On Tristan Foster

“Thou foster-child of silence and slow time”

Tristan Foster is not your friend. Tristan Foster is not your friend because Tristan Foster does not exist. Tristan Foster is the pen name of Franklin Tyrrell. Franklin was born in Brisbane’s south. When he was eight, he was sent to live with his grandparents in Sydney’s south. Sydney’s south was no different to Brisbane’s south. Of course, it was different. But things were the same. When he was in the penultimate year of high school, his teacher recited, at the top of the class, with deadly seriousness, Keats’s Ode on a Grecian Urn; Franklin did not know you could do with literature what Keats did with his poem (though it was maybe the gravity with which the teacher recited the poem that impressed him most) – Franklin decided he wanted to do that too. Hence Tristan Foster. As noted elsewhere, Tristan Foster was a poor choice of pseudonym as a real Tristan Foster was, several years ago, convicted of murder – the article about the murder is returned in Google searches of Tristan Foster. When he was 11 or 12, Franklin, at the behest of some older boys, threw a stone through the windshield of a passing car. It was night. The windshield shattered and the driver turned and hit a parked Volkswagen. Franklin was caught and subsequently punished. Threats to return him to Brisbane’s south were made. He became something of a neighbourhood hero for not giving up the older boys. However, he didn’t snitch on the older boys out of some sort of immature loyalty to them but rather because he feared them more than the punishment he was to receive. He avoided them as much as possible after this episode and maybe appeared to be reformed. Now, in his mind, the size of the stone he threw and the way it felt in his hand changes. Today Franklin lives in Sydney’s Hills District with a brother and three grey-coloured greyhounds named after former boxing champions. This will be my/his last dispatch. Goodbye friends.

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5 thoughts on “On Tristan Foster

  1. Pleased to meet you, Franklin. You do mean that this was Franklin’s last post, didn’t you? Because, you know, we grew quite fond of Tristan. But if it’s the other way round, we’ll try to get to know Franklin, too.

    1. Thank you, Magda. Since inventing Franklin (or did Franklin invent me?), I’ve thought that it could be nice to be Franklin. For instance, I’d love a set of greyhounds who slink through the house in a pack and are named after boxing champions…

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