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Two Years in the French West Indies By Lafcadio Hearn Characters: 1298

Updated: 2017-12-06 00:02


... Every year, on the last day of the Carnival, a droll ceremony used to take place called the "Burial of the Bois-bois,"-the bois-bois being a dummy, a guy, caricaturing the most unpopular thing in city life or in politics. This bois-bois, after having been paraded with mock solemnity through all the ways of St. Pierre, was either interred or "drowned,"-flung into the sea.... And yesterday the dancing societies had announced their intention to bury a bois-bois laverette,-a manikin that was to represent the plague. But this bois-bois does not make its appearance. La Verette is too terrible a visitor to be made fun of, my friends;-you will n

ot laugh at her, because you dare not....

No: there is one who has the courage,-a yellow goblin crying from behind his wire mask, in imitation of the màchannes: "?a qui lè quatòze graines laverette pou yon sou?" (Who wants to buy fourteen verette-spots for a sou?)

Not a single laugh follows that jest.... And just one week from to-day, poor mocking goblin, you will have a great many more than quatorze graines, which will not cost you even a sou, and which will disguise you infinitely better than the mask you now wear;-and they will pour quick-lime over you, ere ever they let you pass through this street again-in a seven franc coffin!...

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