Saturday, 31 October 2015

Bushfire downunder

Blue skies say little
Every stone hot to touch
Whole body itchy

North wind blows hotly
There's a smoky dusty smell
Bush fires are close by

Trees stir weeping leaves
They too fear the nearing fire
But say not a word

Our stock is nervous
I search the sky for rain clouds
But see no respite

Smoke cloud approaches
I start spraying the main house
The horses panic

Fire crackles far off
All vessels filled with water
Jim Brough's place alight

Come on you rain clouds
Just where in the name are you?
My veins throb with fear

It is hard to see much
At least the homestead is safe
The first drops now fall

I settle the stock
At last the rain's bleeding down 
From the wounded sky

Image found at

Note: Wildfires are called Bushfires in Australia. Native Eucalypyt (Gum) trees can often recover from being burnt and will sprout new growth after a few weeks although coniferous and deciduous rarely do. 

This sweet lubricant

Now some might say that I was errant
I had this need for drinks so piquant
Accompanied by music vibrant
My behavior became so rampant
I was a fully paid up Bacchant
Always lured by strong spirits fragrant
Booze for me was a great assistant
Until my wife became so indignant
I had to shun this sweet lubricant
Give up my ways so exuberant
Or I would become a mendicant
Knowing I had become repugnant

Image found at

Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Home late from work

I got home late from work tired and worn out from a bad day at the office trying to sort out the mistakes of others.

The meal was ready for me and we ate together as if she had guessed what time I would arrive.

She insisted I sit down as she did the dishes as I relaxed in my chair almost ready for bed when she called out "Could you take the trash out dear, they coming tomorrow."

I did as I was told and saw the beautiful starry sky of the still dark placid evening and realized how much I had been blessed.

I heard an owl hoot and the rustle of other creatures of the night as I made my way back inside.

With the dishwasher stacked and the lights turned low my wife was now waiting for me in bed for our after dinner treat, so how could I refuse?

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Being herself

There she is again
Just what is it about this
Nondescript girl

Aren't short skirts out now
And what's she done with her hair
She is so quirky

Placidly smiling
She has some tatts on her neck
Doc Martin's on feet

Where is my little girl
Who slept snuggled in my arms
When she was but two

Memories in the cafe

Here was I drinking my coffee
Lonely old man stirring his cup
When for some reason I glanced up
A stunning face in front of me

Her animated expression
Concentrating on her work in hand
Time slipped by like grains of sand
Recalling one now an illusion

Her lips were like sweet cherries kissed
Her hair as soft as falling rain
Her eyes were those that caused me pain
When from her side I was dismissed

It isn't her of course that is true
But my many memories are recalled
When my heart was so cruelly mauled
Seeing this sweet girl now in my view

Not daughter yet, perhaps grandchild
I leave my cup I did not drink
She waves goodbye as off I slink
How can old love drive one so wild?

I hadn't walked but twenty paces
When I was tapped on the shoulder
There she was now my hat's holder
I was glad, it showed in our faces

I've had my life and so will she
For this young thing I've been gifted
Don't question past but be uplifted
For puppets we are don't you see?

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Saturday, 24 October 2015

Baddies wearing black

Teenage mania
Those B grade movie westerns
Gunslingers and tarts

Baddies wearing black
Sheriff chewing tobacco
Spit-wad in street's dust

Our clean cut hero
In love with girl in whorehouse
Seen on balcony

Town out of control
Stranger locked in oubliette
Innocent of course

Melon shaped dumb clown
Now fumbles to help town out
Dies in the attempt

Fast chase on horseback
Indian brave helps hero
Dies in touching scene

Rattlesnake now shows
But is shot from fifty yardsl
Hero now ambushed

Fierce gunfight now ensues
Six baddies now all shot dead
Hero has small flesh wound

Smites evil in this town
Wakes sleeping whore with a kiss
Vanilla sky ends

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Laughing together

Have I got the ability
To leave the demons behind?
And set off full tank, top gear
On the highway down the lanes
Sell my past to start again
Get back to the elements
Where trees whisper their secrets
Birds sing their songs on the hour
Just lie on the ground laughing
Hugging, kissing each other
With just you as my buddy
Well that is my theory
I just can't be without you

Image found at

Your cute face

Salamanca Markets, Hobart, Tasmania

When walking through the market place
Loud shouts and calls to buy their wares
Fruit and veg, bottled jam and crafts
Suddenly I saw your cute face

You searched a stall with lots of bling
Checking earrings and girly stuff
I note your hands and long brown legs
You turned, smiled and my heart did sing

"Do I know you from so long ago?"
I asked when I approached up close
She laughed and shook her head in fun
"My Dad's your boss, didn't you know?"

"Let me buy you that" I spoke up
As I tried to recall the time
Then persuaded her to have a chat
With me over a coffee cup

I loved her nose and sparkling eyes
We talked of lots and made a date
"What will your father think of this?"
She said, "I'll tell you now, no lies"

"He says you're better than others there
You have potential, so he says
I'm so pleased you have checked me out
I want a man who has some flair"

Image found at

Wednesday, 21 October 2015

How times have changed

Visiting my place of birth after so many years I spied an old building that looked familiar that had been built in the 17th century during the English Civil war and added to over the years; how those brick walls brought back memories.

This old Grammar school in England which I attended so long ago had changed me from boyhood to youth and set me on the road to adulthood for it had made me what I am.

I parked my car and walked in through the entrance gate and found it was no longer a place of education for it was now converted to retirement apartments and no longer rang with the laughs and shouts of children but was a home for quieter persons such as myself.

In that room over there they told us the king had died and now we had a queen and up there in the headmaster's study I had received the cane for misbehaving.

I closed my eyes and I could imagine the games we played in the schoolyard and my nose could sense the playing field with newly mowed grass for us to play our sport on and I felt like weeping.

In my last year there I was admonished for holding hands with a girl as I walked home with her; how time have changed. 

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Never liked camping

All day long we climbed
Through the forest, past the lakes
Up the mountainside

Good idea, she'd said
As with laboured breath I smiled
And followed her lead

We will camp up there
She pointed to the tall trees
Makeshift home tonight

Soon the night sounds ruled
Owls hoots and wind rustling leaves
Tired were soon asleep

Woke, jab in the ribs
Hark, there is something outside
She said terrified

Put my arms round her
Slowly got her back to sleep
Never liked camping

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The blind date

This was not serious
It was just a blind date
Just a friendly foursome
With my mate and his girl
Did I get a surprise! 

She brought a friend along
What a stunner she was 
Five foot one, so much fun
Turned up nose, rosy lips
Then that smile just for me

Introduced we shook hands
I kissed her on the cheek
Just a friendly greeting
Looked deep into her eyes
And my heart beat so fast

Was this one a keeper?
The gravity of that
Then occupied my mind
As we chatted alone
Oh, how the stars did shine

How difficult it was 
Not to fly off with her
I ate with just my fork
And placed my hand on hers
Which she gripped so tightly

After my friend chided me
"That was a boring meal
Where were you two" he asked
But I just did not care
I was over the moon

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Saturday, 17 October 2015

One Winter's Day

When I was a young child 
My father said "Blast" a lot
While in the garden plot

Which was the extreme
By our mother's instruction
As we were so young

However in his work shed
New words were learned without fear
Hidden from her sharp ear

Then one winters day
Called to lunch us three turned up
Washed hands, food to sup

"Oh! Bloody hell Mum 
Surely not cabbage again"
My brother did complain

He was sent to bed
Father looked out the window
Thought he spied a crow

Scared I hid my smile
Glad it had not been me
And ate my greens with glee

Image found on

Come walk with me

Put your weapons down
I’ve no energy to fight                      
Let’s breathe in fresh air                

Here come walk with me               
Let’s show what we are made of  
Let’s transform the world                 

Which path shall we take?            
It’s easy to run down hill                
Into deep trouble                             

I’d pick the track up
You can see the view far off
That is food for thought

We’ll help each other
And can practice our singing
For a joyful life

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So glad it's saturday

It was blowing a gale
Twigs slapping on the glass
Wife was now sound asleep
Breathing steadily now
Who says dads sleep right through?

Baby daughter whimpers
Please don’t cry I whisper
But she is unsettled
Tiny hand reaches through crib
With its wooden pink rails

Is she needing a feed?
Quietly I get up
Rocking her gently in hope
But now she wants to play
Coos and murmurs at me

Carefully I lift her
Take her to the lounge room
It’s halfway through the night
She’s happy to play now
Gurgling her own sweet words

Crisp cold of next day’s dawn
Wife finds me nursing babe
Now sleeping in my arms
Pressure seams in my flesh
Dark bags beneath my eyes

“Been up long?“ She inquires
Smiling happily now
“I’ll get a cup of tea”
She looks so beautiful
So glad it’s Saturday

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Thursday, 15 October 2015

So many years ago

I had a request to pick the grandchildren up from school as my daughter was held up at another appointment.

I was quite pleased for hadn’t done that little chore since I had children of my own.

However I hadn’t anticipated how difficult it was to find a parking space by the school at that hour and had to park so way away;  so not only was it a long walk to the school gates there were two different entrances depending on the classes the kids were in.

So by the time I had pushed passed the boys, girls, satchels, mums, strollers, toddlers and the rest all trying to get out of school I found myself inside the grounds looking for the grand-kids.

There they were, the grandson tearing around the playground pretending he was an aircraft and the other skipping over the hopscotch layout with some friends also waiting for their parents.

While they finished their games and said their goodbyes, I shed a tear of sadness of my own long lost childhood of so many years ago.

Image found

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

Of being alone

I look at the words
And wait to be fired up
But shake my head sadly
I want to be inspired
Write a love story
With a touch of tenderness

I think of a kitchen
Peeling the vegetables
Of igniting the cook top
The chores of the lonely
Of being alone
Washing the greasy pans

Just where are your arms
Holding me so tight
It’s hellish without you
I can’t breathe you in
Or hear your sweet voice
And look in your green eyes

Image found at

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

It was a hot day

It was a hot day
Miles to go before my sleep
AC on full blast

A country summer
Driving across the wide plain
Through eucalypt trees

A kangaroo here
Some Galahs on the fence post
and dead snakes on the road

Two more hours to go
Some white cloud on horizon
No, that is smoke there

There’s a cordon ahead
Diversion down a farm track
Too late to turn back

Now heading northward
Can see the fire is extensive
A mind of its own

There’s a truck ahead
So no chance to pass him here
Unless he sees me

Going is so slow
Long since the track’s been graded
Good, he’s waved me on

Bitumen ahead
Turn right well back from fire front
Scent of smoke now gone

An hour behind time
Back to the highway again
Township up ahead

Yet more diversions
Now the wind is getting up
More fire trucks pass by

Finally get home
“I didn’t think you’d make it”
She says with a kiss

TV is on loud
All about the fire and damage
So I turn it off

Never been so scared
Just wanted to be with you
I will sleep well now

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Saturday, 10 October 2015

Off the beaten track

Traffic sped past us
We're cycling along the road
No reason to rush

The breeze in our face
And the sun’s warmth on our backs
Cabin five miles back

River by our side
The water filled with shorebirds
Playing in the ponds

Off the beaten track
Bikes now hidden in the dunes
The wind in our hair

We were now alone
In the distance sounds of birds
Thin chirps and cheeps

Estuary of love
Their natural habitat
Wonder of new life

Each year we came here
In their own vicinity
To check the new chicks

Image found

The sun next day

The thrum of traffic on the street
A milk carton still in his hand
The chill of evening at his feet            

Illuminated letters bright                           
On neon signs above his head
Negates the urge to sleep this night

The night link bus roars in the mist
Whose grey riders trip homeward bound
Just minutes from a welcome kiss

He risked his all to make his way
Courage fails to make homeward trip
What matters is the sun next day

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Tell me a story

She was four years old
Most lovely girl in the world
Should I be so bold

Every night the same
Dad tell me a story please
What else could I do?

So Peter Rabbit
Fairies, goblins, dragons too
Made her want much more

Alice and rabbit
Queen of hearts and mad hatter
Was her magic world

But my favorite
Was Blyton’s Faraway tree
Dad read it to me

My heart skips a beat
When I hear her pleading cry
Tell me a story

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Wednesday, 7 October 2015

The Rock Island Line

I was sorting out my Dad’s stuff after he had died; you know all the usual junk that you’d find in an eighty year old man’s home who lived by himself.

A few bits might go the op shops; some furniture could be sold or passed on while the rest would be best taken to the tip.

There were a few sentimental knick-knacks such as photographs and memorabilia that could be kept if they had some memories for the family but for the rest…I just sighed.

It was when I was sorting out an old dresser I found something that intrigued me.

It was a much used copy of a 78rpm record going back the 50’s entitled “Rock Island Line” by The Lonnie Donegan Skiffle Group.

I cried as I remember my mother telling me they used to play it incessantly when she and Dad were courting.

Image found at www.45worlds .com


Johnno what a teacher he was                                                    
We were all thin kids way back then                                           
From the privations of the war                                                      
Except for one fatty name Mike                                                    
But his dad did work in a Bank                                                    
In those days schools were poorly manned                              
Johnno taught us Maths and Science                                       
Then he took all us boys for Sport                                               
Somehow squeezed in Music as well                                        

A lot of us inscribed our names                                                   
On the ancient school’s red brick walls                                      
So I put mine next to my Dad’s                                                     
Before I was caught in the act                                                      
But the initials stayed there                                                          
It was well worth half an hour                                                      
Sitting detention after school                                                        
To tell my Dad when he came home                                           
Past six after work in the city                                                        

Johnno also ran the Stamp Club                                                 
Held once a month at week’s end                                                                       
Word philately not used then                                                       
He was my favorite there too                                                        
More than that he inspired me                                                     
Made his lessons interesting                                                        
He praised all us kids at football                                                  
Said my voice was like a foghorn 
I even loved him for that   

Image found at                                            

We met again

After all these years
She still had that certain smile
I remember Jane

Much more than just friends
So absorbed in each other
Shall I say lovers?

Yes, she glanced at me
Embarrassed she turned away
Left my heart empty

Sunday, 4 October 2015

Dreaming of you in autumn

I awake                                                                       
My dreams of you gone                                           
Fragments of the past disappear                           
Who has stolen you away?                                                
Gone from my side                                                   

Still dark night                                                           
Tears fall from my eyes                                            
The clock says three fifteen dimly                                     
Erotic moments have passed                                      
Alone once again                                                    

Have I changed?                                                      
Do you watch me still?                                             
Who was guilty of your theft?                                 
How I dread the morning’s light
Leaves fall sadly                            

Image found at  

Saturday, 3 October 2015

The clock ticked on

I have left the town of my birth                                         
With her wide fields and copses dark
Running free as a small wild child
For that is what I surely was
Dirty knees, shoes and ragged pants
We’d shout and tease the girls around
A grin upon my dirty face
As I would run from place to place

I’ve traveled far, so far away
Why did I leave those tinkling streams
The lurking foxes and squirrels red
Placid cattle and hooting owls
We climbed the trees and forts did make
Then stooked the hay in harvest time
Late home for tea on each fine day
All us kids sad to end our play

I left because the clock ticked on
The seasons changed and I did too
First I wore those long trousers grey
A combed my hair all by myself
Now I saw each girl with new eyes
And I blushed when they laughed at me
But gladly would go back there again
As growing old is such a pain

Image found at

The wind whistled

The wind whistled                                 
Calling on the rain                                                  
To share its game                                                   
While the farmer shook his head                         

His sad face flushed
It was hard enough
Without their threats
And nexus of playfulness

He still pressed on.                                                 
One field left to plough                                          
Then to rest up                                                        
For he had no cause to swear                              

Sun sank westward                                                         
Day’s list now complete
Wends his way back
To kiss his wife tenderly 

Illustration of Evelyn Harke painting found at