Possible Reason One. Somebody snipped the lightning rod in two. It used to be there buzzing and smelling and burning cracks through other ties. It was a sure fire thing. A reliably electric connection of eyes, ears, memories and the transmission to fingers. Today I think of it in cloud form free-floating and gone but it used to rub at my ankles like irons.
I traversed this goddamn city from one end to the other and it was beautiful. I found James Joyce scuffed in a pamphlet under the dandelion shadow of El Alamein. I paid two dollars to hold it in my hands and my handbag. It sat next to the two plates of fish and chips we shared between the three of us. I was tempted to smear grease on it to lessen the unbearable sense of having unearthed a treasure.
It has been a while since I've walked through The Cross. Been a while since my feet followed my eyes. I was searching for a way to jump off the page and stand in the streets of novels and poems. The Cross felt like a tree house. Ever present elevation and movement of air. Long shadows and a built feeling solid and enduring with a canopy of leaves. Newtown feels like a sketch now.
Rich men wear shorts on Sunday in Rushcutters Bay. I despise them for their rock hewn foundations and the combination of sandals and elderly dogs. I sat a on a sea wall in the sun. I bent my head and stared through the bottle green harbour to white sand below. This is a harbour city but I had forgotten the bouyancy of boats and the tidal pull of salt air. Things swim with purpose here.
I was ordered to take off my boots on the steps at Manly Beach. We stood in a row pulling off our boots and stuffing our socks into our pockets. It seems all three of us have now taken to the regular wearing of knee length stripy socks. Madam Squeeze frolicked in the sand, running in circles and waving her arms. I made an uncertain line for the water stepping over bluebottles and trying to remember the remedy for stings. The ocean was cold, we arrived there by accident, taking a wrong turn and crossing the bridge in Spencer's big old car.
There was more to this day, the lightning rod may have been snipped in two but I remain faithful to the idea that this is only one of seven possible reasons.