Even with the greyest of skies, her elegance holds a million blooms.
This is George’s story….
Sitting outside a Newtown cafe, feeling appreciative to step out of the house where my diseased body coughs me consistently to exhaustion, a man stops by. As i sip my coffee, he asks comfortably,
“What is it about this coffee that you enjoy?”
I openly reply, “it is the best coffee in Newtown.”
And there it begins, as this man joins me to observe the bustle of the street. His eyes are tender, his face has passed the years of time with burden, yet a deep reckoning of acceptance lies within the creases. Our curiosity for our encounter deepens. Stories are told of struggles of this world and the message of benevolent universal truth. He speaks passionately, as he recounts the tortures of being at the wrong place, with the right information.
This setting of the past takes place in Jordan. The darkness surrounded him, as people took him from his home during his sleep, pain enforced on him to tell the secrets. Secrets he only knows because of his previous job – working for a secret service. Him and his wife both worked in this field in the USA. The truth of your job can endanger your life in some parts of the world when too many questions are asked of you, by the wrong people.
“Although, not as dangerous as being around people who deny the truth of reality.” He explains. His wife was victim of this daily back in USA. “It is an operation, it is the making of technology.” He says.
Cultures, colonialism, civilisation – ancient and modern, suppression of people, Indigenous rights are all the stories that flow passionately from our minds. We both know, we both have learnt, we both have been fortunate with education that bypasses some in their ignorance of unknowing.
I speak of understandings of shadow. But as I and my fellow brothers and sisters so close to me, we experience great fortunes being the youth of Australia. I speak of the universal truths of living life to serve a purpose beyond just the human experience.
This angers him, as he too acknowledges the existence of the polar opposite, light.
“I am burdened by the world. I cannot carry this load any longer”, whilst discrediting my naive beliefs with pity, disturbed by the notion of the unreal.
“Let it be free” I say, as I lift my hands to the rainy skies.
This world we live in is burdened with struggles. Our dear men carry these on their shoulders, as a result of another man’s diabolic fantasy to rule this human world. Yet, with the existence of his story, you cannot exclude that of which I experience too. There would be no shadow, without light. No winter, without summer. No night, without day.
He refuses to accept the atrocities to plague his life. Being able to cope could of gone either way for his mental state. He is letting the joys of the present day to be his story.
I continue to speak of the beauties I see, the beauties my brother and sisters create daily.
“It is happening now” I tell him.
There is a feeling of separation between the two of us, as we are aware that the conversation has fulfilled its purpose.
“Tell me why Simona, I am able to speak to two million people, but I cannot speak directly to my wife about her pain, my pain? Tell me?” Here I shake my head, genuinely unknowing of the nature of his question. I ask,
“What does this mean?”
He stares at me in silence, and walks away halting a “goodbye”.
Two hours have passed, and I pay for three coffees; two for me, one for him. A didgeridoo is played by a man of the Wiradjuri Nation as I leave. I walk to the great fig tree located at the cemetery near my home, and let it take this encounter to the skies.
So many moments are ours to keep, so many stories are there to be told….love, light and today, gratitude.
Photo taken at Camperdown Memorial Park, Sydney. As an obliging courtesy, a fellow magpie friend poses beside the spirit tree.