Waiting By Lorraine Ellis (Flo)
One, two, three, four, five, six, try not to worry. It’s nearly time, it will soon be over
When you was small, the front room, we had to be quiet, the black bag in the passage.
My Dad’s face as white as chalk, and then the excitement.
Seven, eight , nine, ten, remember, remember, the bed in the front room.
My mam propped up on the white pillows.
Auntie Maud doing the washing trying to silence my big brother’s boisterousness,
Trying to calm my anxiety.
And then the hurried unplanned trip to the cinema with my older friends.
The walk to the park.
The women of the terrace standing on their steps arms folded waiting.
Seventy one, seventy two, sixty, fifty four, no, no you can’t go back, count think, remember.
Seventy five, seventy six, that’s it keep going,
It will soon be here.
Ice cream and sailing boats, my brother’s laughter.
The double-decker frogs upon the lake the mass of jelly,
My baby doll always sleeping.
Ninety nine, one hundred, start again, one, two, three, four
The long walk back from the park.
The warm afternoon,
The figure in the distance.
My dad coming to meet us a cigar poked out of the side of his mouth.
Eight, nine, ten, the terrace in sight,
The women on the steps, smiling nodding their heads as we pass.
Twelve, thirteen, fourteen, fifteen, got to keep going blot it out blot out the pain.
Sixteen, Seventeen, eighteen,
Don’t stop close your eyes, tight.
Home at last.
My Mam radiant but tired my new brother in her arms.
Twenty two, twenty three, twenty four………., at last it’s over, the waiting the pain the fear.
“Nurse tell me is it a boy?
Lorraine tells us that this piece of work was very experimental for her… recounting a dramatic experience while evoking memories of another equally dramatic personal event… What do you think?
It’s the first of our ‘experimental’ works tonight.