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One Thousand Clubs and a Mole

I dreamt of Josephine. O Josephine. I was going to see the girl of my dreams. I've been yearning to see her for some time now. And here I stood, facing her ebony door. My heart is racing at 5000 light years per second. I can hear her voice from where I stand. I'm not too far from a cardiac arrest (Aw, Yehowah). Thoughts of retreat are now flashing like neon signs in my head. I see my younger brother in my head (what is he doing there?) jeering and calling me a 'john' boy. My fears seem to have reduced by half (now that was fast). I gather what's left of me and rap twice on the dark surface and prepare for blackout. The door opens and Josephine appears beaming at me. I feel like melting (if I haven't melted already). She hugs me lightly and this time I actually stagger. This is going too well. I beam all my teeth to the heavens, grinning at all the angels and the old man in a humongous golden chair. "I'm never waking up," I say to myself. I enter her room and simultaneously feel something cold poking my posterior. I ignore it but then it becomes more persistent. "Kojo, Kojo, ah! Daddy is calling you." What?! Philo? What in Jupiter is she doing in my dream? "Herh, get out of my dream. Go, go!" Now I feel a kick to my behind. This girl is going to bruise my butt when she's done. Josephine is fading away (this can't be happening). I change tactics. "I beg. Please, one minute. I beg." An aggressive kick sends me tumbling to the world of the living. I hold my butt in pain, struggling to my feet."Awush," I let out a hapless squeal. Now I'm not too far from tears. It's only 1:15 in the morning. I wrap myself in my blue and white school cloth. It's chilly and my ears feel funny. Starting out dazed for my dad's room, I knock over the actively burning mosquito coil. "Focking!" I curse under my breath kicking it even further away. Satisfied, I move on.

My dad is pacing (why can't this Olu sleep eh?). Philo is at his side. They seem to be looking for something. Representing to my right in an unkempt beard and bloodshot eyes is my cousin Thomas. He too is rubbing consolably at his butt! Then I see it. My dad is holding some sort of a pole and Philo, a hammer. He turns to me, his eye balls almost out of their sockets, "Kojo, I'm sleeping with a big black rat." He motions behind the door and I turn. Behind the door is a similar pole he's carrying, three fufu pestles ranging in length and size, a saw (yes a saw), two big brooms, some rusty iron rods, a garden rake and a cutlass. I feel like making a joke but quickly decide against it (This is neither the time nor place). Thomas wields the brooms, one in each hand. He weighs them and nods. My dad begins to turn to see what's keeping me so I quickly grab one of the fufu pestles and get into position.

"HEY!" my dad shouts in alarm. Now all I see is a black blur and the rat is gone, too fast for me to react. We start to do what humans do best. We trade blames. Philo starts, calling me an incompetent fart and that all I know to do best is to deplete the kitchen's food stores. She's not too far from the truth but to bring it up at a time like this was just unfair. I hit back by saying she's just around to make our number even and that she was just a waste of our time and that the rat's. My old man ignores us and keeps poking with the stick in the direction he saw the rat run. A final harsh poke and the black rat is out having had enough of the abuse my old man was generously handing him. Two brooms ram into it from Thomas a mile away. Philo is on the bed like a flash and screaming frantic babblings. It runs my way at phrenetic speed."Kai," I jump and thrust the fufu pestle in its direction. It takes a partial hit (mostly because I can't aim right) and runs back to hide. My eyes are wide, my heart is racing. That was no rat! Rats don't have elongated snouts and fossorial feet! Thomas heads for the little armoury and switches from the brooms to a rake. I switch for a cutlass and my dad goes for a shovel. Philo is still holding her hammer to her chest on the bed (Jesus! She's shivering). I check the time.

It's 3:45 in the morning. The mole slips onto the bed and into one of the pillows .Philo had had enough and flies out leaving her hammer behind. My dad moves to strike, his shovel raised. I start to think of Josephine when Thomas taps me in the head. I shoot him a nasty look which he ignores and raising his rake to shoulder level motions for my dad. Round two had begun and we were one man less. I moved to back my old man who was smashing furiously at the pillows. Thomas guarded the rear. Our morning had only begun.

by D.S. Senanu

 Posted by: D.S. Senanu


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quot-img-1The cruelest lies are often told with sunny smiles.

By: Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe quot-img-1
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