A missed alarm
- A hurried departure
From home to bus to bus
- To craft fair!
All handmade, all ingenious.
And reused items appeal to this sustainability-freak.
"There's not much for your kind here"
But just as I say it we spy a stall
And the goth finds Cthulu,
A snake with which to adorn himself
Amidst the usual background of 'Oh, he looks like Russell brand'
His cousin was riding.
Riding the plastic spastic twirl-around bull.
"Another turn? Go on, your dad didn't see you!"
She shakes her head, almost shy
But is lifted and hoisted on once more,
Smiling and giggling and kicking away.
The operator has success,
She jumps right off and back to her father,
Uncles and cousins all grin.
- To cafe!
Entrance a ramp,
The outside already proclaims the spaces brilliance
Narrow hall with piano stating 'closed'
Walls adorned with old newspapers
Light fixtures are bottles
Door handle a coffee grinder
Tables old school desks,
Mismatched chairs and couches and plates;
This sustainability freak is in heaven.
The Goth smiles
"I knew you'd like it"
And even the menu provides
My dietary restrictions no obstacle.
I have a smoothie.
"Judging from your case I would say you play heavy metal"
I giggle; Incorrect.
"Are you going to play for us?"
The waitress asks
We look at each other; are we?
And after our meal we do;
The radio is turned off in response.
Young children play on my violin
Their parents more concerned than I
"Be careful! It's delicate!"
We serenade the coffee and the tables and the birdie on the wall
We serenade customers and workers and the owner as well
We serenade to perfect
We serenade to give back to this space so beautiful
We serenade half in hope of being asked to perform
Of being paid to perform.
The owner enjoys; the possibility is open.
The workers enjoy; "you made today worth it"
The customers enjoy,
One chucks coins to our guitar case
A suggestion of busking
We drain our complimentary drinks and tip the coins
Wander onwards, sated, and glowing.
- To old acquaintances
Who tell scandalous tales
Of the Goth's little brother
"Tell your folks I look after him...
He's hilarious when he's wasted"
The goth queries
"And when I'm wasted?"
"Oh it makes no difference; you're hilarious sober too!"
No one could argue except the Goth himself;
"I'm glad you have a terrible sense of humour"
- To Opshop, closed.
And then the car,
Family bubbling around us
Excited voices clamour with stories
We arrive in a field of green,
Children swinging on a tyre
An old meeting house is dwarfed
Beside the new, uncompleted
A chair in the sky
Seats white fingers
Coated from work;
Yet his is the best view.
"Uncle... Aunty... Cousin.."
Names drift into the air
I won't catch them.
"This is only a small portion of my family;
You should see the group photo!"
An older man teases
"Get your hair cut!
Oi, why haven't you told your son to cut his hair?!"
And his father expertly replies
"He can do what he likes with his hair"
"Why haven't you died yours then? It's all grey!"
Smiles spread wide at their cheek.
A bell tolls
Signals the slow meandering;
We sit, grass beneath us
Trees and field all around.
These three buildings so connected.
The prayer starts,
In foreign tongue
Yet not foreign
- It is the language this land first heard
Aside from sea and bird and sun
An occasional group "ah" in response
Teenagers mock; "aye"
Even adults chatter to one another
Come and go as they please
I am wrapped in his love.
And all of their love.
Lying in his arms
With sun warming me,
Love warming me,
I send it back.
And then chairs are moved
The tables to be laid
Inside this time
"Come here, you don't want to do the chores, do you?"
A crafty cousin teaches evasion maneuvers
We kick a ball,
The goth looks almost joyful
The usual "Me, sports? Eww"
Forgotten, or put aside.
Shoes back on now
"Your feet could do with some sunlight"
The cousin protests.
We eat with our hands;
For me there are oranges
And chicken salad
I put ethics aside
To sate hunger.
The children are playing elsewhere
We claim the rope as ours.
An upside down ladder?
A missing rung?
There's more air than step.
Together we swing.
"Who do you belong to then?"
Caught off guard
"I belong to myself"
The goth smiles at my assertion
"How'd you get here, who brought you?"
I gesture with my foot
"You're so rude! You didn't even introduce me to your girlfriend! I'm his Aunty, that makes me his, and your Aunty too now."
He clasps my hand
"That's how easy it is in my family"
We serenade once more.
Nervousness closes throat
How to express oneself?
I feel small and shrunken
Push myself to claim space
- I do belong here
The love swells around me
Tall poppy syndrome must be beaten into me;
I'm trying to convince myself
I'm not being overbearing
- They want to hear us.
And they're impressed
"Oh what a beautiful voice"
"They do sound wonderful together"
All laugh as Grandma joins in
"That's Nan trying to out do them"
With Promises to jam next time,
We take the scenic exit,
Past those who have past
Past the past itself
Graves decorated with All Blacks flags,
With decks of cards,
Love. Even here,
Love and celebration.
- To friends
Reiki, a goodbye card, packing and kittens, markets and dinner
- The candles glow was soft,
Too soft for menus.
"I wonder why those baskets are all locked up...
Ha! Basket cases!"
We draw a piece to make Dali proud
And jest of eating candle wax
But foods arrival prevents such oddity.
Eating pizza with knives and forks?
I decline, fingers once more.
Restaurant etiquette is not my style
Mine is puffy to their flat
- The perks of being gluten free?
And we leave them to their dessert.
With much sorrow.
"Thank you for enriching my experience here"
No, thank you. Thank you thank you thank you thank you.
"Have a wonderful life!"
A different good bye.
And we cry as we hug,
No tears, just noise.
To cheer ourselves.
We giggle and depart.
Surrounded by darkness
Traffic roars overhead
Rocking support beams
Pigeons shuffle now and then
A dim light is irresistible death
Beyond the trees ripples fold and swell
And I am here with him.
Our own little patch of night time
Folding and swelling around us.
"Now you're the one keeping us awake"
I cannot argue.
This moments magic is worth tomorrow's tiredness.
One more friend to visit.
She saved us a piece!
Oh dietary constraints!
Cheesecake, for me?
Hazelnutty and chocolate!
We ***** about sudden illness
About food restrictions
About fad diets
Apparently the 20's is when the **** goes down.
Our bodies are complaining now.
Maybe we'll figure out what they're trying to say,
Speak English, **** you!
- To the tent!
And blessed sleep.
It's technically tomorrow now.
Well, it's today.
"Thank you for touching my feet that time"
I curl up in his arms,
And all the world is golden
This illness raises its angry lil head
And his caring melts me
Thank you thank you thank you thank you.
Thank you for this beautiful most perfect day.
It was a perfect day. Even through illness and sorrow.