This Wednesday’s literature extract resumes from where Part 1 left us:
Susan and I peered from inside, praying the kookaburra didn’t fly away. I looked at Susan as she smeared her hand across her mouth in a vain attempt to suppress her giggles. It was the most buoyant I’d seen her. Susan watched with care, but never with a face so radiant. She was glowing. Susan normally dressed with care too. That was Susan. Rarely in jeans or sloppy jumpers. But tonight she dressed like that, hair up, no make up – lively, but at home. She even pushed me with a laugh seeing our kids. We were in the same sphere. My eyes became as wide as hers gazing at the kids.
I was not sure if I was seeing her for the first time. May be she had been like that before, but I hadn’t noticed. Perhaps it was hidden in the dark when we first woke or went to sleep at night or when she was kissing me more than I was kissing her. Did I have my eyes closed?
The kookaburra stuttered along the wooden rail above my daughter’s arms, pitching up pieces of meat with its pointy beak and catching them halfway down its throat. Trying to get a better vantage point suddenly Johanna fell over Jessica’s leg. The bird jolted fluttering its wings, but didn’t fly away. My heart was in my mouth. Johanna eventually leant up on her arms and muttered to us, about to sulk. Susan stood up, threw open the sliding door and ran to Joh scooping her up into her buxom chest. I wondered how the sliding door still remained on track and the kookaburra kept persisting.
I was now the gawking bird perusing the scene; their excited voices muted by the sliding door in front of me but their body language and facial expression spoke more than words. I knew “I was lucky to have her”. I reminded myself.
I glanced at the kookaburra wondering how it still felt safe. It meandered the ledge maybe frustrated by all the human commotion delaying its main course. Joh then kicked her legs against Susan’s torso. “Please put me down now Mummy”!
Mesmerised, I watched this and merged two inner parts of myself, my child and adult self. They came together at this spot. I planted my hands against the sliding door – splotching the glass. At any other time Susan’s blood would have boiled about my smearing the glass, but she was engrossed like the kids and bubbling at the kookaburra’s feather-brain antics. Every few seconds she turned to me through the glass door laughing.
I noticed her eyes welling up with tears of unbridled laughter.
My eyes became glassy too as I looked at her and the children.
A tear rolled down my cheek. “What is this?” I asked myself.
Soon, I immediately understood. Everything has culminated up to this point in time to let me know – that this is my summit.
Next week Part 3 (final).