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Trump Quaking

THE BEST THING about being away from the Internet and television for the last week was that, for seven blissful days, I did not once think about Donald J-for-Jackass Trump.

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A Red House for Mr Biswas

To mark the enigma of departure, I offer this affectionate parody, peopling our Red House with the tragicomic c.haracters of Miguel Steet. The words italicised below are mine; Sir Vidia’s prose in plain type, as untouched as it is untouchable, is taken direct from Miguel Street.

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Jasper the Lionhearted

Emancipation Day showers pelting down and I’m criss-crossing St James, searching in vain as well as in rain, for doubles for my daughter. In a side street, in the middle of the road, in the rain, he sits, wet tail wound around his damp, straggly, reddish-brown fur.

He looks like a preemie fox. Standing on rear tiptoe, his front paws at full stretch would barely touch my knees. He turns a baleful eye towards me. Bounce me, nuh. Raindrops spattering my spectacles, I call out to him. He moves reluctantly to sit right outside the driver’s door. His big brown eyes lock with mine.“It looks like he’s saying, “Take me with you”,” I say to my son, who arches a doubtful eyebrow. “More like, “End it all, please”.”

He doesn’t look cared for – looks like his owner couldn’t possibly care less, actually – but a small crossbreed, didn’t arrive here as a stray; and my wife has already dog-napped someone’s pet in Barbados, thinking she was “rescuing” him.

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Emancipation precipitation

SITTING at my desk on Wednesday, trying to avoid the irony of having to work on Emancipation Day, instead of setting fingers to keyboard, I turn eyes to window and watch the water lash the pane. It always rains on the Emancipation parade; you could almost set your watch by the banner at the head of the march reaching the National Museum and the black clouds opening up over the black people. Water lashing the pane and the Africans; well, better water than a whip.

What a place we come from, our history; what a dismal way to start anything. These little rocks we try to persuade ourselves are countries began with the bulk of the people in the place actually enslaved; and that was after the bulk of the people who were here before anybody else were methodically snuffed out, like fleas on a stray dog before you let it into your home.

How can anything that begins like that end well?

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