Our latest Centre Stage column shines the light on New Zealand writer Maria Majsa.
I confess it was more than just clothes that drew me back to Hyper Hyper on those rainy afternoons. There was music. And The Boy. Perched behind the counter, nose in a book, he seemed to exist in some other world, one with particularly rarified air - it was all over him like a scent.
The house lights dimmed, the curtain rose, a hush fell and the assault began. Proximity of screen plus technicolour panavision multiplied by gigantic singing heads equals nausea.
The Scottish lads had all lost their front teeth [fighting, falling over drunk] and at some point they loved to flip out their plates so we could appreciate what proper hard men they were. This may or may not have been some form of Celtic foreplay.
Maria Majsa 93 Edgewater Drive, Pakuranga, February 1982 It was right after the funeral that things began to happen… the lights cut out and the music drained away like water leaving a sink.
Maria Majsa 21 Swan Crescent, Pakuranga 1974 Under all the fairy floss, trouble is lurking. There are wrong turns, regrets, situations that are easier to run from than face. Goodbye Yellow Brick Road is about escape and it wasn’t lost on me that the first place I heard it was my favourite place to escape to
Maria Majsa Back bedroom, Pakuranga, Auckland 1978 I held the popsicle to my left ear while my brother stabbed away at my right. It was a warm day and I could feel the popsicle oozing down my neck. Blood and raspberry, an indistinguishable mess.
Maria Majsa One bedroom apartment, Herne Bay, Auckland 2007 You can fall in love with songs just like you can fall in love with people and because I discovered Elliott Smith after he’d died, it was like falling in love and breaking up at the same time.
Maria Majsa Hammersmith Palais, London 1980 After all the attitude and swagger of punk, here was a band with the courage to be vulnerable. And while admitting to vulnerability is never comfortable or easy, it is necessary for real human connection.
Maria Majsa Pakuranga, Auckland 1967 There is a radio in a brown leather case on the bench. My mother turns it on during the day when my father has left for work and the house feels different.