posted on October 5, 2008 at 8:50 pm

whatever it was that i wanted to say
i well n truly forgotten
go for a drive to a strange part of town
i get lost in this huge city
the car takes me on n on
through unknown streets
past gardens and houses
i walking down this path
a green river on one side
kingfishers drying their wings in the trees
people go past…ordinary people
the houses emanate their stories to me
i stand in front of a house
the black windows stare back like empty eyes
i make my mind a blank
i stand there
an empty vessel
who am i?
i couldnt say
i am the repository of all the houses emanations
and my memory brings em all back
the long gone children
the cats buried in the garden
father and mother return from their somewhere
2 days before christmas a long time ago
see by the fashions and the hairstyles
yes this is old australia
but its like a place i saw in pittsburgh
all overgrown and shabby
the weeds have broken through
the cement is all cracked
little stones lie around all dishevelled
the river flows like peak hour traffic over its oozy bed
the path is rough on my bare feet
bees nibble at the clover
the house regards me
why does it try to keep its stories to itself?
ah says the house
its in its hoarse woody voice
that i hear in my ghostly heart
no no go away says the house
closing its doors and groaning its boards
you have never lived here appears in my mind
i empty my head as much as i can
i pour out all my own cherished memories
so i can fit this house
and this hot morning
and all the people and the cats
and its so close to christmas
christmas when it meant something someone whispers
i can hear the piano
theyre banging away on the piano
an old time song
a song from when even i was a child
they stand around drinking beer and shandies
and cups of tea
and the cats lie in the laundry to get cool
and the mother fusses round the kitchen
and the father sits smoking silently on the porch
a train shudders by nearby
rattling and vibrating into the hazy distance
and magpies and willy wagtails land on the garage roof
the choko vine breaks out into fleshy green leaves
and curls around the pipes and lattice work
and butterflies float across the summer like
a calendars pages
and a boy sits in his room
with his playboy magazine
transfixed by all that pink flesh
and by those inviting dark places
and it seems life is going on elsewhere
someplace else across the sea or in another time
where money flows and people drive sleek cars
and the women are all spilling out of their costumes
and they are free with their voluptuous kisses and souls
and the women on the page all speak to him
and through him to me
and through me to you
you there who are watching me watching him watching them
the women say things like
hiya bigboy couldya show a lady a goodtime?
hello handsome….why dont you come over here n get ta know me
and they move on the pages
and they wriggle and they wink and they cajole
and he sees their hollywood boudoirs
with the pink satin heart shaped cushions
and the t-bird parked in the drive
and the lady smokes kent menthols
and her name is sharon black
and she comes from bingle, iowa
he reads her measurements
wow 36 24 36 like a phone number to jesus
or something
in her room where its always evening
with all the latest stuff too
a portable record player
and air conditioning
and the tv is in colour sometimes
and the lady drops nembies
and owes her agent downtown 43 dollars
and her agent sits in his office
with his hard hustles n high blood pressure
extracting his cut
calling in some big favours
cos he’s digging in his desk
looking for some document
and bob mitchum said he’d call but he never did
and he ran into manny at canters
and he was having breakfast with judy g soon
and that very day
elvis flew into town
rolling down the runway
just like a real king
and he was instated in a hotel
where the manager bowed n scraped
and the bellboys said oh wow
golly gee will you sign this photograph
and the king says
and he generously spends some time with em
as he waits for his white limousine to arrive
and the boys chatter on
but his mind is on the milkshake joint across the road
and i keep getting pulled n unravelled as i go on n on
i stand back and concentrate
my empty mind refills itself
a flood of thoughts comes rushing in
not my thoughts
i wonder who thought these thoughts
so long ago
the house is empty now
the weeds prevail
the letterbox is full of spiders
and childhood comes to an end
and then

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