Thursday, May 31, 2012

The mouths of babes

J after seeing the ad for Bikie Wars:
'Mum, why are they called bikies? Is it because they say (in a baby voice)
'I wuv my bikie.'?

Sophie, walking up the street waved her brothers on ahead saying
'Ladies first'

Sacha, on being told that he has to clean up after himself:
"Well, that's effing."

Effing indeed.

J's latest artwork

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

No mo' bitchin

Holidays are on and I am as happy as a lark, hanging with the kids in this amazing late Autumn sunshine. There have been card games, movie nights, carpet picnics, trips to our very special City Park and this evening I even cooked up a storm - lamb souvlaki with home made tzatziki and apple pie for dinner. There is roast vegetable soup in the slow cooker for tomorrow.

Maybe you need the work days to make these holidays so sweet?

Next term I'm only working four days a week - happy days, my friends, happy days.

And the kids' first ever dentist trip today saw them all with a gold star clean bill of dental health.

Today, we are loving ourselves sick. Wishing your days to be this sunny.

Saturday, May 26, 2012


Relentless mornings, negotiations, push,
'Put your jumper on'
push again, white knuckles, tensions, shouting,
push again
'Don't speak to your brother like that.'
Schedules, lunches, homework,
'Are you picking them up?'
cling, whine, cough
'Watch me, Mum'
'No, watch me.
'Just get in the car.'
'What's for dinner?'
'Have you done your homework?'


But this model runs too fast. You can't see that I miss you. Love you. Miss you hard. But there's nothing left in the tank to give. The engine has run on the edge of empty and just made it for the dinner-bath-bed-books-'Goodnight. I said GOODNIGHT' run to couch fall. Juice for nothing but apps, impatience and surly boredom.





Sweet Time.



Saturday, May 19, 2012

A different tune

There is a song out there. You've heard the world humming along to the tune. Maybe you saw the full arena performance by that top ten, self-help songster belting it out from centre stage while running barefoot over beds of hot coals? You'd know it.  It's always played on one wave length, or another. It goes a little something like this

"Extroversion is good. Introversion is bad."

I dug it so much I bought the whole album. After all, it makes sense, doesn't it? In our life and times. The wide world wrote the lyrics and its staccato commands sell it well - 'Charisma, charm, wit, risk. Be entertaining. Be employable. Get out there. Make friends. Be popular.' But the message is most of all, for pity's sake, don't be so sensitive.

I tried to sing along for years, but could never quite commit to that number. The melody just always sat out of my range. Booze and fags helped my performance, to a point. But without them, the show had no conviction.

Then Susan whispered a different tune. It was quiet, but catchy and hit my gut's chord. Her sweet serenade sent the other song out of my head. In the right moment that song is the only one to play, but, well, I boogie to that, no longer.

Shyness has it's beauty. It's a quiet, soulful hymn. It requires a closer listen but there can be genius in it. Introversion is not a dirty word, nor is silent retreat. This is the music that keeps the hearts and minds of the sensitive souls of the Earth in rhythm.

To be made to feel out of step for struggling socially, for shyness, this is madness. Sometimes, doesn't everyone long to leave the wide world mosh pit? We don't all want to rock the dance floor all night long but, sometimes aren't we happier to head home early, solo, for a hot milo? To watch a late night subtitled film on the couch while wrapped in a blanket? To tinker with our own tune for a while, without the blurts and squeals of everyone else's songs muddying the composition.

Susan sings it better than I can, and I dig her pipes.

Saturday, May 05, 2012

Saturday Morning

Waking from tense, work-addled dreams to steaming tea and porridge apparated to my bedside. Alone for one precious moment.

Yellowing magnolia leaves are shadows through droplets on the glass. The air and the floor are chill.

I lie and listen.

Out there, a blanket-wrapped child bashes at a poem about Captain Cook, while ugly cartoons blare beside him. He wrangles and mumbles until the pen and pad are chucked with a curse.

Another, retreated behind the closed door of his sanctum, to the rustle of tiny blocks and the weird recesses of his imagination.

She sniffs. Heaving on boots with tongue out, all the while arguing the case for 'No jacket', then swapping the red tartan skirt for the denim with pleats.

I lie and listen.

Swaddled, I stare at the leaf shadows, negotiating with a resistant Spirit to leave the drudge-mire of the week behind, to reject its hearts' desire for hermitage and to eke life from the precious weekend. Pleading with Humour and Grace to likewise emerge from Spirit's maudlin malaise.

Fantasizing that those looming clouds, heavy with the weight of the coming week and the infinite weeks to follow, will disperse, blown to another space and time.

Children crash into the fragile space, demanding hugs and answers. Spirit recoils instinctively but Will battles for open arms. Thought lost in the fog, Heart stirs and with it heavy slow motion.

Shower. Heat and steam. Dress. An actual dress. Heave on boots and focus on one step, then another. Children attached, I head out. Leaving the shadows for autumn sun, for hot market coffee and the chance of longed for company.