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Finale Event and Poem from Cafe Poet

Join our Cafe Poet Diana Bell Brooks and special guest Deb Westbury when they read their works at Cafe Latte on Thursday 7 April from 5.30pm. Cost is $5 payable on the night and includes a glass of champagne and snacks. Please RSVP to Orange City Library on 6393 8132 or Cafe Latte on 6363 1855. This is the finale event for our Cafe Poet program supported by Australian Poetry, Cafe Latte and the Central West Writers' Centre.

And here is a poem inspired by memories:

The Flood

(l)

The creek beyond the Molong railway track

rises in rivulets I can't contain.

My father's ghost floats by the platform,

in his old white armchair.

There are people from the town's long past

leisurely seeking pleasure

in the creek that's now swollen,

taking their ankle boots off

and wading.

When my parents travelled to Australia,

they knew they were going to settle:

I didn't.

I'm packing cases of books

and wound my arm

on the rough metal staple

of a tea chest

and I'm supposed to be ironing a

handkerchief

of thin white cotton, for the journey

across the ridge to Orange.

(ll)

Now I'm going somewhere

even more uncharted,

where the light glances off the sea

in a curtain of coloured streamers

from the fingers of my loved people

holding the other end.

Where I can hardly part

the way of the crowd

leaning from the handrail of the ship.

People swarm past me

scooping me up with them

and draw me

into the lacquered bosom of the lounge and
stairwell

where the light-roof is.

All the stairs of the ship

centre round us,

and we encounter

the feel of an ark.

I feel the old railway building rising,

golden

on the breast of the flood.

(lll)

I pack up my papers

in the old ticket room of the station

where I've been writing

Down the pine-needled track

I walk for the last time

Kangaroos peep shyly from the shadow.

Bunches of lavender

are piled on a cottage veranda

and the flies lash

old, rich pasture.

By Diana Bell Brooks
Cafe Latte, Austrlian Poetry Cafe Poet Program, March 2011

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