A Lesson from Jack The Rooster Magician


New Orleans, to the untrained eye, is the bee-hive your nephew just blew pot smoke into.

I have an untrained eye.

It is beautiful.

We walk down Frenchman, it is dark, loud–late. A man stands at a small table, he looks like a guy I used to know, a musician; five years sober, now.

A deck of cards sits on the table. We glance at it.

“Mind if I teach your boys a little lesson Ma’am?” he calls after us. We turn. I shrug, my brother shrugs, my mother nods. We go back to the table.

The man taps his fedora, “I am Rooster, Rooster the magician, no idea why they call me that,” he takes off his hat, a tuft of hair is all he’s got. He winks; it is a wink like a subconscious thought, so subtle you could swear it never happened.

“Do I seem like an honest man?” he says, rolling up his sleeves.

“Sure,” my mother tells him.

“Okay, watch close.”

He has my mother pick a card, show us–Queen of Spades. She tucks it back in the deck. His hands move like two butterflies, we watch close. He talks the whole time, but the cards are all I can focus on, we’ve been drinking. The deck gets set down.

“Now, wouldn’t it be impressive if that top card were your card?”

We all nod. He flips it, it isn’t–Six of Hearts. He pulls the Queen of Spades out of the air. We clap against the side of our drinks.

“Now,” he says, taking up the deck. “I told you I was an honest man, did I not?”

We nod.

“And I told you I’d teach your boys a lesson, did I not?”

My mother nods.

“Well, here you go, this is what I did–” he holds out the deck, showing us how he cut it when my mother slipped the Queen of Spades into it. “See here?” he says, flipping the deck around in his hand, The Queen of Spades dances between his fingers, swimming in and out of the deck. He slows it down, moving the card slowly enough so we can see exactly how it all happened.

“Wow,” we say, almost in unison. “Understand the lesson?” he asks, slipping the Queen of Spades back into the deck and setting it down. We all frown at the deck.

My brother is the first to say, “No.”

The Rooster mumbles something, we look up. He is smiling, Queen of Spades between his teeth. He spits it out, catches it.

He winks.


He smiles, “never trust an honest man.”

My mother left him ten bucks.




18 replies to “A Lesson from Jack The Rooster Magician

  1. Uiii a game story? Hmm, unfortunately, I had a lot of problems with translation/ Vokabulary at the beginning. “New Orleans, to the untrained eye, is the bee-hive your nephew just blew pot smoke into.”??? “Walk down Frenchman” … hahaha, we “bit farewell frenchman” this means if somebody leaves the party without telling anybody, that he leaves ….. A musician/ a rooster mage,who teaching a lesson to a few boys . The cock is regarded as vain animal in Germany..hmmm ….. The morality? … do not trust in anybody? Oje, to whom we can believe? Only Ourself? But probably it is about the spade lady … she stands for a task, for a new way and has also something to do with trust …. stupid makes me the fact, the wizard betrays his trick. A wizard does not betrays his tricks.! I think I’ve discovered again only fragments of the story by first reading …. they are just very, very cleverly written Flash! … and I hope you also give us a so subtile wink, as a subconscious thinking, so you could swear that it never happened!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh, I see, Thank you flash! And the first sentence is the description of New Orleans I think now? A stoned bee-hive…not very pleasant….uuhhh

        Liked by 1 person

      2. hmmm, I wonder if the first sentence is really said by the narrator, or this is a mini foreword, and the narrator starts with.” I have an untrained eye.”

        Liked by 1 person

      3. But the sentence feels so meaningful, .. then a very meaningful joke! 🙂 … or as we say at home: a seriously meant joke!


    1. I also believe that the magician is very wise. He is only called Rooster. Who knows, perhaps also a intended camouflage. I´m still impressed, that he betrayed the trick .. and winked. I think he’s too refined to read his face.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. a colourful city, with lots of different people I can imagine….but for me, living in a little, little village, there is already the next bigger village a big town….perhaps I should move to somewhere else to meet other people…..


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this:
close-alt close collapse comment ellipsis expand gallery heart lock menu next pinned previous reply search share star