragadap ro boor.Imade friends with the bragadap man;broughtenlightenmenr ro hisshopand established myselfasa son ofpocket editionofDr. Johnson in his be t coffee house days. But the coarsenessof the food affected my sromach andmyepicurean sense has revolted against all food shops since.I tendered myresignation (0the firm. hinring darklythatmygoingw'ould bea great loss; but hoping thatitwould be able to get somebody else whose talenrs(thoughpoorer than mine) would assist it in living down the tragedy; and finally,byperseverance. indusrrv and the inevitabil ityofthemarchoftime, the fIrmwould once again regain its prestige and come back into its own.I furrher stated in my letterofresignaionthatIwould do nothing (0 hunthefirmand urgeditto.asitwere. stand at ease. AndIhave never done anything to ruinthatfirmofsolicirors;thoughIcould merelybyshouting"Police'"Iwas onlv avouth;butIhad a senseofhonour.Ileft the rown and the firm.IwasinKingston again after two monrhs. But beforeIleft the town,Ihad made a great impression.Iwas a young manofgenius,Ifelt, andIdidnothing (0 concealmyfeelings upon the poinr.Ihad flung myself about;Ihad hushed the (Own's windbags and bags-o'-knowledge;Iwas confidenrof myself. WhenIwas laving down the law upon a poinrIwould brook no inrerruption.Iwasa young half starved prodigyofaninrellectual -ofvery great promise who spokewithvillagedonorsand lawyers andputthem (Q flighr. AndDfmyfuture, more anon.Iwas again in Kingstoninsearchofa living andofcompanionshipofbooks, whichIloved;ofspiritual alliances.

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MeinKampf -extractASTRANGEEMPLOYER I was22I wao employedbyamerchantofthecityandparishofKingsron.Myemployer couldnotread and the only writing he coulddorooktheformofa 'lueer seriesofslanting srrokes which purporredtobe his signature.Sometimeshe would make twelve strokes;sometimessixteen.AndI have seenhimmakeasmanyasrwentyuntilthebanksentback his che'lue withthecomment,"IrregularSignature."Inorder to expedite the businessofthe off!e I decided to putaSlOpto the"IrregularSignarure"affair. So Istoodoverhimwheneverhe was signinga che'lue andwhenIthoughttwelvesrrokeswerealreadymadeIwouldcontemptuouslysay"that'senough,sir."Hiscusromersinthe country parts were not always punCtual in settlingtheiraccounts and he used to dicrarethemostobscene letters tothemin aloudvoice,callinguponthemtodotheirduty.Duringhisdictationhistempergenerally rose ro apitchwherehegenuinelybelievedthatI wasthecustomerwhowouldnotpay and from amouthchronically foamy,hespatonmy clothes; beat my shoulders;thumpedthe table; sworeandthreatenedloudenoughto be heard several chains away. Indeed, peoplewhopassed the placeandheardhimdictatingusedtogoaboutthecitytellingtheir friendsthatthey had heardmybossgivingmehell and had seenhimactually beating me.Hereisa specimenofhis letters: "John BrownYou cock-eyebruteFarEnoughPIO Sir -Yuskylarkingwid my money yusonofab--;butefyutinkdat yugwinetiefmeyumekbigmistake. A see yuandyu wifeina newmorocyartwOweeks ago.Howyubuybigmotocyarandwonpay yu debt' Don'tyu see yuisa wutliss man'"But agivinyu diswarning;ifyudoanpay mymoneyby Satidayofdis week a shall sue de account in deSupremeCurtcompanion(accompanied)withaBankruptcyNoticeandrunyououtabusinessyudyam wutlissdog."Andhe had arubberstampin the officewiththewords "FI ALNOTICE"which was ferociously applied with red inktotheviolent letter. Hereisanotherspecimen: Mr. and Mrs.JacobSmithMount Sinai,HorebPIO Dear SarandMadamSeemtomeyutek yuaccountmekjoke.Dat'sfeyu

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A.E.T.Henry225business. Isnodyam joke wid me; and dis skylarkinisonly gwine rohumbugyugoodself. Cause anatlosingmymoney-atellingyudatstraight.Andyucanputit in yu pipe and smoke. A hear say yu childsgointoWolmer's.Howyu can sen yu childs roWalmer'sandholeupmy money?"Whataboutmy childs?Ifa doangetmemoneybyrerumpost a tellingmesolicitorstosuedehellourayu-yudyam tief." And,ofcourse:"FINALNOTICE."Andhereisa finalone:-"NarhanielPowers Rackabessa Dear Sir: A wrice yu rill a tiad.Yuseemcobe ason-of-a-b--man;butagwinegetevenwidyu.Doantinkyugwinero nyamourmymoney.Abrutemanlike you shouldgoa workhouse. Treemonthsagoyusayyuwaitinondegingercrop.Gingercropcomeangoneannomoney.Denyu tell nedda lieboutcoffee crop. Coffee crop finish; no money.Denyusay yusonin Merica sendin yu sometins.Yuson mussa dead.Warnewlie yugwinetell now' Agivingyu a chance to pay me my money by Chuesday. An if yu doan pay me a show yuwhatisit." And"FINALNOTICE."Ofcourse I nevertookdownhis obscenitieswhichwereunprintable.1wouldlistentohisfulminationsandthenwritealetterin Englishtothe customer. Andashe couldn't read the letter in any case, he invariably signed it. Occasionallyhewould ask while signingit: "Yu write dismanastrangletter?" And I wouldsay"yes."

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INREVERSEWata joyful news, MissMattie,I feel likemeheartgwineburs'JamaicapeoplecolonizinEnglandin reverse.Bydehundred,by det'ousanFromcountryandfromtown;Byde ship-load bythe plane-load JamaicaisEnglandboun'.DemapouroutaJamaica,EverybodyfutureplanIsfegetabig-timejobAn'settlein demotherIan'.Wata Island'Watapeople'Man an' woman,oldan'youngJusapackabagan'baggageAn'turnhistOryupsidedung!Somepeopledon'tlike travel,ButfeshowdemloyaltyDemall aopenupcheapfareToEnglandagency.An'week by weekdemshippin'offDemcountrymanlike fire, Feimmigrate an' populateDeseat a deEmpire.226

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Gona see howlifeisfunnyGona see de runabout,Jamaicanlive fe boxbreadOutaEnglish people mout'.For wen clem catch a t.ngiand An' start play dem differentrole,Somewill settle downtoworkAn'SomewiIl settlefede dole. Jane say dedole isnottoobad Because dey payin' she Twopoundsa weekfeseek ajobDatsuit her dignity.Me say Janenever fin'workAt the darehowshedahlook,For all day she staypanAuntFancouchAn'read love-storybook. Watadevilment a England!Demface war anbravede worse,ButI'mwonderin'how dem gwinestan'Colonizinin reverse. LouiseBennett227