Monthly Archives: July 2021

like a duck to…

Poor little sad confuséd duck,
born to quack but taught to cluck.
your adoptive mother, a broody hen,
never taught you to swim, and then,
taken roughly from the flock,
the humans stand, and point and mock
as you flap and panic in the drink,
wildly fearing that you will sink
and shuffle off this mortal globe,
my poor little ducky hydrophobe.


We decided the ducks, who think they’re chickens, needed a wash.  They were coated in muddy muck from the chicken coop after lots of wet weather – Werribee (pictured) was living up to his name. So we threw them in the dam, much to their horror and outrage.  Then one of the kids fell in too…   It’s been a good day.  😀 


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hoohoo haha, hoohoo haha

This is for the dVerse monotetra challenge. A monotetra is :
“*Comprised of quatrains (four-line stanzas) in tetrameter (four metrical feet) for a total of 8 syllables per line
*Each quatrain consists of mono-rhymed lines (so each line in the first stanza has the same type of rhyme, as does each line in the second stanza, etc.)
*The final line of each stanza repeats the same four syllables.”
My rhymes aren’t perfect, and the rhythm’s not quite right… but this is it anyway:


Kookaburra laughs at the dawn,
all our night’s fears, banished by scorn.
Start afresh a new day is born.
Laugh for us all, laugh for us all.

Kookaburra laughs at nightfall,
all our day’s woes, gone, big and small.
Gone away, released by your call.
Laugh for us all, laugh for us all.


I was running through my magic pudding To Do list for the day while feeding the animals, after cooking breakfast for the kids, and feeling a bit grumpy and put-upon. Then a kookaburra started laughing. It’s just not possible to feel grumpy while listening to a kookaburra – it’s like the universe laughing at itself and everything in it. Unfortunately my free WP plan won’t allow me to post a sound file, but you can listen to a couple here.   I bet you can’t get more than 30s in without at least smiling. 


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walk of shame

Naughty wombat
been up all night,
look where you’re at
in broad daylight!
You’ve none to blame.
This walk of shame
is all your fault.



Wombats are nocturnal, so I was surprised to see this one crossing the road at about 0800 recently. I think it must have been visiting at the nearby wombat sanctuary.


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experience is a comb

For the dVerse Tuesday prompt “the proverbial“:

Hot water sluices over me
and the scent of roses rises in the steam
as I wash away
the disappointments of the day.
But always a trace remains,
and the lines on my face are a little deeper,
and my soul a little more tarnished
than it was yesterday.
If I stood here long enough,
if I scrubbed hard enough,
could I clean away the years?
And would it be worth it anyway?
If I could go back,
would I just find myself here again,
trying to wash away the day?


Inspired by the Chinese proverb “Experience is a comb which nature gives to men when they are bald.”


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morning commute: stream of consciousness

For the dVerse Monday quadrille prompt “stream“:

Dirt and ‘roos -> gravel -> tarmac, one lane -> two lanes -> white lines -> more lanes, highway barricades.
Trees -> fields -> farms -> villages -> outskirts -> suburbs -> cement-grey city towers.
Farm utes -> dusty wagons -> soccer-mums’ four-wheel drives -> city-cars – shiny bubbles of banality on wheels…
all of us joining the stream


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sea cravings

All night the wind has roared
rolling through the trees
with a sound like waves,
and I wake with a sea-craving.
So I pour a handful of cowries
from the abalone shell where they have nestled,
since the last was added two summers ago.
Rubbing my thumb
across a smooth domed back,
the ridges of its aperture,
I remember the touch of salt water,
its smell and taste,
and try to hold it inside me
as it wells in my eyes.


I am grateful that we’ve been so little affected by covid compared to others, even in Australia, but I so miss the sea. 


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five red tulips in a white pot II

Five white hearts
wrapped in brittle brown paper,
stir in the dark,
reach out.

Standing in a flurry of snow,
a scatter of hail,
I am torn between eagerness
to see green shoots,
and trepidation at their daring.


Five red tulips in a white pot I


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frost ferns creep

Sort of for dVerse ONL, because I couldn’t get to the live session. I was asleep at 0500 local time (1500 dVerse time), while the frost was growing.  I’ll join live when the days are a bit longer and warmer.

All night long
in the dark and cold,
the frost-ferns grow,
fronds slowly creeping,
across the panes.

Until they catch the first morning light
and throw it back in diamond shards.

And are gone.

We’ve had some very cold nights lately, with ice across puddles in the morning and on the windscreen. I find the variety of ice crystals fascinating. The way they grow depends on the temperature and how much water is in the atmosphere,  as well as the surface they’re growing on, impurities, etc. The bathtub and birdbath grow a glass-like sheath of ice. The windscreen grows a variety of ice crystal structures. I think the “frost ferns” shown are a combination of needle and dendritic crystals. These formed a couple of nights ago on a very cold night after rain. Once the light hit it, it was gone in moments.      


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shy Thalia

Tuesday’s dVerse prompt was “choose your muse“. I think mine must be Thalia, muse of comedy and pastoral poetry, as that’s what I seem to mostly write. Finding quiet time to write is a challenge at the moment. 


My muse is shy, she won’t come out
if there is anyone else about.
I hear her whisper, but can’t catch the words,
she demands silence to be properly heard.
So I wait impatiently, all day, and then,
when at last we’re alone, I take up my pen.


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daffodil tete a tete

The first of my tete a tete daffodils has just opened! Spring must be very close indeed, even though there was a brief flurry of snow in Canberra on the weekend.  So here is a celebratory ha’ sonnet. 



A tete a tete
with daffodils,
“Well met! Well met!”
their greeting fills
me with delight,
and hope, despite
so grey a day.




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