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Edition 57


Those who trespass against us

Growing up in the shadow of obsession

MY CHILDHOOD ENDED when I was ten.

It was the 21 March 2002. The subdued beauty of an autumn afternoon in Toowoomba. Cool enough to be winter. Dying light and green leaves. A yellow dome glowing in the western skies.

Mort Estate remained in the pre-gentrifiation era. We were the richest family on the street, which wasn’t saying much. The block was dominated by boarding houses and council flats. Graffiti covered the brickwork. Junkies deposited syringes in the wheelie bins. There was nothing unusual about sirens and high-pitched disagreements on a school night. Except this time it was my life unravelling.

A woman stood underneath the huge camphor laurel tree that erupted from the dusty lawn outside our house. She was shaking and bathed in shade. Her name was Mary Israel. She was fifty-nine years old and described herself as a ‘nomadic missionary of God’ to children, refugees, prisoners, homeless people and the... Read more

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From Griffith Review Edition 57: Perils of Populism © Copyright Griffith University & the author.

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