Jamaica Gleaner
Published: Sunday | February 1, 2009
Home : Arts &Leisure
SUNDAY SAUCE: Gillian versus her conscience
Oxy Moron, Contributor

The light from the streetlamps glistens in the gutter water running along the narrow lane. Rats as big as cats rummage the piles of garbage strewn along the sides of the road. In an open lot, a homeless man, yearning for the warmth of his mama's bosom, sings himself a lullaby. A light drizzle damps his bed of grass. Across from the lot, from a urine-drenched corner, a rivulet of blood runs toward the stink gutter water.

A young woman, cloaked in a long black coat and standing on stiletto heels, looks at the blood. She knows where it is coming from. She saw the pimp stab her friend over and over and over again. Her own drug-saturated body quivers, but her mind is numb. It has been such since her mom told her to stay away from men, numb from her cussing and disparaging remarks.

vicious men

Your mom told you how vicious men could be, how much of a dog they were, that they only wanted you to be their possession. But, the depraved alcoholic stepfather with whom she lay nightly was no different, and she loved him. Do you remember when she tearfully told him how much she loved him after he gave her a sound beating? You had to cover your ears with the pillow when he slapped her in response. She screamed and screamed, and again professed her undying love for him.

The young woman walks away from the blood and disappeared into the dark night, the dark night when her stepfather ripped the clothes from her fragile body and had his way. She remembers the beatings her mom gave her when she told her. That she could be so wicked and deceitful was deserving of a beating. Anger wracks her waiflike frame. The gun is heavy under her cloak. The pimp who stabbed her friend had gone around the corner into another lane. Once, he had raped her too. She follows him. She hears her mother's warning to stay away from men. She isn't staying away from this one.

change your life

Where are you going? You have all the time in the world to change your life. You let men, sex and drugs drag you through the gutters of life. You wallow in self-pity and play the blame game. In the still of the night, you walk the streets looking for love, that unrealistic concept that fairy tales are made of. What you find are debauchery and decay. Run away, run as if there's no tomorrow. For when tomorrow comes, it will find you used, bruised and abused. The man who killed your friend will meet his end. But, for now, run baby, run.

The stilettos angrily stab at the pavement. She sees the pimp coming up the lane. His face is a silhouette of black. But, it is her stepfather's face that she sees. He nears her. She smells her stepfather's rum breath. The gun is in her hand. She feels her stepfather's calloused fingers caressing her body. The pimp is six feet away. His murderous face shone in the glare of a streetlamp. He sees her. He's startled. Gillian presses the trigger. Pai!


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