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this text doesn’t have a title/ this time doesn’t have a name (not yet)

i have been waiting to write for a while. i can form thoughts but they are not full thoughts. they are small seeds in strange soil. there’s not been much rain, they may stay stagnant until the spring.

how can we console each other? i feel exposed when asked where i am; my heart goes heavy, my whole life unravels as an answer. all lives unravel in the answer. where were you when…? floating, around. not sure where to go, what i’ve been doing where i’m going where i’ve come from what’s next where’s home. just here. now and grateful. now and unsure. now and unaware. now and then to be sent away, meantime waiting for an announcement; you must go home – we only have the capacity to look after our own.

‘things will change’. is mostly what’s told, scrolling through headlines to get a bullet point view of the world wide west. gradually; an unfolding impression of a historical precipice. as though no moment up until now has been part of history. apart from those moments historical, non-fictional, happened a long long while ago. not to do with us. but now history has returned and we find ourselves involved with its unfolding. right on that precipice of this unfolding, stoic then folded in half, bent double, then stumble and trip off the edge into the abyss


and flailing

and failing and screaming

and shouting and doubting and pushing

and hurting and haunting and feeling and fearing

and then

holding on. to the bed sheets, to a moment of parting clouds, to a soft swift breeze, signalling a shift in the weather.

naïvely there’s a lot of naïve talk about naïve change coming from comfortable people. distanced and hopeful, cynical, rejecting hypothetical. reminders for those who remain unreminded that ‘a virus doesn’t discriminate’ is not a truth that will up-end the waste and scarcity of the world wide food chain. it is not just the virus we are living with, but a capitalised globalised colonised world that we exist within whose backbone is strengthened by discrimination racism ableism suppression of ‘us’ who is not like ‘them’, of otherness of ‘them’ who is not like ‘us’. of fears of phobias; xeno, homo, queer, trans. that’s just how this world works and how it ended up here. to this time of diminishing resilience, species, forest cover, ancient knowledge, water sources / unknown forces / earths resources . our necks are bent to get a good view of what’s going on from our windows. it is hard, nay impossible, to know any truth, history, happening, non-fiction apart from our own day to day, our day, today.

is time always going to feel this fast? will 5 pm still feel like the morning when level 4 turns to level 3?

will days continue to disappear for the rest of eternity?

from where i am; a short bike ride away, there’s a line of chestnut trees. climbed over barbed wire and protected with gloves, filled 3 bags – some green, some brown, some already out of their husks. processed by slicing, boiling, baking, scooping; soft insides out. sweet, savoury, snack or staple. a neighbour walks with me, 2 metres apart, recites me nutrients held by weeds from heart. from the soil i till, picked potatoes gold & still. patches of tasted green; with late blooming flowers and insect buzz in between. google search; how to extract pumpkin kernels from tough seeds. apples are falling from the trees. there is an autumn abundance outside the supermarket. if we had the knowledge, if we had the land, if we had the time.  which has been denied to all, stolen from you, taken by them. which we may do, which we most likely definitely do not, which more of us do now.

biological bodies are limited to biological needs; eating and drinking and sleeping and shitting. of food and of water and shelter. of comfort and of safety and health. of love and of light and of laughter. of ease and of accessibility and freedom to act on our own knowledge on our own behalf, for not just our self but for ourselves (as community). it’s only harder to nurture needs (to sow the seeds) when the resources needed to (plant a garden) are taken away, rearranged then again made available, for the price of changing what we need and who we are. pushing us through holes we cannot fit through, into increasingly smaller boxes. where not a single crack will form to let a slither of pale grey light shine through. these structures have been built well.

warm breath in, cold breath out. lay down on the crest of a world in motion. sped up / slowed down. wondering; what’s to hand? a gentle caress from the days close as the nights draw in darker and faster than before. unknown hope for the future, a new remembering of the past, turning to face a truth; that now is what we have.

amber clausner

april 2020



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