Thursday, May 27, 2010

Fill your bucket before you kick it!

Before we kick the bucket, we all want to fill it. What's on your bucket list? Mine's actually blutacked to my study wall on large pieces of butcher's paper to prevent me forgetting any of it. In fact, the thing is so busy with 'to dos' scratched all over it, it keeps falling off the wall and flopping onto the carpet. (Or maybe I just need to be a bit less scungy with the Blutack). Mine includes stuff I've ticked (have a poem published, run naked in the Simpson Desert), plenty I haven't (be an extra in a film, write a book) and some which are, quite frankly, ridiculous or impossible (become Cate Blanchett, appear on Enough Rope.) So, here's a poem about a lady named Kirstyn's bucket list. It's surprisingly so choccas with everything she's done already, I have no idea how she's going to continue filling it for the next 70 years! Maybe some inspiration in there for yours...

My Bucket

If only my wonderful parents had known
that when I was just aged four,
my little beach bucket then full of sand
would soon fill up with much more.

For, whilst then the shy and retiring type,
I sort of, well, went, KABOOM!
Decided to suck out the marrow of life,
announced, ‘Now then sand, make some room!’

And off I did trot with my bucket and spade
and my gumption and gizzards and guts,
proceeding to fill it with crazy adventures,
not heeding the voices, ‘She’s nuts!’

I bungee jumped out in Zimbabwe;
it bounced in my bucket aboing!
I danced on some tables, Croatia,
‘twas that, or get sleep, flipped a coin.

Shoved an elephant in, rode in Thailand
and a leopard in Africa patted.
Risky, perhaps, but a baby, and that’s
quite sublime, as if nothing else mattered.

There’s pelicans in there, Kalbarri,
and wine bottles from South of France.
They’re empty mind you, for what else can one do
but keep chucking them in. Take the chance!

My bucket went with me to Queensland
and scuba dived out on the reef.
It skydived Namibia (no broken tibia)
and sunbaked in Broome for relief.

I threw in some lions on safari,
giraffa and zebra tossed too
and ripper strong curry, don’t be in a hurry
mzungu to find you a loo!

My poor thankless bucket on that one…
and also a few other places.
Try, all of Nepal, thank you bucket, quite brimming
with mountains…and spew, oh good gracious!

You could say my bucket has fortitude,
for long far and wide did we ‘Rome’.
Indeed there, the grand Colosseum
(was tough work to ship that one home).

But my bucket said, ‘bring it on!’ daily,
so why not live life to the max.
Done the ‘Undies 500’, Kalgoorlie
and paid my respects in Auschwitz.

My bucket reflected in stillness;
we both knew how lucky we were
and onwards we journeyed together
as a whisper of breeze it did stir.

We’ve driven through Spain (wrong side of the road),
drove a header, four wheeler, a van.
Oh memories, my bucket, of tootling along
with a gorgeous South African man.

And then there’s the bee that once bit me
(I’m not going to tell you all where)
but I nearly died and only survived
in a one man run hospital, yeah!

And soon, with old Esperance quite buried down deep,
Karratha was tossed in the mix:
gorges, Karijini and camping, bikinis
and thousands of great Facebook pix.

But that was way back in the noughties.
Let’s fast forward eighty years on,
my memory now straining, my bladder now raining,
my bucket, not quite had the gong.

And I’d filled it to bursting point every year -
I’d married, had kids (hair all curly),
learnt to surf like that Slater, run a pub out of Africa,
stayed up late with my mates, got up early.

Taught English in Taiwan with girlfriends,
done TV, wrote books, travelled more
and worked at the Antarctic base camp
(my poor bucket got frostbite galore!)

And chucked every bit in my bucket
and heaved it on buses and trains.
In Kombis it thumped, doing bombies, it jumped
and I held its hand tight on big planes.

Then yesterday came. It was different.
Worn out by its weight, I felt sick
and in but a split second moment of ire
I gave my loyal bucket
                                       …a kick.

So here now we are up in heaven.
‘Watch out!’ they called, seeing us come.
‘She crammed full her bucket on earth ‘fore she kicked it
and I reckon they’ve both just begun!’

© Elise Batchelor 2010

1 comment:

  1. Elise!!! Fantastic. I still get a thrill every time I read it. Thank you a hundred million times over. I feel OH SO honoured!! You are a magician with words.
    Kirstyn x


Feel free to share. It's just between you and me (I promise)...