Over another Hump

Thursday, August 25, 2005

A Family Moment.

The painting, 'A Day on the Bay' by Sandra D. Wilson, sparked my memory and prompted me to write this poem. We were not often all together as a family in a moment of relaxation. This was a special day for me, I hope Craig and Sandra remember it. The perfection of the day, its colours, sounds and smells stayed with me as I drifted off to sleep that night.

Remember Peterborough,

that rare relaxation with our parents -
our picnic in that sunny cove?

Too cool to swim
we lazed on the white sand,
buried our feet in its warmth,
built sandcastles.
Smells of salt and seaweed
seasoned our sandwiches -
how ravenous we were.

Moving jewel blue colours of the sea,
capped by foam breakers
that crashed at our feet,
sucked away support.

Cotton clouds chased each other
accross spring sky.
Behind my closed lids
those scenes replay in Technicolour
and seagulls shriek in Hi Fidelity.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

A Dragon's Visit -2003

When we were children we lived in a remote farm in the Strathbogie Ranges of Victoria. Fire was always a hazard during the hot summer months. One year my father and uncle were called to fight a fire burning along the ridges near our property. At home we children waited with our mother, fearful and watching as the fire seemed to be gaining ground. This poem is a memory of that day. The painting, by my sister Sandra D. Wilson, arrived last night. I am proud of her talent and love the opportunity to display it. I intend to feature more as I progress with the intricacies of blogging.

A dragon came up to my door
his fiery breath was rank;
I trembled, awed by what I saw,
as on my knees I sank.

I saw his army claim the ridge,
devour the grassy land,
saw the wanton carnage
caused by that savage band.

A sullen sky gave no respite
to the wildlife fleeing past,
defeated by the monster's might
then killed with furnace blast.

The parched land had no chance
against this fearsome foe;
the dragon did a macabre dance -
manic darting to and fro.

When all hope had faded
Nature took a healing hand;
the hot north wind abated,
turned south and saved our land.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Now I have that off my chestless -

A perspective from down under. We're all bats you know.
What can you expect from a country that began as a convict colony?

Everything Happens at Once in My Family.

It is our 44th wedding anniversary. Yep, right after my birthday - which HE also forgot until it was flashed in his face on our emails. No emails this time but I have written a story for him. As a point of reference - we travelled to New Zealand for our honeymoon, and to start a new life. This isn't true, obviously - the story I mean. But second time around???

Smell the Roses?
Ann sat beside her mother and waited for her to wake from her nap. She noticed how thin her skin had become over these last months. Her hands, speckled with liver spots, looked transparent in the late afternoon sun.
Her mother turned her head and smiled at her, eyes still bleared from her sleep. "Hello dear, I've had such a nice dream. I was back in Rotorua with your father.
"It was a lovely morning, when we set out. The beginning of spring, but still very fresh, as it can be in New Zealand. Oh, it was so peaceful. And green! You haven't seen green grass until you visit the North Island. Australia has nothing to compare with it. We drove up from Auckland in our rented Mini Minor. Sheep were everywhere, and so white. No dust you see, to make them dirty like ours."
There was silence as her mother drew back into her memories, then she spoke again. "There wasn't much traffic, being a week day. Just a few farmers taking stock to market and a beer tanker. I remember the beer tankers because your father told me about the parties they had when one turned over." She smiled, mischievous as a girl.
"We had our windows down and were singing to the radio. Fifties stuff - sweet, silly and sentimental. Not like the stuff you listen to today." She sniffed and Ann smiled, she'd heard that before. "We could smell the town before we saw it. Rotten eggs, I thought. You know the smell naughty boys mix in chemistry class to disrupt a lesson. It was overpowering, like Dante's world, and became more so as we drove closer. Steam hung over the whole area, keeping the smell close to the ground. No tourists were there at such an early hour.
"Your father parked close to the walks and made me get out. He was angry that I was pregnant. Just when we were beginning to get ahead. It was hard to make ends meet in those days."Ann's mother sighed and moved to ease her bones.
"That's where I lost him. One minute he was on the wooden walkway with me, the next - only the bubbling hot mud. He'd wanted me to have a mud bath… Sulphur reminds me of him." She sighed and held Ann's hand as she drifted back into her dream world.
Ann sat and wondered.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Yesterday was my Birthday

And what a present I got! Rain halted cricket for over five hours. It saved our bacon and we didn't have to play on. We aren't doing so well in this series, I'm afraid. Guess it is because I don't sit up and watch? I will watch tonight, though.
On another front, I went to a first birthday party for our youngest town member. There are only two children in this village - we call it the retirement village - both are under school age, which is just as well as the government closed the school a couple of years before we arrived. That was the death knell for the town.
Despite the normal scarcity of kids here, there was an amazing number at the party. Would you believe only one mishap the whole time we were there, and that was just a little cry because he got a wack on the head. Amazing! The guest of honour wasn't interested in the toys she was given. Just kept running to her favourite spot in the yard to play with her stones when she thought she wasn't being watched.
Most of the presents were bright plastic activity toys. It seems to me that the children get an overload of these and turn off because of the sameness. One can only do so much with primary colours and shapes. The rag bunny I made was a hit with the older ones so I guess I will make Renae one after all. I thought it might be a bit babyish for a three year old but it got dragged around all afternoon. I felt quite smug about that.
Today, for the first time in ages, I decided I was going to relax and read and do a bit of scribbling. I have a poem buzzing around my head so I want to work at it. Wouldn't you know - Frank has become motivated and is working on installing the exposed beams in the lounge room where I intended to relax. Now I am in here writing drivel as the house begins to dissolve around me.
When he goes to have his snooze I will creep back and watch John Wayne in "The Undefeated". It somehow eluded me when I was younger. Interesting how my opinion of Wayne has changed over the years. Sadly, he is no longer my hero.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

I'm Out of it!

Forget me - I'm watching the Ashes.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Chap Book.

My chap book, The Country Gate, has now been released to selected shops. This anthology has stories and poems inspired by Torrens Creek, Queensland, its wildlife and some social 'happenings' around the area. I compiled it to give our many tourists some idea of what makes people love living in the outback, despite the lack of town comforts and entertainments. Here we make our own entertainment.
The gate on the cover was entry into one of the remote properties here, it has since been changed to another farmers' enigma - the gap - and is even more difficult to open.
The poem, The Country Gate, is one of a series I have written about Australian icons. I chose to use it on as the cover piece because it seems to typify the contrary ruggedness of bush characters.
The book sells for A$10.00, plus postage and handling, and may be ordered directly from this site.