Last day of autumn

I’ve spent half of autumn in mining country north.  I’ve enjoyed this more than I can say.
DSCN7422.JPGI’ve enjoyed the gum trees road side along the highway in the Goldfields.  Gorgeous sky line.DSCN7403.JPGI took a lunch break at the lookout overlooking Lake Lefroy, a large salt lake near East Kambalda.DSCN7407.JPGOh! the colours of this landscape!DSCN7140.JPGAnd despite the big trucks, open skies, magnificent landscape and ‘earthy miners’, I managed to find this.  Invisible to the naked eye, I zoomed in to a speck thinking it was an insect, only to find it to be an exquisite flower.

Much like finding the tiny flower, there are other unexpected pleasures.  I’m going out to dinner tonight.  It will be nice to have company instead of eating alone.  Dinner and drinks sounds just about what I need right now, before winter kicks in tomorrow.  I’m not ready for it.

Until next time

As always

a dawn bird






Written in lines

Cape Gooseberry, yet to fruit in my garden.DSCN7354.jpg
Whitebreasted woodswallows, in the Kimberley region.  Keeping together.DSCN8593.jpg
Love lines in the sand, Carnarvon, Western AustraliaDSCN9789.jpg
Solo mother, doing it for herself.thumb_IMG_1851_1024.jpg
Camel lines on Cable Beach, Broome, Western Australia.

Hurried post.  Hope you enjoy!

As always

a dawn bird

In response to Judy Dykstra-Brown’s Photo Challenge:  All Lined Up

Going with the ‘flow’ …

I’ve been doing some reading on the work of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi who espoused the psychological theory of ‘flow’.  Much like mindfulness, flow is about being fully present in the moment.  It appeals to me more than mindfulness.  Flow is about generating a spark.  It ignites.  In a moment of inaction, it generates movement, it is fluid.  One becomes all.  All becomes one.  All falls away.  There is no ego in that moment.

Photography does this for me.DSCN7349.jpg
I need moments like this every day.  To me, they are as vital as breath.DSCN7373.jpg
I need big skies over me.  I am humbled and in awe of this.DSCN7367.jpg
To be one with this leaves me wordless.DSCN7377.jpg
There are times I am so still, I forget to exhale.

The best part is when what I’m experiencing in the moment, is visible to someone else who has seen it many times but never experienced it.  It is a moment of intimacy, like no other.  It ignites.

Until next time

As always

a dawn bird

In response to RDP : Tuesday – Spark

Come fly with me …

It’s late as I write
I should be in bed
tomorrow I fly again
this time, north
where the dust is red
and pink frangipani bloom
outside the door
I won’t be alone
you’ll be with me
watching the silent heron
as it catwalks through mudflats
and as always, waterside
for sunrise and sunset
then, I’ll be home soon,
too soon,
with stars for eyes
for the ascent, again.

a dawn bird

When one helps another ….

The run up to the end of the financial year is always busy for people like me.  I am booked solid until the end of June.  I come home to swap suitcases.  I’ve had to transfer all my indoor plants to the patio where the gardener can water them in my absence.  Nothing upsets me more in the home than to see a plant wilt from lack of water.  In my world, it is an egregious act of neglect.  Perhaps this strong emotion stems from my cultural values, when someone visits your home, offer them the best hospitality.

As a child I can remember my aunt’s university friend who visited India.  She would walk around the field behind our home and take photographs of the nomads and cattle.  Beyond a rocky ridge was more housing but it was in the distance and even though my best friend lived there, I was not allowed to walk there on my own.  At dusk we could not find our American friend.  My parents and aunt grew increasingly anxious.  People spread out in different directions looking for her.  The ridge was dangerous.  It was regularly blasted for building purposes and left behind deep pools after monsoon rains.  I recall a neighbour drowning in one of the pools, after she slipped washing her feet.  Then word came someone had found our visitor.  We went to where she was.  She was seated on the ground, coughing from dung fire, enjoying a cup of sweet tea and a piece of dry roti with her delighted hosts.  She refused to leave until she had enjoyed her moment with that family.  The joy in the interaction between this woman and the family is a moment that stays with me.  They did not have much, but they gave generously.thumb_IMG_5037_1024.jpg
I had a pretty packed day yesterday and found it difficult to sleep in.  I woke to a beautiful morning in Bunbury and watched sunrise from my hotel balcony.thumb_IMG_5033_1024.jpg
I had an hour long drive into forest areas so I just stayed where I was, watching the ocean  The waves were fearsome and I could hear them crash from where I was.  Soon it was time to shift gears and head into timber country.thumb_IMG_5041_1024.jpg
I have driven through this tiny town many times.  I love buying fruit and vegetables here.  All locally produced and have watched staff rinse off the dirt from freshly picked vegetables before placing it on the shelf.  It’s that fresh!  This was the car park of the place I visited.  The local school has just 25 children who attend kindy to the year before high school.  Charming is too sophisticated a word for it!  I fell in love with the place instantly!thumb_IMG_5042_1024.jpg
I then had an appointment with the mother.  She told me she’s “just down the road” out of town.  It was a long few kms of unsealed road!  I thought I was in an enchanted forest.  The drive got darker and darker with towering trees on either side.  I was so relieved to spot her standing at the end of a long driveway.  My car skidded and crunched it’s way to the homestead.  She had sent me a text earlier in the day saying it was Tuesday, nothing would be open in town so she had made lunch for me.  She offered me lunch including fresh fruit from her orchard.  We talked for hours.  Her parting words of thanks is something that will stay with me.  I remembered my mother’s constant mantra, “give like you have plenty to share”.  This, too, is hospitality.

As I drove away I had another 3.5 hours drive before I got home.  A very long day but I felt energised.  I had lived a day that reflects one of my favourite proverbs, German I believe it is, “When one helps another, both are stronger”.

I’m headed out again … more later.

Until next time

As always

a dawn bird

In response to Word of the Day Challenge:  Hospitality

Invisible, no more …

DSCN7078 2.JPGNature’s depression
that confusion and distortion
descends by stealth at night
sometimes, preceded by warning
take heed, nothing will be familiar
Be wary,
The monochrome of grey
Where all is same but isn’t
Will become the norm
Ignore at your peril
which I did.
It took a brighter sun to break through
It warmed the earth where I stood
in bare feet or in boots
as the fog lifted,
I closed my eyes so I could see
and found,
in those dark days of invisibility
the trees continued to breathe for me.

a dawn bird

In response to Word of the Day Challenge:  Fog

Virtual reality

DSCN7152 2.JPGSunset, Back Beach, Bunbury, Western Australia

Letter to Steve

Grief torched my life in the years before I met you.  You helped me refocus.  You helped me find my voice, my creativity and a sense of purpose.  Five years later, I lost it all in one fell scoop.  The light you brought into my world was too bright.  The memory of your vibrancy made me flinch for years.  I averted my gaze whenever I drove alongside Back Beach.  I buried myself whole into work.  Last night I walked along where you once jogged.  It was magnificent at sunset as it often is.  As I walked I realised you were meant to come into my life for a reason.  I am where I am, because of you.  Today, this is my reality.

I looked for a relationship unsuccessfully with another academic in the years that followed.  It was a natural thing to do, after all, I had been married to one and then met you.  Life is either crazy or just plain contrary.  What followed was so not what I thought it would be.

It was 17 years after your death when I found photography.  It helped me see the world around me in new ways.  What was familiar was unfamiliar, and then familiar again.  I found shapes, patterns, colours and movements.  A rhythm. I started to write again.   I looked for clouds and rain, because, together, they meant rainbows and not a banal weather report that dictated my work schedule.

My work life is nothing you and I could ever have envisaged.  I don’t present papers around the world like you did but I do spend more time at an airport.  It has become an office.  I find a quiet spot in the lounge and get work done.  This is where life started to get strange.

Had it not been for my camera I would not have noticed the imperceptible glint in the gaze.  The casual look that is exchanged between strangers, and maintained for a fraction longer.  You did not know the logistically challenging rostered world of FIFO workers, if you did, you would have grinned and said, what followed was meant to be.  The gaze turned into a conversation and my dormant heart found a beat again.

He is no academic.  He barely finished high school and so proud of his TAFE achievement because he makes a good living from it.  His nails are not manicured.  His hands are rough and stained from hard work.  He barely reads the news headlines, let alone a book.  His views on politics are succinct, and expressed in the vernacular of the region, “Effing wankers, the lot of them!”  End of story.  There is no malice in his reference, “Miss Fancy Pants!” as he curls his finger around pearls.  He is sensitive and sensual for a man who works with earth on his hands.  Nor do I feel what I do is diminished by his inability to understand it when he says, “what is it that you actually do?”.  What you see is what you get with him.  He travels light.  His values can be endearingly old fashioned, at times.  We admit to nothing.  The unsaid, saying it all.  Things are just what they were, at first ignite.  Alive.  Unfinished.  Unended.  It makes pick up where we left off, easier.  I like what this gives me.  There are no tomorrows or happily ever afters.  I searched for those for far too long.  For me, they were an unfortunate myth.  I live in the moment now.  It’s a happy place to be.

He is no blinding light in my life, like you were.  He lights up my world for a moment, much like seeing a shooting star, and when we leave, the eternal hope, it will happen again.

Where ever you are, here’s to another morning … shine bright.  What was, and what is, is meant to be.

a dawn bird

In response to Word of the Day Challenge:  Virtual