[Caribbean Literature]

"Our Literature": Robert Antoni's Divina Trace

Dr. Domingo's Story of the Glass Eye Ingestion

from pages 284 to 287 of Divina Trace:

BOY, LET ME give you a little story while we here, showing you just what kind of story this story you telling has become. It was, I suppose, three or four years after I'd arrive back from England. The little nurse comes running in to tell me, 'Doctor, dey a oldman standing up outside dere, only rubbing he bamsee groaning groaning like he sit down on a porcupinefish!" "Well," I tell her, "we better get him in here right away." So I ask the oldman to drop he drawers, and we put him to lie down quiet on the table .with the pillow beneath he belly, and he blueblack bamsee standing up tall in the air in what we call the jackknife position. But before I go in from behind to take a look, I ask the oldman what is the problem. "Doctor," he says, big big problem. Ninety years I been shitting like a pelican, my mummy tell me, and dis never happen before." "Well," I ask again, "what is the problem?" He says he can't make a caca. "Every time I try Doctor, I feel one pain in me ass like I been feeding on groundglass, and thumbtacks, and fishhooks!"

So I take out the proctoscope from out the cupboard, I grease it down liberally with the K-Y jelly, and I ask the little nunnurse to open up he cheeks fa me to push the proctoscope inside. But before I can get near him with this proctoscope, before I can even come close, the oldman seizes up he bamsee tight tight trembling, and he lets loose a bawl like a Warrahoon spying a quenk: "Ay-ay-ay-ay-ay- ay!" Of course, I jump back quick like if it is me sit down on the porcupinefish now, and when the oldman's bamsee stops quivering, I ask him what is the matter? He says, "Doctor, I beg you, please don't push dat imperial cannon you holding up inside me. Not to say I too manmen to take little plugging in de softend like a buller. But Doctor, contrary to de doctrines of History, contrary to de chronicles of all de schoolchildren"s Economics books, dis little backside ain't big enough to accomodate de Royal Navy!"

Well I have to smile a little bit at that one. I rub up the oldman's bamsee nice and gentle, and I promise him so long as he relax heself, I wouldn't give him no more pain. "But Mr Adderly," I tell him, "if you don't let me push this thing inside there, how I ga look to find out what giving you all the groundglass, and thumbtacks, and fishhooks?" I tell him to turn he head and try to distract heself- think about a cricket match, or he girlfriend, or something so -- and I promise him he wouldn't feel the cannon. Now I lubricate he bamseehole too with a squeeze of the K-Y jelly to try to relax him, and now he tells me, "Doctor, I don't know what kind of thing you putting up inside me dere, all I can say it must be make from icecream: cool, and soft, and lovely!"

Now I slide the proctoscope inside easy enough, I pump up the little bulb a few times to send some air inside there to inflate the mucosal folds, and I light up the little lightbulb at the end. But boy, when I bend down to take a look, when I focus my eye through this proctoscope, is now I feel the porcupinefish: just there at the recto-sigmoid junction, where the third portion meets up with the sigmoid flexure (because the rectum is constructed in three divisiones of 5 and 3 and .5 inches in length, the first half curving towards the apex of the prostate gland shining in the middle, then backward and upward curving again on itself to culminate with the orifice of the faecal opening in the end, which is of course where all the caca comes out) in others words, right there at the onset, in the very beginning, just there at the source of this oldman's rectum, I find an eyeball staring back at me cool cool like if I am the asshole looking out!

Of course this thing is impossible! It could never be! But the harder I look, the surer I am that is exactly what it is. And of course, when I nudge my nose at the proctoscope fa the little nurse to take a looksee, she only lets loose a cry, "Amor Matris!" and she bolts fa the door.

Of course, I excuse myself fa quick weewee and I bolt out the door behind her, I fire down a quick one, and when I get back I tell the oldman, "Mr Adderly, I don't know how to put this thing any other way: you got a third eye inside there blinking at me, right up at the top of you asshole!"

Of course, the oldman gives me a face like I gone viekeevie now fa true. But then he begins to chuckle little bit, he bamsee still standing up in the air giggling way. "Mr Adderly," I tell him, "if you know a pretty joke you better give it to me quick, because just now I ga shit down this place with enough caca fa you and me together!"

"Doctor," he says, "dat eyeball you seeing not belonging to me a-tall. Even dough in truth I must be carrying it round a good long time. Dat eyeball belong to me daddy. You see, daddy used to wear dat eyeball make from glassbottle, and he used to take it out every night and leave it in a tasa of water above de kitchen sink. De story goes dat one morning as a little boy, I climbed up on top de sink and I drank down de tasa eyeball and all. So Doctor, I suppose dat glassbottle eyeball must be rolling round me belly all these years, and it only now stick up on de way out. "

"Well," I tell him, "as they say, hindsight don't drive motorcar. And that is a good thing, because if you ever want to shit happy again, I ga have to remove it."

"Pluck it out!" he says. "Let me smell me way to Dover!"

"England?" I ask.

"No Doctor, you play de Regan fa me old Grenada: is de plague of de times when madmen lead de blind!"

"Oh-ho," I say. "In that case, you better open up you ear again fa me to pour in the poison."

Now I take the anuscope from out the cupboard, I grease it down too, and I replace it fa the proctoscope. I press down the lever to open up the two halves of the anuscope, I reach inside there with a long ring-forceps, and in no time a-tall I pluck it out. Of course, before I have a chance to remove the anuscope, before I even have a chance to brace myself: Boodoomboom-doodoomdoom-boom- boom-boom! And boy, that ain't groundglass, it ain't thumbtacks, and it ain't fishhooks. It come out flowing easy as poetry!


Antoni, Robert. Divina Trace. New York: Overlook Press, 1991.

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