in a quandary…
I have been writing a long-winded novel for kids over many summers (the only chance I get to work on it each year for a month or so)… and the first 3 books in the series are complete (just been re-reading them from last summer before launching into the next season of writing). Continue reading
Putting together a new CD is a big job, but rewarding and fun (once you get over the hump of self-doubt; hours of listening to takes and impros that weren’t quite usable; dealing with coughing audience or bleeding traffic noises…)
The CD I have been working on recently is unusual in several ways. Primarily because it was recorded in a tunnel under Darwin. Continue reading
“Empty Bottles” is a long-winded poem on the drunkards’ middens of the Northern Territory, written in 1893 by William Aaron Millikan, my mother’s father’s father. When I first read his poem a few years ago, I was not enamoured of it’s form. It must be some kind of poetic convention of his day, I thought, and set about rewriting it to make it flow better! Rather presumptuous, but my attempts were not an improvement, so I put it aside.
Just tonight, I came across the poem The Raven written in 1849 by American poet Edgar Allan Poe, with it’s “nevermore” refrain. Aha! The form that great-granddad ripped off! OK. Time to share William’s poem, warts and all.
“Empty Bottles” is a glimpse into a white man’s wowser perspective at the end of the 19th century in a remote part of Australia where Aborigines worked on their confiscated lands for no pay, no thanks and no rights, and Chinese immigrant workers (“John”) were resented by the drunkard white population because they were hard-working, reliable, entrepreneurial and generally good citizens.
The ejected capsule will not re-enter the docking bay. If this were deep space, lives would be lost…
I give up on reassembling the space-age vacuum cleaner, and flop onto the couch. Glancing across the room, I ask, “So, what’s it like, not being able to hear conversations, or read a book?” Continue reading
a fierce and frazzled freznel fairy
flittered free of fraynel fold
fluting flying fleeting flouting…
returning once the tales were told
what happened here
that your rocks all stand on end?
I like im.
I like im camp outside
because of course you got to sleep outside,
you got to feel im that wind and look star!
a snippet from one of my favourite poets, Bill Neidjie, from his book Story About Feeling.