Rubbing The Metaphor Bottle
09 January 2012
... ... ...
I was cold. So I made myself a hot breakfast of chicken-burger plus toast with cumquat marmalade, and 2 cups of coffee made on our woodstove with the Italian coffee maker; and before that I lit the wood fired stove, and before that - dressed warmly. It is Summer, but the wind is mainly out of the west, and cold. The stove is has warmed the boat which rocks occasionally to 25 knot gusts, but now lies still. The kettle speaks wisps of steam, waiting for me to wash up.
I'm alone, at least as regards human company. We, the oceangoing ketch and I, are at anchor in Cygnet, Southern Tasmania, my wife in Hobart for 2 days; all is still, my mind and I at rest.
The country around is beautiful, farms riding pulsing hills, shining waters, clutter of moored boats, little boatsheds and a hauled out 1905-built Irish yacht of classic shape Granuaille, named for an 18th century pirate queen. Yesterday I had coffee on board her, guest of chutzpah heroes Steve and Zara, and looked out at the sunshine through a temporary window of missing planks and new ribs, the lovely old yacht gutted, in midst of radical surgery.
In the night, a rain so light it sounded of the falling of the finest gravel or the knocking of a thousand tiny angels trying not to wake me; now so quiet I can hear the clock stepping out the seconds, here on the chart table. The sun leans in, slapping down light, and sliding it around.
Don't envy me; instead try this ten-second exercise - Say to yourself:
"This Moment Is Perfect" - and then search for evidence of this incontrovertible fact. You will be pleasantly surprised.
It's raining harder now - shut the hatch.
Reading The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak, yesterday, rubbed my metaphor bottle and heated it to nearly one thousand degrees, releasing a writing genie! Selecting paper and pen, I allowed words to arrive, let them scratch visible traces, allowed them to be me, so to speak. I diffidently transcribe them here:
Jollied into doing things
a husband tracks in money's footsteps
his mind left behind - reading,
or writing, a book.
merely a refusal
to look in the right direction.)
is the one
who can hold his breath underwater for longest.
I stayed down for forty pages!
The older I get
The younger I get!
Joy is seeping
through all the cracks
of the back of my hand
is the best, ever.
The thought that passed
Who is there who would understand it?
Should I have simply
written it down?
A Japanese banjo-player
flanked by a young woman (violin)
and a young man (guitar, left-handed)
gurgled in the dim light.
We sat upright in our chairs.
It was not enough
the day proves itself
I was there!
Did I hear a cow?