POETIC JUSTICE

I've never been much of a poet. I struggled with it at university and remember my professor telling me to stick to short stories instead, which was heartbreaking at the time but we all need to learn to accept criticism. So I stuck to my short stories and brewed over the fact that I'd never be a poet.


That didn't deter me completely. So, I kept fiddling with poetry when I was stressed out from exams and assignments. One of those poems that gave me some head space was this one I'm about to share. It's called Embers of Matilda and it's something I came up with during a time where my mother just had a very severe stroke. I had a lot of pressure coming from everywhere and I was completely burnt out from helping my father care for my wheelchair bound mother who was no longer competent to do anything anymore. We did the best we could but eventually she had to enter full-time care in a nursing home.


I contemplated age, hereditary diseases, illnesses and all things regarding growing old and getting sick when I wrote this. I guess you could say I experienced some very intense melancholia at this time. But what came out of it was a special poem I had to convince myself that I actually wrote, since I wrote it within an hour and didn't really have any idea how.


I guess that's what poetry is about. Not overthinking it and not trying so hard. It has to come naturally or it will be a terrible poem. With that being said, I really do hope it's not a terrible poem.


Even if it is, it somehow helped me accept what had happened that day, and gave me an ability to forgive myself for not being able to do more for my parents.


In a way, this is an Ode to my European parents who made their life in Australia, giving me a new life on the other side of the world. Because of that, I am an Australian.

EMBERS OF MATILDA

little forest solider carved by an old man's withered hand beneath the crack of a velvet axe

strikes luminous thunder

it scars and marks

like his master is

shedding timber splinters that once caught on a young man's lashes

on moonlit nights remembered

one lonely silver birch

weeps manuka honey tears

her sweet aroma fills his senses

as she mourns her lost children

fallen leaves transport on the wind while his strong hands tell

their own palm read story where every deep line

speaks of sweet sorrow

a springtime cornflower blooms

her blue petals welcoming the season

she seeps into the red dust

pretty angel pulling her apart

mixing shades the same for him and her botanical beauty

igniting its own foam-less friction

in the amber earth beginning an emotional sandstorm

he ponders her future

knowing he will leave her

forsaking the promise made incommodious spaces found in the dark corners of the abacus

now he counts his days in colours measuring the time with rainbows in spectrum's of Matilda please come a waltzing again my darling

innocent summers where we dreamed of happy endings

the rain wet our naked bodies

we watched it layer the harsh land

leaving patterns to match our own scars

old age will do that to a man

a woman too

one who is no longer a girl

one who will never be a girl again

we traveled far you and I

beyond the years of Yuletides

I longer than you

connected

life expires

this life but not the next

a time will surpass again

we are unique

organic children of the northern land

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