Driving down the motorway, the familiar tightening in the back of my eyeballs starts. I know this sensation more than I ever thought I would. And more than I ever wanted to.
Every time it grabs me, I’m right back to the first time. The time when I thought that maybe things were still going to be okay. That life would go on as it always had. That this dash was a false alarm and I would be able to call my girl whenever I needed to know how to make spanakopita, again (“You know, the lamb one that you saw on SBS that time.”). Or when I feel ripped off that there isn’t just one more sip in my capp (when I thought there was), and I can send a photo, and within moments my phone will ping with: #crook #fuckthat and I will know that I am heard. That there is someone in the world who knows my heart and my stories and understands my FW anguish.
Driving down the motorway, the familiar constriction of my throat starts, and I wonder if I have grown a tumour in the distance from Sunrise to Coolum- the looming head of the defeated warrior that is Mount Coolum seems to get me every time. What is it about dreamtime stories and connection with messages of the heart? The throbbing sensations of the rhythm of this land have a way of bringing me back to heart. And heart brings hurt. If it has been marked.
My heart has markings on it Hayls.
And you made them.
You made them deep and you made them good.
So tonight as I drive past the moment where I saw your last sunset, I allow the torsion in my eyeballs to wring their salty liquid, and I let it flow and flow and flow. The bruised greyblue skies reflect me, and the cane fields greedily devour our shared wrenching. The dusty cracks in the soil strain to be quenched with our grief. We nourish the sugar with our loss, and I wonder if there will be a bitterness in the sweet when it is refined. Or is all sweetness laced with loss?
The heaving in my chest surges like the Maroochydore River, and as I cross her, I say, “I see you Maroochy. I see your sad and I hope you found your peace.”
I hope I will find mine, by and by.
Tomorrow we will cast the last of my girl into the biggest salty water, and I will watch her fly free, and wish I could have kept her here longer.
She will dissolve into that big blue, and I will not.
I will wish for one more laugh, one more lesson, one more conversation to stop the world turning. And I know that my wish will not be granted this day.
…From The Ashers
Make it count