Beatrice writes; Yes, I oft looked for him to when out and about, and for the subtle messages that he is still beside me. I look for Godfrey in mobs of school kids, for the dreamer in ill fitting uniform and gumboots playing alone in a mud puddle..and this morning there he was. They were on a class tour of the posh new Fresh-Co in our town, all about six or seven, they were exiting the Bakery Department.
This little chap still had a hairnet on pulled over his ears, last in line, with a paper bag of cookies clutched tight in one hand. He had drifted from the chattering group and was standing watching the rotisserie chickens turn. Teachers no longer cuff wandering Godfreys on the head, or throw chalk. This teacher pauses beside him to watch the chickens cook, then guides him along with a pat on the shoulder. “Will there be beets? Miss”, I hear him ask, voice barely above a whisper.
..WORZEL WRITES- To put it politely, Godfrey’s taste in gifts leaned to the hideous. With little regard for money though, he was always thoughtful and generous. Because I loved my turquoise chair, he believed that I valued tawdry things, and he took delight in treasures gleaned from the bargain bins.
He gave me poems from the wonderful places he had been, and his last gift to me was a painting. It hangs above my bed, in a place it will never be questioned or seen, Running To The Dunny On a Summer Evening, By J.Boscombe- Down.
We were browsing Cheapo-Depot, he was two aisles over from me when I heard him exclaim. I located Godfrey, he was bent over laughing, holding a painting in a gold gilt frame. Shoppers moved away from him and shook their heads at me, he held the painting up so I could see, that it was not crudely executed. nor did it in any way mean to offend. It was a stout, wind and sun blown woman dressed in outdoor gear. She was running towards an outhouse, roll of loo paper in hand.
Why, I asked Godfrey, why would an artist paint an outhouse? It is old to, I wonder how it ended up in here? Godfrey told me the back-drop reminded him of Tasmania, the high country called The Blue Tier. He said, “I have no money, but this elegant painting, would look nice on the wall of your home” So I bought the ugly work of art for him to give me, and Godfrey gave me back this poem.
Skip to the Loo- from Godfrey- it is early evening, high up the Blue Tier, of Tasmania’s ruggedy land. All is peaceful and good, a hot, dusty day is at end. Her gray horse waits, slope hipped, swishing flies, in the water tank’s shade, her cattle dog lies. In the ghost gums are calling the black Cockatoo, tomatoes hang heavy ,down the path, where she strides to the old long-drop loo.
It’s a sheet-metal hut, with moon carved on the door, dimly lit by the sun going down. It is not pretty, but she would not trade the dunny, for a fancy new toilet from town…Later that night, thunder booming. Storm sweeps in from the ocean, raining hard oer her beloved Blue Tier. Coat and hat on she runs to the outhouse, down the path to the dunny without qualm or fear, From Godfrey.
. Recently, I learned the artist, J.Boscombe- Down, was a misunderstood chap, and Godfrey was correct in identifying The Blue Tier of Tasmania. J. Boscombe- Down’s other works of note were, We Were A Fine Pear- a still life of over ripe pears, and a discarded engagement ring, and the apalling, “Places My Buttocks Have Been”.