And finally with little one, first
stuffed-up nose for the year,
struggling to stay asleep, tucked in behind her.
It reveals itself.
The meaning of the 'awful past'.
A sudden downpour, hard for air to get through.
The slap across her face that leaves her jaw clicking.
O clouds unfold! Waters broke, a warmth running down her spine.
For it's about her stupid empathy being exploited. About her
youthful gullibility being disarmed and
savaged and made to account for things it didn't
cause or start or, even, ever consider.
How she was wrong-footed, dumb-headed
for a man who ran at her with a machete, an idle hammer, a mobile phone
a man who tried to have her arrested for sedition,
sentenced for his thefts with her signature.
How her believing in standing up for the underdog
lacked serious assessment of that dog's training and character.
How she's never been very interested in domestic animals.
And finally with little one, double
doses of vitamin C,
pockets padded with cough lollies and tissues, twirling ahead of her,
She can see how it happened.
Like a Pilger expose, the inverted pyramid
that silenced her ambitions.
Who she was, when she was like this, over and again,
A seasonal problem? Always October to December.
Why she was the way she was and
what of that poisonous cock with a tail, and other shadows like him.
Those lost years, her toxic shock syndrome.
She is that woman who married in secret, in blue
And divorced in town, in red.
Without cowering, forgetting to eat or wishing to forget
She remembers it all.
- 99: BROWNFACESUBMIT NOW with W S Dunn 98: SINGAPORECOMING SOON with A Pang and J Ip 97: PROPAGANDACOMING SOON with M Breeze and S Groth 96: NO THEME IXwith M Gill and J Thayil 95: EARTHwith M Takolander 94: BAYTwith Z Hashem Beck 93: PEACHwith L Van, G Mouratidis, L Toong 92: NO THEME VIIIwith C Gaskin 91: MONSTERwith N Curnow 90: AFRICAN DIASPORAwith S Umar 89: DOMESTICwith N Harkin 88: TRANSQUEERwith S Barnes and Q Eades 87: DIFFICULTwith O Schwartz & H Isemonger 86: NO THEME VIIwith L Gorton 85: PHILIPPINESwith Mookie L and S Lua 84: SUBURBIAwith L Brown and N O'Reilly 83: MATHEMATICSwith F Hile 82: LANDwith J Stuart and J Gibian 81: NEW CARIBBEANwith V Lucien 80: NO THEME VIwith J Beveridge 57.1: EKPHRASTICwith C Atherton and P Hetherington 57: CONFESSIONwith K Glastonbury 56: EXPLODE with D Disney 55.1: DALIT / INDIGENOUSwith M Chakraborty and K MacCarter 55: FUTURE MACHINES with Bella Li 54: NO THEME V with F Wright and O Sakr 53.0: THE END with P Brown 52.0: TOIL with C Jenkins 51.1: UMAMI with L Davies and Lifted Brow 51.0: TRANSTASMAN with B Cassidy 50.0: NO THEME IV with J Tranter 49.1: A BRITISH / IRISH with M Hall and S Seita 49.0: OBSOLETE with T Ryan 48.1: CANADA with K MacCarter and S Rhodes 48.0: CONSTRAINT with C Wakeling 47.0: COLLABORATION with L Armand and H Lambert 46.1: MELBOURNE with M Farrell 46.0: NO THEME III with F Plunkett 45.0: SILENCE with J Owen 44.0: GONDWANALAND with D Motion 43.1: PUMPKIN with K MacCarter 43.0: MASQUE with A Vickery 42.0: NO THEME II with G Ryan 41.1: RATBAGGERY with D Hose 41.0: TRANSPACIFIC with J Rowe and M Nardone 40.1: INDONESIA with K MacCarter 40.0: INTERLOCUTOR with L Hart 39.1: GIBBERBIRD with S Gory 39.0: JACKPOT! with S Wagan Watson 38.0: SYDNEY with A Lorange 37.1: NEBRASKA with S Whalen 37.0: NO THEME! with A Wearne 36.0: ELECTRONICA with J Jones