Archive for April, 2019


This poem ‘Renovations’ was an homage to my old ‘home’, but doesn’t express just how happy I am with my old/new love.

Perth Words... exploring possibilities.

Reading Vinny’s blog  and his wonderful ‘Wind Chimes’ poem reminded me of a poem I wrote in 2002 when I found my life was suddenly turned upside down, down-under.

I had to pack up the house I’d lived in by myself for 28 years after divorce, while I explored the possibilities of returned love at the age of 52 and learnt to share my sacred space again.

It was not always easy but my reward was a love I didn’t know was possible.

450px-BlueJacarandaFlowers Wiki Photo of Jacarandas.  I had planted one  to remind me of my Zambian home.


house loud

full of colored voices

frequently gathered

while fancy-dressers

danced in yellow


purple walled

creative spaces

where words poured

like leaking taps

Bali knick-knacks


replaced by exercise

machines marching

across gym-lounge

to a new beat

sparse spare look


quiet everyman

wants resale

erasing all memories

of trees – too many


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Just received the OK to share a wonderful poem I found on my preferred poetry blog; Write Out Loud,  ruthlessly lampooning the Corporate World and it’s inherent characters.  I smiled, laughed and giggled all the way through my reading – I am visually stimulated and his visuals were hilarious! 

I’m sure, if you ever inhabited that high-rise enterprise you’ll enjoy it too,  so I’ve copied it below his ‘permission’.  

Hi Frances
Thanks very much for your kind and thoughtful comments re: ‘Monday Morning – 9AM’  I really appreciate you taking the time to comment.
Of course you can use it on your blog – maybe just put a reference on there to my website www.thecrowsofalbion.com so folk might head over and take a look/listen at more stuff 😃
I’ve left those days of meetings behind – thank god. took early retirement and never looked back. I certainly don’t miss any of the characters in this poem I can tell you 😉
Thanks once again – glad you liked it

Just in case you haven’t clicked over to Write Out Loud to read the poem, here it is:

Monday Morning – 9AM

He calls the meeting to order

The alligator with the human skin briefcase

Teeth like buzz-saw blades

She raises the first objection

The girl with butterfly wings

Muddy puddles for eyes

The maggot takes the minutes

Slowly chewing the page

Drizzling ink-blood on paper

Smudging ideas


A firefly drifts aimlessly

From subject to subject

Saying nothing

Words like gossamer cobwebs

And the hyena

Stares out of the window

And smiles

While playing a fountain pen

Round and round

His finger claws



By a slow spider

Who distributes

Croissants and coffee

To break up the tedium

A cat licks the cream pot

A dog chews an idea bone

A parrot with golden plumage

Mimics the boar who is speaking

In riddles and rhymes


The clock runs counter clockwise

Seconds stretch into minutes

Minutes to hours

Like clouds across a mountain

Slowly the objectives unwind

Leaving snapping dragons

And mewling little demons

Clicking and clacking

Digging up bones

Long buried and forgotten


When the gavel comes down

The corporate menagerie

Dust of their crisp suits

From a century of dust

Adjust their positions

Raise to their full height

Of not much or nothing at all

And leave through the door

Of shimmering dreams

And rose coloured glass


Come on down you pretenders

You hoary old men

You power dressed bitches

You meek being led

By faceless monstrosities

Sitting in caves

At the end of an oak paneled corridor.

This is the Company

Grinding up lives

In its mincing gears


The time and the date

Placed in the diary

Along with the doodles

And pertinent points

From a thousand

Monday morning meetings

Where caffeine and ambition

Pump screaming adrenaline

Into the veins of the smiling

Ruthless devourers of souls


Ian Whiteley © 2019

Don’t forget to check out his website too. 


#IanWhiteley  #thecrowsofalbion  #poem  #MondayMorning-9AM  #CorporateWorld  #WhiteCollar  #Lampooning

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This poem ‘An Easter Tragedy’ deserves another reading.

Perth Words... exploring possibilities.

Today, I’m watching The State Memorial for Nelson Mandela.  The camera pans across all the international attendees as the representative of the A.N.C. reads out a list of those dignitaries.  As she reads ‘President Robert Mugabe’ a huge roar erupts and I am astounded!  Don’t they know how many of his own people he has slaughtered, starved, beaten to within an inch of their lives and stolen from – and continues to do so?

Here Mugabe sits in a now free and democratic South Africa where everyone has a vote.  I wonder how the people around him feel?  Surely the UK and USA PM and President will not shake his hand… I find his presence insulting and wonder if Mandela would have felt the same way.

There must be more of Africa in me than I thought, because I seem to have the memory of an elephant.  How can…

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Shattered Windows

Filmed in 1985 around Northbridge, inside the burnt-out Swan Brewery, at MidWestTV studios and a very different Perth Railway Station, was another video called: ‘Shattered Windows’ .

1986SphinxProd2 001bW

My daughter was 8 – thought being there was great watching Pete and I do our thing.

It was the 1st Music Video film-partners Peter A. and I did when we started SPHINX Productions back in 1985.  Totally scripted, directed and produced by yours truly, the video won Best Cinematography for Peter in the WA Young Filmmakers Awards at the Film & TV Institute in Fremantle.

The original song was written by a break-dancing duo who won the Talent Competition I ran at the Riverton & Kelmscott Hotels in 1983.  Wonder where they are now?

Apart from $1,000, their prize included this video clip made by Sphinx Productions, the little production company a young but very talented Peter and I set up in 1985.

#FTIYoungFilmakersAward   #ShatteredWindows  #SwanBrewery  #Northbridge  #PerthRailwayStn  #Mid-WesternTV  #MusicVideo  #SphinxProductions

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Moondyne Festivals

Looking through my archives on Vimeo, I’ve found a little video I put together with firstly photos from the 2009 and vision (with sound) of the parade in the 2010 Moondyne Festivals held in Toodyay.

09MayMoondyneFest (11)w

On the way home I wrote a poem inspired by the evidence of recent bushfires in the landscape which was later published by the International Centre for Landscape and Language Journal, Edith Cowan University.




black ash still lay

where fire had licked

with devil tongues

across the road-side gravel


a careless cigarette

city slicker thrown

on community fun day

to re-enact Moondyne Joe


quick fire prowled up

summer-dry gullies

stand of trees ridge

wind break – not fire-breaker


no escape allowed

as bright yellow jackets

smother white foam

contain the bush fire danger


gumtree pale striped

old bark peeled back

green growth beauty

black trees juxtaposed


fresh life canopies

halt dieback spores

spiked hair sprouts

thousand years and counting



Frances Macaulay Forde © 2010

#POEM:Toodyay  #MoondyneJoe  #MoondyneFestivals  #ToodyayWA  #poetry  #FrancesMacaulayForde

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Red Spiders…

Inspired by this photo on the  Sky Cafe Blog, I wrote a Haiku.  Unfortunately the blog is no longer accessible.  Gone the way of many clever webpages, which is such a shame, I enjoyed the fabulous photography on there.


At the time, I assumed it was a photo of Singapore Harbour but today, searching the internet so I can credit the photo appropriately, I discovered similar photos taken of Vancouver Harbour.

So if anyone can help me credit the photo, I would greatly appreciate it.



Clouds growl as

red spiders walk

into the lion’s mouth.


Frances Macaulay Forde © 2004


#HAIKU:Vancouver  #SkyCafeBlog  #FrancesMacaualyForde  #Poetry  #SingaporeHarbour  #VancouverHarbour

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The Empty Chair

Periodically, I read poems posted on a blog called Write Out Loud even now and then, post one or two myself. 

Last week, one of my favourite contributors, David Moore posted a poignant poem which reminded me so much of my dad. 

With his kind permission I am reprinting it here but if you’d like to hear David read it as well, go directly to the original posting by clicking this link for Write Out Loud


The Empty Chair

The empty chair is unimpressed

its vacant care bereft, un-blessed,

with threadbare arms and scuffed footrest

in lonely sitting room, undressed.


It squats in rays of slatted light

unknowing of the day or night,

no to and fro of padding feet

it’s just a chair, so incomplete.


The chair is nothing now he’s gone

just something he once sat upon,

where soon there’ll be an empty space

for something else to take its place.

David Moore © 2019


#Poem:TheEmptyChair   #DavidMoore   #WofgarMiere   #Sadness   #Loss  #Poetry  #WriteOutLoud

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The Prima Ballerina.

Once again in honour of my niece who is marrying her Prince Charming, miles away on a Caribbean Cruise and I can’t be there. I am so proud of her achieving the ultimate happily-ever-after and sharing with family and good friends, surrounded by blue ocean, their two beautiful children in wrapt attendance.

Perth Words... exploring possibilities.

painting-by-vincent-romero-madrid-1956 Vincente Romero © 2007-2009

As I’m focused on picture books for children through my 12 x 12  challenge, I’ve also just enrolled in a class on The Art of the Picture Book illustration class with Shadra Strickland.

(Of course, I could never be as good as Vincente Romaro who’s paintings I’ve just discovered!)

So for a ‘tester’ project, I’m going to use a poem I wrote many years ago (and I mean many) in the early 60’s called “The Prima Ballerina”.

I hope to show you how I adapt it to a PB and slowly, how I have a go at illustrating it too…

The Prima Ballerina

She lives in a world of fairy tales,

all fantasy, happiness and woe. 


Floating across the stage in tulle,

fine silk or organza.,


softly pirouettes through the mist,

or dies upon the snow. 


This is the world of Ballet

of the…

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Wedding Day…

In honour of one of my favourite nieces getting married on a cruise ship somewhere very exotic, I am reminded of this poem which I have published today, here on Write Out Loud  (click to read the poem) with it’s original title, ‘I am love’.

040811Barry&KelWEDOrig (5)w

In 2004, I was asked to write something to be read at the wedding of an honorary nephew.   Normally I don’t write poetry ‘to order’, preferring to let poems ‘grab’ me, but knowing how romantic he is – and the special request for something to be ‘signed’ by an interpreter, I found I was inspired.

It was a challenge because, not only was I going to be presenting something to wedding guests who in the majority would not be ‘into’ poetry, but also to be careful to tailor the words to interpretation for many audience who were hearing impaired, some profoundly ‘deaf’.

Poetry lovers love ‘shmultzy’ and rhyme but non-poetry lovers hate that.  So I had to be mindful of my construction and rather, chose to speak as if making a vow which most of the audience would expect at a wedding.

And because I used dust as my analogy, the interpreter had a challenge to sign my words ~  there’s no sign for ‘dust’ so the lady also had to be inventive whilst keeping up with the rest of the poem.

The poem was read as part of the wedding ceremony and I have to say (I’m a sucker for a pretty wedding)  it was difficult not letting the emotion overwhelm my reading, so I paced myself carefully, allowing for surreptitious gulps between sentences.

As I finished there was a heavy, deathly silence in which I died a hundred deaths thinking the wedding guests had hated my words but was shocked when suddenly this tremendous applause burst out to cover the sniffs.  There was barely a dry eye!  Barry’s Mum particularly loved the words and her deaf friends asked for copies of the poem.

It’s been used at a few weddings now and in cards, so you are also welcome to use it.  If you do include it in your special day, please let me know, just as a courtesy.

Thanks ~ and may you always be surrounded by dust…

#WeddingDay  #Poetry  #WeddingVows  #Romance  #Love  #POEM:LikeDust  #FrancesMacaulayForde


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Wonderful to hear such a talented writer is finally being published. So sorry Lucas won’t be there to raise a glass to. Well done, FAWWA and Helen Hagemann.

Helen Hagemann's Studio

Looking forward to the launch of Storyfire – the magic of the short. An anthology of prize winning stories from the Hadow Stuart Short Story Competition 2008-2018.  While the stories in the collection are prize winners, included in the book are short stories by Lucas North (1973-2013). I was asked approximately two years ago to send three of Lucas’s stories to the FAWWA for inclusion in the anthology. During that time I hadn’t heard whether or not the book would go ahead. I was told that the Fellowship didn’t receive any funding and left it at that. A visit to the Perth Writers Festival this year, to the Fellowship’s tent and a chat with Pat Johnson revealed the anthology was a viable thing. It will be launched on Thursday, 16th May, 6pm at the State Library, Perth in the Great Southern Room.

I am thrilled that this has been…

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