What would you do if tonight was the last day of your life?
Nā KERI HULME
There will be no tomorrow. The sun will not rise for you.
I refuse to speculate about your future…
I do know what my Unca Bill (who had shot many hundreds of animals) said:
“Dead is dead. Otherwise we couldn’t eat ‘em.”
I won’t diverge into live eating: it did happen – and of humans – here.
But – you have 12 healthy hours: current circumstances prevailing,
and no especial difference
between when you took your morning shit and – now!
Would you hunt down hated enemies?
Seek a joining with former lovers?
Desperately try to correct wrongs you’d done?
Maybe you are artistic and you will carve/sculpt/paint/illuminate that work you
have always meant to start on?
You are a musician and you realise NOW OR Nothing for the song of your heart –
Auē! The hours are slipping away –
I think every human being is inherently able in the range of arts humans of
all times & races have practised
& I know that these accomplishments outlast us – there is cave art both here in Aotearoa and Australia, Papua Niugini and many many older sites in the world –
We are a species who really wants to be recollected, remembered, recorded –
so we can pass on things we deem important to future generations…
whether those future generations deem what we seek to share worthwhile is –
Writer Keri Hulme is southern Kāi Tahu but lives in “Big O” – Ōkarito. Among her passions are whitebait and family history. In 1985 Keri’s novel The Bone People won the Booker Prize.