Sunday, 25 April 2010
Mother Tongue # 3
Location: House by a canal, somewhere in Yorkshire.
Characters: Mother, Daughter
Daughter: Mum, why have you got statues of naked men everywhere?
Ma: I inherited them from Great Uncle Alun. Do you like them?
Daughter: They're unusual ...
Ma: I wanted to put a sash on William -
Ma: The bronze without a head. I think he looks a bit cold -
Daughter: Yes, I can see that -
Ma: But your father thinks a sash would be tacky -
Ma: And that William is inspirational as he is.
Ma: He might have said comforting. Or was it -?
Daughter: Did Great Uncle Alun have any naked female statues?
Ma: No, he said they were difficult to dust.
Daughter: Was Great Uncle Alun gay?
Ma: Don't be ridiculous! He was engaged once.
Ma: 1953. He broke it off.
Ma: His fiancee phoned him wailing she was going to kill herself. Alun was so worried that he rang the police. They called at her flat and there she was, sitting in front of the gas fire eating chocolates in her stockinged feet.
Daughter: Right ...?
Ma: Well, how could he marry her after that?
Daughter: Because she didn't have her slippers on?
Ma: It made him wary of women. Come upstairs and I'll show you his engraving of the Monks of Bangor being put to the sword by the order of Ethelfrid. It's lovely.