Darwin Calm

by stein forster

There’s something strangely comforting accepting the peace within above the banter and daggers of hurt ego. Even when others continue to throw crudities, discourtesies and powerfully delivered yet subtle messages at you, the temporal power of acceptance is liberating.

Temporal because I accept my humanness. Accept the transient nature of mood and energies beyond and within my control.

I’m leaning against a palm tree in the park at Darwin. Metres away from a city lagoon. Bordered by buildings, filled with families, couples, backpackers and me.

Minutes ago I was in the back seat of the hire car. Youngest in the front. Eldest with me. Mum driving. It was tense with the usual rumblings of tiredness that turns mundane actions into evil entities torturing peace.

Each was to choose a song. Mum was the second to choose.

The words clear in their meaning. Clear in their blame. Clear in the intent to express pain under water. Express through the white noise of the last day in Darwin where the surreality of separation was lived out in vivid colour.

The words in part :

That I should’ve bought you flowers
And held your hand
Should’ve gave you all my hours
When I had the chance
Take you to every party
‘Cause all you wanted to do was dance
Now my baby’s dancing
But she’s dancing with another man

My pride, my ego, my needs, and my selfish ways
Caused a good strong woman like you to walk out my life
Now I never, never get to clean up the mess I made, ohh…

It was blatant to all but my youngest.
I asked who chose the song to make sure I knew who’s message it was to me or them.

” Mum did”, my eldest says. Seconds later he pauses it. Now sensitive to its inappropriateness to either him personally or me. I’m gladdened by his awareness despite the scolding from his mother.

As a photo stills a smile, a frown, a sadness a beauty. A song does the same. For emotion. Simplified beyond accountability. Beyond the larger story embedded with swells and swirls of buttons, masks and fears.

My temporal beauty of acceptance acknowledges the words. I gently open the door to egos room. Peeking in to see what I knew I wouldn’t like. I close it with just the sound of metal clasping.

A 2 inch thick bullet proof glass pane slides between us. Between my past and my present. The part that yearns to be heard. Yearns and burns for my children to understand the complexities of why it happened. My sketched face leaking stains on the paper. Knowing it wasn’t as simple as that.

Yes it was that. It was the lack of flowers and so,so much more from other sides.

Muffled though is the scream. Blurred is the image. Holding no power I hop out of the car.

Walking bare foot on the cooch. Settling into Sunday mood. Lagoon a face of being today.

I bask in the strength of me. Just now. Just for now. In the Darwin Calm.