Day 23 — Bill & his posse of Nature Poets

Shakespeare’s birthday/deathday. Each year I try to write something Bill-affiliated. This can be made harder by having a theme superimposed over the top of it (ie, like pandemics or climate change) but at least it forces me to think outside a few boxes for some green inspiration. Which is always a good thing. Need to apologise in advance for the long pome, I didn’t have the time to write a short poem.

If only poets had the power that multinational corporations have to effect change in the world.


Bill S & his posse of Nature Poets

Bill being a country boy born & bred
was a big lover of nature
dropping dozens of wildflowers
animals, trees, natural events
63 birds, & more into his plays ;
with whimsical abandon
he set them in forests, on coasts, 
on rugged heaths
— if he were writing today
climate change would be his bent

so too Bill Blake’s rage
against dark Satanic Mills
which were pumping his pristine
English skies full of black soot 
& were, after all, the beginning 
of man-made climate change

the posse is being assembled

Lawrence & his dark forest soul 
would definitely be there …
with his animalistic magic 
of snakes & bats & pansies 

a third Bill, Wordsworth
knew nature was divine
& believed true happiness 
was achieved when existing 
in harmony with it, always happy 
to wax lyrical about daffodils, 
clouds, & Tintern Abbey

youthful firebrand Keats
loved nature’s vibrant scents 
& colours & cool calming water
a man who happily sang odes 
to Nightingales, Autumn, & the Sea
would get in on this action

although somewhat simpler 
in scope another John (Clare)
less complex & less well known
marvellously describes the natural 
world & rural life in affectionate
vignettes of Winter Evening,
Wood Pictures in Summer,
& the Little Trotty Wagtail

Emerson’s belief that we understand 
truth only by studying the song of nature
& Humblebees & Snow Storms

& Shelley’s awareness she destroys 
as well as creates; singing odes 
to the West Wind, Skylarks & Mont Blanc

& Dickinson finding awe in everything
Light Existing In Spring
Birds coming down the Walk

& Frost whose name suggests he should be
though not a pure nature poet loved
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening

many modern poets too are in the posse

the marvellous Mary Oliver who instills 
poems with wonder-filled images 
drawn from daily walks near her home
Wild Geese & Journeys on Summer Days

& Gary Snyder an activist who speaks 
with an ancient voice but modern tongue
of fertile soil, animal magic, 
the power of solitude, rebirth; 
the love & ecstasy of the dance
& Mountains and Rivers Without End

but as wonderful as all these 
nature loving poets are
what we really need
is for everyone to remember
they too are poets, alive in this bleak
eternal universe only because
our home is a delicately crafted
paean to life

Day 22 — The Ark

Inspired by a line of Warren Buffet’s when he was pretending to be the billionaire Green Messiah who would save us all.


The Ark

let’s assume : just for a moment : that anthropomorphic climate change : is absolutely : fair dinkum : ’od’sblood : a serious thing : something : worth worrying about : & after all : the odds are looking : pretty good : or bad : depending on : your linguistic bent : that they are :: surely : if we’re going : to make a mistake : let’s err : on the side of caution : on the side : of the planet : of the only planet we have : y’know : just to be safe

to use a metaphor : that doesn’t entirely : hold water : but might be appealing : to more conservative minded : perusers of poetry : if you have : any common sense : you have to build : the ark :  before  : the rains come : no good : still hammering : it all together : even as : the flood waters : lap your thighs

but truthfully : we need : more than a single Ark : remember Noah’s : was built : not to hold : everyone : on earth : only the privileged : few

hmmmm : if only : there was something : big enough : that could : sustain : us : all

Day 13 – vision


wise indigenous 
people the world 
over  value the earth 
more than we beasts
in the civilised west
— in their spiritual
connections to nature ;
beliefs that healthy people 
need healthy country ;
& the practise of making
decisions by considering
the impacts choices have  seven
generations into the future

whereas short sighted  CEOs
pollies  decision makers  &  spine
less  policy wonks  look no 
further  than their  bottom  line

Day 02 – twilight (& touristas)

02 twilight

No longwinded introduction needed tonight.


twilight: autumn roll call driving home

in the 25 dusky kilometres
between work’s end
& my welcoming door
i choose the slower route
the winding back way
through hills

by so doing, i glimpse three
glitteringly furred foxes;
half a dozen twitchy roos;
two scraps of darkness
reveal themselves as bats;
a crossing echidna forces brakes;
& a stealth owl i can’t identify
skims the windscreen
in an unwise game of chicken 

& although these are all
common enough creatures
for my part of the earth
every one ticks the box
inside my greengrass heart
labelled TINY THRILL



BONUS POEM: April 2, 2018

Wandering round Rome’s big Roman attractions (the Flavian Amphitheatre, Circus Maximus, Palatine Hill, the Forum) has been somewhat surreal. I loved classics since a kid; read countless histories & fictions set there, that to experience them firsthand was bliss (despite the blisters, boom, you’re welcome).

But this is the subject of a separate poem. What you get today is somewhat lighter & more whimsical 😬.


Selfie Schtick 

something about me
clearly implies trust
(or an ability to fake it

for today, on top
of Palatine Hill,
i’ve been requested
to supplant
the selfie stick
almost a dozen times

i quickly developed
my own schtick
by the second request
— a trio of American
boys who laughed
at the result

which of course
meant the joke
grew with exposure
till its inevitable
demise with a Russian
(perhaps) family 

who failed to see
the humour in having
one photo of my face
& two blurry ones
of their own four
(so poorly framed
owing to gross self
congratulation with
my cheekiness)
i neglected to include
the Vatican
in the background


Day 26 – the green green grass of home

Another poem crossed off the ToDoList. It’s been a pretty successful NaPoWriMo in that regard; but it is weird how things rarely turn out the way you thought they might. I dunno if other poets manage to craft poems as they first envisage them, but for me they often go off in a different direction. Not sure if that’s cos I’m too lazy to keep them on track or what …


fuming suburbia

at my previous residence my neighbours
considered me lazy because i wasn’t a fan
of leafraking, grassclipping or any activities
that fought old ma nature’s inbuilt supremacy

here: the local gardeners get their revenge
by deliberately staggering their duties
over ev-ree-thing — weed whackers at 20
paces, a duelling banjos for the bourgeoisie

forget the 24-hour news cycle, ours is a 7-day
mowing cycle cos weekends are no respite
— sure, the professionals may have gone
… but that’s when amateur hour begins

how hard would it be for us all to sit down
& schedule a day, say from 11am-1pm
— suddenly Whippersnipper Wednesday
is born & we all. just. get. it. done…

granted it’d be a crazynoisy couple of hours
but at least it leaves the rest of the week
in blessed peace — seriously, there can’t be
that much kikuyu in my damn street



~ interlude ~ “Eureka!” Another poem published…

Just a quick heads up to let folks know that one of my poems was published in yesterday’s Eureka Street.  Link here.

I’d like to say it’s a cleverly timed poem which combines two very hot topics in the news ATM — terrorism (internal) & climate change — so therefore well done, Mr Finger On The Pulse Of Contemporary Issues Poet Of The People …

… but the fact it’s appeared when it has, is probably just a coinkydink.

Hope you enjoy it…

(No doubt I’ll enjoy the cheque when it arrives. It may even been in double figures 🙂 )


Image taken from here