Finally!…lunch time..I squeezed our basket shopping trolley between the seats to a table in the crowded Zuma’s Café there at the Central market. We come to this café for lunch every time we come to the market, which is about once a month..it is always crowded at lunchtime..a popular spot…lots of noise..lots of noise… Michael, … Continue reading
Jean Clements always came home from work to an empty kitchen. She came from her work as principle of the Hudson Street Primary school always in an agitated manner, primarily because of certain incidents that bedevilled her at the school, mostly concerning the behaviour of students and parents reacting to certain students there, or because … Continue reading
The Little things…
Bodkins and bobbins and little things you need,
Hatpins and napkin rings or whatever you please.
Boxed and tied with ribbons and bows,
Tho’ whatever for these days, God only knows.
For that world has passed such need to sew,
Socks and pinafores, aprons..ricrac in rows.
“Where the remote!?” is now the cry..
“Where the laptop?…Where the phone named “ i ”?
The day is gone where a passage of quiet,
Would presage not unease, but a healthy diet
Of patience…music or meditation on life,
And wine, friend or lover in company with thy,
Neither gone nor forgotten from the sight of eye,
Ever our company..ever our thoughts occupy.
What can it be that “anchors” a refugee to their personal situation and can give them the strength to persevere but a cultural / familial reflection back to happier times in their own country with their own family. As to how far back that memory must go would surely have to depend on what their … Continue reading
It stood on my grandmother’s dresser in the lounge. A strange, glass bowl about eight inches across, of several soft colours, neither striped nor layered, but like clouds in the sky, their burred edges blended and vague..touching and yet not..where two colours would have a common border , then interrupted by another intruding between the … Continue reading
Into the fire she did cast,
Letter by letter until the last.
Her stern face, flame-lit aglow,
No pity nor sentiment did it show.
No regret, nor heartfelt loss,
As letter by letter she did toss.
Until the last in hesitant hold,
One short sentence writ in bold,
One final line that caught her eye,
And though the rest she did despise,
That one broken promise with love’s death,
Gave pause for memory’s catch of breath,
Forgotten above this, all the rest;
“Forever my Love, my love, to you,
I do bequeath”.
“Tickets please….Tickets please”… The porter made his way from seat to seat checking and clicking the tickets of the passengers of the 12.30 pm. train to the southern suburbs..It passed through the flats onto the hills stations to finish at Marino Rocks. Annette clicked open her purse to extract the return ticket to Brighton from … Continue reading
If you were ever to ask old Jack Henke about it, he’d go all modest and dismiss any such notoriety about his discovery, and say ; “I wouldn’t say I ACTUALLY discovered it, because it was already there!…Had been all along…Like Penicillin..or Australia…they were always there, but someone just recognised the fact..I just happened to … Continue reading
Anyone familiar with that 1998 film.: “The Truman Show” will not be too amazed at what I am about to reveal. I will warm those unfamiliar with the aforementioned film up a tad and bring them up to speed on my revelation. “ He doesn’t know it, but everything in Truman Burbank’s (Jim Carrey) life … Continue reading
A Gap in the Line.
He touched the medals tenderly, the ribbon colours sublime,
The case of burnished velvet, the soft attractive shine,
He touched the medals tenderly, an Uncle’s Great War “shrine”.
Posthumously given for courage, in “closing a gap in the line”.
In closing a gap in the line he died, in mud, gore and slime.
It was for these tokens of honour, he marched, to fill a gap in the line.
With Union men, many of them with those medals he’d proudly stride.
Union men, many of them and a title his Uncle wore with pride.
Himself, a Wharfie, born and bred, right down the family line,
His Uncle too, t’was always said, could lump a hundred-weight a time,
Bagged sugar, sticky with sweat, soaking wet, at eighty tons an hour,
The men would lug from those cargo holds with no break for tucker.
In the Summer strike of ’98 they marched for conditions fair,
When “Patrick” crawled to Howard’s Government to send the coppers there.
Along with the Farmer mercenaries trained by the covert ; “Sandline,”
They sought to break the strikers…to break through a gap in the line.
In the middle of the night they sent in the thugs, the scabs and the dogs,
It was hard to tell which was which among the slavering, crawling hogs.
And deals were made and rights were trade between the ruling class,
That left the strikers on their own to hold the line tight to the last.
Howard set the dogs on the men and the women and children in kind,
Reith, the crawling bastard, banked the scabs through a mercenary company; “Sandline”,
And the Journalist sucks and the Murdoch hacks lent their honour to that shameful crew,
And wrote of “overpaid wharfie bludgers” when of sweat and blood they NEVER knew.
And he saw the look in the breaker’s eyes, he saw the hate confined,
So clasping tight, holding the next striker’s arms with all his might,
He called and bellowed fit to wake in fright..:”Hold boys, Hold!”
“ Hold my bastard boys!…we’ll not let them force a gap in the line!”
There comes a time in everyone’s heart, where honour and justice combine,
We must choose which side we’re marching on..what a sense of honour defines.
Would his Uncle have him march for nought, but just a place in a line,
Or should he honour best his Uncle’s pride with his class aligned.
Today he touches those medals tenderly, with a habit long refined,
But he’ll not march on Anzac Day…not while those Tory scabs declaim,
No..there’ll be a space where he held his place with the others marching time,
And owed in respect for his Uncle’s indebt’..they’ll now see clearly outlined,
That in the place of his marching space…there’ll be a gap in the line.
There’ll be a gap in the line my fellows…there’ll be a gap in the line.
Owed in respect to an Uncle’s indebt’…Today there’s a gap in the line.
A short biography of a working-class warrior. Let me present to you an image of an aged man, rather heavy-set, sitting deep in a relaxed posture in a large, plump, rounded sofa purchased “unused” from an eBay seller five years ago that was gifted to this same man sitting in it from his children on … Continue reading
Got talking to Pete last Friday down the local..the subject got onto the passing of one’s parents..I ‘spose because we are both old now ourselves and it comes as no longer an immediate sorrow, but rather one lived through so many years ago..And we got onto the reactions one experiences at the funeral, what with … Continue reading
The twist of the knife.
“ ‘Twas the cruel hand of fate”, some will attest,
“Plain bad luck..had to give it best”.
No plot nor plan nor Nemesis,
That loss of life, fortune..no redress.
There was that time for just the smile,
Luck, sweet mistress, walk a mile,
Friends, well wishes, oh wilful guile,
Was jealous intent? or blunt revile!
Chance will intervene yet awhile,
To arm the hand, repay the slight,
Fate; cruel mistress will plunge the knife,
Yes..Fate’s deft hand..would repay it best,
But truly I say ; ” ‘tis the twisting of the blade,
Gives most pleasure…
Above ALL the rest ”
End of Stories.