Well there’s one thing you can’t lose
it’s that feel
– Tom Waits
“You think this is a joke? You think it’s all a great big joke? You think you can disobey your father and laugh in his face? I’ll show you how we can remedy that, Miss Ultra Sen-Si-Tive who won’t go and clean out the pigsty! – See this belt? I’m taking it off, just as a joke, mind you, and now, just as a joke –”
Thwack, thwack, thwack – fifteen, twenty, twenty-five times that heavy leather belt struck my behind.
But I could never stand that stench – it would nauseate me, make me faint. Grandma knew, and she protected me while she was alive. But then she died, and whatever strange leverage she’d had over her cruel son was gone.
I’d get belted for not doing my duty on the farm, for being seen with the wrong boy, for refusing to eat the fatty pork on our table, for not backing down, for looking him straight in the eyes.
I could not wait to turn sixteen and leave.
No more leverage over me.
– James Steerforth ( © 2010 )
Written with joke, leverage, remedy from 3WW.