He said, ‘you are not out of the ordinary if you feel a little apathy.’
She said, ‘it’s so cold as we’re still sleeping on our veranda.’
He said, ‘scaffolding arrived on Saturday mornings well before breakfast,’ then yawned.
She said, ‘Will we really have to leave?’
He said, ‘Let’s build our lives again’
She said, ‘I will sing ballads by the sea,’ she took her guitar.
He said,’Let’s salvage and rebuild’
She said, ‘Will you ring the insurance?”
He said, ‘Can I have a cuppa first?’
She said, ‘I’ll see all our memory moments every time we see this farewell couch’
He said, ‘Let’s give out medals’
She said, ‘So many quiet heroes’
He said, ‘banana prices are too high’
She said, ‘I’m going to meditate.’
He said, ‘Are you off to yoga?’
She said, ‘I’m going to see our daughter’
He said, ‘The papers say we’ll nearly all be home by Christmas?’
She said, ‘ Just as well’
He said, ‘yes just in time for cyclone season, I wouldn’t want to be in a dongah for another one of those.’
They sighed. They hoped. They dreamed.
The sun rose.
She said, ‘I can almost breathe.’
He said, ‘I know just what you mean’
Then they heard a strong wind.
The butterflies returned.
She said,’I’ll paint butterflies on our old roof.’
It was then they knew the secret of insight.
By June Perkins
So many stories spinning around, and asking to be remembered. This is what happens when cyclone, tidal waves, twisters arrive at communities, and leave people in their wake.
It is theraputic for the creatively express that swirl of experience, until something emerges to give comfort.
The he and the she in this poem are not a single he and a she but a combined he and she of the whole community.
For more stories see After Yasi