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Well hear this one time nuh. I tellin’ all yuh the queen must be alien or something not of this earth, because in 1966 she come and visit Trinidad when I was just a schoolgirl, and I gone with my classmates to see she, and before we gone, the headmaster tell we, we have to throw flowers at the queen. Now, we small and don’t know nothing, we cut the flowers from the neighbor’s bush, we take the flowers and a quarter of the bush, too; leaves, stem, picka and all. It was hibiscus if I remember correctly. I think we see she on the highway. They make the new highway and name it for she sister, Princess Margret. Margaret real like Trinidad, she keep a house and live. I used to walk along the path on her property garden, nobody dey. It’s high up on a hill, but then they break it down after she leave. The Queen was travelling in she car next to she husband Philip. They waving as they passing. She was wearing yellow, I remember. Davika, who was fair skin later say, “Queen? I see she, and the bottom of my foot whiter!” So the queen wavin’ and I only know that I have to throw flowers at she. The queen so close to me, I can almost go up to touch she. So everybody cheering and throwing flowers, and I go to throw my flowers, and I pelt it—stem, leaf, thorn and all, right up next to she face. Now lemme tell yuh of all the children pelting dey flowers, nobody hit she. But how is it that when I go to trow—I was the one who planted the landing blow! She lift she arm up to block the attack, but I see I get she good. I see a little bit of red, like so, right on she cheek. I make the Queen bleed. But then they start speeding up the car after that to get out quick and make they escape! But I’ll tell you something. I see she bleed, but I also see the cut heal up, as they speed up. Right in front of my eyes the red blood gone, and only soft powder skin remain. I ain’t never seen anything like that before. Well I know she husband lookin’ strange next to she. A few years later I watch how they land on the moon—my neighbor had a tv and we all watch. For real I think I see she face in the tv for a brief moment. It fuzzy like. So I thinking they could really be aliens. From another planet. Visiting here. Where they don’t belong. But how she can bleed and heal now for now like that? Like nothing can touch she. All I know is that I make she bleed, and on the news that night they say the queen was attacked by schoolchildren. And the next day some people who dress up in suits black-black like pitch come visit the school, and the headmaster look frighten and tell us all not to say that he tell we to throw flowers at the queen. After that I think I hear she park up she yacht by Tobago and didn’t leave.



Sarah Ramdawar is an Indo-Trinidadian Canadian whose writing has appeared in Augur Magazine, Heartlines Spec, Apparition Lit, and others. Her work has been featured in a Tor.com Must Read Short Speculative Fiction list and included in The Best of Utopian Speculative Fiction 2022. She continues her search for actual magic in Toronto, and can be found @sararam and sarahramdawar.com.
Current Issue
20 May 2024

Andrew was convinced the writer had been trans. By this point his friends were tired of hearing about it, but he had no one else to tell besides the internet, and he was too smart for that. That would be asking for it.
You can see him / because you imagine reconciliation.
It’s your turn now. / the bombs have come in the same temper— / you in your granny’s frame
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