My colour was autumn in a fading colour kind of way as I scrambled for more time as time slipped away then my colour was winter cold bleak and grey the shortening of daylight gave more night than day when my colour was spring and more light filled the air I felt for a green time my happiness was there but my colour became summer coming in bright yellow hues til the landscapes went dry sun extracted summer dues now my colour is a rainbow arching over seasons casting no shadow coloured joy without reason
Spicing it up
Basil had finally arrived in Arizona dreaming of repeating Krakow nights with his saffron love, Garam Masala. After leaving sunny Paris they had spent thyme watching Tuscan sunsets before mulling spices into a mural of flavour for adding some Aleppo pepper to their long awaited reunion. Laced with dill, pickled appetisers set a savouring mood for their evening Cumin, coriander paprika zatar and mustard seeds ensured the main meal was saucy, spicy and hot. Sea salt, lemon grass fennel and sesame seeds added potentcy to the salad Nutmeg, cinnamon and vanilla heightened their senses throughout dessert. By the end of the meal they were ravenous for the after dinner mints.
Merril set this week’s dVerse prompt for we poets to spice things up using at least three of twenty-five listed herbs, spices, flavors, and spice combinations. For a bit of fun, I chose to cook up something that used them all.
blue you blue hue
blue poetry as blue as you change the shade from deep dark blue to blue sky blue change the hue write your due write true (fridge poetry)
Mokoan Ponds Walk, Winton Wetlands
A new walk I have published on Victoria Walks walkingmaps. You can see the full version here: Mokoan Ponds Walk
Any door every door
Today’s dVerse prompt was to undertake a very interesting ekphrastic challenge from Sarah. Sarah asked we dVerse poets to choose one of five fascinating images created by UK artiist Lee Madgwick . I chose the image displayed above.
How many times do you step through a door and that decision changes the course of your life? How many times? You step through a door and whether you know which way you are going or not that decision changes the course of your life. Many times. You look through open doors and glass doors and the view beyond each threshold can look better much better with broad vistas of more promise than the narrow one in which you are standing. You are a stand in many, some days, every time. How many times do you go through these doors to where the grass is greener? Many times. You look through closed doors, opaque, the cracks and keyholes of doors to wild skies of threatening, black clouds, heavy and threatening cloud banks of stormy weather oppressive and threatening with worse to come you know it will be worse for at least a time many, some days, every time. But still, consider. How many times do you go through these doors? Many times. How do you choose which door opens to the best passage for the rest of your life? The green of desire or of envy, the passing black of fear or courage? There are no obvious silver linings. The lines are not clear. Can you say your lines? Your lines are not clear. There are no obvious wishes to guide you. Your wishes are not clear. Can you articulate your wishes? When will you wish honesty for yourself? When honesty is a necessity? Don’t close that door. When is the right time? Or the right place? Or do you bother to choose at all? When the right door opens for you? Even when no choice is always a choice and change will come regardless. Change will come. You know this. Do you know this well enough by understanding there is only luck at play? Only luck is at play. Do you know this? You might not know this. How often do those doors that are closed to you and blank with no offerings get ignored because there is no obvious gain for you? You walk past new worlds of wonder and peril everyday. All the time. Any door every door any time every time. Every step is a decision. Every decision is one to please, regret, grieve or rejoice. At the time or in time. But, you never know and that is the reason for looking at doors any door and every door and always wondering about going through into some place else. It should never be otherwise because time is linear and time is limited. All doors are only one door any door every door in front of you when and where ever you are. And each door has its own nature protecting you from the elements or exposing you locking you in locking you out shutting quietly behind you slamming in your face creaking with foreboding or letting in the fresh air. You my be attracted by doors to the light. It seeps in around the edges and under the woodwork and you think to be in the light must be a good place to be, you cross that threshold. That threshold will be crossed. to find a good place to be, And sometimes it is a desert, a blazing sun, a hot, dry furnace and you retreat desperate with thirst, burned and changed. Other times it is a moonlit field and you run through the soft green grass before realising you have strayed enough to never return to be the same person. Does either door scare you? Are you scared? Hope is the latch, fear is the key. Finding a way to use them is finding a way to be. You never have to stray far from yourself to change. Crossing that threshold is no distance at all. One that can take you al long way. Crossing that threshold. You are changed forever every time. Many times. Any door every door any time every time go through. You change so the world changes You change me and everyone else irrevocably. You change us all. All of us change. Neither you nor I, neither will we and us ever be the same we, you and I. For passing through any door every time will change us here and now in time. The person you thought I was is no longer mine. The person I thought was you is no longer in time. The world changes instantly every time without design. We pass through many doors many times. How many times do you step through a door and that decision changes the course of your life? How many times? You step through a door and whether you know which way you are going or not that decision changes the course of your life. Many times.
Yorta Yorta Yarning and Gathering Pathway (Sculpture Walk), Winton Wetlands
A special walk that adds to the wonderful outdoor public art collection at Winton Wetlands. You can view the full version and artist details here: Lotjpatj Natjan Danak
worry, but after perhaps find the right music do a dance (fridge poetry)
Pioneer Mine Walk, Mitta Mitta
I loved this walk through an ancient revegetating open cut gold mine near Mitta Mitta. The atmosphere was one of enchantment.
You can find the map and descriptions here: Pioneer Mine Walk
Lake Benalla walk
Another recent publication on walkingmaps is Lake Benalla walk. I have walked this 5k circuit several times and always find it pleasing and interesting. The diversity of experiences and observations is very impressive. You will find the link to the map of the walk and descriptions after the gallery.
Click the link to visit the walk: Lake Benalla walk
Benalla Botanical Gardens walk
My new walkingmaps project is Benalla Rural City and surrounds. Benalla Botanical Gardens walk has something for everyone. I often stop by the Art Gallery to enjoy some of the wonderful exhibitions. The playground is great fun for kids. The gardens are a pleasure to stroll. I took the photographs in autumn and winter.
From now, I will start by including a gallery of my favourite images taken on each walk, followed by a link to the published map and details.
You can find the walking map here: Benalla Botanical Gardens walk
this is a prosaic story about choice, choice is thirteen. choice is growing up in a fairly well to do neighbourhod. she has all the things the other options in the street enjoy, a neat house built by free willy (her dad), an allocated amount of pocket money in return for contributing to keeping the house ship shape (as her dad always says), three meals a day chosen by responsibility (her mum), a bike for moving around her immediate environs (which she has never extended) and an obligation called obligation (her pet black cat with a collar and tinkling bell to warn away the birds). choice likes her life. it is predictable and secure and fun and she never has to worry about what to do next because there is always free willy, responsibility or obligation to let her know. the other options in the street are pretty much the same. they go to school to learn how to behave away from home, they join clubs and play sport to understand how to be organised and they sleep comfortably tucked into warm beds with soft toys and billowing duvets and down filled pillows and electric blankets for the colder nights. they all think waffles for breakfast are a delightful Sunday treat and one hour of tv each night is enough to keep them talking all the morning after. it never occurs to any of them life could be any different. then one night something different happens anyway. choice feels it in a change of the wind, a new taste in the air, she feels it when she wakes at 2.36am to cramps and a bitter chill that makes her turn up her electric blanket. something is not right and she squirms and twists fitfully in bed for the rest of the night such that she wakes to a crisp bright sunny morning exhausted and grumpy for the first time - only to look out her window and see old mr routine next door being wheeled out to an ambulance never to be seen again. the new neighbours come from some other place. they play a lot of music and always seem to be fixing and constructing in their backyard, their front yard and their house. choice can see an easel in the bay window opposite her room and a mess of paints and palettes scattered around. choice feels very uncomfortable about this. she knows proper people are always neat and tidy, careful and predictable. she and her family avoid these disruptive new people. free willy and responsibility say they don’t want choice introduced to anything or anyone who might be a bad influence. at school choice sees the new boy from next door. he is in the next year and he also looks untidy, but whenever he is around choice can’t take her eyes off him. he moves differently, acts differently, speaks differently and when he turns her way it feels like he looks into her instead of at her. choice experiences uncertainty for the first time in her life. this boy unsettles her in ways she hasn’t felt before. days go by, choice making no choices, just being choice, except she finds herself looking for the boy at every opportunity. find him she does like a a bee finds a flower. she finds those deep grey eyes swinging toward her as if he knows she is looking, as if he wants her to be looking. without knowing it choice begins to find reasons to be outside in the street more often, obligation gets a leash, the bike gets ridden more than ever, a daily constitutional becomes a health necessity, chores start to be delayed or missed altogether, other options are no longer considered of worth. then it happens and nothing is ever the same. he is waiting for her at the gate after school. would she mind if they walk home together? they are holding hands in minutes without knowing how or when, they are talking without pause, laughing and listening in wonder. at his house to say good bye he brushes her cheek with his lips. his hand lingers. she never wants him to let go and choice finalises the choice she doesn’t even know she is making. every future choice flows from there and then.
This week the dVerse prompt comes from Christopher Reilly. It is about choice. I chose to write a poem, but I couldn’t make it stick. It turned into prose, a short story and that happened, so here it is.
Dartmouth Dam Wall walk
A new walk I have published on VictoriaWalks walkingmaps. Here is the link Dartmouth Dam Wall walk
Pioneer Mine walk, Mitta Mitta
One of my favourite recent walks published on VictoriaWalks walkingmaps. Here is the link: Pioneer Mine, Mitta Mitta
Tableland Talk, September 2022
For those interested, here is the link to the small local newsletter I edit each month: https://strathbogie.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/202209_nws_TT-1.pdf
Good Things Only #16
OK, so it’s a beautiful morning. Cold, about 1 degree when I got up. Just a touch of frost. The grass is very green and I can’t see a cloud in a very blue and crisp winter sky. The air is sharp, crystal and the light breeze has a bite that penetrates. Nonetheless (I love that word), it is a beautiful morning with the stripped bare deciduous trees revealed in their all their steak naked glory and the evergreen indigenous trees contrastingly clad in their full, puffed up grey green winter coats. It is a beautiful morning. It is silent except for the gentle rustle of that surprisingly penetrating soft wind. Oh, and the always there hushed background tumbling sounds of water spilling and falling, running and spinning, turbulent and dashing over flat granite shelves into rocky hollows and against small stray boulders pushed along by the intermittent pressure waves of variable winter flows as they surge with irregularity down the creek. It is a beautiful morning.
Against the cold I am wearing my favourite jumper. There is no heater on, just the layers of clothes capped by this marvellously insulating and cosy thickness of wool are keeping me warm. Lovingly knitted by my loving wife, it only really gets a look at the world in winter. It is too warm most of the time for wear in other seasons. I think that is what makes it all the more special. The built in love and warmth reflect its specialised purpose.
It is big and old, enveloping, creamy and embossed. These days it is a little on the stretched, sagging and droopy side (giving it a 10 on the affection scale – which as everyone knows is the top score for a jumper). It sort of hangs around me rather than is worn by me. In fact it could be called an affectionate jumper. The first of its kind and a quality to be aspired to and emulated by all knitters who learn of it.
The crew neck now has a cute little “V” shape from under which diverse collars can peek. Otherwise the knitting has held its pattern for years, making it sort of tight and loose at the same time. I love the detail of its repetition. This jumper has character. Maybe it even is a character in its own right. Yes, i think that is right, it has become a character in the story of my life because I have an emotional attachment to this jumper. We belong together. And that’s the way I like it.
Mitta Mitta River walk
A new walk I have published on VictoriaWalks walkingmaps. Here is the link Mitta Mitta River walk
Mitta River to Old Tallangatta walk
I have published this walk on VictoriaWalks walkingmaps. It adopts a section of the High Country Rail Trail in Towong Shire. Here is the link: Mitta River to Old Tallangatta walk
Curdies River and Foreshore walk, Peterborough
A new walk from the south west coast Curdies River and Foreshore walk
Gibson Steps Beach walk, Port Campbell National Park
Another beautiful walk I have published on VictoriaWalks walkingmaps: Gibson Steps and Beach walk
Such a turbulent, pitiless, brutal battering. This powerful storm wind pushes relentlessly through the defenceless trees of the creek. It lashes most at the isolated and vulnerable, stripping them bare of grey green winter cloaks, whipping the fabric of canopies to ragged threads, blasting layers of protective cladding away into a roaring tempest. This scouring wind probes incessantly for weakness, fissures in the gnarly bark skins, cracks in the very bones of each noble specimen mercilessly exposing deficiencies as it flails and lays bare its victims with neither remorse nor respite. Over extended over and over, flawed limbs fail first fracture, snap and drop. Crowns too heavy with water shake and quiver. Sodden feet lose their grip on the world. Once stately trunks twist, rock, waver, shudder and fall. And the sound of the final defeat is an explosive crack, the collapse a mighty crash, and the thud at the end is dead.
For today’s dVerse poetics Sarah prompted us to think and write about the elements. I chose air/wind because I often find myself contemplating the fierceness of a storm’s breath as it can turn the tranquility of our peaceful riparian zone into a deadly maelstrom.
The Twelve Apostles walk, Port Campbell National Park
A new walk I have published on VictoriaWalks walkingmaps: Twelve Apostles walk
vicissitudes of life
From birth through growth to the time of decline From decline to decay such a time is mine For all that went before for all that went astray For all that has been given and will be taken away I see many patterns unfold around my life with the wisdom of hindsight I see the brightness of knowing through latter years insight As the past stretches out behind me the future road becomes short The decisions I have made will shortly come to nought I take one last chance to pass on the learning of my years One last chance to give advice to those to come if those to come have ears For history is our greatest teacher in handling the vicissitudes of life For human nature is our undoing when handling the inconvenient truths of advice Secure your future with love and enough wealth is the best advice I can give Working to this end gives hope which gives purpose to how you live Start early and start young to earn a path to joy and be your very best Don’t deviate from this path but keep it flexible and ensure rest Loss may strike you without notice grief may rock your solid floor Grow from your loss for better to turn haunting to past lore Change will come unanticipated and shake you to your core See change as opportunity to put a foot firmly in each door When love comes your way hold it closely to your heart If love lost should leave you reeling be proud that you took part Know you have been loved and can love again because love is all around If one thing is known it is we all want love with time it may be found
Bridges and Cuttings walk, Tallangatta
A new Towong region walk I have published on VictoriaWalks walkingmaps: https://walkingmaps.com.au/walk/5472
Anytime a poem is needed
A poem can be found
Just look into your heart
Just look all around
It all started at the restaurant
I sat Table set Her late for date She came Soup came Talk flamed Soup good Entree She said Problem lies in bed Main meal She reveals I’m heel Big deal Drinks round Table pound Curse slur From her For desert Her hurt Expressed curt Wants shirt Stands up Stamps out What’s all this about? I know I’m great Super man Super mate Get home Her stuff All gone Enough’s enough I call Mobile phone No answer She’s done Oh oh Really gone? This time I’m alone Misery me Don’t deserve This treatment What nerve!