Monday, April 25, 2011

In which the fish greets Easter Sunday

We were all there, on Easter Sunday.  

The sea, warm as my blood, rocked and danced quietly 
under an immense and luminous dome of blue.

I slipped out on the current and watched the heads of my offspring, sleek and shining with light, darting and bobbing over and under the waves.  The seagrass below waved
 like a field of green, a forgotten world.

I swam past them, and drifted awhile in the calm of the open water, breathing in and out slowly, drawing saltness and blueness deep into the heart of me. Folks sat on boards and chatted quietly waiting for waves, or dipped cupped hands along the surface, going here and there, looking for the best place. 
The ocean was soft and green out here, far from the tangle and thrust of life. I floated with my hair down like tentacles.
 I wondered what I might snare.

After some time I raised my head, and saw the horizon tilt. 

For Me?
I asked the sea.

I flipped my fins and the sea picked me up on its wavering lip. 
I stretched out my hand, holding the heel of my palm against the surface of the wave which had turned to glass as the sea rolled forward.
I was so high that I raised my head and watched the water speed beneath my hand, the froth and foam rushing, spitting out onto the dark green of itself.

I flew in like  some strange heraldic sea creature all the way to the sand, where I stood up, flicked my hair from my face,  and breathed once more
the salt of the sea, 
into every small corner of my heart.

Friday, April 22, 2011

fish on good friday


I did not want to leave to go to work. 
I wanted to stay home, 
sit on the red chair with the cat, 
then go to the sea.


I can.

Happy Easter everyone.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

the fish in the phone

Having contracted myself this semester to an unseemly number of classes, I have found little time to do much else, and thankfully I am now more than  half way through the semester.

As can be expected when one works nine hour days, the family chooses to all have simultaneous breakdowns and issues, which contributes to all the excitement. There is not a lot of time to do much else at the moment: when I am not teaching, I am reading up for the two postgraduate classes I was breaking my neck to have. This week I am reading up on Bourdieu, Elliot Eisner,  and pictorial conventions in Venetian portraiture.  I am very thankful for this, as some of the other things I have had to read were very annoying. 

Interestingly I looked at the photos on my iphone and found it had become a little journal of sorts, a record of my life in phone photos.


They are many classes. Lots and lots, so it is fortunate I actually like them.

Here are  some students drawing a few weeks ago.
At the moment they are painting. All 180 of them...

thankfully not all at once.


I spend a lot of time in my car thinking about things. I look at the sky a lot because I go up and down a few big hills. This was on my way home.

Some days are of course nicer than others. This is Sydney,  City of four seasons in one day.

The band

The Husbands band plays quite a bit, and here they were playing down the coast a bit and I drove down to watch.

I drove home in a rather melancholic state, because of reasons, and played Einaudi all the way home, looking at the scenery. It is an emotionally-laden landscape, full of nostalgia, change, and remembered other lives that I have led.


In contrast, they played at an inner city pub, which was fun even though I think that day I was fretting over some reading for that week, which was not Bourdieu but something very tedious if I remember correctly. It was good to get out and watch. the proprietor said it was his biggest crowd ever.

The Archibald, Wynne and Sulman Prizes Opening Night at the AGNSW

Here I am with My friend Ben in front of his artwork. That room resembled, as Ben described it, a zoo.
As you can see I remembered to take my favourite bling (in the form of silver coral) to work, but NOT my hairbrush. 

Here is Lucy Culliton's painting of Ray Hughes. She is a great girl, and I have a few of her paintings here in the house, one is of cakes.

Here is the winning Ben (Quilty),  with whom I have had the pleasure of speaking a number of times and  been impressed by the depth of his feelings on various issues such as indigenous rights, australian history and identity, and the way young men in the outer suburbs enact various suburban rituals. 
He seems a very generous guy, and before he moved to the southern highlands from Sydney, was happy to accomodate my painting students, and give them talks on his work and ideas for nothing. 
In his speech at the opening, he gave a pasting to sportspeople who dont pay their HECS debts. Culture, he said, is the glue that sticks us together, and in hard economic times it was culture which provided social cohesion. He then questioned the legitimacy of famous swimmers who did not have to pay university fees, whereas others who made important contributions to life, still had to. He included in this equation his own brother who had just attained a doctorate in soil rehabilitation, rather than just swimming up and down a pool. It was interesting.

Peace and Quiet

The boys of the family spent some time on a surf trip. This meant that after I cleaned the house, it stayed that way. 
Sadly, they have decided to return and fill my life with chaos.


Some days commence in spectacular fashion

and finish with a tsunami of sorts, right above my house.

And such is the life of the fish, whio ha managed only fragments of time in the water, and is hoping very soon to be spending far more time in the salty deep.