From Me to You: A Letter I Never Sent.

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(To accompany my words..)

 

As I write this, it’s 9pm. It’s a Tuesday evening and I feel alert. Just a day from now, I’ll board a plane. For what has felt like far too long, I will go further than the mere hour to Auckland. A few more, to Fiji. Do you remember the time I ventured? Across the sea for bronzed skin and unremitting days. For kindness and for love. 

 

Do you remember?!

 

Oh, friends, I do! It feels just a moment ago and yet, all the same it is a year I never did live. I was a different person then.

 

No, perhaps, I was much the same.

 

Moons ago, I craved for rows of seats. Dark alleyways and headlights. My alit young face. Senseless words and cyclical street-ways at the other end. I’m racing out of here in ripped shoes. I stand on funny feet with calluses; tattooed scars that scream I’m ready.

 

I shall look back once, twice, three times. I will watch the stretch of Dreamworks sky envelop me. For today, I will know nostalgia. I’ll know it like I know Supertramp Side Two. This has been safety. This has been comfort. This has been home. For grass, sea and sky, I will return.

 

But now, I see them waving! At me? Oh, I have to wave back. They’re laughing the way I laugh. They’re hitting each other’s shoulders and acting a fool.

 

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It’s 9.36pm now. Few lights triumph in little, old Wellington. Yet that I am fond of the city, I find once again that too many people sleep. They don’t understand when I tap their shoulders. The streets close at 5pm. Why? Why! There’s so much to do. So much to become.

 

I remember being 7. Twelve. Fourteen. One day, they did as they said they would: they gave me my own bank account. A number I memorised to please my parents. A direction to school I utilised for the scuff of my shoes; for mastering my scurry. Now, I walk my own way. Sometimes, I don’t walk home.

 

Can you believe it?

 

It’s 9pm. I’m in Kelburn, Wellington. I have lived time across two main cities. I’m 19. In two days, I will be in Fiji. In seven, Sydney.

 

Can you believe it?

 

That time and the sun, that satisfaction is ours.

 

Can you believe it?

 

That money and fucking employment needn’t be the way they once so glumly detailed. Remember when they told you about medicine and engineering? One day, they stopped telling you because you wanted to be a doctor or an engineer. They told you… because you wanted to earn money.

 

Oh sweet child, when did you start wanting money?

 

There is more. More to that kid. To his or her eventuation! And you’re indebted. Pay your accounts. Pay your accounts.

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I hope that you jump on planes and get giddy like a child. I hope you forget about money and attaining a stable career. I hope that you run. That you run and you find something. I hope it’s yourself. I hope it’s someone else.

 

I hope that you drink so many cocktails the River Seine looks fit for a swim. I hope that someone stops you from stripping in the streets. I hope that you almost do! I hope that you kiss and you flirt and you wink at every passer-by, attractive or otherwise. I hope creepy men dissolve into crowds. I hope you stay naive. I hope you grow knowledgeable. I hope you love regardless.

 

It’s 9pm… I love this city. I love its people. And for a little time – and a long time – I shall leave it. I shall smile at others with this grin too big for my face. They once told me to get braces. Too big a smile. They once told me to grow up. Too big a dreams. 

 

I once told them to live.

 

I’m not letting them respond to this one. 

 

Mckenzie xx

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