Sunday, November 1, 2009

How The World Gets Bigger

Reading your post Marg, 'Things never as they seem' reminded me of this beautiful poem
by Alison Hallett
How The World Gets Bigger
This morning there's a note pinned to your door
explaining why you've had to rush out
and cancel our meeting. I turn back into
the rain, watch it falling on tarmac, rivering
in gutters, little bullets exploding. I unbutton
my jacket, lift my face up to the sky. This is better
than crying: nowhere to be and nothing to do.
I walk the christened pavement, cherry tree
humg like a chandelier, the corner on the end
of the road suddenly appealing, the way it
turns without revealing what lies beyond.
When I mentioned to Mama in a letter that Bill was gathering up his boats from boat sheds and garages and (alas) outside places she replied 'What on earth are you going to do with boats up there? (In the middle of nowhere hours from sailing water)' Here they are under the trees resting.
Well the pool is deep enough and when they're all mended we can go up the road and sail on the neighbours dam.

But I was telling Bill about the Brighton boats 'the corner on the end of the road suddenly appealing, the way it turns without revealing what lies beyond.' There was something about going to Brighton that was such an adventure. Running home from church to pack lunch, maybe tea also, and run back down the hill to catch the bus (will everybody make it?) And then the long bus trip out to Brighton Beach and somewhere in the course of the day we'd take a walk down to the boat house-just a few of us kids by ourselves. We had to negotiate with the grumpy old men for a boat and then head off up the river rowing, around the corner and away into the countryside and looking in to peoples backyards as we went. Once or twice we went up as far as we could go until the river ran out. I don't ever remember looking at a watch but we all seemed to make it back to the bus stop in time for the ride back and then a 40 min walk up the hill home. Rivers and boats still contain that adventure.

Took the kids down to the Taeiri River today. The snow on the hills is melting so the water level is running high. They assured me it was warm. From the perspective of a wetsuit it probably was.

The garden goes wild at this time of year and here's my special helper: it's a 'PLANET JNR', a seed sower for anybody who didn't instantly recognise it and it will be sowing 6 packets of carrot seed and 3 packets of parsnips-with a bit of assistance from me.

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  1. I wish I had the right words to say how much I love this bit of writing.

  2. Hi Miri,

    Another great post. Ken loved the Brighton reminiscing - he said it reminded him of another fun trip....Toko Mouth! Ha, ha. I think that particular excursion is scarred on his memory forever.

    Hopefully we will see you all some time over the summer too. We miss you all.

    Love Mary

  3. Hi miri

    I too was reminiscing about trips up the Brighton river. Think we did that all in the days before life jackets and adult supervision and boat WOF's - surely it would be all regulated out of existence now.

  4. Hi Miri - yes I agree this is a marvellous post. You totally inspire me to read a lot more than my work stuff which is my chief reading fodder these days.

    Those Brighton trips. They were great. I remember row boats turning in circles till we got the rowing rhythm right. Those experiences have stood us goodstead allour lives.

  5. I remember those boat trips very fondly. Being the littlest I never had to row. I just dangled my hands over the side feeling the water and the goopy algae between my fingers.
    How nice it is not to rush.