Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Et nous existerons en nous amusant, en rêvant amours monstres et univers fantastiques, en nous
plaignant et en querellant les apparences du monde, saltimbanque, mendiant, artiste, bandit,
prêtre ! Sur mon lit d'hôpital, l'odeur de l'encens m'est revenue si puissante ; gardien des aromates sacrés, confesseur, martyr...

I remember a summer day in the Jardin de Luxembourg.
An argument about e.e. cummings and taste. A stale cheese and ham sandwich. A feeling that the European sun doesn't have the same strength as the Antipodean. We thought we'd never go hungry again, but we didn't reckon on our tendency towards melodrama. The belief that we were somehow more fucked up than everyone else because we were young, we were in love with our own voices. I was etching out a story about being too small to talk to god, you were musing on my loyalty - and there were questions we didn't want to ask, because we were worried that we would like the answers too much.

Now there are no more questions for us to answer - just small grins across large oceans and promises of handwritten notecards. We want to live in Middlemarch, in Wuthering Heights. But not as protagonists. I've learned that I don't have to be the centre of attention and I think you taught me that, if only through the scrawled postcards you've been sending - suggestions of memory, that maybe the make up I left in your bathroom is still there.

And a parting at a train station that was made all the better by our passion for vintage clothing, our lust for pretentious snapshots (but it was slightly spoiled by my brilliant self deprecation). Now I sit at train stations thinking of delayed trains, instead of wondering where you are. Sometimes I read books you recommended, but mostly I sit and feel the sun seep into my skin. Sometimes I try to write, but the words aren't flowing as easily as they used to. I don't know you well enough to know what adive you'd give me to get my pen back on the paper. But that doesn't matter because you told me once that whatever I did, wherever I went, as long as I did it with glitter in my footsteps, then brilliance would be within my reach

So I've taken to wearing feathers in my hair, and I'm rereading Decline and Fall
. There's no worry in my footsteps, just glitter. And it's a summer day in the Sydney Botanic Gardens with Bishop Allen for company.Rimbaud sitting next to me with his trademark scowl. A blueberry bagel and the knowledge that sometimes the words write themselves. And even if the over fifties think that I'm trying too hard, that I'm not original or different from any other twenty year old, that I'm aiming true at my pretentious target, it doesn't matter. Because the future is mine, all blue open skies, new shoes, paperbacks and promises.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Bravo! Et maintenant, traduisez pour les pauvres australiens qui parlent seulement l'anglais.