Library Mondays- Home in the rain by Bob Graham
During my last few months of work at my children’s school library I had the chance to come across the wonderful books of Bob Graham. The author was unknown to me before the lovely Ms Tanja introduced me to his delightfully ordinary world made of real families, real mums, piercings, tattoos and all. What impressed me the most in Graham’s stories is that his characters don’t come from “fairy tales land” and are not limited to families with a perfect white house on the hill, but they talk of ordinary people and everyday stories in a way that is both poetic and unassuming. They are families confronted with everyday life and its challenges, yet in these stories there is always a little hint of poetry that is usually what makes the ordinary extraordinary in some ways.
“Home in the rain” was no exception. A rainy afternoon, a little girl and her mum driving on an Australian highway from grandma house to reach home. The traffic is roaring on the big wide road and it’s pouring rain. “ It’s raining on a baby rabbit looking for shelter, on a field mouse “wet and confused”, on young Marcus “water down his neck, his fingers smelling of bait, wished he were somewhere else…” Francie is safely tucked into the car with her mum in charge of the drive. She sees the world passing by , she writes her name on the foggy car windows. Francie, mum, dad…But there is one name missing . It’s her baby sisters’ who’s hiding in mama’s belly.
In a wonderfully tender moment of connection Francie and mum, shared a picnic dinner that Grandma has packed. Then is time to pull back into the traffic and find a service station and here comes my favorite moment in the book “what was about to happen would not be noticed by anyone…not by Sam Miller feeding his dog fried chicken legs. Nor by Kate Calder losing her Sour Fruity Fizzzes from a hole in her picket, not even by a seagull who was eating them”.
“Perhaps it was something unremarkable,
Not to be seen by strangers passing in the rain
For it was just a mum lost in her thoughts and a little girl dancing”
I swear if I could make a photo of this moment it would be my most favorite one.
How unassuming yet wonderful is an ordinary moment? How delicate unpredictable and fleeting.
And how masterfully can a writer describe it? A photographer capture it?