Tuesday, December 2, 2008

12:15 Greyhound to Kelowna

I found myself on the bus to Kelowna today. My brother and I had swapped cars last week; my shiny new convertible for his old van. I headed to the parking lot on Friday, van keys in hand, when I discovered it wasn't there. Hmmm. Who steals a 1998 Transport Van?! Apparently someone. I've been stranded these past few days, and finally yesterday hopped on a Greyhound to go pick up my car. I did a sketch on the bus that later turned into my first lino cut. What an interesting process, thinking only "light, dark". I'll be doing more of these.

It made me think of the poem that Austin wrote for Grip Magazine when he was in high school. It's a poem born of the emotional scars he bares because his mother (me) made him ride the Greyhound back at Vancouver. When I was a kid, we had to WALK to Vancouver. Uphill. Both ways. In the snow. I'll find the poem and post it. It (like Austin) is very cool.

Ah, found it!

Bus Ride - by Austin Holm
The rough and tumble trundling
of the bus jolts me along an Okanagan road.
Outside, one farmer's field melts 
into another
into another
into another.
Like skin coloured M&Ms:
who's to say if it's melting
in my mouth or hands 
eyes or brain
or if it melted before I even saw it.

Roadside landscapes are fluid:
They just go round and round.

Hours on a bus can be like that.

The girl in front of me is beautiful,
and smiling and cold and still wearing the heavy perfume of last stop's cigarettes,
flavouring her with a kind of hidden mysticism.
She reminds me of a Japanese temple:
coins clinking into coffers
and prayer bells ringing to the olfactory backdrop of the monks cigar tainted breath
and slow burning sticks of oriental incense.

I am wondering
if she is coming or going.

I'm afraid I'll lose my ticket and just wander from stop to stop
the Austin on the Bus
going round and round, 
until they find me out
and kick me off
into an indistinct farmer's field.


Capt Elaine Magliacane said...

WOW... you obviously nurtured a poet... I can't believe a high school student wrote this. You should be very proud Mom, very proud.

Sketchalina said...

Thanks Elaine. I am! ;-)