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A Quarterly Journal
Jeffrey Woodward, Founder & Owner
Ray Rasmussen, General Editor

Volume 13, Number 2, June 2019
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Jan Foster
Geelong, Victoria, Australia


An Aussie Christmas

Monday, 23rd December

Today begins the week leading up to Christmas, and we are expecting a houseful of visitors. The first guest, my sister-in-law, a single lady of 53, arrives this morning.

ants scurry
across the paving stones
on the patio
a pile of sand grows steadily
beside the cracks

Tuesday, 24th

The interstate grandchildren have arrived to join the locals. They need to be kept busy if mischief is to be avoided. Arcades and surf shops are a definite drawcard.

teenagers
have their own ideas
our role
to deliver the goods . . .
beach, cinema, mall, wheels

Wednesday, 25th

Christmas Day. The food has been bought and prepared, presents wrapped, the tree decorated and the family gathers. Extended family, in-laws and outlaws, all know each other well. Blessedly, we all get on. The house buzzes with many conversations and much activity.

carols, laughter
wrapping paper strewn
on Christmas day
I think of a cold hillside
choirs of angels, a star

Thursday, 26th

Summer’s day, visitors scatter, sightseeing. Adults recall their own childhood Christmases with much nostalgia. I silently tally the missing faces of those who are no longer with us.

our daughter
taken far too soon
is here
. . . I feel her warmth
never far away

Friday, 27th

The travellers prepare to leave; ahead for some, a long day’s journey home. Plans are afoot for the cousins to swap visits over the coming year. The generations subtly shift another step forward.

maiden aunt
delivered to the airport
confesses
being grateful
she’s single

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