New verse by Wellington writer Louise Wallace.
Meryl Streep went nuts at me in the breakfast room, because
I’d taken her table by mistake. Have a lovely day! I wanted
to say as we left, but my husband, a calm and sensible man,
convinced me to take the moral high ground instead. It was
very difficult for me.
The next morning, as we were about to drive off, I saw Meryl
Streep walking towards our car. I groaned without altering
my face. I pretended there was something I desperately needed
in the glove box, but I put down my window when she
tapped. Her eyes were shimmering, seconds away from tears.
I’m so glad I saw you. I wanted to apologise for yesterday. Would
it be all right if I gave you a hug? I looked back at my husband
in the driver’s seat. He gave me a forceful look: Take the high
ground, Louise. So I took the easy option, opened the car door
and got out. Meryl Streep embraced me in the Holiday Inn
car park, my body unyielding like a pool noodle. Her tears
ran down my neck, and I shivered. I raised my arms from
the elbow, my biceps still pinned by her remorse. I could see
far and wide from the high ground. I patted Meryl Streep’s
From the new collection Bad Things by Louise Wallace (Victoria University Press, $25), which was launched with deserved fanfare this week.
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