The school girl in the following poem is made up of all the things she experiences-the things she sees, hears, smells, tastes, remembers-all that she has been taught and all that she thinks . She is wrapped in a cocoon of experience composed of the good and the bad things of the past and present. But one day she’ll free herself of this cocoon and emerge as a woman.
I am a child.
I am all the things of my past.
I am the freckles from my mother’s nose.
I am the laziness of my dad
Resting his eyes in front of the television.
I am all I see.
Boys doing Karate Chops.
Rubens’ lovely ladies,
Fat and bulging.
TV ads of ladies who wear lipstick in the laundry.
And worry about their hands
And their breath.
Madonnas with delicate faces holding little bundles of Jesus. I am all I hear.
‘Look after him. You’re his sister.’
‘Come and get your hair done.’
‘Rack off, Normie!’
Waves lapping or crashing at the beach.
And the wind in trees and telegraph wires.
I am all I feel and taste.
Soft and glossy mud on toes.
Hairy insect legs
Slippery camphor laurel leaves
The salty taste of fish and chips on my tongue
And the watery melting of iceblocks.
And all I remember.
A veranda shaded by grape vines,