‘The Empty Glass’ by Henry Lawson

The Empty Glass © Gretchen Bernet-Ward 2022

The Empty Glass

by Henry Lawson, 1906

There are three lank bards in a borrowed room —

Ah! The number is one too few —

They have deemed their home and the bars unfit

For the thing that they have to do.

Three glasses they fill with the Land’s own wine,

And the bread of life they pass.

Their glasses they take, which they slowly raise —

And they drink to an empty glass.

(There’s a greater glare in the street to-night,

And a louder rush and roar,

There’s a mad crowd yelling the winner’s name,

And howling the cricket score:

Oh! The bright moonlight on the angels white,

And the tombs and the monuments grand —

And down by the water at Waverley

There’s a little lone mound of sand.)

Oh, the drinkers would deem them drunk or mad,

And the barmaid stare and frown —

Each lays a hand on the empty glass

Ere they turn it upside down.

There’s a name they know, in a hand they know,

Was scratched with a diamond there —

And they place it in sight — turn on more light —

And they fill their glasses fair.

There’s a widow that weeps by the Hornsby line,

And she stood by him long and true —

But the widow should think by the Hornsby line

That others have loved him too,

‘Twas a peaceful end, and his work was done,

When called with the year away;

And the greatest lady in all the land

Is working for her to-day.

If the widow should fear for her children’s fate,

Or brood on a future lot,

In a frivolous land with her widowed state

In a short twelve months forgot.

She can lay her down for a peaceful rest

And forget her grief in sleep,

For his brothers have taken an oath to-night,

An oath that their hearts can keep.

They have taken an oath to his memory,

A pledge they cannot recall,

To stand by the woman that stood by him,

Through poverty, illness and all.

They are young men yet, or the prime of life,

And as each lays down his trust,

May the world be kind to the left behind,

And their native land be just.

(Silence of death in town to-night,

And the streets seem strangely clear —

Have the pitiful slaves of the gambling curse

Fled home for a strange new fear?

Oh, the soft moonlight on the angels white,

Where the beautiful marbles stand —

And down by the rollers at Waverley

There’s a mound of the golden sand.)

Henry Lawson, 1906, Australian poet

Source:

http://www.ironbarkresources.com/henrylawson/EmptyGlass.html

https://www.britannica.com/biography/Henry-Lawson

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

Knowledge and Wisdom

Image © Gretchen Bernet-Ward 2022

Alfred, Lord Tennyson, in full Alfred Tennyson, 1st Baron Tennyson of Aldworth and Freshwater (born 6 August, 1809, Somersby, Lincolnshire, England — died 6 October, 1892, Aldworth, Surrey) an English poet often regarded as the chief representative of the Victorian age in poetry. He was raised to the peerage in 1884.

Source https://www.britannica.com/biography/Alfred-Lord-Tennyson

Clouds, No Daffodils

Clouds from Mt Coot-tha lookout, Brisbane © Gretchen Bernet-Ward 2022

I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud 

By WILLIAM WORDSWORTH

I wandered lonely as a cloud

That floats on high o’er vales and hills,

When all at once I saw a crowd,

A host, of golden daffodils;

Beside the lake, beneath the trees,

Fluttering and dancing in the breeze…..

Remember this poem from school days?
Complete verse on Poetry Foundation

https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/45521/i-wandered-lonely-as-a-cloud

Gretchen Bernet-Ward


I have been WP blogging 5 years so that is 10,000 views per year – maybe! GBW 2022

D H Lawrence and the Swan

Swan © Gretchen Bernet-Ward 2022

Relativity

I like relativity and quantum theories
because I don’t understand them
and they make me feel as if space shifts about
like a swan that can’t settle,
refusing to sit still and be measured;
and as if the atom were an impulsive thing
always changing its mind.

by

D. H. Lawrence (1921)


David Herbert Richards Lawrence (1885 – 1930) was an English novelist, poet, essayist, critic, playwright, and painter. 

Australian wild
swans are black

WILD BIRD RESCUES, GOLD COAST, QUEENSLAND
http://wildbirdrescues.com.au/feeding-native-birds/feeding-swans-and-ducks/
Read why you should NOT feed wild swans!

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

Reading Wales #Dewithon22 has Arrived!

This will be my fourth Reading Wales #dewithon and I am excited at the list of Welsh authors and poets which Book Jotter has assembled to tempt our reading taste buds.

Source one book, source ten!
Create your own list!
See my list!
Join in Reading Wales!

Currently I have six books on a waiting list at my local library because it will be easier to collect them rather than hanging around waiting for an interstate or overseas parcel delivery.

I hold Covid-19 responsible and also a catastrophic flood which swept down the Queensland coast, through my city of Brisbane (everything is still soaked) and pounded coastal New South Wales before heading towards Sydney. Notice how I worked in the word ‘Wales’?

A MESSAGE FROM THE CREATOR
BOOK JOTTER, PAULA BARDELL-HEDLEY

Welcome to the fourth Reading Wales celebration (aka Dewithon 22), a month-long event beginning on Saint David’s Day, during which book lovers from all parts of the world are encouraged to read, discuss and review literature by and about writers from Wales.

For more in-depth information on this reading jolly, head over to DHQ (Dewithon Headquarters), and to see what’s happening this year, please follow this link. You can also share your thoughts and posts on Twitter by using the hashtags #dewithon22 and/or #walesreadathon22.

____________________

  • visit DHQ Reading Wales Dewithon22 websites below.
  • click ‘On Our Shelves’ to browse Dewithoner’s suggested reading list.
  • source books relating to Wales from library, bookshop, online.
  • post a book review and tell everyone!

N.B. Dewithon22 reading includes fiction, non-fiction, poetry, plays, in fact anything with a significant link to Wales.

Mwynhewch ddarllen! Enjoy reading!

____________________

What have I ambitiously chosen and which are available to me?

  1. Turning Points in Welsh History 1485-1914 by Stuart Broomfield and Euryn Madoc-Jones UWP. AVAILABLE at my local library. READ
  2. Here Be Dragons by Sharon Kay Penman (because my family are dragon fans and it’s part of Welsh Princes trilogy I have always wanted to read). DOWNLOADED e-book. READ
  3. Black Valley (Jessica Mayhew book 2, couldn’t source book 1) by Charlotte Williams, a domestic drama arts thriller of some intensity. AVAILABLE in my local library. READ
  4. On the Red Hill: Where Four Lives Fell into Place by Mike Parker, a relative new book which according to The Guardian is “A moving, multi-layered memoir…extraordinary, ambitious…” ON ORDER.
  5. The Owl Service by Alan Garner was too tempting, so I’ve added it to my list. The Guardian says “…the plot is very gripping and slightly creepy.” AVAILABLE in my local library. READ
  6. Sugar and Slate by Charlotte Williams – past winner of the Arts Council of Wales Book of the Year, an autobiographical story of a Welsh-African mixed-race woman who brings her unique qualities to the story, transforming it into a lively and living account of her life. ON ORDER.

I’m keen to get started 😀 and already made some headway!

My thoughts are that I will eventually read them all—perhaps not all in March—and I am looking forward to having my mind held captive by the literati of Wales. When I put down the books and walk Terra Australis again, my reviews will be either here or Goodreads.

Looking forward to reading about what you are reading!

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

#dewithon22 Can you see the hidden face in this famous Welsh painting? The answer is here https://bookjotter.com/2022/02/02/are-you-looking-forward-to-reading-wales-2022/

John B Tabb was Ahead of His Time…

Image © Gretchen Bernet-Ward 2021

… or have we gone backwards?

The small green book nearest the candle is simply titled “Poems”, a volume of verse by John B Tabb. Each poem is on a single page and has been written in similar length to Twitter and Instagram. All the way from 1894—I had to share it with you!

There are 172 pages, one short poem per page, extolling nature, love, life and death. I guess Tabb wanted only his poetry to shine because there is nothing personal inside.

The first page has an important red logo with lilies and Latin written on it, not for the poet but the company insignia of Copeland and Day, Boston, MDCCCXCIV (1894)

The second page states “Entered according to the Act of Congress, in the year 1894, by Copeland and Day, in the Office of the Librarian of Congress at Washington.”

The back page reads “This first edition of poems by John B. Tabb is limited to five hundred copies, which have been printed during the autumn of 1894 by John Wilson and Son, Cambridge, Massachusetts.”

A slim volume which appears to have been well handled over many years, and the pale deckle parchment is showing its age—see below.

The big question is “How did this volume arrive at a book fair in Brisbane Australia 127 years later?”

GBW 2021

After the formality of the front pages comes a seven page index (in tiny print) which has intriguing titles listed under headings. I guess the first are general rhymes, the next Quatrains and then Sonnets.

Here are some of my favourites—

The Phonograph

Hark! What his fellow-warblers heard
And uttered in the light,
Their phonograph, the mocking-bird,
Repeats to them at night.

Imagination

Here Fancy far outdoes the deed;
So hath Eternity the need
Of telling more than Time has taught
To fill the boundaries of Thought.

The Dandelion

With locks of gold to-day;
To-morrow, silver gray;
Then blossom bald. Behold,
O man, thy fortune told!

Evolution

Out of the dusk a shadow,
Then, a spark;
Out of the cloud a silence,
Then, a lark;
Out of the heart a rapture,
Then, a pain;
Out of the dead, cold ashes,
Life again.

Compensation

How many an acorn falls to die
For one that makes a tree!
How many a heart must pass me by
For one that cleaves to me!

“We may use different words but emotions are eternal”

Who was this man John B Tabb? Well, his full name and title was Father John Banister Tabb (22 March 1845 – 19 November 1909) and he was an American poet, Roman Catholic priest, and professor of English Contents. He was born into a wealthy family in Amelia County, Virginia, was a blockade runner for the Confederacy during the Civil War, converted to the Roman Catholic Church in 1872, taught Greek and English at Saint Charles College (Ellicott City, Maryland) and was ordained as a priest in 1884. Among his other works, Father Tabb published eight poetry books and was widely published in prestigious magazines of the day including Harper’s Monthly and The Cosmopolitan. The Tabb Monument in Amelia County, Virginia, is dedicated to his memory.
Source https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_B._Tabb

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

——oooOOOooo——

Image © Gretchen Bernet-Ward 2021

‘The Tide Rises, the Tide Falls’ Longfellow

Tidal flats of Wynnum Manly foreshore Moreton Bay, Queensland © Dot Bernet 2021

The Tide Rises, the Tide Falls

By Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

The tide rises, the tide falls,

The twilight darkens, the curlew calls;

Along the sea-sands damp and brown

The traveller hastens toward the town,

      And the tide rises, the tide falls.

Darkness settles on roofs and walls,

But the sea, the sea in the darkness calls;

The little waves, with their soft, white hands,

Efface the footprints in the sands,

      And the tide rises, the tide falls.

The morning breaks; the steeds in their stalls

Stamp and neigh, as the hostler calls;

The day returns, but nevermore

Returns the traveller to the shore,

      And the tide rises, the tide falls.

* * * * *

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, American poet (1807-1882)

https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/44651/the-tide-rises-the-tide-falls

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

Twilight falls on Wynnum Manly foreshore Moreton Bay, Queensland © Dot Bernet 2021

Highway Thrills with Bukowski

“Bright Red Car” from The Last Night of the Earth Poems by Charles Bukowski, author poet (Black Sparrow Press 1992) and yes, I know the car illustration is yellow but this car jousting is, well… just read it…

I try to avoid speed duels on the freeway but the most curious thing

is

that all my speeding tickets are when I am quietly driving

along on

my

own.

when I am in a high speed duel, darting in and out of lane

at near 100 m.p.h.

the police are never

about.

when I get tagged for speeding it is for cruising along,

day-dreaming, at a mere 70

m.p.h.

I received 3 such nonsensical tickets in 3 weeks so

I laid low for some time — 2 years, in fact, but today

out there

there was a fellow in a bright red car, I have no idea what

model or kind

and I have no idea of how it all started but I believe that

I started it:

I was in the fast lane going about 70

and I caught the flash of bright red in my rear view and

as he swung out to pass me on the right

he was doing 75

and there was time for him to pass

then cut into the fast lane ahead of me

but something made me hit the throttle and cut him

off

locking him in behind an old lady with a CHRIST

SAVES bumper sticker.

this seemed to piss him no end

and next I knew he had swung over on my bumper,

so close that his windshield and my taillights

seemed one.

this pissed me no end and I was being blocked by a

green Volks directly ahead

but I cut right through an opening and shot

ahead.

bright red went wild, spotted the far lane open,

roared over and gunned it

along.

after that, it was just me and bright red

jockeying for spots.

he would garner a lead, then with a crazy gamble

of lane change I would regain the

lead.

during this duel my destination was forgotten and I’m

sure his was

too.

watching him, I couldn’t help but admire his driving

skill; he took a few more chances than I

but I had a little bit the better machine

so it

just about evened out.

then

suddenly

we were alone: a freak break in the traffic

had set us free together

and we really opened

up.

he had a short lead but my machine slowly gained; I

inched up near him,

then I was at his side and I couldn’t help but

look over.

he was a young Japanese-American, maybe 18, 19

and I looked at him and

laughed.

I saw him check me out.

he saw a 70 year old white man

with a face like

Frankenstein.

the young man took his foot off the throttle and

dropped back

I let him go.

I turned the radio

on.

I was 18 miles past my destination but it

didn’t matter.

it was a beautiful sunny day.

* * * * *

Charles Bukowski (August 1920 – March 1994) a German American author, an influential, prolific and transgressive 20th century poet, short story writer, and novelist. 

Reference https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poets/charles-bukowski

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

bAYLY’S bEDAZZLED mOTH

Dazzled Moth © Gretchen Bernet-Ward 2021

“Fly away, pretty moth, to the shade

Of the leaf where you slumbered all day;

Be content with the moon and the stars, pretty moth,

And make use of your wings while you may. . .

But tho’ dreams of delight may have dazzled you quite,

They at last found it dangerous play;

Many things in this world that look bright, pretty moth,

Only dazzle to lead us astray”.

By Thomas Haynes Bayly


“Songs, Ballads, and Other Poems” by Thomas Haynes Bayly (October 1797 – April 1839) an English poet, songwriter, playwright, and novelist https://pennyspoetry.fandom.com/wiki/Thomas_Haynes_Bayly

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

Take A Detour…

IMG_20201118_123239
Take a detour © Gretchen Bernet-Ward 2021

“The Road Not Taken” is a narrative poem by Robert Frost, published in 1916 as the first poem in the collection Mountain Interval.

The Road Not Taken

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveller, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves, no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and—
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.

By American poet Robert Lee Frost (March 1874 – January 1963)

Condamine River Sheep Shearers on the Track

Condamine River sheep shearers on the Track 1800s Queensland Australia

Your Precious Life

IMG_20200913_122610
Photo Gretchen Bernet-Ward 2020 — Quote from poem The Summer Day by Mary Oliver https://www.loc.gov/poetry/180/133.html

The Summer Day

Who made the world?

Who made the swan, and the black bear?

Who made the grasshopper?

This grasshopper, I mean-

the one who has flung herself out of the grass,

the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,

who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down-

who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.

Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.

Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.

I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.

I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down

into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,

how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,

which is what I have been doing all day.

Tell me, what else should I have done?

Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?

Tell me, what is it you plan to do

with your one wild and precious life?

Mary Oliver

Mary Oliver (1935-2019) author and Pulitzer Prize winning poet.
https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poets/mary-oliver

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

Poetry Clipart 09

‘Trophy’ Poem

IMG_20200629_115807
Long forgotten heroes … or maybe not …

TROPHY

1st place

Legitimate

The first time I’ve won a

Trophy

In my entire life

And you weren’t there.

I was so excited

My body

SHOOK!

I never expected to win anything

At all

And

When I told you, I got

“Good job”

You encourage me to do this

Begged

Pleaded

Anything you could do

To make me join you in it

And then

I got

Everything

But not

Your joy

Poem by Alice Julia Miller
October 2013
https://hellopoetry.com/poem/497020/trophy/

Poetry Clipart 09 Gretchen Bernet-Ward

‘Ode to the Cat’ by Pablo Neruda

IMG_20200706_185218
Rescue cat JoJo does not want to sleep © Gretchen Bernet-Ward

EXTRACT FROM ‘ODE TO THE CAT’

by Pablo Neruda

… Oh independent wild beast

of the house

arrogant

vestige of the night,

lazy, gymnastic

and alien,

very deep cat,

secret policeman

of bedrooms,

insignia

of a

disappeared velvet,

surely there is no

enigma

in your manner,

perhaps you are not a mystery,

everyone knows of you

and you belong

to the least mysterious inhabitant,

perhaps everyone believes it,

everyone believes himself the owner,

proprietor,

uncle

of a cat,

companion,

colleague,

disciple

or friend

of his cat …

READ THE FULL POEM

https://www.librarything.com/topic/26410
Listed Number 8 but originally from ‘Odes to Common Things’ by poet Pablo Neruda 

There are several different translations from Chilean Spanish to English:
https://leonarddurso.com/2013/07/22/from-ode-to-a-cat-by-pablo-neruda/
http://unmasking.tripod.com/poemless/pn20.htm
https://amiracarluccio.com/2017/10/19/long-poems-ode-to-a-cat-by-pablo-neruda-oda-al-gato/
https://www.poemhunter.com/poem/ode-to-the-cat/

Poetry Clipart 14PROFILE

Pablo Neruda (1904–1973) born Parral, Chile.
Attended Chile University and became a poet, politician, activist, diplomat.
National Prize for Literature Chile (1945)
International Peace Prize (1950)
Lenin Peace Prize (1953)
American Academy of Arts and Letters (Foreign Honorary ∙ Literature ∙ 1968)
Nobel Prize in Literature (1971)
Golden Wreath (1972)

He was perhaps the most important Latin American poet of the 20th century and for a deeper look at his intriguing life I recommend https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Pablo_Neruda

‘AS EVERY CAT OWNER KNOWS, NOBODY OWNS A CAT’ — Ellen Perry Berkeley

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

Mother’s Day Stories & Poems Wanted

Valentine's Day 11

Exactly what we need in these days of social-distancing!

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

Positive Words Magazine

I’m looking for story and poetry submissions for the May issue. A nice way to honour a special person at a time when we might not be able to visit…

Mothers, grandmothers, daughters who have children of their own, special aunts and friends…send them in 🙂

Positive Words magazine

PO Box 798

Heathcote 3523 Victoria

View original post

Bush Ballad ‘The Banks of the Condamine’

The Banks of the Condamine

 

Oh, hark the dogs are barking, love,

I can no longer stay,

The men are all gone mustering

And it is nearly day.

And I must be off by the morning light,

Before the sun doth shine,

To meet the Roma shearers,

On the banks of the Condamine.

 

Oh Willie, dearest Willie,

I’ll go along with you,

I’ll cut off all my auburn fringe

And be a shearer, too.

I’ll cook, and count your tally, love,

While ringer-o you shine,

And I’ll wash your greasy moleskins

On the banks of the Condamine.

 

Oh, Nancy, dearest Nancy,

With me you cannot go,

The squatters gave us orders, love,

No woman should do so;

Your delicate constitution

Is not equal unto mine,

To withstand the constant tigering

On the banks of the Condamine.

 

Oh Willy, dearest Willy,

Then stay back home with me,

We’ll take up a selection,

And a farmer’s wife I’ll be.

I’ll help you husk the corn, love,

And cook your meals so fine.

You’ll forget the ram-stag mutton

On the banks of the Condamine.

 

Oh, Nancy, dearest Nancy,

Please do not hold me back,

Down there the boys are waiting,

And I must be on the track.

So here’s a goodbye kiss, love,

Back home here I’ll incline

When we’ve shorn the last of the jumbucks

On the banks of the Condamine.

 

Anonymous.

 

 

From ‘Bush Songs, Ballads and Other Verse’ selected by Douglas Stewart and Nancy Keesing and published 1967 by Angus & Robertson Ltd, printed by Discovery Press.

The following information from—
https://music.stevetowson.com/track/the-banks-of-the-condamine-2

Poetry Clipart 08

Australian traditional music has a dearth of love songs, but here is one from our home state of Queensland.  The English folk singer and collector A.L. Lloyd wrote about this song—

“Throughout the fifty years from 1820 to 1870, broadside printers in London, Newcastle, Dublin and elsewhere did a good trade with the stall-ballad called ‘Banks of the Nile’, a song from the Napoleonic Wars.  The song spread to America and Australia, and in Queensland it became parodied as ‘The Banks of the Condamine’, with the hero no longer a soldier but a horse-breaker or a shearer.  It has turned up in sundry shapes, to various tunes, many times over, mostly in Queensland.”

FOOTNOTE:

  1. This bush ballad was first published under another name in The Queenslander, the literary edition of the Brisbane Courier in 1894.
  2. The Condamine River in southeast Queensland is 657 kilometres long and starts below Cons Plain and ends at the Balonne River.
  3. It was named in honour of Lieut. Thomas De La Condamine (1797-1873) the A.D.C. to Governor Ralph Darling who also has a river named after him.  But the Darling River has been known as the Baaka by the Barkindji people for thousands of years.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Condamine_River

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

Condamine River Sheep Shearer Demo

Fire and Rain from Poet Kate Llewellyn

Kate Llewellyn is a hidden treasure.  I had not read any of her works before today but she is reaching the age of legend status and should be acknowledged for her beautiful poetry now rather than in retrospect.

In ‘Blue Mountains Christmas’ Kate Llewellyn explores the particular delight of summer rain which breaks a dry spell:

Yesterday, smoke from the valley-–

I thought it was mist

until I smelt it-–

and today, each leaf holds water drops,

shining – it rained in the night.

Kate Llewellyn expresses wonder in the capacity of nature for regeneration in the face of disaster, and nature’s opportunism.  In ‘Magpies’ she defines the summer heat and leaving a garden sprinkler on while a bushfire rages:

It had been hot for days,

the garden sprawled-–

hit like a cricketer.

I left a hose on,

hanging in the apple tree,

and went indoors and slept.

Magpies found this fountain

and stalked around.

They made a midsummer opera

and gargled water-–

it became their song.

They sang as if to praise

the fountain in the tree.

While all this was happening

a hundred fires swept the State.

Great trees exploded,

birds and animals caught fire.

People died and houses burnt,

yet still these magpies sang

around the fountain in the tree.

Poet Kate Llewellyn Playing With Water book
‘Playing with Water’ (Pymble NSW HarperCollins 2005) creates a meditation on nature, on community, on the cycle of life. A lyrical memoir that is a celebration of the senses and the seasons.

Australia is the driest inhabited continent on the planet.  It is natural that drought and the regeneration which comes from bushfires and drought-breaking rains are timeless subjects in our poetry and evocatively captured by Kate Llewellyn.

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

PROFILE

Kate Llewellyn is an award-winning Australian poet, author, diarist and travel writer.  She is the author of twenty-four books comprising eight of poetry, five of travel, journals, memoir ‘The Dressmaker’s Daughter’, letters and essays.  “Kate Llewellyn is naturally poetic, naturally personal, and uniquely generous with it.” writes Australian Book Review’s South Australian State Editor Peter Goldsworthy.  Further reading Poetry Library.

ABC Radio National transcript:
https://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/saturdayextra/kate-llewellyn/3288742

‘Share Your Story’ Writing Competition and Anthology

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LEGENDARY BULLOCK TEAM leaving Jondaryan Woolshed, west of Toowoomba, Queensland, loaded with bales of wool. In his heyday 1858-1862 manager James White employed 88 blade shearers in this huge T-shaped woolshed. Illustration hand-printed 1985 by H. Sperring.


Submissions are open for ‘Bedtime Yarns and Ballads from the Australian Bush’ in 2020 Share Your Story.

Here’s what coordinator, author and literary entrepreneur, Michelle Worthington has to say in her newsletter:  ‘This year’s theme ‘Bedtime Yarns and Ballads from the Australian Bush’ will have judges looking for creative, engaging short stories or poems inspired by life in Australia, Australian animals, the Outback or overcoming adversity which will appeal to children aged 0 to 12 years to be read at bedtime.’

Map of Australia 06A ‘yarn’ is a rambling story, particularly one that is implausible, and poetry must be in traditional Australian ballad format.  Michelle encourages writers to think of a modern version of Blinky Bill, Banjo Patterson, Dorothea Mackellar, ‘Wombat Stew’ (I add my own personal favourite ‘Snugglepot and Cuddlepie’) for a new generation of readers.

Michelle Worthington goes on to say ‘We would love aspiring authors of all ages to have the chance to be published in our next Anthology to raise money for Aussie’s doing it tough, with proceeds donated to the NSW Rural Fire Service’.

NOTE:  ‘The winning entries will be included in an Anthology to be launched in October 2020, and all successful authors and illustrators will be invited as VIP Guests to the Pyjama Party Book Launch at the Queensland Children’s Hospital and locations around Australia during the launch month.’

Entries open 1 Feb 2020 and close 9pm 30 April 2020

Poetry Clipart 08For competition guidelines and entry requirements, visit the website to sign up for Share Your Story newsletter

https://shareyourstorypublishing.com/

Michelle Worthington is an international award-winning author and business woman.  As Founder of Share Your Story Australia, she waves her wand to coach aspiring authors and illustrators all over the world to achieve their dreams of publication.  Michelle is also available for speaking engagements, book signings and school visits.  She runs diverse workshops, and if you are thinking of becoming a writer, check out Share Your Story or visit Facebook or contact Michelle for further information.


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Maybe you could rework the legend of NED KELLY (December 1854 – November 1880) an Australian bushranger best known for wearing a suit of bulletproof armour during his final shootout with the police.

Poetry ‘Deep Into the Heart of Wales’

Sunday 1st March 2020 the Wales Readathon and Dewithon20 begins!  To get fired up, read Gareth Evans emotive poem, one of many he penned on a trek across Wales.

“In the summer of 2003, Gareth Evans walked the length of Wales from Cardiff to Holyhead, taking 28 days to cover over 500km and 18000m of ascent.  Twenty-eight poems were inspired by the journey.  Some are humorous, some are philosophical, some are descriptive and all are the product of quiet, solitary observation.  Join Welshman Gareth as he probes deep into the heart of Wales.”

Here is one of his poems—

“The Dragon’s Back”

Turned to motionless stone by a great Welsh wizard

His red scaly back turned to a silvery grey

The most powerful dragon that ever lived

Is harnessed by a mysterious, magical spell

His elongated head peers down on the Llanberis lakes

His massive body full of spikes is a fearsome sight

His rock-studded spine slumped high above Ogwen

Gashes line his steep sides like old war wounds shooting down to Idwal

Gullies and arêtes form the webs of his folded wings

A bristly tail drops down suddenly, decorated by spectacular pinnacles

Before flicking up again with one last majestic sweep

To its triple-pronged tip soaring towards the heavens

The roar that once filled the valleys preserved forever

In the howl of the wind and the scream of the jets in Nant Ffrancon

His beauty is held in the eagles that now circle above him

He lives on in the spirit of the people of Wales

Courage and passion are mirrored in their eyes

And his fire still burns in the depths of their hearts

By Gareth L Evans 2003

Poetry from “Deep Into the Heart of Wales”
http://www.authorsden.com/visit/viewPoetry.asp?AuthorID=8106

Wales Readathon 2020
https://bookjotter.com/2020/02/03/are-you-ready-for-wales-readathon-2020/

My Dewithon20 post
https://thoughtsbecomewords.com/2020/02/21/are-you-ready-for-wales-readathon-2020/

‘One Moonlit Night’ by Caradog Prichard is currently winging its way to me via Booktopia.  It is the book chosen by Dewithon20 as a group read.  Or pick your own book and join us!

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

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Dewithon Logo Daffs

 

‘Ebb’ Poem by Edna St. Vincent Millay

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‘Ebb’ by Edna St. Vincent Millay (1892-1950)

Edna St. Vincent Millay was born in Rockland, Maine USA, on 22 February 1892.  Edna’s poetry and playwright collections include The Ballad of the Harp-Weaver (Flying Cloud Press 1922) winner of the Pulitzer Prize, and Renascence and Other Poems (Harper 1917)

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Edna won a scholarship to Vassar College and became famous during her lifetime for her poetry with its passionate, formal lyrics, her flame-red hair, outspoken political views and unconventional lifestyle.  She died on 18 October, 1950, in Austerlitz, New York.

Poets https://poets.org/poem/ebb
Poetry Foundation https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/55993/renascence

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

‘Peach’ by D. H. Lawrence

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Peach

 

Would you like to throw a stone at me?

Here, take all that’s left of my peach.

 

Blood-red, deep:

Heaven knows how it came to pass.

Somebody’s pound of flesh rendered up.

 

Wrinkled with secrets

And hard with the intention to keep them.

 

Why, from silvery peach-bloom,

From that shallow-silvery wine-glass on a short stem

This rolling, dropping, heavy globule?

 

I am thinking, of course, of the peach before I ate it.

 

Why so velvety, why so voluptuous heavy?

Why hanging with such inordinate weight?

Why so indented?

 

Why the groove?

Why the lovely, bivalve roundnesses?

Why the ripple down the sphere?

Why the suggestion of incision?

 

Why was not my peach round and finished like a billiard ball?

It would have been if man had made it.

Though I’ve eaten it now.

 

But it wasn’t round and finished like a billiard ball;

And because I say so, you would like to throw something at me.

 

Here, you can have my peach stone.

 

San Gervasio  D. H. Lawrence (1923)

 

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David Herbert Lawrence, English author, poet, literary critic (1885–1930) is regarded as one of the most influential writers of the 20th century.

Lawrence’s hard working-class upbringing shaped his life, and he wrote extensively about the experience of growing up in the poor mining town of Eastwood, Nottinghamshire.  “Whatever I forget,” he said, “I shall not forget the Haggs, a tiny red brick farm on the edge of the wood, where I got my first incentive to write.”

A prolific writer and traveller, Lawrence earned fame for his earthy novels (some banned) and short stories, and subsequently received acclaim for his personal letters in which he detailed a range of emotions, from exhilaration to depression to ruminating on life and death.

The story of his ashes and final resting place makes intriguing reading on Poets’ Graves
https://www.poetsgraves.co.uk/lawrence.htm

Gretchen Bernet-Ward