This is the question they ask me,
And one which I struggle to answer;
For it is not something I gave much thought,
And I really dont know how to answer.
It plagues me every day,
For you are still - ALL of you..."gone";
Why did I ever go back?
Had I been away for too long?
Perhaps I was being selfish,
Wanting to go back and see my Nan,
Wanting to go back to my roots,
To be on the ship while I still can.
To go back to where I felt I belonged,
I had waited ten years to go back;
And I still dont regret my return,
I dont see it as a reason for "attack".
I thought I had a family,
But it is quite clear that I do not;
For I struggle to find any answers
For this place that time forgot.
So it was a big mistake
To once again return,
To feel the soil under my feet,
For which I had so long yearned.
To climb High Knoll,
Looking out to sea;
Beyond the rugged terrain
lies nothing but sea, sea and more sea.
To climb the peaks,
Through the flax and the ferns;
Everything so green,
Being circled by the terns.
The wild windy bends,
On the road to Blue Hill;
The cloud almost consuming me -
and then everything so still.
The woods of Plantation,
And Rosemary Plain;
The sweet smell of fresh pine
Brings me back again and again.
The narrow streets of Jamestown,
Where cars and people compete;
Can take such a long time to walk,
Talking for hours with everyone you meet.
Swimming in the sea at Rupert's
Became my great escape;
With lovely friends we'd cook and swim
From early until late.
Being churned by the rough South Atlantic
Is like being in a washing machine;
When the huge waves come crashing upon you,
All you can do is hold your breath and hope...its better not to scream!
The water is warm but not gentle,
The swell can sweep you away;
As the waves pound rocks at your body,
You might be tempted to pray.
We swam and ate plo,
We swam and ate cake;
Fish freshly caught
Then from fire and onto plate.
Nana's house has not changed much,
The old geysir still in place;
The bead curtains, the photos,
of just about every single face.
Cockroaches escape hastily,
And the mozzies might come in,
Yet the peace and tranquility of this place
...with its "acoustics" of tin...
For the tin roof has a lot to offer
Especially for a musician;
The flute can be heard from afar,
Penetrating the silence within.
The rain drops make music too,
As they fall upon this roof of tin;
Every other sound may well be drowned out
And the lights sometimes go dim.
But to look from Nana's house,
To the peaks, the Gumwoods, the Fort;
Across to Francis Plain, the School,
And the sea in the distance of course.
Flagstaff sits prominently,
The sun setting on its flanks;
All can be seen from this house,
Built on these precarious banks.
I said goodbye to my nana
I did not know she was going to die;
She was staying in the nursing home,
I visited each time I passed by.
The house then felt more empty,
Even though she had to move out;
Suddenly it became so empty -
Everyone now has moved out.
It was also a place of torture,
And I am not proud at all of my mark;
I left this house with a darkness,
From which it will never depart.
I left the Island with darkness,
As it came time for me to depart;
The people, community shattered,
I still love it with all my heart.
I then felt I could help others,
After learning from those I could confide;
Since my once close knit family
Had pushed me to the side.
We thought we could bring justice,
For many victims of this fate;
But then as we drew so close..
...all of a sudden - it was too late.
Now we are cursed even more,
For our actions have caused such shame;
Yet he was the one who abused us -
He was the one to blame.
So I say goodbye as thats all I can do,
Tears flowing as I write this;
For I know with most certainty...
that I shall never return...and how I miss...
I miss you St Helena,
I tried to help you too;
But as closed minded as you are,
I am just more sad - there is nothing I can do.
Without the support of anyone,
Due to "fear of speaking out",
My own voice falls on deaf ears,
Even when I shout.
Now I must live with this damage,
And shame, and blame, and guilt;
Sometimes I still know not what is true,
Because as women - of course, its "our fault".
You are drifting away St Helena,
Our people - they have but gone;
I miss you, our jewel of the ocean,
Thinking back to the days when I was "still one".
I was still one of you till last year,
How so much can change in that time;
But now our bond is forever broken,
Its broken...because of this crime.
....and yes....it was a crime.
A new poem...not really thought out. Just thoughts that came out (!).