Thursday, February 22, 2007
That Cabaret Life
Why won't children let their mothers sing? I like to sing. Admittedly, I can only remember the first line of any song. Still, I like to sing that line and do it tunefully. But children like to keep their songbirds caged and dark. "Don't sing," my youngest son dictates from the table where he plays with plastic soldiers, guns moulded and ready. "I mean it. Don't sing." He fires a cannon and three men die in friendly fire. "Why not?" I ask, my painted smile slipping as I stand in the spotlit darkness of my kitchen cabaret. "Why can't mummy sing?" I lob my question into the blackness and hear my six-year-old's voice: "We like it quiet." This from boys who moments before, arms spread wide and mouths a-roar, were jet screaming round the table. The super trouper flickers and turns off.