Academic journal article Hecate

The Handcuffs

Academic journal article Hecate

The Handcuffs

Article excerpt

She sits across from me, at the laminated table.

Head bent, with distant tired eyes.

Her rheumatoid beaten hands clutching her teacup.

She's got her cotton apron on, a uniform.

Her formal status ... half-caste Melanesian maid.

Proud, strong.

The air thick, warm ... aroma of tea fills the kitchen.

Lino sticky beneath my feet,

The handcuffs lie on the table,

metal hard, heavy, cold.

"Where you get these from Grandma?"

She picks them up, turns them over,

puts them down in front of her,

With distant eyes, she signs,

begins to speak in her softly toned voice,

They tried to take me away,

"Who? Grandma"

Ohh them bastards - Police

"Where?"

MISSON - a place where me and my Gudgal people didn't belong.

No... them coppers weren't gonna crumble my soul, that day

With fingers tight around her teacup: Too proud of a black woman for 'em

I was...

Grabbed me off the dusty main street,

put me in a cold cement cell.

I've sat in the cold and dark before ... but not like that

Fought them ... I did.

I read their books, you know... bout white man's law,

Acts ... policies ... their inhumanities.

Huh ... got me in the street, they did.

Locked me up, alone I was.

Her eyes turn steely, but not as hard as the metal that lay before us.

Huh: Activated a hate, fear and misery in me - forgiveness left me that day.

I watched the tear form in her eye, flow down her cheek. …

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