Writers Corner

    Booga Town - Rebecca Stinson

    25F84838-EFDA-4EE9-BFD9-54BC62AB83F7

    I'm Picka, Picka Blake. Yes it's an unusual name but so was everything else back in those days. Daddy thought it was a fitting name 'cause' as he would say, "I 'Picka' over every creature on this earth." He was talking about me of course. The name fit right in with the odd canopy of trees that nestled the town like furniture or the little, neatly positioned homes that looked like they belonged to gnomes instead of Black folks. And we took pride in them lil' houses and we claimed them trees and all that was under it as "ours". We didn't have much but we knew what belonged to us.

    You see, back then there was nothing strange about waking up to the smell of fresh rain. There was nothing like it, other than mama's fresh brewing coffee, her smokin' hot biscuits, drizzling sausage and gressiling bacon popping like music. Daddy loved the smell of morning breakfast and mama loved my daddy. The morning fragrance always proved they still had it and nothing compared to that smell of fresh rain and morning breakfast; nothing. You see, we lived in Booga Town. It was a small, little community back then, filled with lots of love and nosy people. It was a great place to raise children because everybody looked out for each other. It was that fresh air, and cut grass that smelled so great in the summer and in winter it was the wood burning in that "pot belly" stove that told a story through your nose.

    Well let's begin. One beautiful morning, when everything seemed just perfect, my daddy decided to work on the car. He loved that Black Chevy and was always doing something to it. I danced around the yard, as usual, in my blue dress with knee socks. I was truly the apple of his eye being an only child. My daddy valued me and both my parents loved me so. Well, as long as I sung my lil' songs and behaved he would eventually let me sit in the drivers' seat of that ol' car and pretend to drive. Those seemed like the best days ever. And on this particular day which seemed like an ordinary one I heard my grandpa come up on the hill, hollering at my daddy. I could slightly see what looked like Uncle Dan in the distance.

    "Come on and fight like a man", he said, more agitated than his usual self. His riffle dragged loosely on a strap over his shoulder and he could barely walk in a straight line. I stood back on the porch, waiting for my daddy to calm things down as he usually did.

    "Pa, go on now. You just drunk."

    But on this day, granddaddy just kept going.

    "Come on and fight me like a man." His speech was slurred but the words were clear, as he fired several shots into the air. Even as my daddy grabbed his sweat rag and turned his focus to granddaddy, the gun shots and rage didn't cease.

    "I have a daughter out here. Don't you mess around and shoot her."

    But Granddaddy just wouldn't stop. The liquor had a hold on him and my daddy just happened to have a pistol in the fender of that Black Chevy. Before grandpa could make one more move toward us, daddy had shot him in the leg. Next thing I knew, my Uncle Dan came running down the hill, as fast as lightening.

    "You shot my Daddy? Now I'm gonna kill you!"

    Well Daddy without giving it a second thought, picked up that gun and shot Uncle Dan too. By that time, I'm crying like crazy and scared as hell because I'm just a little girl. And these two nuts are laying on the ground, kicking like horses from the pain.

    "Daddy! Daddy!" I screamed.

    Before I knew it, mama had drug me off that porch and into the house with her.

    And my daddy didn't bat an eye, dropping the gun and making his way into the house to deal with it with my mama. 

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    Monday, 21 October 2019
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