Saturday, October 29, 2011

Lolly Pink

The beauty of sunsets
is that they are invariably different

even when viewed 
from the same vantage points

on the same pathway...
they are always able 
to halt you in your tracks

and take your breath away
Tonight's sunset glowed golden red 
through the eucalyptus trees
as it stretched out 
over the ocean towards me

and then at a certain point

on its steady slipping

behind the hills

it turned a bright pink

a lolly pink sunset

wondrous oblivion

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

On the Path

On the path to Hell's Gates today
I saw one large goanna
slithering under the pandanus leaves
one small frill neck lizard 
standing on a rock
looking out to sea

a number of pods of small dolphins
and a family group of black cockatoos 

Dad is holding a banksia nut

the flower seeds of the banksia shrub

and he is using his beak and dexterous tongue
to pick the seeds out
He's the dad because he has a pink eye ring
and a dull yellow cheek patch
and he's BIG

over here in the banksia
is another male 
the males have a darker beak
and lighter yellow patch

look at his
beak and tongue up close

and the way he grasps the nut
in his claws

Alaine my blog friend has told me 
that cockatoos always grasp food 
with their left feet
isn't that fascinating...

and left behind in the tree
and indignant is a juvenile

making quite a noise 
until she too takes flight
to join her family
See her tail
These are yellow tailed Black Cockatoos
the biggest of the cockatoos
and they usually herald the advent of rain
They flap deeply and slowly
in a heavy fluid motion
you can hear them coming
by their wing beats  
and their loud eerie mournful wailing calls
I have seen them 
in this cluster of banksia trees before 
perhaps it's a favourite family haunt...

Monday, October 24, 2011


There is the heaven we enter
through institutional grace
and there are the yellow finches bathing and singing
in the lowly puddle


Mary Oliver wrote the above lines
and inspired me...


There is the blessing we receive
from ordained clerics
and there is the sunlight sifting through the trees
onto the green forest

There are the holy books from which we learn
the theology of man
and there are the Scribbly Gums
and the tracks of seagulls

There is the communion of people
and of sacraments
and there is walking in awe
in the green blue cathedral of Nature

I related to a friend
how I had been inspired
to write these lines
and she told me about
Longfellow's poem:

My Cathedral

Like two cathedral towers these stately pines
uplift their fretted summits tipped with cones
The arch beneath them is not built with stones
Not art but nature traced these lovely lines,
And carved this graceful arabesque of vines:
No organ but the wind here sighs and moans,
No sepulchre conceals a martyr's bones
No marble bishop on his tomb reclines.
Enter! the pavement, carpeted with leaves,
Gives back a softened echo to thy soft tread!
Listen! the choir is singing;all the birds,
In Leafy galleries beneath the eaves,
Are Singing! listen, ere the sound be fled,
And learn there may be worship without words ..

Oh Holy
Happy days...

Friday, October 21, 2011

1969 Time Warp


1969 Making a film for fun...

In 1969, when I was in my last year of high school in Christchurch, New Zealand, a girlfriend and I, along with two film maker friends, made a short three minute movie to the song Society's Child.
The film was released on the sole television channel at the time and aired as an 'interlude' - a filler when the programming, for some reason, didn't run to schedule.

The song Society's Child, was first released in 1965 by Janis Ian, a sixteen year old. She had written the song when only thirteen. The song concerned the taboo subject of inter racial romance and caused quite a stir at the time.

The song tells of a girl's inter racial romance that was forbidden by her mother and frowned upon by her peers and teachers. The girl eventually decides to end the relationship claiming that societal norms and pressure left her with no other choice.

Many radio stations refused to play the song and one in Atlanta that did was burned to the ground.
Ian received hate mail and death threats.
Ian said later that she lived in a near all black community and was one of only five white children in her school so that she saw the issue from both sides. She also regrets the hurt the song caused her family and the fact that her father was branded a racist when this wasn't the case.
She said she wrote the song to reflect the way things were in the community at that time.

The song became a hit after it was featured on Leonard Bernstein's TV special -
Inside Pop: The Rock Revolution.

Our little film looked at the issue of class differences and the difficulty of breaching class barriers and forming cross class friendships.

The tall fellow in the top shot has become a respected New Zealand filmmaker, well known for his Antarctic filming. Working for NHNZ, a film production company, Max Quinn has made over twenty films in the antarctic regions.

To slip back to the late sixties click here:

Pity about the false eyelashes...

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


The wild grasses on the sides 
of the coastal track

are autumn brown although it's spring
I bent down to look closely

at the tawny grass 

and spotted a splash of yellow
down the hillside

a clump of everlasting daisies

and right on the cliff edge

the daisy seeds set to be carried 
by the coastal breeze
to begin a new life



I am part of the sun as my eye is part of me
That I am part of the earth my feet know perfectly
and my blood is part of the sea
There is not any part of me that is alone 
and absolute except my mind
and we shall find that the mind has no existence by itself
it is only the glitter of the sun on the surfaces of the water


Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sunday Walk

Sunday walk
to Sunshine Beach
for lunch

is a ritual 
that has been established 
this year

Up the hill
down the slope

through the eucalypts 
and the banksias
and the wallum

A Small Frill Neck Lizard poses for me

back through the wallum 
to the tanglewood
and the rain-forest

It was hot today
we were all hungry
and on the move

Now back to collect our car
at the edge of the rain-forest

What's over here at the rock wall?

It looks small 
but these are large boulders

The carpet snake or Morelia Spilota

a native of the rainforests of Queensland
which is my state

is a python who is non-venomous
and can grow 2-4m

This one I estimated to be 2m long
Carpet snakes can live 20-30 years

He has attractive black 
and yellow/brown markings
and a gorgeous iridescent pearl eye

A great Sunday walk...

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Bearded Dragon

Walking up the steep steps 
behind the township
of Noosa Heads this morning
I was bemoaning the fact 
that I never see 
critters on this walk
while they must be there in the trees, 
old logs and deep leafy carpet
on the forest floor

I found a bright little flower on the path
and the curious green flowers

of the macaranga tree
with the large parasol leaves

I began to make my way down hill
through a residential zone

and spotted a movement on a front lawn
he stopped very still
and as I cautiously approached
he scampered into the leafy camouflage
and I walked closer still

he's a Bearded dragon
with rows of spiny scales on his throat
which he can puff and expand if threatened

and also spines on the back of his head
He has a hand waving gesture
to indicate submission to other dragons
and a head bobbing action to show dominance

He's also able to change colour 
like a chameleon

The bearded dragon enjoys basking in the sun
in dry arid zones of Australia
but when the temperatures rise to 38'-50'C
he buries himself underground

He's an omnivore and also diurnal.
The Dragon can grow 45-60 cm
half of which is tail
and despite his angry appearance 
he makes a gentle pet...