Spirits lay beneath the concrete, where ancient feet once roamed.
Where the streets have no acclaim...
(A play on the U2 song, Where the streets have no name.)
I made this video in 2013. It's never been made public.
I didn't like my voice-over. I was hoping to get someone to replace it but never got around to it. (I've lost the original edit so its too late).
I was visiting Melbourne and shot a lot of footage and wrote the poem around it. I usually work the opposite way. I was happy with the look. It took me forever to edit and add sound effects. This is actually an earlier version. The later version drowns out even more of the voiceover so had to go with this one. Still not ideal, hence why I've sat on it.
Trivia: My convict ancestor had a small pub/hotel in this street, Bourke Street. He was one of its original inhabitants, when it was called Bearbrass and only a camp of 300.
(John Batman had negotiated a land treaty with the local Kulin nation in 1835, who may not have been aware of what they were signing over. Irrespectively, the British soon claimed it was invalid as Britain 'owned' all of Australia).
William went there with his friend John Mills after they had finished their sentences. John opened Melbourne's first brewery. They both married the young Hale sisters, becoming brother-in-laws. John died young, 31. William at 48.
A decade later, I've decided to present it to you as is.
(FULL TEXT Below)
Where the streets have no acclaim
I stroll on molested concrete
Burying sacred ground
Along with countless others
Concerned only with today’s odyssey
Tales of woe
Spattered with moments of joy
Yet hyped with the anticipation
Of a little more
Of that good thing.
The natural follow up
To our folly
The spirit crushing awareness
Of the prominent mundane.
Yet despite our singular head space
The streets are awash with stories
In never ending flux.
I want to believe
That I am not a mere drop
Of semen made self aware
Salt of the earth
Or impossible to pin down.
I stare at tram tracks
And think of past bicycle tracks
And four legged sojourns through dust and mud
That replaced bush and forest
That eliminated centuries.
Once free to roam
Yet grounded in Belonging
They may be omitted now
But we are the fractured ones
Yet never more alone
With the rise and rise
Of the individual
Destined to fall
Washed out by neon
And wasted in the night
Reflecting our hollow bones
Sturdy yet flawed
Heralding the cry of a thousand misspent dreams
From bleeding hearts
And a million more besides
Hiding in walls
Lost in lust and booze
And flippancy and derision.
Fabrications without meaning
Fighting inevitable cessation
So we dance amongst the pretty lights
There’s another day coming
At least, that’s the expectation
That we can make it right tomorrow
In the ever churning meantime
Waits dependably patient
To reclaim those flimsy structures
And fragile souls
We of the never satisfied
From the final fleeting charade.
|Stories and poetry on connection
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