We all crowded inside the court to see the spectacle better than cinema better than a game of cards. We chased it round and round the redoubtable Mrs Imam had murdered her husband and made the hacking complete.
Why come to us for the weapon? I wondered when she had the axe in her hand much more easy and if she had why not say a word in her own defence but the yearning to know what the trial would bring had made nonsense of my efforts to understand it was years later I asked the right questions.
Indeed if I had not been overwhelmed by everyone's certainty I would have fared better as a amateur sleuth. The game was up for the Mrs I thought the poor lady. Someone spat out the wife "should just divorce the man not kill him. Most unsuitable almost back into the dark ages".
"Pa it was pa." I almost laughed.
His wit had seen that many people might want some refreshment so he was selling lemonade as a gesture and saying he would do it at the right price. Mother said it was not lemonade but sherbet. But that was a exaggeration.
He had asked for the lemons from Gold and how she gave him permission for the stuff because he had fooled around with her daughter after being with her. Gold was so easy when it came to him.
"I can't remain faithful to grandmothers. Mon cheri." He would smile he was learning French. "Must improve at all costs and do well in life."
"Dad you look strange."
"Now behave your daddy is going to be a great man."
"Foolish." Said Gold.
"Isn't he wonderful." Sighed Zeks. She had become pregnant and was hardly complaining as she knew how much he liked children.
Back at the court where this ugly thing was happening the dark sober thoughts came the thing which mattered to me was the woman was not going to hang.
Then I lost interest went out got my lemonade and drunk deeply. There was nothing else to be when the world was so busy and sunny. The brilliance of the cloudless sky and the way the formations had stopped in the sky made me think and feel alive. When the wife and mother was bundled inside the cage I was almost oblivious to her plight where she gave me a look so odd. How could I have forgotten her already?
I felt a surge of some guilt as if the very remains had got inside me of her cage.
"My children." She whimpered.
"Well what she say." She stopped.
Then went into the cage in a mutinous silence." How come that kid always around?"
"Some poor stupid man's child does not have anyone always alone."
"No such thing."
"Well don't be shy."
"Daddy. Grandpa and the rest please a little help will be very nice."
"They called pa a stupid man and I a stupid kid."
"Well you are stupid." Owned the man in question," but I am not."
He beat up three men in one day that took a lot of courage and I went and drowned myself in the lemonade. After my refreshment knowing that dad would count the litre I poured water in it to top it up.
There that done it was over and then I went to watch some boys play football and there was a ring which played cards he did it so adroitly. He had all my money in one day.
When dad got around he pulled me by the ears.
"Are you a fool?"
"It is a trick now let me show you."
"So your birth will not be wasted."
"I do not want that."
"To please your father."
I had firm principles because I knew I could not con anyone what was dad thinking? My behaviour would tell anybody where the bloody card was.
Then we were interrupted by the wailing of someone.
The wailing did not cease so we had to stop our bickering to find out.
Because of the crisis in our department you have been suspended said the wailing girl. She had lost it. Her mother had done it this time. By chopping off she began to laugh. Then went drunk like into the very barn and sent herself flying with a rope. It happened more than once so we were used to it. It was not right to stop anyone with doing their own business. The undertaker had changed and they were all bustling for new clients.
" She did not deny the facts she admitted the murder by nodding her head."
"The sins of the fathers down to the heirs or the mothers."
"She was lost cause."
She they were worried to say did not die. Someone called a doctor reached her in time. Most natural being a good doctor. That was what they were for. The approval rating was high and there was not much else to be done but to ask her if she had lunch.
She was shivering when I went and asked her that. I did not mean to offend being a child. But when years later I had a narrow escape from being killed. Someone asked me to go to lunch as well. We are never the same the echoes and past echoes down the years as if floating in a stream.
She looked daggers at me. Strange that always made me feel alright.
She was not as attractive as her sister. So I assumed she the guilty party. In real painful sobs she was being led away out of the town into somewhere where she could recover.