Wanderlino Arruda
Djalma Souto


They’ve stolen my stump again

Wanderlino Arruda

For me even as child`s play, it is an act of violence to take, in the dead of night, my stump of twelve years of valuable service. It was a piece of old log, damaged by the sun and rain, suffered by the bad treatment given by the neighborhood kids, stepped on, rolled around and violently pushed. Its all so very primitive, with deep cuts from the ax, without bark, an eternal bank at the end of the street, but it is mine, of my family, including the maids that live in our home, almost an heirloom. I will explain more: when we moved to the new house, also on St. Sebastian street, next to Corridor of Pequi street (forgive me, Yara, Col. Francisco José Souto street), at the end of making of two tables, there was left a circular piece of wood, not used because it wasn’t of the best quality and also because it was a little damaged. Out of use, it was put out on the sidewalk in front of the house, right next to the wall, like a bank to sit on or a log, lying there. It was wonderful, useful all these years, a great place for late afternoon conversations with the neighbors, a place for the maids to romance, an advanced reception post of the kids and their friends.

During twelve years, our stump remained there like a fortress or safe port, a guarantee of welcome encounters, a mark of much domestic happiness. The neighbors got used to it. It ever was useful in giving directions to taxi drivers: “Stop at that door behind the stump”. And the drivers always understood immediately.

Then one day the worst happrned, our stump disappeared. While I was traveling from Brasilia to Montes Claros on the night from the sixth to the seventh of September, when I came home to celebrate my hard won fifty year birthday, and it was also independence day here in Brazil, already early morning, I discovered that it was no longer there waiting for me, like a patient dog, It was a disaster! When the rest of the family woke up, even so busy with independence day preparations, they felt the same despair, a lack important and constrictive: Our stump has disappeared, disappeared…mysteriously.

Already over ther shock of the loss of our dear stump, all now consoled, acostumed to the material absence, my wife, Olimpia, goes to Belo Horizonte, our state capital, and there, receives a call from our daughter Wladênia, who gave her the dire news that our dear stump had been kidnapped and was now in the power of the army. It was detained, retained or deposited at the police station, as the object of a possible terrorist conspiracy, a sabotage for the Independence Day parade, It was because some boys, I think it was two, median height, blond median length hair, apparently around 22 years old, with glasses and driving a white Gol, had taken our Stump to the avenue in front of the Immaculate College, exactly where the parade would pass, more or less a mile from where it was taken. And, since the security forces needed the street clear for the parade, they almost caught the playful terrorist sabatores, (who knows what the hearts hides) Actually they chased the boys away and conducted our dear Stump to the public jail on Dr. Veloso street, registering the event, to be officially explained. It was this…or almost so, that Wladênia had read in the newspaper.

Of course, back in Montes Claros, I still working in Brasilia, Olimpia told me the story by phone. Our dear Stump was detained by the military authorities and needed to be released. It was a very touchy case in the justice, or better yet, at the police, involving questions of national security and sovereignty. Shouldwe, or shouldn’t we alert our family lawyer to free our Stump from the long arms of the law. Of course, this procedure would be the logical and correct. João Wlader, our oldest son is a lawyer, isn’t he? It’s is a good case for him, if not lucrative, it would be interesting, for sure: That he should put his knowledge of the law to the defense of out loved Stump…He should go and talk to the sheriff immediately, of course! Our country and we are the victims of a grave and heinous injustice, caused by the unthoughtful and irresponsible actions of the blond boys in the white Gol. Now, besides belonging to us, our much loved Stump in a object of national patrimony!

Joõ Wlader, doctor of law, went, spoke, explained…discource during several minutes of the affection and estimation we all have for our dear twelve year old Stump. A serious beginning, as the reighning authority, the sheriff ended up finding the whole story hilarious. Everyone at the police station seemed to know one part or another of the happening but not all. The conclusion was a general glee for all; the Stump came back to us as a dearly missed companion which it was! A party, with many smiles, and much laughter, including mine, on my return home after my work in Brasilia. It was the old Bible story of the stray lamb…

But can you imagine what happened next? Destiny pulled another trick on us: When spring came, in another early morning, someone stole our loved Stump again! The front of our home was now desert, with no furniture, as in our hearts, a small piece of our lives has gone. It seems like our luck, or destiny, was to live without our Stump. Patience…

Wanderlino Crônicas
Wander Poesias
Academia de Letras
Automovel Clube
Elos Clube M. Claros
Espiritismo Online
Folclore Brasil
Fundacao Marina
História de M. Claros
História M. Claros
Links Espíritas
Montes Claros
Poema Virtual
Poetry Poem
Rotary Club