Friday, January 22, 2016

Wheel in the sky.

My world has lost two of the good people.
Both so suddenly gone.
I hadn't yet come to terms with losing my gentle, funny co-worker when I learnt that a dear old friend was in a coma.

At her bedside there were no chairs, no flowers. I had imagined it differently. She was beautiful and peaceful - as if merely sleeping. It was her birthday and I read her some messages from people who were far away. I told her something from long ago.
Then I said good bye.

I wrapped a job and came home to yet more fires raging on the mountains. The air thick with smoke,
a fine layer of ash covering everything.

In the garden, a blood lily is blooming for the very first time.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

On the other channel.

Whenever I go to Geoff and Alistair's shop, I am drawn - beyond understanding, to the items with no price. Yesterday it was an old garden fork. Turns out it's the tool they use to draw the security shutter down with.

With persistence, sometimes I get what I want. Hence the weathered grey step - now my nightstand. The pink Colonial lady hails from Côte d'Ivoire and has watched over me for many a year.

I get all het up when there isn't a pile of bedside books.
Some stay there for many months, for the odd dip into - Elizabeth David's French Country Cooking, the love letters of André P. Brink and Ingrid Jonker which are way too intense for a single sitting. Other important things live there too: a mini Maglite for power cuts and late night rambles. Tomato leaf hand cream. Reading glasses. Zam Buk salve for lips and itchy bites. The leather nail care kit given to my father by an order of nuns. Calendula tissues for the sniffles. Notebooks for dreams, recipes and playlists. 
Songs for dancing by the moonlighting DJ.

I finished Patti Smith's book last night, so reluctantly. (A tall man bears the best gifts.) I don't remember ever being reduced to sobbing by a book before... Patricia hits a nerve. But mostly I smiled.
She is woven into the fabric of my small town childhood - my three older brothers had all of her records, I know all the words, I know all the moves.

 How I wish we could meet in a dream: Patti, the cowpoke and I.
Share a bottle of snake wine at the desert bar.

Amongst other things, she has awoken my Murakami-lust, so I plan to reread them all. Their books are similar in many ways: love and loss, the importance we give to objects. The rituals of living. There is always spaghetti, there is classical music and poetry and of course, there are cats.

The dusky bells of the Cape Fuchsia turn into dusky seedpods.

A family of sunbirds visits the flowers every day.
A striped field mouse has moved into the compost heap.
I am back at work and it is driving me growling mad.
The TVC world is so different to the features world.
Way more money. Way more grief.