Tumbling (something new)

I’ve been unwell the last week so the blog has taken a back seat. I thought I’d jump back in with something different. Following is the piece, Mourning, written one year ago, but now reworked as verse…



Denise cried in public.

In the queue to buy groceries,

one moment composed,

the next shedding quiet,



like spring rain.

She told no one.

Only checkout attendants knew,

commuters on the Belgrave Line,


A mum from school found her hunched near the flexiteller.

Denise told a story of her sick father.

Said she’d be fine.


The crying became her new secret.

It replaced John in those parts of her day-to-day, alone.

Pete knew nothing about either.

All he knew was she’d moved into the guest room.

She saved her sobbing for outside the house

where the being-by-herself was greatest.

She no longer understood

the nature of her tears.


7 thoughts on “Tumbling (something new)

  1. I noticed your absence … Glad you are feeling better now. As I’m getting to read more of your works I’m struck by the swathe of melancholy that winds through them. So many stories of missed moments and regretted lives. Am I seeing a false pattern?

  2. Happily-ever-after rarely has the attributes of a story. It’s a pattern (though you’ll find plenty of stories in among this lot that are exceptions), but not one I can link back to anything other than the need to create meaningful narratives. Well that’s my story anyway…

  3. I think there’s more to it than that. Not saying this in a psychological way–although I’m sure that comes into it–but it’s about what sort of composer (of stories) you are. And you’re always at the deep end of the keyboard! Or thus far.

    More generally, I think we play in the keys by which we are fascinated. For whatever reason.

    Think about Margaret Olley, for instance, who never exhausted her examination of still lifes.

  4. Fair point. I do find most of my stories at the deep end. There are lighter moments among these stories but they’re the exception. I suspect this balance reflects my observation of human experience (regardless of my own comfortable and stable existence).

  5. Which made me just think then about a story you might write, or have already written, where what is in brackets is the thing. David Foster Wallace has a story where there is just one line that cripples the whole thing. I’ll dig it out and let you know. It’s a devastating parentheses needless to say. The story haunts me still. Given your proclivities, it should be right up your alley.

  6. I’d love to read that. I’m such a sucker for bracketed asides (there’s something not quite up front about them).

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