He is no longer with us, he has passed beyond our powers
His soft, firm voice will not be heard in places we call ours,
He brooked no fuss when times were tough but with a simple smile
Ignored his pain as beneath disdain joined us for another while.
We shall not seek in the shadows for the friend who’s passed away,
We shall not walk the darkened streets where gloomy thoughts hold sway,
We’ll remember him for his quiet grin and the warmth of his gentle laugh,
As he told his tales of the land of his birth and … Read the rest
He is no longer with us, he has passed beyond our powers
Crisp, harsh, the morning summer sun,
leaves of our tree
making fractals of its light;
heat seeping in to awaken,
to arouse, to release, to cherish.
Wet, a smell of salt,
engaged with sand; a murmuring
as waves wash our feet,
never ceasing, subdued now.
This is where we met, went together
each Saturday at sunset; slept together, the tent buffeted
from without and, I remember,
Passion spent, we watched the sun rise, its light
casting fractals through the leaves.
A place of sanctuary; lost in the arms
of a loved one, to explore
your naked … Read the rest
When the clouds move in and the rain tumbles down,
I think of my mum in her old dressing gown,
Watching the rain forming puddles in the path
and creating strange patterns in the window glass
of the garden shed marking memories of the past.
When Mum sees the shed with a vacant stare,
We know she’s remembering a girl not there,
Tales have been told about our sister and friends
Tales that get twisted, that never seem to end,
A tale I will tell…there the matter will end.
One Spring when the garden was looking its best,
and Mum … Read the rest
Water from last night’s storm chokes the gutters, rushing
like panic-stricken bulls at a Spanish event.
I’m sitting undisturbed, alone,
on my back steps in the dim light of a Brisbane dawn.
I glance around my garden.
My mind slips from one disembodied bush
to the next, like pale ghosts from a Henry Lawson
morning they stand, not registering on my booze-laden synapses.
I should know these fellows. My mind is not up to it.
I’m not good company, stuporous in fact.
My mouth is a gasping fish, and a yawn
recreates my face. A crushing pain behind my eyes … Read the rest
47 runs on the board, drag out all the drums and bells,
Let’s celebrate this mighty feat on hilltops and in dells,
Near thirty years to take the plunge and marry that young man
Another seventeen to wonder how the hell this life began.
Work and play, and kids to raise, her heart is throbbing sweetly
With uniforms and dancing comps and maths tuition weekly,
Her husband’s current’s arcing volts, he shows no sign of shorting
To default on mortgage payments would simply not be sporting.
But 47 years from now with walking stick and brolly,
With eyesight dim and … Read the rest
In winter when bleak nights are cold and frost embalms the place,
When all things brace against the snow and face the winds’ swift pace,
These winter winds are fierce at times and blow ferociously
through mountain passes, hills and flats, until they reach the tree.
The old Blue-gum has stood in place as long as I recall,
Its stolid roots have held the line though trees around it fall.
When gales ramp up their angry blasts with cruel ferocity,
The tree withstands the winds’ fierce bursts with real tenacity.
Midsummer’s unrelenting heat bears down upon the town,
The Blue-gum … Read the rest
I love to watch the shadows fall as cast by the sun,
Their dancing on a sunbeam is sinuously spun,
Silhouette or outline, full details or none,
Captivating moments obeying orders from the sun
I love to watch the shadows cast by the sun.
I love to look for footprints embedded in the sand,
Were they left to titillate with secrets we’d understand?
Or perhaps to tell the nation that nuclear war’s begun;
Or simply fall unnoticed by friends just having fun,
Traces carelessly laid down and captured by the sun.
I love to watch the shadows as I tidy … Read the rest
Dressed to the nines in its foliage of green
Sprightly, straight-stalked, keen to be seen,
Flaunting the glory of its capsicum flower,
Today is its story, its finest hour.
Safe in his nest in a tree nearby,
Relishing the sounds of eager passersby,
A possum rests, feeling safe from his foes,
Waking to shuffle-off his daylight repose.
Tidying the lounge-room preparing for bed,
Thinking of the capsicum down near the shed,
Drinking in the night air, plundering its chest
The garden, its nutrients, are shared with the best.
But a hungry possum is out on the prowl
Ignoring as friendly … Read the rest
Good morning to you, Mr Wagtail,
In your military black and white.
Hello to you, Willie Wagtail,
You’re a very impressive sight.
Why did your Mum call you ‘Willie’?
It’s an excellent name I am sure,
She could have said ‘Roger’ or ‘Billy’,
Both of those names will endure.
Why did she settle on Willie?
Because you’re a manly chap,
Romantic in lace from Chantilly
French pouring out of your trap.
Why did she call you Willie?
It’s puzzling me, you know.
Should you want to dally and dilly
Your dress brings the girls and so,
Why did your Mum … Read the rest
Please come to me in springtime when breezes dance in the sun
When flowers follow their leader in frolicking one by one,
When trees uplift their branches to welcome the sprite of life
and dance in celebration, to receive the warming light.
When humid heat descends on us and drives us to the shade,
When sticky bodies glow with sweat, it’s beer or lemonade,
When sleeping is a challenge, and we throw sheets from the bed,
Recall the days of springtime and in gladness raise our heads.
Goodbye! Goodbye! To dreariness, to cooling autumn rain,
Farewell to misted gullies I … Read the rest
The lioness yawns with gaping jaws, her teeth
blunted and decayed, no longer a tearer of flesh.
Her leg muscles liken to an overgrown kitten that has lost
the urge to play – fatigue lies in the line of her body
in place of stamina.
She descends from the rocks on which she has lain for
more hours than she can measure. Time has no meaning here,
her home a net of confinement, boredom a requirement.
She sniffs her prison and tests her fangs on the wire. She grunts
And slumps. There’s no hope here.
Her gaze at those who … Read the rest
With the grace of a seasoned performer
Who pirouettes on a stage every night,
She responds as the music informs her,
And does so with gifted insight.
Though she is no prima ballerina
With thousands of delirious fans,
She’s a girl who was always a dreamer
Who believes in the pulse of the dance.
Who ignores the sprains and the warnings,
that threaten to defeat her goal,
Her close friends observe the dawning
Of dance as part of her soul.
She doggedly overwhelms the torture,
And laughs off the pain of a blister,
For she has the blessed good fortune… Read the rest
They came together, and now they’ll stay
Linked by a shared ambition,
Each with a burning goal that they
in classrooms would earn admission.
From the back of beyond comes Sarah, a blonde
In a short striped top pulled tightly,
Wears a bold, flared skirt, could easily flirt
and that’s not at all unlikely.
And Millie the one with a smile laid bare,
Unsure but open to incitement,
Her flaxen hair pinned behind her ear,
Eyes aglow with an inner excitement.
There’s Jenny the one with her chin tucked in,
Who peers through her specs as we scan ‘er,
We’d … Read the rest
Let us go there you and I.
Up where the sunset kisses the sky.
In your old wagon on Mt Gravatt hill,
And watch the lights of the city twist and curl
Like a tapestry woven in diamonds and pearl
Following the river, silent water at night.
While we sit alone on top of the world,
Companions together, a boy and a girl.
I pinch myself and wonder if by some devious ill,
Some god is mocking me, here on the hill.
A beautiful woman drinking wine, who seems
Contented, beside me, watching the moon
Tempting thoughts of romance…a man … Read the rest
Dressed to the nines his eyes on a swivel
Sprightly, laid-back, prince of the drivel,
Flaunting the glory of his UK doin’,
Preening his down, Eagle faces Bruin.
Wrenching the bark from a giant ash,
Only his teeth, his hands in his sash,
A Bruin sly, charged ready for disputin’,
Settle for an eagle, will Vladimir Putin.
Blaming Barack for his bad election rap
Eagle has plans for this Russian bear chap,
Slip a Mickey Finn in his vodka slivovitz
He’s a Smoky Bear if his loose lip slips.
The eyes of the world on a Finland splendour,
A talkfest, … Read the rest
No mansions lie within my house,
No matters give concern,
Just windows to assist the light
and doors within the walls.
No sharp thoughts sear the lining
the crust of vacant soul,
a simple thought, a breath, a laugh
a cling-wrap surface whole.
A simple house unchallenged,
with new ideas unknown,
A house where no man thinks afresh
just shares with himself alone.
But oh! how tedious, how empty
a vase with hollow sound,
where whispers exit windows,
and doors let through all found.
Thinking is for the hardy,
who hear the struggle bells,
and pearl-like, push aside the grit… Read the rest
I hear your voice when winds blow hard, and howl around sheds we built in the yard,
I search each time in hope that tonight, I’ll find and know that you’re really alright.
The bitter years have come and gone, and memories remain and linger on
The dog and I know you’re here somewhere, and we search and search, but you’re not there.
We wed in Spring in the pale yellow light of a gibbous moon moving low out of sight,
A lad and lass, a bed and love, and a future to build, not a cloud above.
A life … Read the rest
From my window looking west there’s not a lot to cheer,
For the countryside in deep distress wilts slowly year by year,
Year by year a drought holds fast, the land is all bone-dry,
And graziers bleeding in their souls must watch their cattle die.
Few had raise the issue of the scourge that drought can be,
For many decades end on end they’d cursed the rains they’d see
drawn boldly on the weather maps predicting naught but flood,
but time went by and river pools succumbed to encroaching mud.
The rainfall stopped, the crops grew tall, the … Read the rest
When the fog rolls in covering the trees out the back,
When the murk is so thick he can’t see his old shack
that’s stood for years through the Summer’s harsh stare
creaking in the heat while the temperatures flare.
When his mind sees the world through a blanket of mist,
When visibility falters, he gets his tail in a twist.
Then he wonders if she still leaves home for a jog
down by the school yard in the deepening fog.
He remembers the day they met near his shack
when he gave her some water from the tap out … Read the rest
The grass is green upon the land, my lawn is clothed in blossoms,
The gum trees dotted on hill and flat are home to crafty possums,
It’s Autumn, lawns and trees and shrubs still fresh, invigorated,
For plants like bees and ants and birds pursue romance elated.
A possum sits near my back fence his loins are agitated,
A female lives not far from here she’s willing to be mated,
Alas! for him she’s made a rule he must agree politely,
Requited love now costs the sum of four gum nuts precisely.
The possum knows that’s just not fair, his … Read the rest