and
When Did You Find Out

1 August 2014

I don’t remember
it’s not like
a birds and the bees talk
it was a gradual kind of knowing,
sort of
(felt like I was carrying something)
It wouldn’t make sense to say
I think it’s something you slowly
wake up to
wake up to
wake up to
wake up to
wake up to
wake up to
wake up to
wake up to
It’s simple
[talk over]
maybe we’re past that now
this place is scraped knees
and bleed onto the pavement
placing history books into boxes
I didn’t care where they went, I mean
it’s a shame but we’re all good now right
we’re concrete, steel and ashphalt walking up
roller door driveways
a gradual kind of knowing, it’s like
finding out your family has hidden a pile of
bones
you could throw a rope
still, you couldn’t reel back the loss.
[count 2]
But I didn’t know what to…
awkward silence
What did you do?
choke on sadness, I didn’t
brew a pot, I didn’t
seem too bothered, I didn’t
say a prayer I didn’t
hear voices I didn’t
have anywhere to go I didn’t
and then the colour of the grass made sense
I think about it a lot
I don’t
think about it a lot
at migratory birds and
native birds and
native birds fight with
migratory birds and
soldier birds squawk while wagtails work
kookaakkaakakkakakaka
(silence)
how do you feel when you walk barefoot
I wonder where we’re going
is it we
is it us
I can only I
(increase in intensity and volume)
where are we going
where are we going
where are we going
[native title section, kind of talking over the
top of one another]
The Australian Government has acted to protect
the rights of all of its citizens, and in particular its
indigenous peoples, by
(3a) to rectify the consequences of past injustices
(3b) their prior rights and interests, and their rich
and diverse culture, fully entitle them to aspire.
a special right to negotiate its form, must be
provided to
rejected the doctrine that Australia was terra
nullius
Justice requires that
Justice requires that
Justice requires
Justice requires
Justice requires
on a granite rock
basalt
it’s simple
sharp to talk about
my son watched sorry
and said
‘that man sorry’
I move:
a new page in Australia’s history by
moving forward with confidence to the
future. the laws and policies of
successive parliaments
the removal of
We the parliament of Australia
respectfully request
this new page in history
this new page in history
we store history books in court houses
I stop at the lights
I watch a teenager
being spun in a shopping trolley
It’s complex it’s
I didn’t choke on sadness
I don’t think about it a lot
I wonder where we’re going?
I don’t remember when it was
or taught in school
probably doesn’t matter anyway, I just
suddenly felt like I was carrying something.
it was on a ‘Tuesday’
It wasn’t there before
maybe it was there before but
I hadn’t been listening.
hadn’t wanted to hear.
hadn’t wanted to see myself in that story.
It’s complex
[talk over]
Maybe I was too sure of myself
All straight edges and upright
I never knew I could dissolve like that.
then I felt like a stranger inside my own skin,
as if
I’d given up my body,
falling through time.
the landscapes
I recognized before,
blurred into a sort of ache.
It didn’t overtake me, I mean
You wouldn’t know anything was different
Perhaps the sun was hotter, and the wind
colder.
back as far as history,
still, you couldn’t reel back the loss.
[count 2]
But I didn’t know what to…
do with it.
awkward silence
I don’t remember. I know I didn’t:
ever cry, I don’t think, I didn’t
talk for days, I didn’t
plant a tree, I didn’t
feel sick straight away I didn’t
pack up and leave I didn’t
want to walk away.
and I couldn’t watch the story the clouds
played out in the sky (anymore).
I look at things differently
I don’t
Look at things differently
fallen feathers and
patterns of flight
fallen feathers and
patterns of flight
they are scavengers in the suburbs now
(silence)
through the forest?
I’m a ghost, but I don’t know whose.
is this the track we should be taking?
is it they
is it you
no we can us
(increase in intensity and volume)
where are we going
where are we going
where are we going
[native title section, kind of talking over the
top of one another]
(2b) held that native title is extinguished by valid
government acts that are inconsistent with the
continued existence of native title rights and
(3c) ensure that Aboriginal peoples and Torres
Strait Islanders receive the full recognition and
status within the Australian nation to which
history
Justice requires that, if acts that extinguish native
title
Justice requires that
The needs of the broader Australian community
require certainty
The needs of the broader Australian community
The needs of the broader Australian community
The needs
The needs
once I sat on a rock for days
on sandstone
metamorphic layers of meaning
It’s complex it’s
sharp to talk about
the wrongs of the past
profound grief, suffering and loss on
children, communities and their
country.
acknowledging the past
acknowledging the past
acknowledging the past
the moreton bay fig sends earthquake through
the pavement
there are tracks below this street
hosting footsteps to bunya festivals
it’s simple
a gradual kind of knowing,
I can’t watch the story the clouds play out in
the sky
Perhaps the sun is hotter, and the wind colder.
you could throw a rope back as far as history
still you couldn’t reel back the loss




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