I sometimes wish I could visit the house of my childhood.
To go back in time, open the door and see this house
just as it was from 1944 to 1956 when I lived there on the farm on
The house has long gone
and the farm is no longer an entity of its own but part of a much larger holding.
The sheltering pine trees from behind have gone too.
Three small bedrooms, the living room with its fireplace, the tiny kitchen and the dining room and extra bedroom that Dad added for big sister Shirley.
Dad also added a bathroom and a back porch. The 'lavatory' was outside behind the shed that housed the copper and concrete tubs for washing clothes.
I have no memory of it being wanting. Small children are more aware of love and happiness and security, or the lack of it, than of the absence of material things.
It could have been me in the house on Matakawau Road.
The door is exactly the kind of door I remember.
The activity is just the kind of thing I used to engage in.
I see myself running, crying to my mother, with a bleeding scratch that ran from below my tummy button up my chest.
I'd been riding on the top of the door, swinging too and fro.
Dismounting by standing on the door handles and sliding down, I hadn't taken into
consideration the sharp edge of the lock.
Needless to say, the riding of doors was forbidden ever after.