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Birrarung Billabong

Sitting with your open coffin thinking and not thinking I want to be with the world and you. I knock against the grain of wood and want to know if you remember the day we took the bikes to the river and rode along the bank against a current willing us home to safety. At the billabong we circled sacred water, threw away our shoes and socks and splashed through tea-stained shallows and stomped in mud. We were something more than wild boys that day. We were our mother’s babies, from her womb, from her waters that one morning broke and set us on our way. You had never been happier and you lead the way and you told me that we should never leave, that we should stay with the water and be the water is what you whispered to me, shyly and with all the love you held in your heart for me. On our way home, we rode in the darkness below and a big sky above. We were not afraid, not me or you. Our hair was long and curled and golden, our eyes the richest brown, our skin carried water and water carried skin. The sounds of the river rushing at the falls a common pulse. Now I understand that we were never so alive and we would never be again. I stand and bend forward and kiss your cold skin and know that you are not here in this squat box. You were never here little brother, the one we knew as Golden Boy. You are with the water.

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