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.

22 May 2016

The Writing on the Wall

Look up here, friend!
The man who wrote Eternity
in perfect copperplate
all over the city of Sydney
did it on footpaths mostly,
in chalk. But he meant for you
to raise your eyes to Heaven,
and your thoughts. I, conversely,
with a blast of spray paint
and a stencil, exhort you:
HERE AND NOW! and I urge
that you look from this display
down to the ground you stand on
and all that lies around you.

This jagged, brash, imperfect
piece of graffiti blaring at you
from up here, says: There's a lot
that sucks, go fix it! We've got
an election coming up. Do you
really want the same buggers
coming back? Stop! Look!
Pay attention! Eternity must wait.

NOW the sick are unfunded, 
made ever more helpless, NOW 
the temperature's rising beyond
bearable, HERE we fracture
good farming ground, HERE
we poison our water, HERE AND NOW
we torture our neighbours
(not love them) in island prisons.
And we don't let the word get out.
Don't tell me it isn't us, it's just
the Government. We elected them.
Eternity may be perfect. Meanwhile 
I'll settle for a Here and Now
of ordinary kindness: flawed perhaps, 
but human, beautiful ... and here now.

Written for Play It Again: Taking It To the Streets at 'imaginary garden with real toads' and for Prompt Nights: Imperfection is Beautiful.

You can read about 'the eternity man', Arthur Stace, at Wikipedia.


  1. YES! If we must settle here and now, let's settle for human kindness.

  2. Oh, this is the message to stir the masses, if there ever was one. PERFECT street poetry with an urgent message. I especially love the human kindness in your closing lines.

  3. there is a time to call to heaven and a time to roll up our sleeves and clean up our own shit.
    The time to call on heaven is after we have made the world smell a little better.
    pray from a toilet
    expect to be

  4. My fist in in the air, pumping with fervor and echoing your "Here and Now". You've capture the heart of street art: making a statement that speaks of humanity, of need.

    Love this, Rosemary. The tone is just perfect.

  5. A very timely message powerfully written. This would be an incredible piece of street art. I say get it painted and on busiest corner in the city. :)

    1. I do have a friend who is a very good street artist. :-) But alas, we don't live in a city.

  6. Whistles!! Such a whole lot of power in your lines Rosemary :D love this call to action especially "This jagged, brash, imperfect piece of graffiti blaring at you from up here.." really brings it home and manages to stir up emotion inside the soul. Beautifully executed.

    Thank you so much for participating at Prompt Nights :D and for your constant love and support.

    Lots of love,

  7. Very apropos for today's age...and also for some current events. I love this more than I can say...

  8. Oh yes, I sympathize with this...here and now, and just maybe it makes also eternity a little bit better or even possible.

  9. BRAVO!!!!....by definition, Eternity will always be there so we need to focus on the Present which is ever changing :D XXX

  10. "ordinary kindness" who would have thought that would be so extraordinary? If only...

  11. Wonderfully written statement, Rosemary. You are predicting Hard Times, Doomsday soon.
    (We are in a worse big mess over here. Soon to jump out of the skillet into the frying pan now matter who's elected.)

  12. Here and now 'ordinary' kindness is how we change the world - of that i am certain

  13. I like this call to action!

  14. I would settle for ordinary kindness, not easy to come by anymore. We must do something about all this "Here And Now." But what?

    1. It used to be that one could vote the bad guys out, but nowadays it seems that, in many countries, it's hard to find the good guys to vote for.

  15. Well said, Rosemary! I like your urging that we look on what lies around us here and now, and for ordinary kindness. Your use of street art to convey such a powerful message is praiseworthy.

    1. Well, that scenario is fictional, unlike the story of 'the Eternity man'. But it would be good if we could display poems on public notice-boards! (And if people would read them. Perhaps some graffiti to attract attention!)

  16. Thank you, Rosemary, for your poetic rant. One hopes that it can transferred from the internet, to the ballot box, the next time, Australians votes, in its federal elections. Sadly, it's the poor and the disadvantaged, who suffer, at the hands of the political and ruling elites. Wonder, how they would feel, if their position was reversed, overnight.

  17. "I'll settle for a Here and Now" hope we could find out a way of How...in my State people just voted the same buggers back...sigh...

    1. It seems there is the same malaise all over the world just now. :(

  18. Sadly we are given the message that it good to be greedy and to care for no one else but ourselves because that is precisely the way the politicians feel. Big business on the other hand has no feelings. Lemming like we must follow our leaders over the cliff face.