Wishes

Monday 8 August, 2011:

Tau texts me this morning:

Oh hi ms i cant make it 2corse 2day because i need to take my dad to hospital to take hiz stichez out of hiz eye?’

Are you going to course tomoro? I enquire.

Thanks ms, an yeap I wil b goin corse 2mro? 😀

As the question mark is an embellishment more than a signifier, I feel confident that Tau does intend to go course tomorrow.

 

Wednesday 10 August:

Today I’m all afloat with a kind of happy-sad-happy-sad buoyancy. Bobbing about on a sea of unshed tears – there’s something almost calming about it. I feel like a little boat sailing along on a grey day, over a calm grey sea; just a slight, choppy breeze to propel me on.  Everything is lightly tinged with a sort of sorrow. And at the same time, things are alright.

 

There are some potential alliances forming – not yet stable.

12 History (first up this morning) are super-good – much to their own delight. Kepaoa tells me he might come back to school for a second crack at Level 3 next year. He’s already year 13, so I question whether that’s such a good idea, saying carefully, “I’m just thinking you might have… moved on from school by then.”

He shrugs. “Maybe – but I want to get Level 3.”

“I know, but there are other places to get it,” I say.

“Mmm… but this school’s ok,” he tells me.

“Yeah, but just think about it first.”

He raises his eyebrows at me.

Sia, sitting next to him says, curiously, “Miss, are you saying you don’t want Kepaoa to come back?”

“No,” I reply. “I’m just saying he should be careful.” I look at him directly, saying, “So don’t you go starting up a business or anything.”

This makes her giggle, and Kepaoa just gives me the merest of nods, indicating that he knows what I mean.

“That’s a joke, aye Miss?” Sia pursues.

“Well, it’s a targeted joke,” I tell her, and Kepaoa looks at me and starts to laugh. We’ve never discussed it specifically, even that time he told me about the DP’s searching him. But maybe he is dealing – though I’m not one hundred percent sure. And next year, when he’s turning 19… well, I think he might be better off out of school, for his own sake.

And I’m aware that I shouldn’t know about any of this. But I do. And so, there it is. Nothing’s proven. And yet the signs are all around and everywhere, for those who care to read them. Who am I to go bringing things to light, when all that happens as a result is completely meaningless? The only way that means something to me, is to be bounded by trust and respect. And so, I have my own ethics.

 

Monday 15 August:

Nothing goes ‘wrong’ today, but it isn’t a peaceful day for me either. I wish, painfully and gently, for a different life. I wish to be another person. But I can’t flee, and there’s nowhere to go.

After school, Leroi and Zion and Teki run around chucking balls of ‘ice-snow’ at one another, making big tie-dye thwacks on each other’s school shirts. Teki puts his hands on mine, to show me how cold they are. The unselfconscious physical contact makes me feel even more ashamed to be going home to nothing and no-one.

When I drive home, I kind of gasp air and sob, without tears and unhysterically, all the way to the dairy (to get milk) and then on to my driveway. There’s nowhere to run but here. It’s already cold and dark, and there’s hail and ice on the roads. Where would I go?

I don’t wanna cook – I don’t care – I can’t bear the feeling of making food all on my own. Even breakfast in the morning is barely hanging on as an old habit, these days.

I wish… I wish to be sitting at the table at Zion’s, with Esau; the table all wiped clean, and Zion’s little sister eating toast with jam, and the TV on. Or to be beside Tau and Sheree and Scott, not even intruding… just being there, to wish. I don’t know what I wish for. I wish I could help, and I wish I wasn’t alone, and I wish to keep guard – or something like that – I don’t know quite what I mean.

Instead, I ache and I stay quiet, and I stay here. I want to go out, and come home, and not be alone.

 

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