Today was all gray and the rain fell almost constantly. It was like hour after hour of soggy twilight. But to my surprise,t he rain ceased just when I had to go shopping, and didn't resume until I had returned home. It was as though something had decided to make up for the soaking I took last week.
Or perhaps it was nature making up for the human chaos of the markets. The last two weekends of the year are always the worst. I have no idea where all those people come from. They certainly don't shop the rest of the year. I begin to suspect that this town has a secret population of eccentrics who fast most of the year a year, and only come out to shop for holidays. Maybe it's a cult. Maybe it's a cannibal cult, and the rest of the year they only devour one another, and that's the only thing that prevents the cult from taking over the world.
But I digress. I'll be so glad when January does arrive with its placid weekends, and I can shop once again in peace. We should expand the War on Christmas to include the New Year's celebrations. Rid of both, we could have placid markets throughout December. The only downside is that I would find it more difficult to keep track of time, but that's a small price for a clear path to the cauliflower.
by Bruce Dawe
Every morning they hold hands
on the fleet diesel that interprets them
like music on a roller-piano as they move
over the rhythmic rails. Her thoughts lie
kitten-curled in his while the slats of living
racket past them, back-yards greying
with knowledge, embankments blazoned
with pig-face whose hardihood
be theirs, mantling with pugnacious flowers
stratas of clay, blank sandstone, sustaining them
against years' seepage, rain's intolerance.
Each evening they cross the line
while the boom-gate's slender arms constrain
the lines of waiting cars.
Stars now have flown up out of the east.
They halt at her gate. Next-door's children
scatter past, laughing. They smile. The moon,
calm as a seashore, raises its pale face.
Their hands dance in the breeze blowing
from a hundred perfumed gardens. On the cliff of kissing
they know this stillness come down upon them like a cone.
All day it has been suspended there, above their heads.