Ute, the other half.

Remember when I drove behind you, and when you turned right, and I had to turn left? I watched your white ute escape the corner of my eye.

When you met me in Canberra for a Bush Dance, holding onto me wherever we went. I didn’t want to dance, but you grabbed my hand and pulled me into the sweaty crowd.  We muddled our way through the moves, laughing. Then holding your VB can and leaning onto my shoulder to tell me you loved me.

Remember when we stood over the mist, and you explained what was below the gray, asked me to imagine where the buildings were and where you spent your days,  you had your hands safely on my waist.

Remember waking up in the cottage, looking out as the sun poured in, over the pond. You would make me instant coffee, with honey, no milk.

When we were laying on my bed, and then you told me you already had someone in your life, the fear in your eyes and the worry of what that would do to me. You were ready to catch me in my sadness, and yours.

Remember when I met your other half for the first time. We sat in couches, and spoke of books we had read, and had a platter of cheese and sparkling wine. He was an intelligent, gentle and handsome man. Then we said goodnight to him, and we went to bed.

When I played that song, and you would burst into tears and hold me tight. Every time it played, you would do the same thing. “Its a Better Place Since You Came Along”, the words telling me that this is what you wanted. Me.

Remember when we would call each other, throughout the day. You would be eating tuna and crackers, I would be walking by the sea. I would learn about your customers, you would learn about my work. And he would be in the background, working beside you.

When we would talk of getting a house in the country. My own room to write in, and have a view of the world outside, sat at the beautiful old roll top antique desk you bought me. I still have the key for it, I wanted to return it. He said not to.

Remember the smell of the old Volvo, as we drove across the outback in the heat, no air conditioning. We had to shout to hear each other, the windows open, Adelaide panting on the backseat. I would take your hand, and I wouldn’t feel you grip mine.

When I said I would fly home, I couldn’t find you. You stood before me on the beach, but you weren’t there. You drove me to the airport and let me go home. The next day you drove 800 kilometers to my door, to hold me tight again. You were gradually ripping apart.

Remember surprising me for my birthday? He turned up the door, I said he could stay. Then you came from around the corner, you both brought cheese and sparkling wine again. The following day you remained while he drove up home, and we lay and watched the baking show.

When you text me suddenly, that you weren’t coping. Then went silent. I would call, you wouldn’t answer. I would text, and the man I knew, was overgrown by the silence.

Remember when I drove to a hotel near you, in the storm. I waited while the late news played in the background. All the power went out, I could see your headlights out on the road, as they came near. The gravel moved out of your way, the wind blowing inside as I watched your dark figure walk towards me. I couldn’t see your face, you couldn’t see mine. But I felt your sadness, you felt mine. We kept each other warm that night, as you let me in and talked for the final time.

Then we had no more talk of country living, or of tuna or customers. You went back inside the man I lost, and then when he nudged you, we spoke on the phone nine months since we met. You told me I deserved more,  I nodded, I did. The call ended, and the ringing in my ears is the silence that stayed with me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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In. Two. Minds.

  1.  I lose my job in three months.
  2. I have debt.
  3. I have heartache.
  4. I open up the news, its filled with fear.
  5. Family have told me that who I am is not right. Its wrong.
  6. I have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. I am drained and tired very often.
  7. I dont know who God is anymore.
  8. I try to write, and stop. I try to create, and pause.

__________

  1. I can do anything I want next year. I can travel, I can write, I can take on new adventures with work.
  2. I have money to eat good food, live in a comfy home in a safe place.
  3. I have been loved, and loved. And will love again.
  4. I open up books, and there is so much hope.
  5. Family have told me that they love me no matter what. Friends fill me with joy.
  6. I am fit and healthy. Focussing on my health, also makes me mentally strong and happy.
  7. God is there. My faith is not dead. And will continue to discover.
  8. I write and keep going. I create and get to encourage others, usually when I don’t realise.

 

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So the Knitting has started

A project I have been working on, and of course I cannot take it seriously. Enjoy.

 

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Skunks and Coconut Coffee

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I have been and gone. Travelled across North America, via car, boat, bus, plane and train. And it was incredible. It felt complete and I felt so relaxed, so inspired.

OK now the contrived sentences are out of the way…  I fell over onto a lady with my iced tea on the train, I was too scared to paddle board on the lake in Seattle, but redeemed myself in a much shallower lake (about 1 foot deep) later in the trip in Maine. I was given a T-shirt with my face printed on it as a gift. I wrote about 10 postcards, paid for postage, but then never posted them. I sat and watched San Francisco buses asleep at 1am, in their parking lot. I drank so many iced coffee and coconut milk beverages, I smell like a bounty with a hint of arabica beans. I read all the accreditation of the people from the cuddle shop in Portland, Oregon. I said hello to my first skunk by English Bay in Vancouver, and my first chipmunk at Crater Lake. We got along, to the extent I usually get along with wild animals.

(Breath)

I walked through a park at 9am on a Sunday in LA, and was the only one awake, and one semi-awake person dressed up like a Starbucks worker. I sat in a dining car travelling across North Dakota with an Amish couple, learning about their world. I filled my wallet with many one dollar bills, that I awkwardly pulled out and handed bar staff a lot. I read six graphic novels, for the first time. I slept on a sailboat in Seattle. I got to know my friend Jim much better, I got to know a black beetle more so. A cat and I exchanged sleepy nods in North California.

Now I am back. Many choices ahead, and do I get a puppy?

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Empty Lot.

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The carpark sat there silently, beside the dark brick building. Inside the car, he merged with the faded vinyl seat. he wasn’t ready. Obedience is what was overpowering him. Guilt and obedience. Leaving the warmth of the car and many other secrets.

Knocking on the dull door, his acne scars is what he noticed first. Tony, in his 50’s. Walking in, he had expected to sit on a couch, to complete the cliche, but he was offered a seat in an old desk chair.  Throughout the session, he would sub-consciously he fiddled with the height adjuster, that ignored him, broken.

“Your mum has mentioned you wanted to talk”

“Yeah, I need to”

“That’s great to hear. Really good. The first step is the hardest, and you have already done that”

“I just dont know what the next step is.”

“That is where I come in. I have dealt with this many times, for many years. You can be rest assured you are not alone”.

Tony had the notepad. And the writing that he could not read upside down. I didnt want him writing things. Things I didnt know.

“I have worked through many different struggles with people, mate. From child sex offenders to prostitutes. I spend most my week in the prison system, so much change and reward there.”

I dont think he asked Tony for his CV. But it felt good to know he wasn’t alone, perhaps.

“Martin, I am sure it is all very overwhelming. We dont need to talk about everything all at once. Let’s start in one little corner.” Tony’s voice was calm, but the calm a pool closed for the winter would be, way too cold. Way too still. And this corner he spoke of, was where a naughty kid should be sent.

He swallowed. Then breathed. This is where he had to jump in.

“Well, I just have got to a point where I never want to hurt. Hurt anyone else, most importantly. And God has led me to be honest outside, not just inside.”

Here is where the lies were about to start.

——-

Walking back to the carpark, did he feel any better? Mum was already back at the car. She had a slight smile on. “Don’t worry mate, you are doing the right thing”.

“It was fine Mum. I know it feels right.”

“Good mate, good.”

The slight smell of cigarette smoke hung there. Mum had been doing it again.

The car began moving onward to home. The steep hill made no difference to the speed. Cruising silently, there was a lot that could be said but the words lay inside. Each bend in the darkness, wrapped around them, mother and son.

 

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Music Sunday – “We Can be Friends” by Francis and the Lights feat. Bon Iver

Good to hear Bon Iver. Funky and different, I like. It will be playing high on my 2016 list.

Music Sunday – “Hyperballad” by Bjork, cover by Ben Abraham

This song came out just over 20 years ago. The music, the words, one of the first songs that really washed over, and grabbed me. Carried me out and I explored such a clear and powerful set of imagery. I only heard it in 2003, but it has been one of my favourite songs ever since.

Here is a beautiful cover, by Ben Abraham. Adore the arrangement.

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Our Part

We all have our part. Whatever you believe, the reality is we are all here. Some of us make others laugh, some of us have an abundance of love to share, some are making sure others don’t die, and so many feel unnoticed cause who they are seems to be insignificant. But we all have our part. And we all have helped someone else, whether we know this or will never find this out. And you will help someone again. And someone will help you.

I like my bike. It makes you feel fast, and free. Except when the chain falls off, and you have to awkwardly pull over in the middle of the major intersection, semi straddling it awkwardly on your tippy toes. Then you get your hands covered in grease, and you didnt casually put a grease rag in the back of your workpants. Other than that, I love my bike.

 

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Music Sunday – “Don’t Worry About Me” by Frances

One of the most beautiful songs I have heard in a long time. I am just thankful Frances has shared her voice with the world.

Makes me think about where I am right now.

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Weekender

Weekenders remind us we have so much more to live for. Went to a getaway last weekend, to a beautiful part of the world, the Great Ocean Road. Had a house overlooking the ocean and we felt the coming winter coolness, jammed with the warm lingering sun. Celebrating birthdays and just good company.

OK enough of that, it sounds like the opening to one of those articles where you want to rip the page in half but you cant, because it is an online article. So you close the window with a slow click, to get more satisfaction.

But yes, good weekend.

I have finally found the story I want to write. And it was in front of me the whole time. I have given myself until December to have the first draft complete. I am having so much fun with it. I have dropped to four days a week in my job, to give myself one day a week dedicated to it. It felt really adult doing that, as it is a financial sacrifice so I better get something out of it. Which I am. Its like reading a book you cannot put down, but it doesnt have an ending yet, the words appear in the book. Like the Never-Ending Story, but hopefully there is an ending.

Speaking of.. here is a photo of a cake with Falcor from Never-Ending Story.

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