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Despair
by Abigail George
2018-12-19 10:48:39
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Despair (a diary entry)

My breath is caught in
the downward arch of
the wave’s-length. I feel smothered
by the wise heat of the
day. It knows something
I don’t. I expected more
from you. After all, you’re my sister. My own

‘flesh and blood’. Not this.

sunse0001_400Not this. A casual indifference to my illness, and my

  disability, my medicine stash.
We talk to each other the
way that lovers do in the honeymoon phase (on the telephone)
of the relationship but you, my sister,
will never be able to understand that.
Words like ‘sweet dreams’
and ‘goodnight sweetheart’ punctuate our sentences.

I make prayer a way of life these days.
I live in this kangaroo-Australian atmosphere. This hemisphere of
leaps and bounds that boomerang. Of energy
and lethargy.

  Slippery heat and prairie stiffness in the joints when I do

do not get enough rest.
I wasn’t an attention-seeking actress
wearing a broad smile on her
 face. The piano is in that corner.

Books take up space. Atom knows
 that books take up space and I
wonder if school will bore him
the way that it bored me. Will he be religious?
Adopt a church and what will his
personality be like as an adult.

Will he be anything like me or his father?

    Keep your head above water.
    Perhaps your soul will be healed
    that way. Perhaps you will
   realise that the kingdom of God
   is within you. That the earth
is eternal and shadows are fleeting visitors.
   I have left the radiance of

childhood

behind. The feast of peace that
was once in majority. Gone is
the heart of that worship of falling into a waterfall, down the rabbit hole.
The centre of attention was the
family kitchen. Everyone was
paying attention to the child, my brother’s son.
To his new shoes and his old-
fashioned ways. Atom taught
us that all a family needs are
love and laughter and sanctuary.
The Sunday afternoon was golden. The light of that day forgotten.
I will always remember that day.
His dark hair and his dark eyes.

    Once the singing and the
birthday kisses had ended.
And while we singing, I was dreaming.
Dreamt I had two kids, a girl
and a boy and a husband-(schoolteacher)
who had disappeared into the
mists of time. ‘Don’t let them-people tame you too much,’
I want to tell this 3-year-old.


   
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