Six Days in a Convent Far from Here

Lesley Synge

 

for the St Joseph’s nuns at The Haven, Emu Park, Australia

 

the slow road north –

roadworks and the sight of

an overturned car

 

blessed are those who wake in a bed made up by nuns

 

wrapped up in green leaves

in the convent garden –

a small package of ants

 

on the beach

the wind snatches away

the straw hat he left in the car

 

blessed are those who wake in a bed made up by nuns

 

a boundary fencepost

is now driftwood

and salted white

 

like the television ad i heard one night

a little brown owl calls

where the bloody hell are you-oo?

 

blessed are those who wake in a bed made up by nuns

 

uprooted tree –

i upturn the Buddha’s advice

and meditate in the roots of trees

 

a kookaburra gang

not jovial at all

laughs while persecuting a magpie

 

blessed are those who wake in a bed made up by nuns

 

rainy day –

in the mirror of the dark bathroom

i look so young!

 

without much sun

the sea is silvery-cobalt

and stretches on and on

 

blessed are those who wake in a bed made up by nuns

 

ninety years ago, my jilted grandmother

came here

and decided she’d brave mothering alone

 

blessed are those who wake in a bed made up by nuns

 

Lesley Synge lives in Brisbane. Her poet’s film, Mountains Belong to the People Who Love Them, is on YouTube. Her illustrated e-novel, Cry Ma Ma to the Moon (about poets in a love triangle), is available on Amazon Kindle as is her most recent work, the biography Wharfie.

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