Friday, November 04, 2005

Death of a School Friend

Death of a School Friend.
(my first love.)
Today I found out that ‘C’ was dead.
“He died from Aids related causes”
Whatever that is.
“He died last Christmas.”
How come I thought he was alive?
I thought I would know when he died.
“He was an architect and he died quickly”
I had to ask.
“ He designed a beautiful home for his parents
who still live in the country.”
And I used to think he looked like Dustin Hoffman.

I went to school with him in the 1960’s -
I hadn’t heard or seen from him since then -
(Why would I?)
We redirected a few street signs,
laughing hilariously one night
as we pointed the ‘Mulga’ street sign,
directly at what we thought was mulga...
Mum was not impressed,
“What if an ambulance had been needed?”
But we were sixteen!

We kissed, that night, only once,
walking home from a party.
After ages of dreaming that was it - the full extent.
I always remembered the intense anticipation of that one kiss,
it being more precious because...we were sixteen.
The next day at school we couldn’t look at each other...
My first real kiss... and school drifted away from me,
and I drifted away...

I always believed he would be alive,
living his life, as I was.
I took it for granted, as so much of my life
Why wouldn’t I?
Who dreams that their first love ever dies?

Therese Mackay   Dec 1990

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