Go towards the light….

go towards the light

When I was a kid I grew up in a place called Somerset West in South Africa. It was beautiful and I have amazing memories living there with all of the beautifully changing landscapes and incredible wildlife. I used to go to school with a chameleon or a tobacco roller snake curled up in my pocket. I lived, breathed and ate horses (I always hated that saying – I would die before I ate a horse)…maybe…anyway, I was a happy-go-lucky kid. My parents were wonderfully social butterflies, having many dinners and do’s that were amazing. I would sneak downstairs and take a look at all the beautiful people and listen to their laughter and tinkling cutlery. My mother would let me have dessert upstairs while I watched TV way later than what I was supposed to. I had the dogs and cat crowded up in the den and kept hoping that I would be forgotten and could stay here, just like this, always.

Well that didn’t happen and life trundled on – I must have been about 14 or 15 years old and had my first boyfriend. My parents were out one night and so my boyfriend Mike, and I were over at my friends’ house across the road. Before we left we made sure the dogs were not able to get into the lounge, a light on the front porch was left on for when we came back and everything was locked up.

So we had a fun night with our friends’ and decided it was time to head back – my parents would be home soon and Mike had to go home too. We walked hand in hand down the long dark driveway and headed across the road. My house was lit up like a birthday cake. Every light in the house was on. Mike and I stopped dead in our tracks with our mouths open. I went to hurry forward and Mike held me back. We approached with more caution. The front door was also open…and all of the windows. We were terrified but for some reason instead of going back to my friends’ house we kept going towards mine. Mike pushed the front door open and we slowly went in – I was hanging on to Mike for dear life! Everything was super bright with every single light turned on, the guest toilet lights, the reading lamps beside the beds and the main lights…what the hell was going on? What was really weird is that the dogs were bailed into a corner in the kitchen. Not even where their beds were but squashed under the breakfast table. Now we had a Great Dane (Cleo), a Labrador (Lottie) and a Bouvier des Flanders crossed with an English Sheepdog, (Charlie). These were not little dogs or scaredy-cat dogs for that matter, yet they were cowering and terrified of coming out when Mike and I went in. Usually they were delighted to see us and went crazy even if we had only been gone for twenty minutes. The cat, Fluffy-bum, was nowhere to be seen either.

Mike and I scoured the house and turned off the lights and closed the windows – man, we were creeped out. Mike had to go so I reluctantly saw him off and kept the dogs close. I made sure I locked the front door behind me and checked the downstairs windows with a trail of pets behind me. While I wandered around the house trying to feel safe, yet believing I may be locking something in with me rather than keeping something out.

Suddenly I could smell something burning. I poked my nose outside to find out if there was a bush fire somewhere but I could only smell the delicately cloying Wisteria and Jasmine that threaded the hedge. I hurriedly retraced my steps, the dogs got in the way of course and I stumbled over them several times in my hurry. I couldn’t find anything that was turned on now – I had turned it all off! I checked the power outlets all around and unplugged anything that wasn’t being used but nothing was melted or smelt as if it was burning. I checked the oven, the laundry where the iron was – nothing, not a heated thing. I went into the den and turned on the TV. Lottie, Cleo and Charlie followed me in and clambered onto the sofa with me. Fluffy-bum had turned up and wiggled her way in amongst all of the dogginess. I wondered when Mum and Dad would be home, I hoped soon…

Next to the sofa was an old cane rocking chair and foot stool that would now and again crack due to the change in temperature so that was nothing new. But y’know how cats suddenly stop doing what they are doing and just stare at something you know is not human and may be a ghost or something like that. But you don’t want to believe it when it’s in your own lounge. So Fluffy-bum is washing herself, and the dogs’ faces in between their fluttering lip snores and does this petrified statue thing, looking at the old cane rocking chair. It cracks and I think nothing of it. Something has changed, the snoring has stopped and all three dogs are awake, lying there with their eyes open but they had not picked up their heads. That was really strange – they leapt up at anything in a race to meet it, greet it or eat it.

The cane chair cracked some more and then became regular as the chair started tipping back and forth, rocking… I shot straight off the sofa – cat and dogs flying. Something had changed in me – I was fed up with this torturous unknowing. I stormed over to the lounge door – ripped it open and yelled over my shoulder, “GET OUT! YOU ARE NOT WELCOME HERE – GET OUT!” and carried on like a tornado to the front door – ripped that one open, after I fumbled around unlocking it and yelled the same thing behind me. I stopped in my tracks as I felt something move and shift in the atmosphere.

“I’m sorry…” I whispered, “I’m scared of you, I don’t know who you are but I don’t want you here. You need to go to the light, just go…” and I closed the front door. I walked back into the lounge, I felt shattered but hugely relieved. I looked towards the welcoming sofa where Lottie, Charlie, Cleo and Fluffy-bum sat waiting. They looked relaxed and content. I plonked myself down and Fluffy-bum came over, she looked up at me and closed her beautiful green eyes in a smile of thanks and curled up on my lap after a couple of raspy kisses on my hand. Somebody released some of their dogginess and we were almost back to normal. I heard Mum and Dad’s purring car and saw the headlights sweep over the windows in a comforting light – wondering if whomever I had chased out of our house felt as comforted as I did right now, I really hoped so.

Look at me…

Vintage mod rock

Look at me

waffling on

happy as a bee

Look at me

skipping through life

thinking I’m free

Look at me

that wistful child

once so wild

and now independent

and grown

Look at me

with 3 under 3

and a house I don’t

even own

Look at me

shared weekends

if we’re lucky

And I know you’ve been

sucking

someone else’s cherry

lip gloss

Look at me

bitter days

long nights

spent watching crap TV

Never to be

free –

the very unhappy

divorcee

© Kait King, 2015

Another Opportunity

opportunity

Yes love,

that’s exactly

what you do

Dust yourself off

once you’ve

pulled yourself up

and sing

dance

stand tall

Honey if you

think about it

it’s not the first time

and be sure

it will not be the last

You know the rights

from the wrongs

Don’t ever let them change

your song

With a Nelson Mandelian

grace

and a dignity dug

from the deep

You will triumph

and in a cloud of

dust, like a rolling

Pig Pen

You flagrantly walk

your walk into

another opportunity

© Kait King, 2016

I remember you Dad

I remember you Dad

I remember being only

knee-high to a grasshopper

and you would twirl me around

you let me stand on your feet

and danced with me

while I clutched at your

chino trousers or

the creases on your business suit

You never minded

we always danced

I remember pouring your drink

two fingers of Glen Morangie

two fingers being my index and little

but not really

I mixed that whiskey with two blocks of ice

and a dash of chilled water

I remember how you would savour it

in the South African sunlight

at the end of your day

I remember the love of words and animals

you gifted to us all

your funniness

and sense of justice

I remember you telling me

to eat my crusts

so that I would grow hair on my chest

and I did – eat them, not grow hairs on my chest…

I remember you used to type

business letters on my belly

and I was an old typewriter with a runner

and a “ding!”

which tickled the hell out of me

“Dear sir” you would type

I’m shrieking with delight

And the photo’s that I have

I remember you Dad

© Kait King, 2015

With love and dedication to my incredible father – the walking Encyclopaedia, the uncapped academic – I miss you, we all do xxx

When I Sing

me-singing-at-howick-show

Howick 2013

When I sing

I feel this thing

all of my body cells

join

the vibration

When my voice

comes out

and I sing of things

I care about

I feel pure elation

When my body

can’t hep but

move

As I sway and sing

the groove

This here,

this is my perfect situation

© Kait King, 2016

Tantalizing

like a moth to a flame

Like a moth

dancing

tantalizing

directionless

you gaze at me

and slowly

coax me in

I know my wings

will burn to ashes

My heart

it bursts in fire

but even though

I’m burning

and the flames will swallow

me whole

my destiny

remains nameless

by choices

never made

© Kait King, 2015

Rise Above

Rise above

Jealousy

Please leave me

Let me walk free

from your grasp

Honesty

Please fill me

Set my words free

with that trust

Stupidity

Please abandon me

Let me hear twice but speak

with one voice

Integrity

Please empower me

Take over my mind and body

to make the right choice

©Kait King 2017

Sometimes a word

Sometimes

Touching many

or touching none,

the joy it brings

just touching one –

with a torrent of words

cleverly writ,

from the coolest phrases

in ancient Sanskrit

or perhaps a scribe in

a guttural foreign word

is the sweetest thing

anybody ever heard

And the English language

with it’s redonkulous rules

where no matter how good you are

it still makes you a fool…

sometimes

© Kait King, 2016

Society’s Perfect Human

Society's perfect human

Don’t know why I’m here

but finally I see

there’s a few hard lessons

to be learned by me

And it doesn’t matter what I

think I’ve learned

I give so much

and still get burned

So how do we turn ourselves

into someone new

It can’t be the easiest thing

to do so

why do we try so hard

to be

society’s perfect human being?

© Kait King, 2015

Violent Love

Violent Lovve

Wild animal

– resonate in me

Violent Love

Tender Brutality

Snake, lion,

tiger or sheep

– Passionate,

almost Violent Love,

to: shy,

submissive,

meek
Only 50 shades of grey?

That is what I

want to say

– That Hollywood crap

you can keep…

© Kait King, 2017

Foot in mouth disease

foot in mouth

I loved university. I loved being up to my eyeballs in something I was fascinated with. The challenges and deadlines were all bonuses on top of the actual subject and I rose to greet each one. Anyway that’s by the by, so I’m in the lecture theater and the lecture is about to end. I know I’m getting a phone call very shortly so I excuse myself to go outside to wait for the call.

I get outside and there’s a kid doubled over, sitting pretty much folded over on the side bench. I wander to the bench, my phone out, texting and looking up as I walk. And I sit down on his right side. He shuffles over a little to make room. He is not moving much and my curiosity gets the better of me and I surreptitiously glance sideways at him. Yep, he is totally bent in half, but I do see his phone in his hand and he’s got his left hand side of his face plastered to his phone. Not the left hand side as in, his ear and talking, I mean like with his eye and not talking. Possibly taking a picture of his eye? Or the pupil of his eye? So without thinking for another second I pipe up with “I think you need glasses by the looks of things!” and chuckled a little, breaking the ice and everything. And this is my problem – my brain doesn’t engage with my mouth or vice versa – they work independently (against me!) so this is where I have ended up with this Foot in Mouth Disease – I’m a a frequent flyer.

Well, this kid looks up at me and one eye is covered with that cloud, the cloud that means that they can’t see much of anything out of that eye and the other one is scarred too.

He says, “It’s the only way I can see my texts – glasses won’t help…” I’m sitting there like an idiot. But I did what I usually do and chose not to ignore the elephant.

“So what happened to your eyes?” I asked.

He looked up from his phone again – well, as best as he could, and explained that he had been walking down Queen Street and it was winter. A super stormy day, and Queen Street can become like a wind tunnel on days like that. He had a jacket on that zipped up and as he grappled in the wind with it, the zip sliced across his eye, blinding him totally in his right eye and severely impinging on his sight in his left.

“I’m so sorry dude – really impressed you’re at university…I didn’t mean to be rude by the way….” I trailed off. He smiled, “It’s OK,” he says to me, ” at least you didn’t just walk away – that’s the worst. Everyone knows something’s up with my fricken vision. Lots of people don’t know what to do when they’re confronted with something unexpected…”

We were silent for a split second.

“I’m sorry this happened to you…. but I see in spite of a universal fuck-up in your life, you’re still here, still givin’ it all that!” he laughed at me and I laughed too.

“Often people so let the wrong things define who they are, or the worst things. The fact that you rise above this defines who you are.” He looked at me with a serious frown, somewhat created due to his lack of vision.

“Thank you for that, I needed to hear that right now…” he said.

I didn’t know his name but I did know much more about him than just some letters to identify him to his friends, family, fellow students and work colleagues. Not only that, but I found out even more about myself, or maybe about people. We all share commonalities – common likes, enemies, feelings, injustices etc. We all share bonds and those deeper threads of what make us who we are are far more interesting and important than your name, your clothes, your home, car, bank account…we truly are here to fill our souls and not our wallets. I take my soul with me when I go – I will leave my earthly belongings behind.

© Kait King, 2015