For me his week's Poetry Thursday is very timely seeing as I have been having this poetry / prose battle of wits - all in my own mind you understand.
* 'she'll be right' is a national kiwi (New Zealander) expression, meaning 'everything will be okay'.
** 'chilly bin' is a white polystyrene box for keeping things (beer or picnic food) cool.
The Most Beautiful Word in the English Language
He should have listened to me, she said, but he's too 'she'll be right'. Always with the 'she'll be right.' Says I'm just being paranoid. Anyway, what I thought would happen did. Of course.
The dog whimpers from the back seat of the car and under the tartan rug, with his groggy, frog-eyes and his face screwed up sad, he looks like a grandfather who can't remember anything anymore. So of course the dog got run over didn't he? I told him but would he listen? I said it wasn't a good idea to let the dog run along beside the car. He said he's seen his mates do it and it'll be all right. Don't worry about it.
I had to carry him like a baby in my arms. He weighs 20 kilos. The vet weighed him. 20 kilos all squashed up into a fat little body is a lot of weight to carry. It's 7 three-litre bottles of milk. Heavier than you, she says turning to her daughter.
The vet said that there's probably a fracture and he'll need an x-ray. Bring him back in the morning. Can we keep one of the pictures? my granddaughter asks.
The turtle in the tank by the front desk swims up to the glass. A grenade with legs - his cake-rack patterned tummy the shade of milky custard, his head a thumb.
The vet called the injured leg his arm, she said.
Over a cup of coffee at 'Rhubarb' that used to be a butcher's, we note the white-tile walls, the band of decorated tiles and the stained-glass window over the door.
And what's more, she says, he hasn't said sorry nearly hard enough. We both laugh and I think about how daughter must be one of the most beautiful words in the English language.
Friday tomorrow, she says. Work again. What is it with these Third World wages?
At the top of the hill on the way to the second-hand clothes shop to look for cardigans,we see the sea. A kidney-shaped piece of blue. She says don't you hate those days when the sky is all white? For all we know we could be locked inside a box. A chilly bin.