Plain Voice

December 13, 2007 at 6:52 pm | Posted in writing | 6 Comments
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After Deborah Harry, the first woman to return a love that I had offered was Elizabeth Roberta Reeve. That is not her real name and I have changed only a few minor details of this story. I chose that name because like hers it has the sound of classical violins in a drawing room which was both ironic and appropriate because Liz as she was known then was the daughter of a railway worker who had died in his fifties of hard living and struggle and her mother was going quietly insane of loneliness in a public housing estate on the fringe of town.

Elizabeth was studying for a Law degree and an Arts degree on a full scholarship. She could mirror write with her right hand and normal script with her left at the same time. She had a photographic ability to draw faces in charcoal. Why on earth she chose me, I have no idea.

Liz was a twin. I never met her twin sister who committed suicide with a shotgun in her brother-in-law’s back shed. Liz flew down to Melbourne for the funeral and when she returned we made a kind of crazy, despairing, crying kind of love at her insistance, or mine, I have never really been sure. And I never saw her cry again.

Our relationship ended badly. It was very difficult for me to let go of her, to accept that she no longer wanted me and in the end she slept with two of my best friends and made no attempt to conceal the fact from me. I have never been angry. I accept that she was finally telling me as loudly as she could to let go of her without actually saying it.

One of them was Robert Threnody-Pendrecki who fell into the same abandoned love with Elizabeth as I had and changed his name by deed poll and shaved off half his beard and the other half of his head and dyed the rest bright blue and chased Liz to Melbourne a year or so later. Confusion resulted and he died some time later in my bathroom of a heroin overdose. I have no idea if there is any causal connection between all these events. I don’t think it profits anyone to say that this happened because of this. We simply are who we are.

I have never visited his grave and I have no idea of the whereabouts of Elizabeth Roberta Reeve. This is all so long ago and I am sorry to have imposed on you this tiny and irrelevant tale, F. said putting his drink down on the piano. Play that Amsterdam Song again, I am back from my travail,

I looked down at the piano and all I could think to play was, if i dreamt, i dreamt a train,


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  1. I don’t think it profits anyone to say that this happened because of this. We simply are who we are.

    A heartbreaking tale, not tiny and irrelevant, no….isn’t it just the tale of it all?

  2. darkly enchanting. compelling. and it leads to poetry of trains. I loved this and the direction it took me in.

  3. I dont know if I desperately want this to be true, or if I just as urgently want it not to be.

    I guess what I want to be true is the way that you tell it.

    you have a skill at the slow unveiling

  4. …and the not so secret color of scarlet is red, which bleeds all through this piece…making it close enough to real for me to feel and see that someone soon is going to feel the need to reach for an old schedual of trains and leave…again.

  5. It’s always bothered me this answering comments in your own comment box. I don’t really expect people to come back just to see thankyou for your feedback. And I certainly appreciate the thought and care that is going into the comments I am getting. It just seems so strange is all. I can’t criticise someone’s reading and say this is what I meant or Yes or No because the pieces are deliberately provocative, designed to elicit a response which will always depend as much on your understanding of the world as mine. Even accents differ, so my lazy Australian vowels and my perverse sense of humour, these are things which I must remember don’t always get communicated. It is a very difficult this writing thingy and every tiny bit of feedback is greated with huge hugs, huuuuggge hugs, like this ((((((((((((((((((((((((((((you))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))
    poetman, you can sit that one out, seeing as we are both well, you know, boys, and I certainly wouldn’t want to overstep any boundaries of intimacy with the ladies, it is just an emotixcon after all,

  6. This was a legendary dark trip around the world, love affairs and drug overdoses, people falling off the mountains they climb and around them all, a world that keeps turning. And a hint of home calling to us from the end.

    Great writing.

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