It took 66 days for Bobby Sands to starve himself to death.
It took me many years to starve my mind of the fear of public speaking
& though I have come a long way & people praise my confidence
it is still a work-in-progress
- what fears have you overcome either partially or fully?
- mural in Belfast courtesy of Wiki Commons
That little kid in Maccas
from Aldinga Primary
with one hand on his yellow scooter
is picking up his order as I
am putting mine through.
Hello, he says brightly
& I say, hello, back
& I think should I be even speaking
with this kid?
[hasn’t he heard of stranger danger?]
so I ask him when did school go back
& he says, Monday so I ask him what grade he is in
[ he isn’t that little]
so I guess, Year seven
& he says, Year 5
& adds he comes each morning to Maccas
to fill up his tummy
so he can work hard .
He collects his pancake with chocolate syrup and strawberry milkshake
& scoots off
with his bag of calories and good work ethic.
*pic courtesy of Wiki Commons
I was idling by the brook fishing for tranquility
when the phrase leapt into my head.
What was I to do with it?
Toss it back?
It had me hooked. It wriggled and flashed.
What texts would the well-read salmon have tackled?
Isaac Walton’s ‘The Compleat Angler’, of course.
that old chestnut, ‘The Old Man and the Sea’
and ‘Cloudstreet’ where poor old Fish Lamb almost drowned
& was revived but ‘not all of Fish had come back’,
‘Moby Dick, perhaps though as everyone knows a whale is a mammal
not a fish
though the well-read salmon would have known that.
He would have been well-versed in sea poems too,
knowing by heart ‘The Rime of the Ancient Mariner’ being one up
& a hearty singer of sea shanties going up and down
Maybe because I was slipping away into the comfortable, undemanding
arms of magazines, she gave me a brand new bookmark from ifaw.
Now all you have to do is find a book to put it in, she said.
It’s like someone buys you a pair of slippers for your birthday,
you’ve got to get a dressing gown to go with them, and then a box of cigars
and a bottle of tawny port like an English gentleman to get you through
the evening and a cozy murder mystery to curl up with before the fire
& suddenly I knew what type of novel I wanted.
- what book have you got .lined up to read?
- do you smoke cigars, drink tawny port and curl up before the fire of a winter evening?