DEV VIRAHSAMY

Nou Finn Fel

Lilinn fek gagn sez an. Li pe dibout lor bor enn pon e pe get dilo toransiel desann 50 pie anba.

Pandan dis an li ti sof ban lekol primer ek prevok – ena dir li ti al lekol anba ban – me pov tifi la pa ti konn lir-ekrir. So profeser ti dir ki li pares; so fami ti dir ki so latet feb. Li pa ti kapav swiv kour formasion pou aprann enn metie parski li pa ti konn lir-ekrir. Statistik ofisiel ti met li dan kazot “Pa kalifie”. Li pa ti gagn travay parski li pa ti konn lir-ekrir. So mama ki ti travay servant – li ‘si pa ti konn lir-ekrir – ti dir li ki li ti pou kapav travay servant pli tar me pou lemoman li ti bizen okip so frer-ser parski so mama ti bizen al tir jab par lake andeor lakaz.

So papa? Pa kone kot li. Tann dir li finn fer menaz ar enn lot madam.

So vwazen Chounouk ti koumans pran li kont depi ki li ti ankor dan lekol primer. Okoumansman li ti atir li ar bonbon ek sokola; apre tanzantan li ti donn li enn ti fiol losion ousa enn ti po lakrem Tokalon. Apre depar so papa, li ti frekant so lakaz souvan. Li ek so mama ti kontan bwar rom-koka. Apre zot ti dir zanfan al dormi.

Lor bor pon Lilinn tat so vant ki finn koumans vinn gro. Dilo ki pe desann pe fer lekim lor ros kouma  araze.

Monper ti dir li dan konfesion ki avortman enn pese grav. Peyna pardon. Lanfer so plas. So mama ti dir li ki li ti amenn laont dan fami; ki li pa ti pou kapav nouri enn lot batar.

Dilo ki pe desann ar laraz pe dir li vini. Li zete.

Dan lakanbiz samem tou dimoun pe koze. Pa kapav blam Chounouk. Li enn zom. Lilinn ti sirman rode. Enn sel dimoun pa dakor. Normal Toktok pa dakor ar seki tou dimoun dakor. So manier sa!

Lor televizion Premie Minis pe koze. Bizen dir bann madam gagn plis zanfan. Pei bizen plis travayer pou fer devlopman.

Toktok kas enn gran riye e li kriye for, “Paran, profeser, pret ek politisien, toulekat ‘P’, zot tou responsab lamor Lilinn! Nou tou nou finn fel.”

Li pran sime danbwa. Sivilizasion fer li gagn maloker.

We’ve All Failed

Lilinn is just sixteen. She’s standing on the outer edge of a bridge watching the torrents rushing down fifty feet below.

For ten years she kept the primary and prevocational school bench warm – evil tongues would say she sat under the bench – and yet she was totally illiterate. Her teachers claimed that she was lazy; her relatives said she was soft-headed. She was denied access to vocational training as she failed the entrance examination. According to official records she was ‘unfit’. She could not get a job because she had failed all exams. Her mother who worked as a housemaid – she too was illiterate – told her that later she too could be employed as a housemaid but for the time being she would have to look after her young siblings as Mama was the only provider sweating and slaving for a meagre pittance.

Her father? Nobody knew where he was. Some said she was living with another woman.

Her neighbour Chounouk showed interest in her when she was still at primary school. He would give her sweets and choccies; later he offered her toiletries. When her father had disappeared, he became a frequent visitor. Lilinn’s mother and Chounouk would have a few drinks and then she would tell the children to go to bed.

Standing on the outer edge of the bridge she touches her stomach which has started to swell. The torrents are frothing, foaming, raving and raging between boulders and rocks.

At confession she was told that abortion was a serious sin. God would not forgive her. Her mother told her that she had brought shame to the family. She would not feed another mongrel.

The furious torrents beckon her. She jumps.

In the tavern they are all talking about that. Chounouk cannot be blamed. He’s a man. She looked for it. One voice is against the general trend. Nutty’s. They all sneer at him.

The Prime Minister is on TV. He wants people to have more children for the country needs workers.

Nutty can’t bear it anymore. He bursts out. “You are all to blame … You parents, teachers, priests and politicians … all to blame. A child is dead. We’ve all failed.”

He leaves, goes into the woods. Civilisation makes him sick.