I AM YOUR KING. NOW KISS MY RING!
PODCAST #8: VOICE FROM AN URN
In our previous podcast, which brought you the first half of Chapter 5 of “Voice from an Urn”, my mother, Jadwiga had met a handsome stranger while waiting for my father to get his Visa papers. As they chatted, she couldn’t help but notice how different this man was from my father, Bogdan. As she reflected on this difference, she recalls a particularly horrible episode with my father where he told her he was her king as she must obey her by kissing his ring.
We had just finished making love and Bogdan was telling me how much I was improving at being a lover under his tutelage.
“I knew I could teach you how to make a man feel really good,” he grinned, tweaking the nipple on my swollen breasts as he said it.
“Ow…that hurts!” I told him, slapping his hand away playfully. I noticed his mouth twitch as I did it, but ignored the sign I’d eventually come to recognize as beginning anger.
“Don’t slap my hand away when I want to play with your breasts. I just love them. Your breasts are beautiful.” He cupped them both, squeezed them together and began kissing them hungrily. It hurt, but I didn’t dare protest. So I laughed:
“Oh stop! Haven’t you had enough yet?” I pushed his head away playfully from my aching breasts.
“Never enough for me,” he said, pulling me close to him again. You are Queen Jadwiga, but I am your king and you are here to obey my every command.”
He said it grandly, like he was making a proclamation to a roaring crowd of followers. I giggled. “Oh yes, my king, my master.”
“That’s right,” he said. “I am your king and master. He hopped off the bed and stood beside it. “Come,” he ordered. “Off the bed.”
I started to protest, but decided I’d better play along with his fantasy. I lifted my heavy, very pregnant body carefully off the bed.
“Good. Now, bow down before me and kiss the ring on my little finger.”
I looked at him in disbelief. What on earth? “You don’t have a ring on your little finger,” I laughed.
“If I say there’s a ring there, there’s a ring there,” he said, transported in his fantasy. “Now, bow down and kiss my finger.”
I’d had enough of this nonsense. “Oh Bogdan, stop being silly. I’m not going to kiss your little finger.”
Suddenly, I felt his fist thump down hard on my head, and his foot slam into my huge belly. I fell over onto my side, covering my breasts and instinctively lowered my head into them. He kicked my backside next, and as my body straightened out with the blow, he slammed my shoulder with his huge fist. His foot thumped me again in the belly.
“How dare you disobey me?” he raged. “I am your king! Your master. You will do whatever I command you to do. And don’t you ever laugh at me again. Silly? Who’s silly now for disobeying and laughing at me?” And with that, he kicked me one more time, then hovered over me, extending his hand in front of my face.
“Now, kiss my little finger!”
Sobbing, I kissed his finger. I was filled with disbelief and loathing.
“Again!” He demanded. I complied. And then as if some beast had suddenly taken leave of him, he became gentle and helped me up from the floor. He lifted me back on the bed and while I sobbed, he slowly, gently, began making love to me again.
I think of this now as Leszchek sits down beside me. We talk about the war, the devastation, our families back home in Poland, and share our excitement and fear about the future in another country. Leszchek has asked to go to the USA like most have done. But the Americans are being very selective so it’s taking longer for his Visa to be approved.
Viga is demanding Leszchek pick her up. He obliges and she settles into his lap. She looks at him curiously and begins playing with a button on his shirt. I’m uncomfortable with this. Bogdan could be back any second and he wouldn’t be happy seeing his child in another man’s lap.
“Jadwiga, come to mama,” I insist, reaching for her.
She shakes her head in a furious “no” and pulls further away from my outstretched arms.
“It’s okay,” says Leschek. “I don’t mind holding her. I’ve always wanted a little girl of my own but…” He looks off, as if remembering someone or something. I don’t pry. It’s not my business.
Out of nowhere, Bogdan appears. His mouth is twitching. Viga scrambles down from Leszchek’s lap and runs to him. Bogdan hoists her up and looks at me quizzically.
“I’m done. I have our Visas and I will leave in two days.” He looks at Leszchek. “And you, Sir, are?”
“Nice to meet you,” says Leszchek, standing up and extending his hand in a handshake. “I’m Leszchek Kucharski from Wroclaw. I’ve just been keeping your lovely wife and daughter company for you. Hope you don’t mind?”
Leszchek turns to me, and with a courteous bow from the waist, says “It’s been nice speaking with you Jadwiga. If you or your little one need any help while your husband is gone, I’m in Barracks 10. Just call on me.”
And with a final feet together, formal salute, he acknowledges Bogdan again. “Goodbye Sir. Have a safe trip to Australia.”
Bogdan hugs Viga tighter against his chest as he watches Leszchek walking away. Does he feel threatened seeing another man holding his child? I know he loves Viga very much. He looks at me and smiles but I sense a seething under that smile. He is not happy with me.
“Come on. Let’s go. We’re done here and I have things to do to get ready for the trip.”
As I get up, he adds, “Don’t let that lecher anywhere near you. You know what he wants from you, don’t you? Just remember while I’m gone, you’re mine, all mine.
If you are a memoir writer, or aspiring to be one, you might enjoy subscribing to the author’s other PODCAST for MEMOIR WRITERS, MEMOIRABILIA. Subscribe here:
Stitcher: Stitcher: http://www.stitcher.com/s?fid=82277&refid=stpr
And if you write other than memoir, you should check out Viga Boland’s newest site for writers at VIANVI