posted on June 10, 2008 at 9:33 pm

les n joyce meet
our lives are merely trees of possibilities
end of the war
summer of peace

les n joyce get married
i do i do i do
to have and to hold
time being a glimmer in the eye
time being coming down the line
time being getting ready
re: in car, nate

oh a little bundle of joy arrives

see me in my pram asleep
a golden child with tiny angels a’hovering
hear my dulcet tones
when i gurgle out my first phrase of da da esque poetry

see me walking talking living boy
see my budgie napoleon
see me fly my red plane and my blue plane
see me in watercolour memory garden
the summer nights in sweetbriar
dad bangin’ on a piana

im in australia
look its the ninety fifties
men were men
n women had those horrible hairdos with all the spray
how poisonous was all that bloody spray
sprayed all over yer face n in yer scalp
airborne glue
conditions in australia a little “rawer” than england
especially the matter of sanitation
hey les can do well here tho
he’s a photographer n pianist n mechanic
n a all round cockney geezer
hes bloody funny too that leslie
aint ‘e , ladies
ooh that les….such a comedian

oh idyllic days before i started school
sitting up in bed colouring
next to me mums having her afternoon nap
mum n dad have these curtains diffusing soft light in their room
im very quiet n still
i dont want to wake mum up
i am the custodian n guardian of her nap
i will keep still
and in the delicacy of each movement
in the extreme quietness and slowness of each moment
i colour my book in
such marvellous stories
little toy sailors riding fish that looked like dolphins
hobgoblins and witches
a door in a tree leads to a faery feast
the midnight hour kidnapped n rescued by a mouse
a fierce old man with a beard who turns out to be friendly
(first time i saw the word “fierce”…will always associate with that book)
i discover my favourite colours among my pencils were pink n mauve
they had some important link i could never fathom
same as the letters j and f
those two letters have some link my young heart told me
maybe coming from before….?

at one of our seemingly endless picnics
here we all are by the side of a lagoon on a perma-sunday
the dads are all snoozing in deck chairs
the mums are all getting lunch ready
the kids are all floating round on blow up toys
theres joyce with a flask of hot tea
theres les with his new fangled movie camera
a movie camera….that les…!
hes gotta have all the latest gadgets
he sweeps in low and films all the ladies legs
they all have a giggle except mum
shes used to his antics
oh look
that little freckle face kid
hes a skinny little sod
his hair is short backnsides and bleached sandy by the sun
his shoulders are red n peeling
so hes swimming with a t shirt on which he hates
some of my relatives are really lovely
aunty ivy was nice to me
seeming like she came from another age
aunty lou my dads sister was a hard lady to handle
she fomented revolt n dissent with all her rellies
humphing n tut tut tutting n shh n rolling her eyes
she wound em up n she set em against each other
a real matriach worthy of a roman dynasty
lou used to try to set me dad against me
it hurt me that my dad was taking flack from his big sister
over me n my bad behaviour
my cheekiness towards the groan-ups
my lack of the required subservience
the way i didnt eat my dinner
the only food i liked was fried egg n chips…!
lou had a million little aphorisms along the lines of
children should be seen n not heard
kinda trip
still on days like these
life seemed endlessly pleasurable
but anxiety had begun to pop into my stomach
a general uneasiness as i began to suss the lie of the land

i go to a school
everyday i go there and get educated
i learn how to sing christmas carols
i learn how to daydream
i learn how to look at the pretty girls
i learn how to compete
i learn the hit of winning
i learn the miss of losing
i learn the currents of popularity
i learn to compare
i learn to bully and be bullied
i learn to get in fights
i learn to avoid fights
i get threepence
wrapped in my hanky for bus fare n after school
my mum has already made my lunch and playlunch
at 11 oclock we drink warm milk left in the playground
(it wasnt supposed to be warm….)
we use this paint that had a wonderful smell
we do a play
we have yo yo experts come to school
we have a fancy dress competition
we catch the bus home
i watch superman starring george reeves
i watch zorro
i watch rin tin tin
i watch lassie
i watch the cisco kid
i watch robin hood
and the adventures of lancelot
mr squiggle n the gillypops
i watch bandstand
i go to bed at 7 30
dad tells me a story
anxiety creeping more
school is frightening
i realise i’ll never have those days with my mother again
they were over before i knew it
i decide i dont really like school

the roaring sixties

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