Poetry for Star Cinema

Victoria resident inspired to write after a great experience at Sidney's Star Cinema

I search the newspaper for something good.

Four lines in the vast page of theatres

catch my eye. The only cinema in town.

Easy to find – down Beacon, left on Third.

A half hour drive from the city, lovely

along the sea, in this June evening chill.


There is no marque or sign, only the door

flung open – people streaming in. I call out

to a woman on the street. Ask for the theatre.

She laughs. Says that’s the easiest question

I’ve been asked all day as she points to the door.

I park up the street, join the townsfolk inside.


Two movies showing: Madagascar and

the Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. The lobby

thronged with kids, parents and of course,

the seniors, alone and in pairs, who

have heard that this movie for the beautiful

and the elderly will make us laugh and weep.



There are no lineups I can discern.

Everybody wants everything all in a lump.

Young girls turn over popcorn and sodas

to eager palms. A small hand-lettered sign

says Tickets with a tiny arrow but no one

is standing there. Such a flurry.


We, the older ones, look at one another.

No one impatient, though it is nearly time

for our movie to start. A mother turns to us,

says if you want marigolds you should step up.

And so a few edge forward, relieved.

Such a kind form of chaos.


The children all land wildly in Madagascar.

Our film has started, the sound is not too loud.

I find a seat beside someone who smiles.

It is like that all the way to the end. We laugh,

feel inspired to go on a little further – with the movie,

with our lives – and when I leave it isn’t even dark.

Judith Heron


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