Monday, October 17, 2011

My Mountain and Me

My mountain is calling to me. I hear it across land and across sea.

My mountain is there in my dreams. I see my mountain standing on the flat plains. It is watching me. I am a young boy riding a blue bike. I am laughing as I ride around and around in circles. I am light and free. I watch the bike’s front tyre as I turn and turn and turn. And suddenly, the whole world is turning but I am still. I stop. I look at my mountain. It is still. It is heavy on the earth. We are like the sun and the moon, my mountain and me.

Oh great mountain, you remember me before I remember me. You are in all my young memories.

You are with me now, even though I am far from you; even though I am too far away from you.

I remember you when I am anxious. My pulse may race, but your stillness is with me. The spirit of you is in my heart.

I remember you too, when I feel life’s power coursing through me. I am lifted up. My head is in the sky but my feet are on the ground. You are beneath my feet.

You are the mix of sky and earth that I have sought after every day of my life.

I long to be near you. I long for the land of my birth at my feet and you by my side. It is through this longing that I hear you calling.

I hear you. I hear you.

And I will return to you. I will bring my own child. We will stand at your mighty feet and I will tell my child of you; the things you have taught me: strength and courage; sky and soil; sun and moon.

I hear you calling.

I will return.

Monday, October 10, 2011


Paul was getting ready for a night out on the town when his phone rang.

“Paul Darby,” he said in his most authoritative voice.

“Paul. It’s Andrew Weston here,” the voice on the other end of the phone replied. “Sorry to call you on a Friday evening, but I have some rather bad news for you.

We’re letting you go, Paul. The Executive has decided to move in different direction…”

The voice continued to talk but Paul did not hear it.

Paul was standing in the dark, his phone still in his hand, when Kim, his girlfriend, arrived. She looked gorgeous.

“Paul,” she said, “what’s going on? Why aren’t you ready?”

Paul didn’t move.

“Paul?” Kim said a little less certainly.

Paul slowly turned his head towards her.

Has he been crying, Kim wondered, but she instantly dismissed the idea. Paul was tough. Paul was confident. Paul was motivated. Paul had ambition. He wasn’t the kind of guy to sit in the dark crying.

“What is it Paul, what’s happened?”

“I - I’ve had some rather bad news babe,” he answered.

Paul’s voice was so uncertain, so troubled: listening to it made Kim feel uncomfortable.

“I’ve been sacked,” Paul stifled a sob as he said this. “I’ve never been sacked.”

“Oh, is that all,” Kim laughed. “I’ll buy you a drink and you can tell me all about it.”

Paul stood over Kim and Kim could see that he was full of fire.

“What do you know?” Paul yelled. “What do you know about anything? You’ve never worked a day in your life.”

Kim’s back straightened.

“Listen buddy,” she retorted, “as far as I can recall, you’ve never worked that hard either. You were always ambitious, but you got everything you ever wanted. Perhaps it’s time you woke up to yourself. The world doesn’t run on cocktails and charisma, you know.”

Paul clenched and unclenched his fists.

“Kim,” he said coldly, “I think I’m going to have to let you go. I’ve decided to move in a different direction.”

Kim had never seen Paul so conflicted before. She was filled with pity at the sight of this man of confidence brought low. She wanted to reach out to him, but she realised that there was something strangely farsighted about his words: Paul needed to move in a different direction.

And Kim knew that she would not follow him.

Monday, October 03, 2011


It was 4AM. Something had woken me. Further sleep eluded me.

Outside, Australian Magpies sang their angular night song. Those black and white birds; those day and night birds: they’ll be tired in the morning, I thought.

My mind was restless. My mind moved across the surface of the earth looking for trouble. My mind swooped down on innocent victims: how easy other people’s lives are, I thought; how simple their problems.

Outside, the wind sighed in agreement. Eee-sss-eee, it said.

My problems are real problems, I thought; my problems are not trivial; my problems are insurmountable.

For some time, an hour perhaps, I tossed and turned and thought about my insurmountable problems. The more I thought about my problems the more restless I became.

Outside, night was turning to day. A kookaburra - that early riser - interrupted my cycle of thoughts with his unsympathetic laugh.

A new thought entered my mind: insurmountable problems start wars.

I am at war, I realised; I am at war with the problems I can’t make peace with.

Outside, wind moved through trees making music learned from sea and sand. And, as I listened, my problems dissolved into the music and floated away.

I slept.