There is an ocean inside of me
Hear the gentle waves wash over sand and shells and smooth-ed stone let the waves break long and slow from one end of the vast horizon to the other
This ocean has existed for a million thousand billion years and reaches to eternity
Listen to the ocean
I am standing in the train with someone’s briefcase pressing into my back waiting in a phone queue to discuss a payment that bounced sitting waiting for a job interview
And I listen to the ocean inside of me
The only thing that’s real.
It’s like this. I have a stone in my shoe. I know its there. It hurts. I know it will need to come out sometime, but not just yet. I can’t stop now in the rain, in the middle of a great sea of people pushing me along, hurrying me. I can’t sit here and remove my shoe, and maybe my stocking too, and be all exposed. No way. I need to find the right space, to be safe.
There is a stone in my shoe. Sometimes I forget that it’s there and I don’t remember why, but I am looking for a safe place, a chair, or a step even, out of the rain, out of this crowd of people pushing at me where did they all come from? Noise is coming out of their mouths, but it does not make sense.
There is a stone in my shoe. I think I have been here before, but the people around me are obscuring my view and they make so much noise, I can’t hear my own thoughts. Am I walking in circles?
My foot hurts. I want to sit down and rest, but I can’t find the right place. I am so tired. I want to tell someone but everyone is pushing me on and on and I don’t know why.
My foot hurts. Is there a stone in my shoe?
When my partner and I got back together after years happily apart most of my family had the shits and one of my sisters just dumped me. I kidded myself for a bit that she would get over it and then got mad and sad when she didn’t. And mad at myself for caring about it anyway. And sad with my family because they wanted us to get over it but I didn’t know how. And sometimes scared because I was going to see her at some family thing and when I did see her I always felt like I was going to be sick. This went on for years, about five years actually. And one day after practicing nonviolent communication for quite a while I actually thought to use it and I asked myself – what is it that I want from her anyway? And the answer was so clear and beautiful – love and acceptance and a little fun. And in that very same moment I knew I had all these things already – with my partner and my daughters, with my workmates and with my friends and I just felt all warm and loved up just walking to work in the morning sunshine on a daggy concrete path, with a straggly jasmine vine climbing over a crumbly wall alongside
there is so much that you have missed
each morning the sun still rises to touch the clouds with gold
that place that sells the good kebabs is making real lemonade again
and Sara’s baby girl giggles in her sleep
they say she couldn’t see that anymore she lived in a world with no colour
but last night, in a world bleached by fog I saw
two white foxes in the headlights
how I miss you
one day I accidentally looked at myself in the mirror, naked.
I thought, what would I call myself if there was no such thing as ugly?
— you are fat and old
OK, no fat and no old. Ha ha!
— gross. Your breasts sag so does your tummy and your chin is hairy
well that may be but there is no gross, no hideous, no misshapen and
no unattractive either.
a searching, groping, a casting about
a small space forms, a gap into which other words now tumble…
— strong, resilient, enduring
And a feeling too:
my badass middle aged lady beard
the desire to carry tweezers everywhere
no caffeine after midday
waking up in a sweat at 2am after drinking caffeine at 3pm
the dog is incontinent
i still love the dog
the steam mop given to me by my mother-in-law really is the best present ever
for the little brown dog who has trotted beside me for most of my life through years across the state across the country – valiantly I have pushed her away, stopped being so damn sensitive, drank the concrete, changed my thoughts, words, my mind… but every time I say I’m ok she nips at a heel to trip me up, brushes her damp body against mine causing the hell-rash, or pounces on me in my sleep to wake me terrified, screaming or weeping
for yesterday when I sat on the train with the water from yet another job ‘no’ leaking from my eyes wondering again what was wrong with me that I couldn’t just appreciate what I had and think of the starving children and be goddamn grateful for fs sake
for when I found her damp and smelly right in my lap. She poked her wet nose into my ear and whispered safely and she left me
for when I finally contemplated safety and what and where and who and when and why safety is and how I might as gently and sensitively as I please go about finding myself some more of that safety
for now – I spot my little friend sitting just outside the back door. I sit with her a bit, content, and throw her some scraps. She leaves them for the chooks, and stretches out in the sun, dry and warm basking