I ... entered the poem of life, whose purpose is ... simply to witness the beauties of the world, to discover the many forms that love can take. (Barabara Blackman in 'Glass After Glass')

These poems are works in progress and may be updated without notice. Nevertheless copyright applies to all writings here and all photos (which are either my own or used with permission). Thank you for your comments. I read and appreciate them all, and reply here to specific points that seem to need it — or as I have the leisure. Otherwise I reciprocate by reading and commenting on your blog posts as much as possible.

15 October 2009

Climate Change Haiku

(In conjunction with Blog Action Day, October 15) 

keep burning forests
spilling chemicals in sea:
abandon the earth


windy day again
and the dust filling the sky
stings inside my throat


washed the car windows
two days later scrawls of red dust
fall out of the air

Climate Change Tanka

(Reposted from Tanka on Tuesday, for Blog Action Day)

From the low vantage
above the storm-damaged beach
the sea, my old love,
lately appears unfriendly
surging in rougher, closer.


And two from my side of a debate in verse with a friend who says global warming is false, the earth's been cooling since 1998, and it's a ploy to raise global taxes for the New World Order:

Here in my country
recent years have exceeded
with greater extremes of heat –
but I don't know what this proves.

Warming or cooling,
new world order or new tax,
on this we agree:
our politicians' motives
are seldom to be trusted.

6 October 2009

Verse Portrait 82: The Girl from Brazil (Market Client)

Soft, young,
excited by life.
I feel, empathic,
the suppressed fluttering
of breath wanting to surge.

A dentist in Brazil,
here she must study
again another year;
doesn’t complain, enjoys.

She longs for love.
I’m glad to see it coming
though not just yet.
First she will visit home.
In March, she agrees.

I see the large, warm family,
her brother’s new baby.
Smiling, she’s love
waiting to happen.

Verse Portrait 81: Old Colleague

“I need a new photo,” she says,
“To replace that one you took
nearly twenty years ago.”

On her website the new one
shows her whiter-haired,
still smooth-faced and lovely.

Upper Yarra Valley
Neighbourhood Centre.
Educators, enablers.

Our shared philosophies
expanded each other’s
gifts: teaching, writing.

Life moved us; 
we never forgot. Now
her best friend turns up here.

Rapturous reunion
via email. We swap
news, our latest books.

I can go public with this one

1 October 2009

Verse Portrait 80: Spirit Sister

“Younger than you,” the seer said.
 “Dark-haired. A Celtic cross
around her neck. She will be
important.” Years later, visiting
the Caldera, strangers
we embraced at her door.
I read her cards. “You must
return here.” 

Life paths almost identical, even
same-named healing centres
in different cities. 12 weeks
we rented her property. She returned,
we stayed close, worked magic,
wrote. Never needed any
explanations. She is

Dark sky: haiku for September 2009


A dark sky;
here and there
clouds thicken


Listen – next door’s violent music.
Earlier a walk by the peaceful creek.
Now the day turns dark.

(word count haiku)


Repco Rally Australia

Police and firemen
all over town: car rally
supposed to be fun.

The birds are restless.
Both coucal and brush turkey
rush about madly.

Painted, numbered cars
arrive for days of roaring
through fragile wetlands.


September sunshine.
From the dull bromeliads
red leaves, purple blooms.


No-one can forget
that horror already old
and forever new

so I turn my head
focus in on my garden
small fragment of peace


a bright fresh morning
the creeper climbing the palm
has shiny new leaves


golden girl Mary
leaves Peter Paul and us all
departing solo


a sky full of dust
thickening in the nostrils
and nowhere to run


dust returned today
less red, less thick, less fearful
we grow accustomed

Tanka on Tuesday: September 2009

Reposted from MySpace


First of September.
A voice in my dream cries “Wake!”
A dead branch hits the garden
fallen from the palm,
flagging another summer
littered with falling branches.


sleeping underground
is the safest for wombats
we pray they don’t try
a path across the highway
and turn up their toes, skittled


Close, he looks nervous;
closer, secretly amused.
My smile looks happy,
reflections obscure my eyes.
Body language? We look close!

(See here.)


in September sun
as new leaves and buds glisten
my friend telephones
her dying father’s lucid
they have had a lovely day


it’s Spring Equinox
here in the South of the world
a time of balance
between the light and the dark
then new life starts as light grows


sunshine and thunder
wind and the smell of new rain
from a warm blue sky
and the blind vine thrusting up
seeking light and sustenance


only three this year
gathering for Eostre
from the old coven
lighting the wishing candle
surrounded by Archangels

Stormbringer, LightStar
and DragonStar (Queen of Wands)
joined hands round the light
and remembered the others
feeling their spirits present

a sky high and blue
a spreading mulberry tree
dripping with ripe fruit
our hands stained with juice like blood
symbol of death and bright life


A response to a friend who claimed climate change is a lie,
as rivers pouring into the sea don’t cause its level to rise.

There is a balance.
Rivers and rain enter, then
But when icebergs keep melting
small Pacific islands drown.


A fresh Spring morning
yesterday’s choking dust cloud
vanished from this coast –
to infiltrate the ocean
or arrive in New Zealand?


with sunshine outside
long hours at my computer
it’s my life story
before computers long hours
thumping my old typewriter

Sevenling (Orchids and clover)

30 Poems in 30 Days: Day 30
Write a poem about the end of something.

You can find out about sevenlings here.

Orchids and clover hung from pots
on the outside wall of his house,
and that strange white night-blooming flower.

The stars were out, shining clearly,
and moonlight vied with lamplight,
illuminating his hanging garden faintly.…

When he moved away, he took not one plant.