Friday Poem: Lucie I & II

Little Lucie is definitely “grown and big” (29 tomorrow), and to mark that occasion, here are the two “Lucie” poems, written most of those 29 years ago…


Little mouse,
Little sparrow,
My ewe lamb,
My Lucie.

At sixteen she may be
A little bat
A vixen,
And a cow;
But she’ll still be
My Lucie.


Will I remember you
When you are grown and big?
Your little arms around my neck,
Your baby walk,
Your baby smile:
Will I remember these?

Your tiny self,
Your skinny legs,
Your baby boldness,
Baby tears:
Will I remember these
When you are grown and big?

baby 3Sometime in the next 17 days, I will graduate from ‘Mum’ to ‘Granny’ (or Metamum, as my youngest thinks I should be known…), when my second daughter gives birth to her first child. Strange how tiny babies seem, once you finally get them out of there…

Weekly Photography Challenge: Focus

Fly in focus

Just one pic of the daffodil, but there’s a little fly on it!

I played around inside, and in the garden (it hasn’t rained for several days, and the sun’s been shining! Spring!).

My camera doesn’t have any manual focus option, so it was a real challenge to get it to focus on different  aspects of one view.  Some of my attempts I discarded because the two shots were almost identical, and others because they were just lousy pictures. More than anything, it has shown me the limitations of my camera, but I had fun trying to overcome them!

Friday Poem: Candle Song

candlelightThe flame dances frantically
Then grows still
I don’t know why
When the flame flickers
The shadows shudder
And quiver over the ceiling
And the walls

And I know everything
And still know nothing
Questions too big to unfold
Too complicated
Have simple answers
As though a huge exotic bouquet
Was answered by a daisy

And so it is
The meaning of the bouquet
Is a daisy
The meaning of the candle
Is its light
The meaning of my infinite
Measureless boundless unquantifiable
Unproven soul
Is simply love
And that is everything

There is a mountain
I have climbed within me
And on the summit
Burns a candle bright
Unwavering light
That shines in me.Apple girl and blossom

Weekly photography Challenge: Carefree




What could be more carefree than a small child running free down a country lane? The adults trying to keep up and wondering how far she’ll get before she stops are a little less relaxed…My shoes

“On holiday” should be a carefree time, and coming across a free outdoor concert near the Seattle Center is as care free as one can hope to be. So carefree, I took a picture of my carefree feet in their carefree comfy Chucks (which now reside on top of a bookcase, shoes emeritus).Carefree music, Seattle

Two years later, I can’t tell you who the band were offhand, but I know they were carefree, and we enjoyed hearing them. Of major excitement for me, photographer Charles Petersen was there, photographing the bands and hanging out with family. I got to bring home a piece of his work, from EMP. One of the things I’d ‘save in a fire’.Olympia fountain

A week or two later, we were in Olympia, strolling, in a carefree way, around the lake, when we spotted these people enjoying a fountain in the warm summer dusk. The water jets seemed to spurt suddenly and unpredictably – huge fun for little (and not-so-little kids).

Friday Poem: Post

true powerI am burning my letters
to you,
My difficult dangerous letters;
All the ones that I wrote
in the light;
All the ones that I wrote
in the dark;
And the ones that I can’t read
At all,
I am burning and sending
to you.
All the letters I’ve written in blood;
All the letters I’ve written with tears;
And the ones I did not write at all;

I have burnt them
and sent them
to you.

loving and abundant


Images are of pages in an artist book I have made, titled “Basic”.

3 Quotes: Kounter Dominator Culture

Lotus pod, with seeds

“As empathy ties the knots between us,
intelligent, unconditional love
unleashes a torrent of peace.”

Marietta McCarthy

“How Philosophy Can Save Your Life”Golden evening

“The mere example of nonconformity, the mere refusal to bend the knee to custom, is itself a service.”

John Stewart Mill

“On Liberty”palimpset

” If the parent is able to create the right balance between secure attachment and at the same time encouraging independent exploration, the child will develop a healthy sense of self and acquire the appropriate emotional maturity to engage others and develop meaningful relationships.  If, however, the parent is not able to provide a sense of warmth and security and allow the infant to explore the world, the child will grow up with an arrested sense of self and be unable to enter into more than superficial relationships with others.
…Subsequent research into the parent/child dynamic…clearly shows that the more empathic the mother or father figure, the more able they are to identify emotionally and cognitively and to read their child’s needs. A parent with immature, inadequate, or deficient empathic sensitivity is not going to be as successful in producing a well-adjusted, trusting and caring child, who feels both secure and independent and able to enter into meaningful relationships with others.”

Jeremy Rifkin

“The Empathic Civilisationlotus pod, with seeds

Empathy, as the Rifkin quote implies, is best learnt in infancy, modeled by parents and/or other caregivers, but it can be taught, even to adults. It is part of the curriculum for medical students at Melbourne Uni, I believe. The teaching of mindfulness, of which one consequence is increased empathy, would save the world a lot of trouble (and money) in years to come.mastery 2

What is dominator Culture? Egyptian politics. Or Syrian. Or the Taliban, desperate to control the frightening spectre of an undependent Feminine, murdering schoolgirls. Even in ‘civilised’ Australia, politics demonstrates the unpleasant, unhelpful and lovely truths of Dominator Culture, where one-upmanship holds sway, and co-operation and compassion are of no account.

Friday Poem: Confessions of an Introvert.

I had my first (half)day at home alone in ages on Sunday. I needed it, and I didn’t want it to end…Bend the rules

Right now
I don’t want anyone to come home
or visit.
I want an endless Sunday
at home

and a mix CD or three.
Undisturbed and free;
A magazine
a pot of coffee
and me.
Only me;
Wild and free.

red silkOf course, it did. Shortly after I wrote the poem…c’est la vie..

Be(a)ware of Headlines Bearing Misinformation

“A reliable way to make people believe in falsehoods is frequent repetition, because familiarity is not easily  distinguished from truth. Authoritarian institutions and marketers have always known this fact.” ( Hello Rupert!)

from ‘Thinking, Fast and Slow’, Daniel Kahneman.

We Like What We’re Used To, and what is familiar seems to be true. Even when it isn’t. If you need to write a message you want people to believe, make it easy to read – clear and  bold and large will do it, and use simple language -witness newspaper banner headlines. Especially in the lead-up to an election.Notebooks 2

An easily read and understood message, pleasingly presented, can give a strong illusion of truth – an illusion that can be overcome by strong motivation. But we like what we’re used to. and what is easy…

“…repetition induces cognitive ease and a comforting feeling of familiarity”.(ibid)

The more we are exposed to an image or idea, the more we like it – and this “mere exposure effect” doesn’t depend on us being conscious of the familiarity; the effect is stronger for stimuli that the “observer” never consciously sees…colonade

Kurt Cobain said something along the lines that the masses only liked “Smells Like Teen Spirit” so much (reacting far more strongly to it than any other song at concerts) because it had been “ground into their brains” by constant repetition on radio and MTV.

Apparently he was right about that.

Aberdeen lane (print)


As the election looms (and any time, come to that) be(a)ware of headlines bearing misinformation. Just because someone wants to grind it into your brain doesn’t make it true. (I am not in any way equating “Smells Like Teen Spirit” with anything written in any Murdoch “News”paper!) I’ll hop down off my soap box now. Peace and Love!