7 John the BaptistMar 16th, 2008 | By Ian Poulton | Category: Writing
A hard man meets reality head on
What do people think of me? I don’t know. I never stopped to ask. I’m not here to be liked; I’m here to do a job.
Do I like it? Would you? Have you ever tried sleeping rough? I guess not.
Aye, there were times when I had doubts. I was an only child, but you would know that, anyway. I’m sure my parents would have wanted someone just a wee bit more conventional. You know what I mean. They had a long wait before I arrived and I’m sure in their hearts they would have liked someone who would have got married and had a nice home and had some children.
But that’s the way of things, that’s the way of things.
I didn’t choose to be the way I am. There are times out here when I think I would like to be back in the city. It would certainly be more comfortable and there would be a bit of company at night times.
It’s the nights that are the worst. People come out here and they look up at the sky and they see all the stars and they say it’s an amazing place to be, amazing. I invite them to stay out here for a while and they are quick with the excuses, “Oh, I would really like to, I really would, but things being the way things are, I’m afraid I can’t stop, perhaps next time”. Of course, most of them, I never see again.
Aye, I have friends, good friends, people who take risks by being seen with me, but there are others. Aye, there are others.
What do I mean about ‘others’? Work it out for yourself. There’s stuff I say that doesn’t go down too well with some people. Do you think the poor would be poor if everyone agreed with me? Do you think this country would be so rotten if everyone in our capital city thought the stuff I was saying was a good idea? Do you think they all go back saying, “Isn’t he a jolly chap and what wonderful things he suggests”?
I wouldn’t be on their dinner party list. You know what I am saying? They will talk about me, alright, but there’s not too many of them that would talk to me.
There’re times when I wouldn’t blame people for disliking me. It’s harsh stuff that they hear, harsh stuff, but that’s the problem with the truth, sometimes it’s not nice, sometimes it’s not welcome.
What about the future? Is that meant as a joke? What do you think is going to happen?
These people I’ve offended, do you think that they are just going to put up with what I say? We’re talking about powerful people. We’re talking about dangerous people. Do you know how they settle matters, or do I need to spell it out for you? They will get me. Sooner or later, they will get me.
But do you know something? I’m not even worried. My work is done. I’ve met the person I’ve been waiting for – all the eyes will be on him now.
You tell people, John was a happy man. Aye, John was indeed a happy man.