Savour each moment

Coffee at a local cafe, Canberra
Latte at a local cafe, Canberra

Breathe in the spirit—
find beauty; the yin and yang
of everyday life.

For there’s magic in the sand

backyard garden in winter, Canberra

Give me a garden;
trees branching out to heavens,
I will grow in peace.

I can’t breathe

Imagine your child saying that. Or your mother. Or the sibling you used to hate every day of your childhood. Imagine… that loved one, the one you care most about, the one who cares about you even more than their declining health, the one that stood beside you during the toughest of times, holding your hand. Imagine watching them struggle to breathe.

It’s torture, even to imagine it.

And yet, again and again, our world watches on, blind to everything but their own matters, as so many loved ones fight to breathe. 

Police kills black man, the news reads. Instantly, a nation rises, machetes and sign boards in hand, taking to the streets, furious yet cautious—standing a feet from each other with masks intact, their voices loud nevertheless. America is used to black protestors, and the rest of the world is used to dropping jaws as the massive nation that parades itself as great and democratic, brings to its knees, any violence not instigated from within its safe harbour of authority.

This week, once again, we witness the nation that can’t stop talking about itself, the nation that forever holds the top spot in global news, grapple with the hard reality of its citizens chocking in its own hypocrisy. And once again, we slap our hands on our foreheads, shaking heads, covering our mouths in horror as we watch cars running people over, rubber bullets piercing eyeballs, and Starbucks outlets swallowing flames. 

Despite all of this, though, somehow, we know that this isn’t the first or last time we’ll see devastation at such a large scale. Everywhere on this great floating earth is the same challenge as in America. In different levels under different names, yes, but there’s almost no one country that’s treating its diversity with the respect it deserves. 

After all, if there’s one thing that all of humankind does best, it’s to pretend that colonisation never happened. I mean, it’s not just the people who can’t breathe—it’s also our earth and the hundreds of species on the brink of extinction.

Scratch that!

Initial sketches of the Australian 10 cent coin
Initial sketches of the Australian $0.10 coin
Royal Australian Mint

Rethink every thought—
quite crappy the world will be,
if first drafts were last.

As we go on and on in isolation

Highway plants shake their proverbial middle fingers at our shameless faces as we struggle to stay in homes we so painstakingly designed—

from those salmon (not pink!) curtains to the perfectly fluffy cushions; from the IKEA dinner table with matching cutlery and crockery to the “essential” side stool even though no one’s used it since we’d bum-tested it at the store—the store that sells so much crap that’d become food for our oceans’ fish anyway—

hoping… 

to spend more time in light airy rooms, reading a book, perhaps, or knitting that scarf we’d promised grandma two Christmases ago; 

to cook more healthy meals using the all-new, matte-finished stovetop, complete with touch-sense technology and auto-off functionality ideal for forgetful and amateur cooks; 

to share a drink with our spouse in the middle of the day, with feet propped up on the luscious leather couch we spent an extra couple hundred to customise with flowers to complement the wall colour, discussing finances and school shopping, and having healthy arguments about whether to buy local, organic produce or help international trade and developing nations by sourcing from less-fortunate economies; 

to relax, after hassling all day at work, on the bright yellow bathtub we’d installed, trying out a new herbal bath salt our slightly whimsical friend had told us about; 

to fishing out the almost-dried out fabric paint from the shed and finish painting the cushion covers we’d meant, engaging the kids, as a nice family activity; 

to fix up the wheel-less mountain bike our old housemate had abandoned in their moving rush;

to finally doing all the things we’d always dreamt of doing if only we had the time.

Well, now we do.

And we can let the world heal.