When Godfrey was just a little boy  the only thing worse for him than school and beets or the breath of his Uncle Lou  was Sunday afternoon.

…For Ma would  rummage about in her room and instead of sweets  would  come out with her cod liver oil spoon.Sister Alice took her dose with a slurp and a big smirk at Godfrey.Godfrey had by then already scooted out the back door, He took to the trees, he hid in the leaves,He was yanked down and zipped in a sleeping bag.His dad was laughing  his Ma was not  she grimly rolled up her sleeves.

Godfrey burrowed to the foot of the bag she shook it upside down,Godfrey bolted deep into the rhubarb soon as he hit the ground,With Alice  and Albion holding out beets  and his mother with the spoon and a net, they cornered him where the peas climbed the fence as far back as he could  get.

Mother netted poor little Godfrey , Albion  pinned him in the dirt with his coat, they poured the dose of cod liver oil down his innocent throat,I Beatrice saw it all, safe side of the gate,Godfrey rolled about gagging deep in the garden waste. I brought him some Jello and a hard boiled egg to help wash away the taste.

Yes MY NAME IS BEATRICE I was  often called GOAT , it was my pointy chin, my long neck and throat I had crooked teeth  people  said could rake herring  and hair cut by my mother who  when I was 6 decided that she was past caring.Godfrey and I were always together  we raced our ponies  through the hills and heather , and he always could make me laugh ,cheeking his Uncle Lou, his dread of beets and plans to build a seagoing suitcase raft .My dad Lloyd was an unraveling traveling salesman, door to door in Tharn, sometimes as far away as Tuckware.My ma loved to draw we had goats in the house as she was by then past all care.

.Godfrey and I shared our margarine sandwiches,  back of the classroom to avoid teachers glaring and helped my Ma , cigarette ash dangling over the bowl, mix  celebration loaf while she grumbled that she was past caring. And one night she cut up her warm winter coat; to make  two  little jackets for Godfrey and me…and she never chased us with cod liver oil, and  that she loved Godfrey like he was her own, with this story I honor her memory.


2 thoughts on “COD LIVER OIL SPOON- From Beatrice.

  1. Oh how I love Beatrice’s mum. I know a house where the sofa is covered in blankets so that it won’t get spoiled by people sitting on it and when you go in you feel that you are supposed to sit on an old orange crate so as not to soil the beautiful furniture. I would prefer to hear ‘gon on. I am past caring.

  2. My brother was fostered out a few years with neighbors who dairy farmed, there were 5 boys, and all this woman wished for in life was a clean house. She had one room, all the chairs covered in plastic, and no one ever allowed in there. Eventually, she got past caring- the fridge was held closed with a series of belts…

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