Today I Remember 1#

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As well as photographs, random lists of memories can potentially lead to longer pieces.  So in that spirit here is a random list of memories. Wonder what sort of piece I can turn it into.

Today I remember
the smell of freshly cut grass just before
I am about to run in a highschool athletics race
butterfly stomach and wanting to win

dreaming of being an Olympic runner but
even though I was a highschool champion never quite making it
but winning a state bronze medal

running on the day the best coaches watch and never doing my best
running a 3000 m for a lark and pulling out thinking, ‘well that was a joke’
running cross country faster than I expected because
of running to school with my heavy school bag on my back

my Dad forgetting to pick me up from athletics training
then catching lifts to friend’s houses and ringing him up

my French teacher wanting me to play hockey at her club’s team
but  me thinking, ‘a hockey stick will cost too much’

going past an enormous poster, the size of a skyscraper,
of Cathy Freeman
on the side of a building in Sydney many years later.
watching ‘the 400 metre’ race on television and being delighted that Cathy won
wishing I had taken a photograph of that giant poster

sitting with Cathy Freeman’s Mum Cecilia Barber at
a camp for Indigenous people’s empowerment and
her grandson and my son going off to hunt for kangaroos,
and us having to rescue them from the edge of the bush

my youngest son breaking a running record
and winning a school medal
but deciding cricket is much more his dream than running

my two older children having no interest in sport
a long jump pit being a sand pit to build castles in
one draws and draws
the other can never put the guitar down

an online conversation with a mother who knew me as a runner
about how to encourage your children in sport
hers are wonderful runners

she sends me a video about a girl with MS
who runs fast
which brings me to tears
and tells me I am a good parent

(c) June Perkins

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