Ventriloquist 1492


Ventriloquist 1492

The European explorer stood on the bow of the ship, holding a ventriloquist dummy dressed as a sea captain. Together, explorer and dummy looked across the vast ocean at the distant horizon. 

            "Vast," the explorer said. 

            "Distant," the dummy said.

 Two weeks later, the explorer stood on shore with the dummy. Small waves lapped at the explorer's feet. A Taino man was also standing on the sand, holding a ventriloquist dummy dressed as a Taino man.

            "Whatever I say," the explorer's dummy said, "it's really what the explorer is saying."

            "I know," the Taino's dummy said. 

            "He's throwing his voice," the explorer's dummy said. "His soul is in another place, about twelve or eighteen inches to my right."

            "I know that, too," the Taino dummy said. "Wanna kiss?"

            The dummies' wooden lips clacked together as they made mm-mm-mm sounds. 

            It really was the two men making the sounds. It could have been a beautiful moment but their souls were twenty-four or thirty-six inches apart.