Monday, 28 June 2021

'Legerdemain - V 2' by Ataur Bacchus

“My mitts is frore”, the toddler said, as her father lifted her on board.

After a leisurely, reasonable feed, she had chosen from the centre piece on the saloon table, awara, the oldest and oddest thing in the Garden of Eden. We suggested that the best option for the night was to set the child on blankets in the fore-cuddy, where we forward-five were laid-on guardians. We winced and shivered at the crunch of infant adze pitted against the almost impervious awara flesh.

We did not have to wake her up as we approached the dock on the mainland.

“Aunt Phyllis, Aunt Phyllis”, she shouted at the mist-shrouded spectres.  One spectre waved back.

“Aunt Phyllis, is that an ice-cream truck?” Her teeth were yellow from snagged awara fibres.

And Number Five among us, Old Peter, lay preacher, and weekend helper at the funeral parlour, when he wasn’t too hung over, stepped from behind his winch.

“Little lamb, who made thee? Does any know who made thee?”

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