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On Mondays I now have a ritual.  I am positively addicted to Lucia Lei who scours Op Shops for  jewellery jars and posts herself opening them on YouTube.

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Lucia has the most soothing voice, a very gentle and appreciative narrative showcasing each piece high-priced or humble with equal enthusiasm.   Her beautifully manicured hands with nails colour-matched to the jar are positively mesmerizing too.

Such a lovely interval in my lockdown day.   So enjoyable I found myself taking pen to paper after this morning’s viewing.

Dear Lucia…

In Oz, it’s Monday when you post your jewellery jar
openings and I’m addicted.  Listening to your soothing
voice, viewing perfect nails, I find myself wondering
how pieces arrived in the Op Shop - who threw them
away?  Was it a house clearance after loss - flotsam?
Discarded by someone sad who didn’t want, didn’t
value the reason for purchase - ignoring the joy
each item brought their loved one, now giving pleasure
to me, the viewer - vicariously owning the sparkle… 

Imagining where I would wear such special jewels,
dressed up to the nines, carefully doing my nails
even matching my accessories… like you. Living
a glamourous life, socializing – dancing to music,
dinner with friends, restaurant atmosphere or
theatre presentations, sitting side by side with
stranger others, enjoying the performances…
Not worrying about social distance.  Not needing
to wear a mask carefully matched to my outfit…

So I thank you, Lucia, for the escape from lockdown,
the chance to be someone, somewhere, sometime
before today.  A time imagined or remembered.
Delving into my memory box re-living happiness,
people I loved, lost, shared good times with and still
miss every day.  I also admit to crying, when you
read the words;  ‘If tears could build a stairway and
memories a lane, I’d walk right up to Heaven and
bring you home again’ now engraved on my heart.


Frances Macaulay Forde © 2020

#YOUTUBE:LuciaLei    #POEM:DearLucia  #JewelleryJars   #OpShopFinds  #Recycled

In 2013, a news story about a ‘Nessie’ sighting this side of the globe, reminded me of something I wrote a while ago for my sister-in-law’s very popular travel blog about Perth; http://perthdailyphoto.blogspot.com.au    Every day she uploads photos she’s taken in and around Perth, Western Australia (she particularly loves our pretty city)  while discovering new and interesting places.

On May 30th 2013, she’d taken a fabulous photo at Mullalloo beach and wanted me to write something to go with the photo. Naturally, I was happy to oblige and sent a short poem back within half an hour.  She was totally amazed with what I ‘saw’ in her frame.

The Surgeon’s Photo

Like that summer’s day, Nessie in her deepest loch

with itinerant Hugh Gray’s camera watching on shore,

bows her head to honour the sparkling blue

dancing in the sunlight between the stars.

 

Here in Mullaloo, she is a he whose strong arms

plunge out to sea, powering above possible danger

beneath relentlessly pulling liquid waves to his chest

– a celebration of strength, youth and fearlessness.

 

Frances Macaulay Forde © 2013

#POEM:TheSurgeonsPhoto #PerthDailyPhoto #LochNessMonster #Nessie #Poem

 

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Recently, I posted some postcards I’ve put together to use as promotional material when I read or discuss poetry with the public.

Liz Gauffreau mentioned she resonated with this particular poem; ‘Hooked’.

I think it’s probably because we’ve got grandchildren and perhaps Liz also knits and crochets for them.  I know, in Winter, it’s my way of keeping both my hands and my grandies warm.

 

#POEM:Hooked  #FrancesmacaulayForde  #Knitting  #Crochet  #Grandies  #MadeWithLove

 

~

My husband is Head of Respiratory Medicine at Joondalup Health Campus. In March, Joondalup hospital (along with every other hospital in Australia) prepared to be inundated with huge numbers of very sick COVID-19 patients, as had happened in the US, Europe and China.

Outpatient clinics and elective and semi-elective surgery were cancelled, while surgical wards and theatres prepared to become makeshift ICUs. Those decisions mainly affected the elderly and vulnerable as their clinic appointments were postponed and surgical procedures delayed.

Each day my husband went to work and saw his frightened patients. Their lungs already compromised, they were anxious about their chances if they caught the virus. They wanted reassurance from my husband, something he couldn’t provide because he knew most of them would not survive if they caught it. He’s been seeing many of his patients for ten or fifteen years, getting to know them and their families over that time, and each night he came home worried how many of his patients would still be alive in six months’ time.   READ THE FULL POSTING

 

 

#LouiseAllen  #COVID-19  #SecondWave   #StayHomeSaveLives

Whispering Gums

Book coverToday, I present another Monday Musings guest post coordinated for me by Bill (The Australian Legend), this one from Michelle Scott Tucker, author of the wonderful Elizabeth Macarthur: A life at the edge of the world (my review).
Thanks so much again to Bill and to Michelle for helping me out with my Monday Musings. Read on … and of course we’d love your comments  … Do you think your online activity will change significantly post-COVID-19?

Michelle’s post

Hands up if you’re quite the expert at videoconferencing now. Got your lighting all sorted? Your headphone hair? De rigueur Indigenous artwork behind you?

With the onset of the COVID-19 shutdowns, the Australian literary community has moved its events online with commendable alacrity. A few organisations, like the Wheeler Centre, were ahead of the curve. They’ve regularly livestreamed some of their events for a while now. But for…

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desertification

before cultivation the water flowed
bouncing on leaves falling falling
to pool on fertile forest floor below

before cultivation the water flowed
flora bursting with life and clean air
jostling for sunspace canopy flirting

before cultivation the water flowed
we didn’t listen as we ploughed
clearing tree roots to feed fields

before cultivation the water flowed
now encrusted salt lusts after land
no sweetness here just bitter dry sand


Frances Macaulay Forde © 2007

 

This article in The Guardian  reminded me of my poem published in FAWWA and POETS UNION anthologies.

CORONAVIRUS IS A WARNING TO US TO MEND OUR BROKEN RELATIONSHIP WITH NATURE.

The world must embrace a recovery that involves sustainable farming and clean energy. Anything else is a false economy

Billows of smoke rise over a deforested plot of the Amazon jungle in Rondonia State, Brazil, August 24, 2019.
 Deforestation in the Amazon jungle, Brazil, 2019. Photograph: Ueslei Marcelino/Reuters

In 1997, a large area of rainforest in south-east Asia was burned to the ground to make way for palm oil plantations. A combination of deforestation, forest fires and drought are believed to have forced hundreds of fruit bats away from their natural habitats towards fruit orchards planted in close proximity to intensive pig farms. These conditions led to the emergence of the Nipah virus, which spilled over from infected bats to pigs, and from pigs to pig farmers. Over the next two years, the disease would kill more than 100 people. This should have served as a warning.

READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE

 

#TheGuardian  #Nature’sWarning   #COVID-19  #POEM:desertification  #FrancesMacaulayForde

 

 

While we’re all separated from each other by COVID-19, perhaps it’s time to send postcards again?  It’s an old-fashioned habit – a short note delivered by the postie, to let others know we are thinking of them.

So, I thought I’d share some poetry postcards I’ve printed using Vistaprint when they have a ‘special’ on postcards.  I used my own photos or artworks with my poems and gave them away when I was doing talks or workshops.

Recently I was in Residence at Burn Beach Cafe as part of the Cafe Poets Project with Australian Poetry, our national organisation and my postcards were quite popular.

The first three are from my time at Burns Beach on the Sunset Coast of Western Australia and the next couple are chosen at random.   I have published many over the years.

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#PoetryPostcards  #FrancesMacaulayForde  #CINQUAIN:Love  #POEM:INeedYou  #POEM:TheBoffin  #POEM:Reserved  #HaikuPoems  #POEM:DoIKnowYou

 

via Another First: Interview on Tea Toast & Trivia! — Elizabeth Gauffreau

I’m thinking of Mum and Dad – yesterday would have been their 76th wedding anniversary. How I would love to have taken them to watch their great-granddaughter Taisen on stage. Maybe they did, anyway… either way I know they would have been so proud!

Perth Words... exploring possibilities.

mv5bmgyyzjk4mdmtytzmms00ywm2ltgxndqtm2ewnzq2mdzhnwqxxkeyxkfqcgdeqxvyndyymdk5mtu-_v1_sy1000_sx670_al_I was 15 or 16 in 1965 when ‘The Sound of Music’ was released and probably got to see it pretty soon after, at our local Astra Cinema in Kitwe, Zambia.

Yes, we did have cinemas in the ‘wilds of Africa’ and we got new releases pretty soon after they were…    You got dressed up then – women even wore gloves and a gorgeous outfit to evening showings.

When I was younger it was a big deal to go to the cinema every Saturday morning, then off to OK Bazaars to spend our 2 shillings & 6 pence pocket money on some cheap trincket.

We had to meet Mum and Dad at the Kitwe Club for a pickled fish and crusty bread (and lemonade) lunch on the verandah.   Sometimes, we’d spend the afternoon playing tennis or watching the adults.

Fast foward 50 years and I’ve just watched my great niece Taisen play Gretyl…

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Time for another outing so others can appreciate these wonderful poems…

Perth Words... exploring possibilities.

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My (current) ten favourite poems for World Poetry Day 2016:

  1. “Don’t make me fall in love again…” by Nan Witcomb © 1979, from ‘Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow, The Thoughts of Nanushka, Vol I – VI’.  I discovered Nan in the early  80’s when I needed to find solace in words and simply beautiful illustrations.  Soaked with romance, this poem resonated – seemed to speak from my own heart.
  2. “The Dolly on the Dustcart”  by Pam Ayres © I’ve loved this poem since I first read it, even before I watched her perform it at the Perth Concert Hall in the early 90’s.  It was hard to choose just one of her poems (I have a few of her books) this one makes me smile with its many layers.
  3. “Fascination Waltz” by T.A.G. Hungerford © 2005 p. 223, ‘Whatever Happened to Joseph’, 1st pub by Jacobyte Books.  Tom most graciously allowed me…

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Stephen Page

Author: The Salty River Bleeds, The Timbre of Sand, Still Dandelions, A Ranch Bordering the Salty River. Alum: Palomar College, Columbia University, Bennington College. Follow on twitter @SmpageSteve on Instagram @smpagemoria on Facebook @steven.page.1481

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