Wild Wetlands in Narrandera

Last Saturday I had the opportunity to read my poetry relating to rivers, wetlands and wildlife at the Narrandera Arts Centre

It was an event organised by Dr Greg Pritchard to recognise these water-based ecosystems and included projections onto the former Masonic building.

Other poets on the night included Dr Derek Motion, Julie Briggs (both shown) and Peita Vincent (who took the pic of me). I didn't get a pic of the latter but we had a nice picnic in the park opposite the venue.

It was good to see around 30 people in the audience, including a number of faces I recognised from the Murrumbidgee Field Naturalists.

For my reading I grouped together a series of haiku.

My son Oscar asked if he could join, then asked if it should be a haiku or limerick.

I suggested the latter and he came up with:
There once was a river called Murray
whose water was all in a flurry
from place to place
the water did race
I wonder why it’s in such a hurry

Static electricity

I don't think I ever noticed static electricity before moving to the country

It wasn't until I was living in a farmhouse, far away from city lights, that I first saw a flash of blue light generated by synthetic fabric.

In hindsight it seems crazy not to have noticed static electricity being discharged before.

I certainly remember having felt it during primary school, when kids would shuffle their feet on the carpet and give each other a mild shock.

Yet I still remember the surprise of seeing it while living outside Wagga.

Fishy snap

Love and compromise


Look at trees in the Riverina and you see history in the landscape

I've posted about scarred trees (click on the "scar tree" tag at the bottom of this post) but here I'd like to look at the trunks ringbarked by Europeans in the late Nineteenth Century.

There are many examples to be found of trees that have overcome this practice.

Looking around a Brucedale property this morning and I spotted a Grey Box and a Yellow Box that had both lived after being ringbarked.

They both sprouted new trunks and both had gone on to grow for over a century and are now forming hollows that will be used as habitat for birds of increasing size and then possibly possums.

Another example was this Blakelyi Red Gum that lost its trunk and formed new ones. It may have been felled more recently, possibly the 1930s.

I really like these trees as symbols of resilience.


As a minister and shadow minister with the Australian Labor Party Tony Burke has held a variety of portfolios and shown himself to be capable

So I found it thoroughly depressing to see him pandering for 'likes' on Facebook this week.

It seemed a sad commentary on the state of Australian politics and the lack of a meaningful opposition to the policies being lobbied by business and foreign governments.

Neve's self-portrait

My daughter has etched another likeness onto the kitchen table

What the...?

My jaw dropped when I saw this ad from Hermes in the Australian Financial Review's magazine

Are they presenting a woman as like a dog being lured by a handbag?

C'mon -- it's 2018!