Weekly Photo Challenge: Out of this world – The Boss

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The Sturt Desert Pea is a striking flower that blooms roadside along highways and in other unexpected places.

When visiting mining regions up north my eyes constantly scan hoping I catch a glimpse of them.

To me, these gorgeous flowers, that bloom close to the ground in harsh clay earth look like aliens.

The centre is a huge glistening black ‘eye’, called ‘the boss’.

The flowers shines like satin and they grow in small clumps.

They are a visual feast!

As always

a dawn bird

 

 

Autumn

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A leaf fell from the tree,

it floated from the top

And landed at my feet

It was shaped like my heart

Its veins were gold, like memories

That sparkle in the morning light

And through the glint, I glimpsed

A promise of tomorrow

That follows the darkest night.

The leaf lay there, like a moment in time

And, although vivid

It was no longer green and new

I smiled as I leaned down for it

Like me, it was supple, not crushed

And like me, it danced

in the crosswinds that blew.

As I said goodbye to summer

A gentle breeze lifted the leaf

Off my hand and into the sky

And in that silent space

It drifted free

Just like me

Under a watchful, blue eye.

a dawn bird

Lunch with a stranger

via Daily Prompt: Dim

Unlike my usual style, this post, paints a picture with words …

I met her 20 years ago in the university cafeteria. We greeted each other, echoing the sentiment, “all men are bastards (but not the next one!)”. It drew genuine laughter from the source of deepest hurt. Today, she takes control of the spontaneity of our hug.

She has already ordered our smoked salmon. We toast social media for making it happen. My eyes glisten with affection for times once shared. She is still my beautiful friend, as she was then.

Soon I am puzzled by the dynamics of our friendship. I am from the suburbs. Judging from her love for chilled Veuve Clicquot at midday, she probably owns a seaside one. I am a worker. She works a room. She is still slender.  My body, on the other hand, is now a spacious home, that once housed my children.

She is constructed thoughtfully. Like art, she looks more beautiful when you step away from her. I am a random product of family genes. We do have one thing in common. I, too, visited a surgeon for years, but I was mended not enhanced. Scars, physical and emotional, graffiti my body and mind. Pain is a frigid companion in the aftermath of an accident.

The art of her surgeon is obvious. Like DaVinci, he had worked to a formula for that facial symmetry. I thought he got the math right, but not the measure of the silicone that flooded her cleavage.  She was ready to face the world again after “investing” $25,000 of her divorce settlement in her pursuit for new love. She was determine never to talk about children, fearing they would “carbon date” her. Unlike me, she laughs easily at this.

Decades later, she is no different. Time has stood still.  She is single again. Her profile picture is honest about what is not. Her tanned legs swing carelessly over the edge of a sailboat, red toenails defining her feet, behind the designer sunglasses she laughs provocatively at the sun. The Swan River below glistens like the two carats embedded in her ears. Her promotion is flawless. She is a screen siren. Sly responses from men whose computer keys are more functional than their once virile bodies ‘Like’ and Follow her Instagram faithfully.  She laughs, sex now is consummated with keystrokes.

Her sense of entitlement is effusive enough to dim the light of friendship.  How can this be!  Where did my friend go?  Did she lose her way?  Or did that happen to me?

As the table is cleared, we are no longer seated in an intimate, shared space of single womanhood. The distance between us is not geographical. I catch a glimpse of her world on the way out. Men, snug in their well-lived bodies line the walls where they can view those passing by, best. I recognise faces once prominent in judiciary, business and politics. Their mobile phones buzz incessantly. While their wives shop, they find company in a dating App, responding instinctively mid-sentence to computer-generated compatibility.  They pause and swipe right.

In the ensuing few seconds of frenetic texting, she looks up. Her smile is deft, she signals availability.

I walk across the car park, my steps heavy with a new reality.

I lunched with a stranger, today.

(Disclaimer:  This was a spontaneous writing exercise and a figment of my imagination!)

Until next time

a dawn bird

Almost autumn ..

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It’s the first day of autumn tomorrow in the Southern Hemisphere.  The days are getting shorter.  I wake to dark.  The early light is softer.  The shadows longer, before they take shape.  Yes, autumn is Nature’s zen time.  A time to let things fall away.

I’m home for a few days enjoying the simple things that life offers before I leave home again.

I’ve had time for a leisurely stroll through markets enjoying the mindfulness of the taste, feel and smell of fresh produce.  Summer lingered in the scent of peaches.  The green herbs still have their zest.  I’ve had time to query when did we change our habits to have a wall of different milks to choose?  Do we really need the mega bulk stores that promote savings if you buy more.  Really?!  I’ve found the only savings I make, is when I don’t buy anything at all.

I’ve had time to take a break and enjoy lunch with my son.  Listening to him talk about his university studies with enthusiasm, a parent could not ask for more.  I’m looking forward to a high tea with his fiancee and my daughter.  Amid girlish giggles, we have been practising holding out our pinky finger, delicately.

I’m enjoying a few days of simple living.  Taking time to talk to neighbours about this and that and nothing at all.  The veggie man in the supermarket, did not avoid me.  I had given him a piece of my mind a while back when I wanted some garlic and found they were labelled “Produce of Mexico” and “Produce of Peru”.  I queried why on earth, when we have market gardeners just down the road.  He proudly showed me the local produce section, yes, it’s tucked away in a corner and more expensive.  The law of supply and demand.

I’ve had time to enjoy roasting tomatoes in garlic and basil, to store in olive oil for a pasta meal, or for a quick hot soup.  I love the vibrancy of the colour and taste.  With crusty bread, it is one of my favourite meals.

When I lived in Canada, autumn was my favourite time of year.  I loved the changing of colours that we rarely find here.

Autumn in Western Australia has a chill to it.  Perhaps, we feel it more acutely because it’s the sudden shift in temperature from the intense summer, to a few degrees cooler.  I’ve come to embrace this.  I know as winter approaches, there will be pots of spicy goulash or beautiful stew to bring the family together.

Perhaps it is an artefact of aging that one comes to appreciate the simple things later in life.  The only regret I have, is not knowing how to appreciate an uncomplicated life, in my youth.

Until autumn

As always

a dawn bird

 

 

 

 

 

End of summer

It’s the second last day of summer.  Autumn is in the air.  There’s a chill in the early morning.  My feet need warmth.

I recall the warmth of the sea that encased my feet, not long ago in Jurien Bay.

DSCN9022The morning was tinted in muted colours.  The beach, nearly empty.

DSCN9005When the jogger was out of sight, the seagull kept me company

DSCN8925I stepped off the jetty to watch the dolphins play.  They enjoyed the limelight.

DSCN8929As if it noticed me, one flipped on it’s back and swam a length, to show off the latest party trick.

DSCN8959The tide was leaving.  The sun arrived.

DSCN9142I started to see things that first startled me … a mouse?!

DSCN9076I relaxed.  Angel wings, or perhaps a butterfly.

DSCN9176I realised, the pristine sand was just shells, waiting for time, like me.

DSCN9027There was plenty to distract me, like the honeyeater in the scrub.

DSCN8973The cormorant on the pontoon, in the early morning sun.

DSCN8983The pied oystercatcher, with mate.

DSCN8996As the day ended, lovers, like lovers often do, stopped to watch a setting sun slide into the sea.

DSCN9096Like I said in the previous post, yes I’ve travelled the world, but every morning I wake in awe, to find it at my feet.

May you do too.

Until next time

As always

a dawn bird