memoirs, art and fragments by Thomas Milner

Amanda Acquitted

You might not believe this but I have little better to do after lunch than to come up here to my little atélier that I’ve made for myself in the book-museum, which is situated (open-plan) directly above and separated from/by a waist-high parapet to/from the entrance and reception area. So I’m obliged to concentrate a fraction of my attention in ignoring mind-bogglingly uninteresting and unwanted information and opinions often expressed in ringing tones beneath me (gobby cows).

Another smallish part of my brain is occupied with a new sketch/painting; (a while ago I gave up searching for a new style – this isn’t an Art Course after all; so I curve the curves and colour the colours in my usual self-indulgent fashion).

STAGE 1

There was a teacher, I remember, in the school in Lisbon all those years ago, middle-aged, pleasant and with the forceful delivery of a person born and bred in Dublin; if she had a fault it was that she was, frankly, a bit of gossip; she would lure one into a corner of the staffroom and start in a loud whisper with the words: between you, me and the gate-post, dear …

STAGE 2

Tomorrow is the 8th birthday of the Home so the Bish and other nobs are visiting us plebs for lunch (different food, mind you – reminds me irresistibly of the prefects and masters troffing away at The High Table, raised up on a dais in the Refectory at school).

Eight years, eh – between you, me and the gate-post, dear it looks and feels like rather more …

STAGE 3

Between you, me and the gate-post, dear, I sometimes get sick of living in an Old People’s Home and wish I lived in a Young People’s Home instead. What a commotion down there! Mouthy mares!

STAGE 4

Back in my room now and I’m watching the dénoument of Amanda’s trial in Italy – what a result! I think I’ll name the painting after her.

AMANDA ACQUITTED - PAINTING by THOMAS MILNER

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