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Friday, 7 June 2013

School's Out.

School's out. The boy's head is in Mayo, fishing for Salmon, his body nearly after. So Ok, he has some pesky exams to do, the Junior Certificate even, but hey he's on it and besides, as he said when I asked him this  first day  if he was a bit nervous maybe, a little apprehensive perhaps,  "like what's the point,  sure it is what it is". And then, an afterthought " hey d' you know are my jeans  like clean for the cinema after?".

School's out.  The beautiful girl has an eye to the  imminent birth of a new cousin for added babysitting to fund the parties,  the brief summer dresses,  the mascara,  her real life, weeks and weeks of it, till September. Next year  the Leaving Certificate,  she's scared and she's eager, and afterwards, stretching endless,  mysterious,  her beautiful life.

School's out. The boss offers to wash the car, wash the dog, wash the windows, sort out the myriad books threatening to engulf us from room to room. She wants money for stuff. The Gaeltacht in July,  more  brief summer dresses,  high topped Converse shoes to match, the mascara. She drifts away from us, in the throes of  the washing, the polishing, the  hoisting, her tender new teenage form taking shape as she dreams. "What else?" she asks, each evening.  Bored, bored, bored already.

School's out. Summer is spectacularly come.. Nature, held back, made to wait, flings out blossom, colour and scent.  White laced  Hawthorns elbow in front of the flowering Chestnut trees,  reaching above to push into the next tree and the next and the next along the singing river where we walk, hip to hip, body to body, melded..  Birds carol, insects drum, scents explode. Interrupting, rude, exuberant, intoxicated with the ferocious kick of it all. At last. At last.

"Ah you know, YOU'LL be finished someday soon" my father told his moaning children as he ferried us home from school one September day "but sure I'LL have to keep going in and out to school forever" looking vague eyed down the long line of his eleven children as he spoke  He's finished now. I'll bet he shifted gently where he lies in Moone graveyard and sniggered at the boy's insouciance, his fine and untroubled verdict that it was what it