Friday, October 9, 2015

Nightmare Fuel, Day the Ninth - Enter the Immigrant, With Bananas

Cartoonist Alice Glytxh said - with context that I honestly don' t understand - that "bananas are the most vile thing on the planet". 

Ray Comfort said - showing a complete lack of understanding of the basic history of agriculture - that bananas are proof of the existence of god.

Todays image contains bananas, which are tasty, nutritious -- and a horrifying symbol of the evils of colonialism and the horrors inflicted on our neighbors to the south.

Today's story follows.

"Enter the Immigrant, With Bananas"

I'd not felt this way in a long time.

That's not true. I'd never felt this way.

I know that I should have, that it should be part of how I was birthed, but I didn't yet know then, didn't understand. They say I drove the ox-cart, but that wasn't true. I was the oxcart, the skeletal beasts lumbering forth under the power of invisible spirits pulling at a decaying yoke, harnessed to a polished-wood cart, open inside for the carrying of treasure.

I was an invader. I took. Not as many as they feared, not as many as they thought, but I did take. If they heard the clatter of the wheels on hard-packed earthen streets, heard the rattling of the oxen in their harness, heard hoofsteps... they knew. I was coming, and I'd take. Shamefully their fingers would move brow to breast, shoulder to shoulder, invoking the protection of another invader from the same shores.

It never helped.

But that, I said, was long ago.

I'd seen, perhaps,  score of generations live and die here. This shore soaked into the bones that are all I am. Then, the tallyman, then the soldiers.

They were new, as I once was. They took, as I once did. They killed, as I do.

It's enough. These people, this place, is mine to reap. Not theirs. So, I ride the oxcart down streets now paved with stone, come in the nighttime hours to the homes of the ones from another distant place, those seeking a different kind of gold than I once sought. I taste in their spirits from where they came. I'll follow.

The journey is a long one. I could go overland, but follow the great boats under the sea. Oxcarts are not made for the seafloor, and generations rise and fall as I travel.

Generations are born and die on the world above. The oxcart, now lined with straw for the safe transport of bananas, rumbles undersea. I begin to forget my home, my history, even my name. There is only the drive forward, only the fire burning in my bones, still unquenched by the sea.

Sometime along the way I meet a stranger, walking the ocean floor. A very young spirit, some sort of hero-warrior travelling from near where I'm going to to near where I started. He wields a  wooden club, calls himself a pirate. I wish him well, but he is young, so very very young. The smooth ash cudgel still loosely grips in his hand, he continues on his way as I continue on mine, whispering words of mercy as I whisper words of vengeance.

I wish him well.

At long last I arrive. Not at the golden door with its welcome lamp, not even at the working entrance with loaders and unloaders, the kind of place the tallyman would favor. No, I arrive at the white sands where the grandsons of the grandsons of those I came seeking go to play. It's been a long time under the sea. Impossible multitudes of bananas spill forth from the oxcart as I leave the ocean, littering the shore as wooden wheels crunch against rocky sand.

I leave the green fruit behind to ripen, to rot, to feed the gulls. It doesn't matter. On each bundle is a sticker,on each sticker an accusation for those who understand.

I am far from the land which birth me, yet I've arrived. I'll leave the banana-choked shore behind me, my cart empty. I am empty.

I hunger.

I will take.

The ones who live here deserve no less. 

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