Live Encounters Poetry & Writing May 2021
Special edition featuring poets from Australia & New Zealand.
Julia Kaylock has worked as a journalist, copywriter, feature writer, web content writer, and is the author of career texts, educational video scripts and training programs. She is also an editor, proof reader, reviewer and manuscript assessor. Julia’s work has been widely published, appearing in literary journals and anthologies such as The Blue Nib (Issue 41, 2020), Grieve (2020), The Burrow (2020, 2021), and Globalisation (MMH Press, 2021). She has also led the creation of several anthologies of poetry, including Messages from the Embers: From Devastation to Hope (Black Quill Press, 2020) and Poetry for the Planet: An Anthology of Imagined Futures (scheduled for release October 2021). Her memoir in verse, Child of the Clouds will be released in mid-2021 under her own imprint, Litoria Press (www.litoriapress.com), which is providing opportunities for poets, memoirists and writers on social issues.
The concrete pathway runs out at a brick wall
my mind hovers like a cursor on a screen
wanting to move this story along
but the fortress is unyielding, no data to retrieve.
I knew – or thought, or perhaps just imagined
there was a mulberry tree that I used to climb,
Was that me, or a dream I had
of another child, at a different time?
History hides behind the fallibility of years.
From the distance of a lifetime
it is hard to separate truth from nostalgia.
In the absence of evidence –
no photos, no notes scrawled on pretty paper,
no-one to provide confirmation
that I once occupied this place.
There’s only memory’s graffiti;
a tagline without a tale,
the rise and fall of walls and fruit trees neutralised
while I stab at possibilities.
Attempting to re-inscribe a past that hides, petulantly
making me wonder, did I exist at all?
Did I have a youth, a childhood, a future?
Or is this inconsequential aging woman all I am,
ever was, and will be?
Fragments fall into obscurity,
This wall continues to assert itself
as hard, cold fact.
Mulberry trees? File Not Found
All is erased:
Remembering Andalusia, 2015
Reclining on a ledge
above claret-coloured rooftops
I am someone else entirely,
in a world that speaks different truths
willing the sundown.
On cue, the birds arrive,
finding their place on the cathedral roof,
a clamorous sea of white
against the azure sky
The magic moment arrives,
white walls turn amber.
and you come, guapo
opening your guitar case.
I sit and wait
while you read my mind,: perdia, buscanda –
Lost, searching. I nod,
I didn’t know I was, before you came,
I empty coins into the guitar case.
We swap Instagram handles
and promise to stay in touch.
Back home, I become a voyeur
watching as you
try out for acting roles,
fall in love,
play songs on your guitar,
become single again,
acquire a kitten,
You implore me to visit.
I look for cheap flights
to Madrid –
Then, the pandemic hits.
You disappear from Instagram
and I realise, I have no way
of reaching you now.
I don’t even know your address,
and you are perdió –
Now, who will read my mind?
© Julia Kaylock