About the author: 11 year old Zion Williams is Grade 6 “A” student at the Baptist Academy. She loves liturgical dancing, singing and watching her favorite TV shows. Although relatively shy, lately she has become bolder, due mainly to her church’s quest to have young children doing public speaking at as early an age as possible. Zion has steadily progressed up the ranks since she started submitting to Wadadli Pen, earning honourable mention in the 12 and Younger category for The Night I went to Cricket in 2014 and 2nd runner up in the same category for A Dinner to Remember in 2016.
About the story: In an effort to prepare Zion for the Grade 6 National Assessment this year, her mom gave her several topics from which to choose and write a story, so she could get some practice in creative story writing. This is the story she wrote on the topic “Those Who Won’t Hear Will Feel.” The story is about a nightmare she had, in which she suffered the consequences of being disobedient to her mother.
In the 2017 Wadadli Pen Annual Writing Challenge, the judges ranked Zion’s story 1st in the 12 and younger age category and 3rd overall.
Weeeoooeee, weeeoooee! the wailing of the siren and the flashing lights seemed so distant, but I knew the ambulance was here, for I heard my mother saying, “be careful , l think her foot is broken .” “Ahhhhhhhh!” I screamed as they lifted me into the ambulance. The pain was so excruciating, I felt I would surely die. The talking grew fainter, and then… nothing….blackness . I had passed out.
It all started one bright day during the summer holidays. It was a normal day, until my mom said she had to go to a meeting, so I would be home alone with my big sister. Mom left giving the usual command to study and do my homework, with the reminder, “Heights of great men reached and kept, were not attained by sudden flight …..” and I finished it for her, because I had heard it so many times before. This was still normal, until the neighbor’s two girls called me out to play. I knew my mom didn’t want me playing with them. She had often said “you’re in the same school, but you’re not in the same class. ” She meant their standards and values were different from ours. You know those mothers who always have a saying for everything ? Well, my mom is one of those.
With all thoughts of the consequences for disobedience out of my head, I went out to play. We went directly to the forbidden dumbs tree, that I was told, as a girl, I was never to climb. We competed to see who could climb to the highest part of the tree and get the half snatty dumbs . I really wanted to win, so although the limb did not seem sturdy, I still climbed on it. First, there was a soft “crack”, as I placed one foot, and then a loud “CRACK”, as I placed my other foot on the limb. The next thing I knew , I fell through the cassi branches and to the ground with a loud THUD!
When I regained consciousness, I was in the hospital with a cast on one foot, a bandaged head, and heard one of the girls saying,
“It’s all her fault, we told her not to go up in the tree.”
“What! They never told me that! ” I screamed to myself. I kept my eyes closed, because I didn’t want to see my mom’s disappointed look, but I could not help hearing her say, “pickney who nah hear wa mumma say, drink peppa warta, lime, and sarl.” When I was finally brave enough to look timidly at mom, she said lovingly, “a disobedient child is worthy of death, but thank God you didn’t die”.
“I’m sorry, mommy” I said sheepishly.
After being outfitted with a pair of crutches and pain killers, I was sent home. Mom gave me my favourite ice cream, and then said, “ you know you’re going to get lashes for disobeying?” as she went for the pot stick. “Whaaaaaa…whaaaaa!” I wailed loudly, before I had even gotten a blow. I could not believe she was still going to punish me with my injuries….how CRUEL, I thought !
Mom was not moved. “What you crying for, you get something to cry for?….. Stop the noise or I’ll give you something to cry for! ….Open your hand! Those who won’t hear, will feel ! ” I screamed , as she raised her hand, and then felt some one shaking me.
“Wake up Zion!” I was drenched in sweat. “Phew!” It was a DREAM….No, a NIGHTMARE!
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With thanks to our patrons, see this writer’s total prize haul below (and remember, support the businesses/individuals who support the arts):
EC$100 gift certificate (contributed by the Cushion Club)
EC$200 (contributed by Frank B. Armstrong)
EC$125 cash/gift certificate (sponsored by Art. Culture. Antigua)
Painting (contributed by the artist Jennifer Meranto)
cake/cake voucher (contributed by Danz’s Sweet Dreams)
Books – Mary Poppins in Cherry Tree Lane by P L Travers, Mary Poppins in the Park by P L Travers, Mary Poppins Opens the Door by P L Travers, Mary Poppins Comes Back by P. L. Travers, Mary Poppins by P L Travers, Spell Like a Champion (sponsored by Harper Collins)
Gifts (sponsored by Juneth Webson)
With Grace by Joanne C. Hillhouse (contributed by Little Bell Caribbean)
Inspirational card (from a line created and contributed by Monique S. Simon’s Caribbean Folklore Project )
Certificate x2 (sponsored by the Best of Books)