This is the story of
Casuarina, but it is a story with several speakers.
is my voice, not Casuarinas.
This is a story of separation,
but also a tale of threading lost needles.
Breaking to be, bleeding as healer.
This is a story of forests and flight-paths, songlines and
cross-pollination of time-warps and mind trails.
This is a story which
speaks for itself through mummified skins,
secrets as peeling.
what is the thought you were dreaming?
man leaving a room with a blood red door
Casuarina was a child she grew the most
wings. They were white with purple spots.
And the spots were ringed round with gold. But her
father cut them off, so she could never fly. But later
she decided she could move just as well on foot. So
she went on her travels where she met a man who
promised her eternal life. Casuarina was fairly dis-
cerning so she said, if you give me eternal life what
do you want in return? And the man said, I will
extract my price, but you must agree in advance
without knowing the terms. You have everything to
gain and nothing to lose. Look at what I am offering
you. This chance will never come again.
Casuarina did not hesitate. She said, I certainly will
not agree to that. I never pay for anything up-front.
Cass loves the simple
things in life, coffee and cakes, skimming the
newspaper without taking anything in. This morning she reads about
the Siberian ice-maiden, undisturbed for 2,500 years, they think
she may have been a shaman. The dead in Sarajevo and the slaying
in Rwanda. The Hindmarsh affair. Shes pleased they are legalising
euthanasia. She likes TV and trash too, theres a woman on Donahue
who thinks shes reincarnated. She walks in the woods and finds a
shady spot to lie down. Its great to be alive! Most of all she loves
secrets. To be able to think anything and nobody will ever know. All
those forbidden thoughts, those veiled acts, those hidden faces.
Yet things trouble her, they knock
but she never quite knows who they
are. Rooms sealed with red wax.
Casuarinas broadminded and reads both
Planes dropping bombs. Wounds
like tattooes. She thinks of the ice- Freud
and Jung without feeling there is any
maiden in her wooden coffin
roused from eternal sleep. Faces competition
between the two. She likes to
come back to her, like the links from
a spreadout, recalcitrant sequence. imagine
herself lying in a grove with all her
off. Faces appear from above and stare
at her but she doesnt mind. She likes the
they look at her, she likes the way they
whats needling you?
just realised when Im enjoying myself,
always at someone elses expense.
the silent slit from
which voices erupt
the threading of a needle with nerves
a word-web spun from the wildest text
book which stirs out of crinkled skins
a story made by a woman from stones
a sign composed of ambiguous dots
hollow cry of the hidden costs
a journey towards a land beyond loss
the purple light on the reddest rock
place which is every and no place you know
a wish that is
never the want that you will
meaning that moves as memory unpicks
which wastes do your thoughts inscribe?
songs does your silence kill?
secret sites are buried in blood?
W e h a v e t
r a v e l l e d a l o n g w a y but
stood in line at the edge of the
pit. They started to shoot. My daughter kept
mummy they are shooting people, lets run away.
They shot my mother and father, in
front of my eyes. My sister was a
beautiful woman, with dark eyes and hair. She
begged to be saved. She met the guards gaze and said let me live. But he
no heed. My daughter kept imploring me lets run away. She was five years
old. He told me to give her up, but she would not go. A shot was fired, I
did not see, I could not look. Then he fired at me. I fell into the pit.
I knew nothing.
When I awoke I thought that this was the land of the dead. Then
I knew I was still in the world and maybe I had a chance to
live. The pit was corpse-full. There were limbs on top
of me, over my face. There were other bodies help-
ing me push. But I had not the strength and if I
had risen I would have been shot again. It
was still light. I waited till night, I waited
for hours, I could not breathe. Then
when it was dark, I climbed
out, crawled away. Now
I know the guilt that
are the stories of Casuarina, but these fables leap
seedlings. These are my words, not Casuarinas.
is a story of places and people but also the intertwining of spindles.
Blinding to see, wounding as weaving.
is a story of pine-groves and pistols, bright sun and dark shade, links between
lines and rites beyond living.
is a story which pleads for itself through dread and delight,
secrets which listen.
whose is the death you are grieving?