In the 1980s I lived in Coffee Hall, in Milton Keynes. Near coffee Hall, there was Bean Hill. The underpass between Beanhill and Coffee Hall was painted with a Wizard of Oz theme. Magic!

I went to Copperfield Middle School, now closed since 31/3/2004, and there was a special teacher: Miss Foster. It was the first time I connected with a teacher. She made a big impression. After the trauma of Northern Ireland, at the height of The Troubles, and having a Northern Irish accent in 1980s England, she was nurturing, made me feel I was good at something: reading. She called me to her desk, put the bookmark under the words, and I read and read. I was very shy. My face got hot. There was a little class library and I checked out the books. I read and read. A kind of salvation.

At Copperfield, there was a special trip to London, to see the Nutcracker. Afterwards, I stood on my tiptoes, spun and spun. I wanted to become a ballet dancer. There was a second trip, but I wasn’t allowed, it was for Jesus Christ Superstar. I was very religious.

Here is the microfiction, from my novel Never Mind the Beasts, forthcoming from Dostoyevsky Wannabe in May 2020. It is called “Jesus Christ Superstar.”

“Jesus Christ Superstar” by Marcus Slease


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