There There There (Expanded)

Remembering Easter in two cities: Perth, West Australia and London, United Kingdom

Perth. Easter Weekend, 1963

The Saturday between Good Friday and Easter Sunday

I have always thought of this as one of the strangest days in the year.

I can remember when I was living in Adelaide Terrace with my dear mother; going for a walk at about Noon on the Saturday of Holy Weekend. I walked up Mount Street towards the Mint, and remember looking past the iron gates and fence into that very private and secure place. There were heavy, dark leaved trees within that area.

Everything was so still.

I then turned on my tracks and walked in the direction of the City. The walls around me all seemed to be white… Well, they are in my memory of the time and place. It was a blisteringly hot day, and the sun was at its zenith in a vast bright sky. I can’t remember there being that amazing cobalt blue that the Perth skies had in the heat of Summer. So my memory tells me that that was not so; not so on that lost Day between Good Friday and Easter Day.

I can remember that everywhere was so white; sun blistered walls; sun bleached sky; everything.

I was the only person, the only soul, in that vast bleached and empty place. No shops were open. No cars were on the road. No other human souls were out in the blistering sunshine. I might as well have been in a deserted street in Greece. The walls were not the walls of a modern city, but the walls of an older civilisation. I might as well have been in Greece; in the streets of ancient Persia; on a lonely and dusty path in Sardinia, or in Palestine.

And as I walked, I heard from somewhere, a loud and strident voice. It was the voice of a man; preaching about the murdered Christ. The sound was distorted, as if the voice were being blown across the sky above me. But there was no wind, and I could not place the direction from which that voice came. I walked on in that solitary place; my eyes assailed by the brightness all around me; my ears attacked by that huge voice. A radio broadcast from a local church or from the Cathedral or from the ABC. (The Australian Broadcasting Company).

And I felt so alone. Alone like that tortured and beaten Prophet who had already been murdered so may years before, and waited, to rise up again.

And I felt so alone. Alone like that poor Saturday, squeezed between those two massive days of Good Friday and Easter Day.

London, 1966

A miserable, wet and cold Winter drew into a miserable and cold Spring

Quoted from my earlier Hub: 'There! There! There!'

There! There! There!

I see the Christ, his bloodied knees; bruised; cut.

As he kneels in the street.

Snow falls upon his tortured head; blood matted hair,

And numbs the pain… just for a while.

Cool drops of salt

Whirling in a cruel

And alien atmosphere.

I see his bloodied knees as he falls

The first time… the last time.

Two crimson smears on the already bloodied stones.

A thousand crosses mark the spot,

And yet this one act is deemed:

Redemption.

Quoted from my earlier Hub: 'There! There! There!'

I see the crimson smears;

The silence of the watchers.

He stops beside a whited car,

His battered, burning face

Pushed into the cooling side;

The reflection is not new to him.

Those broken teeth; that lacerated brow.

I have seen the Christ

In a London street.

The original, of you would like to view it, may be found here.

The original, which is quite brief, may be found here: There! There! There!

More by this Author


24 comments

Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 years ago from TEXAS

My darling Ian! I'm thrilled to see you've posted. If you can forgive me, I'm so personally involved in those stark, unavoidable white streets and buildings. It's exactly my remembrance of returning to my parents' in San Angelo, after I'd worked inside an almost windowless building for 6 months till the tragic death of my sister and her family unrooted and undid me so I turned homeward, only to suffer a sunstroke from that glaring whiteness.

Of course, this hub is more serious and suggests a dream-like state, along with the symbolism of Easter. I need to refresh my memory (if I've seen it before) of the original hub. I had to leave a reply, even if inappropriate.

You've been so missed, my dear.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 3 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Your replies never are, and never could be, inappropriate, my dear friend.

I hope everything is working out with the extended (extending) family and that you are happy and feeling completely fulfilled at last.

The reason i extended this is because HubPages obviously thought the original poem was too short and didn't give it a rating. I suppose that I haven't spent much time doing anything since the disaster that was Lettice Rogers-Allbody and they punished me by taking lots of H thingys away from me.

Frankly, I don't think the HubPolice are very fond of me... but who cares?


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 years ago from TEXAS

Nor of me! I've been scored in the 80s for ages, whether I do anything or not. I just got a 90 but won't hold my breath that it will stay. I've friends who haven't even been on in months whose activity is listed as "not any" but are rated consistently higher. Good thing I don't measure my worth by their scores! So - yes - who cares? I do what I do because I want to - or not - anyway.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 3 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

We're nothing more than house servants or even unpaid labourers, NellieAnna, my friend.

Toil, toil, toil, scribble, scribble, scribble with never a thank you or a by your leave.

Come the Revolution, my friend, we shall mount the barricades, and with well orchestrated and punctuated anthems flowing from our lips, and resonating in their unappreciative ears (of course), seek retribution for all the slights and insults.

Or maybe not.

That all sounds a bit tedious and time consuming.

Hugs,

Ian


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 3 years ago from TEXAS

Oh, yes, Ian; - much too tedious and time-consuming for a couple of avant-garde poets who never care what people think, let alone what some impersonal business-concern thinks of it. Definitely 'not' to any of that Revolution stuff. Personally, I'd be concerned if 'they' did condone my work! ;-) Hugs.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 3 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Dear Nellieanna,

Ha ha ha.

You always make me laugh, my dear friend.

Hugs.

(I'll try to get back to you on the cavalcade of bizarre cartoon characters. I have guests tonight.)


drbj profile image

drbj 3 years ago from south Florida

Stunning expository writing, Ian. I found myself on that same street within whiter than white walls under a blazing noontime sun. You are talented, m'dear.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 3 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

drbj, I feel I don't even have to say how thrilled I was to read your comment.

"It makes it," as they say, "so worth it."

Thank you so very much.

Ian


Anna Haven profile image

Anna Haven 3 years ago from Scotland

Well, an interesting and very atmospheric hub. I felt the searing heat and the solitude. Very skillfully portrayed.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 3 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Thank you, Anna.

Kind remarks are always gratefully accepted.

I done my very bestest!

I "expanded" the Hub because the HubPolice gave me an "empty circle" meaning that they thought that it was of a very poor standard, and/or not up to their elevated standards of workmanship and all that business.

I don't know why I am complaining (if I am) because their opinion of nearly all of my poetry is lower than a snake's tummy.


Anna Haven profile image

Anna Haven 3 years ago from Scotland

Unfortunately the 'HubPolice' seem to like multiple photographs and polls. It isn't always conducive to the poetic theme.

I must disagree with them I am afraid. I thought you created a very real world and done it very well.

Anna :)


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 3 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Smiles graciously.

:-)


Storytellersrus profile image

Storytellersrus 3 years ago from Stepping past clutter

There there TL, the travesty of the Christ splayed upon your hubpages like a unrepentant dog. You convert me. You remind me I was once an evangelist, now redeemed all the more by your witness.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 3 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Storytellersrus, I love the eloquence of your comment. There are some who can write words and make sense. And there are some who can bring a collection of words lovingly together and make one's heart and mind take note; ponder; think and enjoy more. You are one of those far too rare few.

Thank you.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 3 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Storytellersrus, I love the eloquence of your comment. There are some who can write words and make sense. And there are some who can bring a collection of words lovingly together and make one's heart and mind take note; ponder; think and enjoy more. You are one of those far too rare few.

Thank you.


Eiddwen profile image

Eiddwen 2 years ago from Wales

Very interesting and voted up for sure. Enjoy your day.

Eddy.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 2 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Thank you, Eddy. It's nice to see that someone out there is aware of my existence... even if it's only in relation to my writing.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 2 years ago from TEXAS

I watch for a new hub from my Ian but hesitate to chide him when I don't find one. You leave too big a gap when you don't bring your wit out.

But then I discover you're tippy-toeing in and commenting on your ancient hub! So I can find you!

There, I've chided - with love.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 2 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Dearest Nellieanna, I was thinking of you a lot yesterday and in the preceding week. I have started to go through my DVDs and when I have watched them, am piling them in one large column beside the door to the living room. The pile is about me height now and has a hundred and lots in it. (That is an officially recognised amount).

I watched series One and Two of Downton Abbey, and can never do such without thinking of your good self.

There aren't any new hubs coming from me, my dear, because I look at my poetry and despair that one or two of them, which I honestly, and arrogantly, consider to be the very best things I have ever read, have trickled to the bottom of my list.

I tarted one up the other day, with lots of lovely pictures, and it moved a little higher. But you know, as well as I, that poetry does not need pictures (unless it is for the diet of some very shallow readers) being able to stand on its own and create its own pictures for the minds of its readers.

I am not denigrating the lush and evocative hubs that you produce, my Lovely. Heavens no! Your pictures and manipulation of colour and sound and all the things that you excel at are astounding. But you know as well as I that the poetic content of your works could stand alone devoid of every bit of backing up. Written on the wall of a bus shelter in a mean street, your poetry could evoke a tear; a call to arms; a sigh.

Ramble, ramble, mutter, mutter, ramble.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 2 years ago from TEXAS

Dear, dear Ian - I so often think of you in connection with my DVDs, too. "Room With A View" retains a place on the TV stand itself where it is easily available, rather than being alphabetically filed with others. You introduced me to it, along with other greats. Also there are my up-to-now collection of the "Downton Abbey" series residing there. I signed up early on the waiting list for Series 4 as soon as released over here and it was sent to me about the end of January. I also acquired Julien Fellowes earlier written movie script, 'Gosford Park', which is much darker and quite fascinating.

On my TV stand is also a fairly newly acquired set of all the "Upstairs, Downstairs" series of the early 70s, now another of my favorites. While waiting for DA season 4 to come into view over here, I desperately hunted for other BBC series with interesting plots, and acquired another I like, "Berkeley Square", focusing more on nannies in aristocratic London homes around the turn of the 19th into the 20th century. It traces three of their stories in their individual employers' families and homes. It's a different perspective. I got the series, "TheDuchess of Duke Street", and it's OK, but not as addictive as the others. There are so many good movies I like. If you haven't viewed, "The Words", I highly recommend it. It's a writers' story.

I've never read anything of yours that I didn't applaud and cherish. Whether or not a hub 'moves' is of no matter or value to me if it's a good one, though I admit that when, occasionally, one of my earliest poetry hubs gets discovered and brings new comments, it is like manna from heaven.

Anything of yours I read is like manna from heaven, by the way. You are a consummate poet and writer, and I'd follow you anywhere!

Of course you are absolutely right that the writing is the only real value of the presentation. If I didn't have all the other impetus in me, I wouldn't be at all concerned if my hubs were as plain as those scribblings on the wall of a bus shelter or just the words without even so much as arrangement on a hub page, so long as the writings were 'true' and worthy.

I truly love making my hubs as I do, probably resulting from a lifetime of using all my ideas as units and then building my own website for a baker's dozen years before even hearing of Hubpages. Here on HP, it's so easy to use their setup to include whatever one feels contributes to the sensory presentation of the words, so it's natural for me to do it. I don't mind it being sort of my 'trademark', so long as the poetry is the main feature.

When I visit others' hubs, none of that 'extra stuff ' is even a concern. I go for the words, and enjoy any other feature as an extra, not the 'meat'. In fact, I prefer they're plain to being self-consciously elaborate for . I can tell the difference between added things being added naturally and authentically and being just contrivances or a efforts to 'dress up' the words (which may or may not have stood alone on their own merit) by adding a flashy show of dazzle. Anyway - that's my position and I'm sticking to it. Perhaps there are some who regard mine as such a 'show'. So be it. I can only invite them to read and decide, while, hopefully, realizing the relationship with the other elements. ;-) I think that a great book is that much more a joy if beautiful bound, printed and illustrated as appropriate. I don't consider those distractions in the least, though I'd appreciate the bare-bones of the words without those elements.

Thank you so much for your high praise of my work, my beloved friend.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 2 years ago from TEXAS

It got away from me before I could edit out some typos and errors which would appall Lynne Truss! Oh, well, - I know better, just too slow on the uptake to catch and fix 'em. hehe


dis-cover profile image

dis-cover 2 years ago from Serbia, Belgrade

Ian, I love to read your stories. They are so picturesque. While reading , I am at the place about which you write, I can hear the voices of people about whom you write... You have a gift. Wish you all the best and have a nice day!


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 2 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Thank you, my friend. I really appreciate that comment. That's what writing is all about, and your comment has made me very happy.

Give my regards to Serbia. And take care of yourself.

Ian


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 2 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Nellieanna, I have just found this... erm... these two last comments from you and cannot understand why there is no reply from me. Perhaps I wrote one and forgot to "post" it. I know I read yours, and I also know I mentioned that I hadn't realised that Julian Fellowes has written 'Gosford Park'.

I hated it the first time I read it, perhaps because the sound quality was poor... or the actors and actresses were mumbling, perhaps. But I watched it very recently and couldn't understand why I had had such a negative opinion the first time.

I am in the middle of "publishing" another story on Smashwords and the document for the story has been accepted and is ready to go to the printers (As if!), but the JPG file is far too small, and won’t be accepted.

And I don’t know how to make it bigger.

Aaaarghh!

Lots of love,

Ian

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