A Covid Conspiracy Theory — from a Living Descendant of Jack Sparrow

For Lewisham it was an otherwise quiet evening. So, I went next door to remonstrate with whoever was endlessly mowing.

Handsome, forties, with a bit of a belly, he mowed the border of what had been the Salvation Army old people’s hostel. I supposed he was one of the guardians — folk paying to squat in buildings awaiting development, to deter non-paying squatters from tipping up with their dogs on strings, army surplus jackets bulging with beer can bongs and contempt for toilets.

He mowed on. I did the English thing of staring, hands hovering midway to hips, brows hoisted.

He took his palm off the gas. ‘Sir, yes?’ Absolutely self-assured.

‘Er…hello…yes, to you, also. Iestyn. And…I was hoping to borrow the lawnmower.’

‘Jake. Are you in the harpist’s flat?’

I nodded. ‘Staying till my new flat has floors.’

‘How do you know her?’ Suspicious — did he think I might have broken in, suddenly thought I’d mow the lawn, failed to find a mower, conveniently heard one being plied outside…?

‘Singing cabaret at the Aldeburgh Festival’, I said, then gave myself some site-specific context. ‘When I was flat-sitting while this was still a hostel, I was in the bath and heard the ice cream van chime up. Pause. Then the warden shouted, “Mrs Inez — you are type two diabetic. Step away from Mr Whippy!”’

Jake laughed in two halves. I’d slightly stumbled over the punchline. He said I must sing for the mower.

I sang “An die Musik”.

(An Die Musik — YouTube — as sung by yours truly)

He asked if I’d been vaccinated.

To use the mower?

I said I had been, fully, but could wear gloves.

He told me he wasn’t going anywhere near vaccinations. He was healthy. No falling for their ploy. He was as safe — and for however long — as his present incarnation required. Covid had indeed been created by the Chinese — at Great Britain’s behest, because Great Britain had forfeited on her centuries old gold bullion treaty with the South Americas. The treaty had been signed about the time Syria forfeited on a treaty with Germany — and we all know what happened there. (Do we?) With the treaty now forfeit, Great Britain was at the mercy of her conglomerate corporate loan sharks, who were instigating a new world order — hence Brexit, Covid, the cloning that gave us Trump and Bojo; also plans for human microchipping — and look out for other littler changes coming. ‘We see the kind of thing in them changing the name of Jif to Cif, Marathon to Snickers and such like.’

Our choices were to return to pre-1860 off-grid self-sufficiency, which is tricky but ultimately achievable. Or die unvaccinated. Or have three vaccines only to die in a year or so of something as yet unspecified.

I told him I felt better, then, about my forthcoming death from dry socket after a botchered wisdom tooth extraction. ‘Although I might quite have hankered to live in a yurt, on the sun’s timetable, grow my own ratatouille ingredients — no tomatoes: arthritis.’

Drinking water from streams. Bathing in rivers. Poohing in shrubs. But how to watch Judge Judy, Schitt’s Creek and Pornhub; where to source wet wipes when the rivers were too cold — September to June — and could I still keep my library card?

I asked to see round the Guardianship. There was a restaurant kitchen divided into sections: each tenant had his own chopping board. From Freecycle.com had come all beds, sofas, bookcases, TV and two electric keyboards. The dingy glare from white gloss ever washed, never repainted. Dust motes blinking. I imagined echoes of slippers shuffling.

This was Jake’s first Guardianship. He felt he had fallen on his feet. The social department was amazed at how clean and well-furnished the present tenants kept the place. ‘Before coming here, I had a year of homelessness. Maliciously applied against me, as I’m a descendant of Jack Sparrow, George the Third and Charles the 2nd and, by right, own Richmond.

‘I was previously set up in barrister’s practise, but was summarily let go, as I am too much of a threat to anyone who can read my aura and my soul through the eyes. Let alone my propensity for turning up to Chambers in a BMW convertible with my bitches. Those partners knew I wasn’t like them — all about the money. And because the establishment since 1777 has regretted my family’s charter, they make sure I don’t so much as have formal living arrangements. Still at least they haven’t managed to assassinate me yet.’

Jake has genetic memory of all his previous incarnations, right back to his life’s-clay being shaped in the hands of a non-denominational celestial creator. He made a beautiful gesture here of both moulding and releasing. ‘Earlier, even. When I was just a blip of light pulsing through the universe, playing with other blips of light. As we did — only knowing love. I used to happily pass by your solar system. But suddenly, from nowhere, there I was just by Orion’s Belt, grabbed by an energy and ended up in a tight, red, dark place. To be pushed out (my mother’s womb: this time around) into this incarnation.’

When Jake later pushed the mower for me to lend through the harpist’s side gate, there was her already immaculate lawn.

He said, magnificently, ‘I think the mower will cope with this…just about. Keep it powder dry overnight.’

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Author of war memoir My Tutu Went AWOL, Vaudeville turn.

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Iestyn Edwards

Iestyn Edwards

Author of war memoir My Tutu Went AWOL, Vaudeville turn.

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