In Brisbane: 18th February

A fresh, clear morning and I’m sitting on Ross’s patio at Moggill.  Time has done its magic trick, stitching and puckering together, and  this feels utterly familiar – continuous with the last time I was here.  It really might have been yesterday.  The neighbouring house rooves are crisply visible through the gum trees, across into the valley and over to the hills. The trees make it hard to tell how many houses are there: it could almost be bushland. Parrots scream past. Briefly my mind flicks and I perceive them as exotic – Regent’s Park parrots. Then they flick back into focus: they belong here.  They have been flashing through this bushland for as long as it has been: through aeons. Through giddying airy avenues of eternity.

There are mangoes, aromatic  of childhood and simplicity. Cut one open: this is smooth and rich, like biting into whipped cream.  Mangoes of my childhood were stringy, wildly resistant and dripped juice. They were a feral delight.

The dog is lying by my side in precisely the same position she had a moment ago in the kitchen. I toy with taking her photo as an example of dog-levitation.  It’s hard to catch them in the act: you can only get ‘before’ and ‘after’ pictures.  This household’s Sooty (a cattle-dog cross) can levitate with flip. (pictures to follow)

It is 7.00am and the day is waking up. I send Andrew a gloating text:  ‘Breakfast. Patio. Parrots. How you?’

(written up 1st March)

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