10143 Gold -
|Posted: Wed May 05, 2010 3:36 am Post subject: PORT ROYAL (8)Death of L'Olonnais
|Sleeping Dog follows a deer trail through the jungle, Coagula is not far behind. Port Royal is not far away but the jungle makes it seem so. The heavy growth thins as they approach a salt marsh. The trail remains firm. They come to a clearing at the waters edge. The narrow beach is surrounded by reeds, a palm lends shade. They collect driftwood from the shores litter. Coagula starts the campfire while Sleeping Dog organizes items items from his sack onto his poncho, spread on the sand. He prepares an elixir. Coagula wanders the perimeter of the clearing. Tiny waves lap the shore. A gentle breeze keeps flying insects at bay and stirs the reeds. Shore birds twittering accompany Sleeping Dogs' incantations. When the chanting stops Coagula returns and sits. Before passing the brew, Sleeping Dog lets a few drops of the oily mixture into a bowl of water. Fifteen minutes of waiting.
"I don't feel anything, give me some more." Responding with a negative nod Sleeping Dog gazes, mesmerized, by the patterns of the oily colors in the bowl.
" I want mo..O.." now I feel the first flash of nausea, the bitter taste rises up me craw. 'Tis a struggle to keep it down. I teeter, my feet are numb, into the reeds to vomit. The clumps of sea grasses look like the tops of heads, hair all tousled. I step from one to another to keep my boots out of the shallow water. A cloud shields the afternoon sun and the breeze picks up. The reeds are clicking to each other. the clumps of grass seem higher now. Could the tide be ebbing? No, the mounds are rising, they wobble as I stand on them. The wind whispers to me through the reeds, "Maricabobo- Maracabomo " The rising clumps are fully heads, the heads of me mates wot was lost at sea, and at Maricabo and Gibralter and the bad luck that followed after. I fear they'll rise further, full bodied as a ghastly roll-call,wounds agaping, dripping the waters , all slimy with muck. I fear they'll be grasping at me, clinging with fraternal hugs. I dash about, splashing for to exit, but Ay'ym lost in this maze, while thems all "Mariricacabobo-ing"
"AHOY", 'tis Sleeping Dog restoring me sense of direction, and I crashes through the reeds to him. He helps me wet boots off and I puts 'em, to dry, near the fire. Looking at the glowing embers, below the flames I see...Has it ever happened to you -reader, that embers look like a castle or a city or,,,a face.. the face of L'Olonnais! The burning wood crackles and sparks and the face speaks.
"Harken to the tale of my death, Coagula, and if justice was well served. I, with some men were ashore as a hunting party, to scour up some victuals for we'd run out of food. While the men secured the beached longboat and unloaded the muskets, I ventured a reconnaissance alone and unarmed thinking the place deserted. As I wandered past the brush and deeper into the jungle a band of Indians sprang out pointing their arrows at me. I was surrounded. Before I could shout out they threw me to the ground and poked me with spears. But they only wounded me in the leg, and I thought, "Thank God!' soon my brave boys would be coming for me. The Indians removed all my clothing and began arguing about who should get what items and who should get ME. They pushed me through the jungle, slapping me and biting their arms, forcing me to realize that they intended to eat me! Each wanted a share and the wanted to divide me up then and there, but the chief wanted to avenge the death of his son and wanted to take me home alive so that the women might look me over and have some fun and everyone would get together for a great feast. Tied and trussed, I was dumped into a canoe and brought to the chiefs village. Everyone came to have a look at me. They were singing and dancing their dinner songs. The women slapped me and tore at my beard, shouting ' I will take revenge for my friends', telling me how I would be cooked. One woman cut my eyelids off with a piece of sharp glass and smiling directly to my face munched and swallowed them. The fire was ready. Amid shouts of merriment and good spirits they dismembered my parts to roast them one at a time. I was still alive to see very small children biting chunks of me off long, pointed skewerd extry crispt, tossing gobbets of my fat to their dogs, until I fainted from loss of blood, My last breath left me the moment they drove a stake into my body as a spit for roasting torso and head together. I did not feel the fire. I do not know how the ceremony ended"
Aye, L'Olonnais got his just desserts. I can't fathom how he understood what the Indians said, but I truly believe 'twas his spirit speaking to me in the embers, fire and smoke and I was purged, truly purged of my guilty feelings. The fire had near burned itself gone but we kicked sand on it and left.
I was thirsty... O...My jaw ached no more. My teeth were longer and fully retractable and I my thirst was for blood!