Friday, September 25, 2015

Boy on the Beach

Gray skies and seas.
on the sand.

The image of the boy on the beach summoned
easily and endlessly by the simple mapping of bleak colour
You thought you had steeled yourself for the image.
But your stomach lurches still.
But that is nothing still. There must have been more.
Get ready for the sounds of that less-than-bucolic beach
crude shore of stunned silence and disbelieving wailing,
Brace yourself for a lungful of crisp seaside air
tinged with the scent of despair and the acid mouthful of bile.

These are no tourists
collecting their dead and discarded
dreams of nothing more than to breath another day
gone, all gone,
This is no vacation resort town that mocks
those who would dare
risk that they love the most
to at grab thin threads of a lifeline
only to earn a thousand nights of uneasy rest and
unrelenting dreams of a child's grasp failing in the waves.

It was supposed to be better.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Travelling Light

The wedding donut? Maple Bacon
He tells me that he is travelling light, but he has some pretty heavy reading in his hands and some weighty thoughts on his mind as he begins his multi-leg, long layover, leap-frog, budget flight from Portland to London.

He is alone, heading home 36 hours after getting married in a Portland donut shop--Voodoo Donuts, of course, but not the original one which he declared a "little grotty for that kind of thing."

His bride waits stateside for the visa that a marriage to a Briton might afford. He says he feels lucky he can afford the legal fees and visa processing charges and thinks that he can hack the lonely six-month wait for his Voodoo Donut bride to join him in their new life. He hopes to be a barrister by then, someone who will work on issues to better society. He likes the pomp of being a barrister, wig, robes and all.

He realises his choices aren't for everybody; knows he is not the norm. A boarding student from the age of 15 with a family posted on another continent, he learned to rely on himself.  In law school, he marvelled that his university cohorts struggled with laundry, groceries and other realities of being an adult. He had long since learned to separate colours and pre-treat stains.

His mother initially refused to attend the wedding (If you think I am going to watch my only son get married in a donut shop...)  but eventually was talked into a gold sari to step into her son's made-for-Portland wedding. Her friends convinced her that she might not want her only son to get married without her.

His new sister-in-law refused to come. It wasn't, she thought, spiritually safe to get married at Voodoo Donuts.

Nothing like  Herman Hess to weigh down a newlywed