Gladstone, QLD, July 2021
Sacrifice, by Jen Hollstein

In memory of my Grandmother Val, who loved to write poetry.

15,780 kilometres,
Plus or minus a few.
That’s how far away I am
From the place where as a child I grew.
Far from the heather on the moss,
The gowans and the gorse.
Far from our beloved hill Bennachie,
Our dialect Doric, similar to Norse.
Far from butteries, cullen skink, and salmon,
Cups of tea and a blether with mum.
Far from the mighty Scots pine and Douglas fir,
Transformed here to palm and gum.
Far from Nessie, and the bonnie stag,
The red squirrel, and the heelan’ coo.
My current neighbours on this Byellee land
Are the goanna, the snake, and the roo.
Some things here aren’t too culturally distant,
For example, stoicism, barbecues, and the scrum.
But when my eyes go wide hearing ocker,
It seems that I’m an alien to some.
So what does it mean to me? Sacrifice;
To give something up in return for another...
Well, losing the dreich weather, the ice and bagpipes,
For me, that’s really not a bother. 
But what I would give to be able to teleport,
And laugh with my father, my mother and brother.
Who knows how long I’ll have to wait?
Hopefully, I’ll see them next summer...  
And in the meantime, I give my thanks
For the lessons that I’ve been taught,
Because now I know that paradise
Is only inside, not bought.

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