Cartwheels to Heaven
I can hear her running up and down the corridor singing those pop songs with really lewd lyrics that I’m hoping she doesn’t yet know what they mean. Sam, my husband wants me to go out and read her the riot act. He didn’t fight in the war to have to listen to all this noise. I want to say “no, you fought for her freedom” but the grumpy old sod wouldn’t appreciate that and I don’t want to hear any more of his complaints about the younger generation.
I love to hear her. I love the way she cartwheels. I remember doing that years ago my dress falling over my face exposing my school knickers. Not realising our neighbour Mr Pickering was taking photos of me with his old Brownie. In his dark room he’d produce images to dispatch all over the county in plain brown envelopes. My Mammy nearly killed him when some distant cousin in
wrote her to ask if it was me. Mr Pickering walked with a limp for ages and I
found his camera in tiny bits at the end of our garden by the composting bin.
Shame really I would have liked to have taken photos of my own, the Fairies at
the bottom of the garden, Bridie’s rabbit with all its babies, Sister Mary
Evangeline’s beard. The last one makes me laugh out loud. Sam looks at me like
I’ve gone mad, maybe I have. How can you be eighty years of age but still know
how it feels to be a ten year old? County Kildare
I open the flat door and yell “Darcy”
What a pretentious name to christen a child from this estate, although I’m sure she’s never had holy water anywhere near her.
“Yes Mrs Higgins”
I hand her a fifty pence piece.
“Mr Higgins wants you to have this, he loves hearing your singing”
She smiles the smile of an angel. That’s what Sam fought for in the war to end all wars.