20130-01-31a Small Stone – Epilogue

Dad, when do I die?
Body falls, spirit flies on.
A lifetime you’ll have.


Small Stone for:

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2013-01-31 Small Stone – Death By News

We need to take care here, yes you and I
Mesmerising cycle of news from the sky
Pictures of war, flood, destruction and fire
Flashbacks and commentary never expire
Perhaps from we adults just drawing a sigh
Yet a three year old girl asks, Dad when do I die?


Small Stone for:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/smallstones/permalink/138104616354132/

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2013-01-30 Small Stone – Barebottom Runaways

No marbles and lego strewn over the floors.
No tug-o-war contests involving the doors.

No “but I don’ wanna” testing my mettle.
No yet-unmade coffee despite twice-boiled the kettle.

No every house fan on draining the power.
No bare-bottom runaways just out of the shower.

No rice grains and veges ground into the rugs.
No aspirant orphanage for escapee bugs.

No forward roll challenge on the back trampoline.
No toilet bowl forget-me-nots, best left unseen.

No stealing each other’s toys just for kicks.
No wake-the-neighbour battle with boxes and sticks.

No ear-splitting screams when knuckles are scratched,
When fingers are bitten, and toenails detached.

No fights over ABC3 or ABC2.
No feeding the worms, nor hosing the chook poo.

No “Finish your breakfast! Mum’ll be here soon!”
No reaching for OJ and pole-vaulting the spoon.

No bread-crumby bed sheets and half-eaten ‘nanas.
No front gutter dam-building still in their pyjamas.

No stress, noise or bother, as rugrats run rife.
No nerves red-raw jangled, surrounded by strife.

Vegemite and nutella intact with their lids.
All the signs of a house with no kids.


Small Stone for:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/smallstones/permalink/137942589703668/

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2013-01-29 Small Stone – Garden Bug First Aid

Daughter, 3, tears across the daycare yard to greet dad.
So excited to show two garden bugs caught and “nurtured” that day.
“I’m gonna take these home, dad, coz I love them.”
“Honey, what if they just want to be free?”
“Don’t care, I love them so much.”
So home they come in her hat, carefully packed with a fig pod for company.
They hatch their escape in the car on the way home.
One climbing the headrest, the other already on the window.
“Catch them, dad!”
“But sweetie, what if they want to go?”
“No, we have to keep them in a very strong container so they can’t escape, I love them so much dad.”
We get home, and I give her a container with lid.
“And I want to give them some food too, dad.”
“Right honey, how about some leaves from the herb patch?”
“OK, dad.”
Five minutes later, “Dad! The bugs are on their back, legs in the air, not moving!”
“Quick, let’s get them out of that container!”
A bit of fresh air gets them up and about again.
I’d picked marigold leaves, a natural pesticide.
Hmmm, where do I hand in my Permaculture Certificate?


A Small Stone for:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/smallstones/permalink/136994263131834/

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2013-01-28 Small Stone – By The Light Of My Mac Screen

By the light of my Mac screen,
I pondered,
But the mice were getting tired,
Been a possum scratching at my window now,
Six nights in a row.

She’s coming for me I know,
On a flood tide,
We’re both gonna go.
NB:  I’m in a blackout due to the Brisbane severe weather event. Your challenge is to spot the obscure reference.


Small Stone for:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/smallstones/permalink/136703079827619/


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2013-01-27 Small Stone – Nice Weather For Ducks

How’s this rain, eh?

Seems the earth might wash away

I’m not complaining, mind.

This drought has robbed our farmers blind.


Dams are full, and gardens soaked.

Ducks and platypuses stoked.

Creeks and tanks on overflow.

Enough’s enough, I venture though.


Today this frog jumped in my door.

Unlikely protest, “This rain … no more!”

Such, you don’t see everyday.

Portent of storms that come this way.


I hope that those in charge of happ’nings.

Are not this time caught napping.

The water isn’t worth our blood.

Not another needless flood.


Small Stone for:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/smallstones/permalink/136137219884205/

Notes for non-Australians:

After years of drought (except for the flood disasters of 2011), Queensland, Australia is awash with an ex-cyclone travelling down the coast.  River flood and storm warnings are current and beaches closed all down the south-east coast. The Brisbane River itself has no flood warning, however the upstream dams are full, as before the last flood.

These dams are meant to protect the city, but they can’t do so if they are full to begin with. I fear that government will have once again underestimated inflows, and I dread a repeat of 2011’s disaster.

In 2011, I helped people drag their ruined lives from their flooded homes. Many have not yet recovered.

Floods small stone

2013-01-26 Small Stone – Old Friend Bound on Australia Day

on my country’s birthday…

bit of gardening, done

driveway’s low-hanging eye-gougers, trimmed and mulched

a nod to the ceremonies on telly and an eye on the looming fat clouds

off, now to see an old friend on the glitter strip

“BYO, mate, yer grog and snags… new friends on tap here”

the new car’ll get a bit muddy,

but he’s got to see it, eh?

happy Australia Day, one and all

make sure you get home all right, alright?


Small Stone for:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/smallstones/permalink/136006153230645/

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2013-01-25 Small Stone – Pressed Tummies

Backs arch, reaching
Faces glow, sweat beading
Tummies pressed, soft music playing

Arms entwine, fingers curl
Eyes close, senses burst

Move, breathe … as one


Tango practice


Small Stone for:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/smallstones/permalink/135482023283058/

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2013-01-24 Small Stone – Create an Axe Murderer in 40 Minutes or Less

Create An Axe Murderer In 40 Mins Or Less

You enter to all manner of people
Multi-lingual banter adrift in the myriad forms and instructions
An English teacher and I’m confused!
Teenagers hard-swallow their first taste of mind-numbing bureaucratic BS
Youthful exhuberance chipped away by the modern mundane
Old ducks rue days of personal service at the local cop shop
Where they knew your name, and showed the old vets some respect
We sit on crap chairs, drilled to the floor, trapped then unable to stretch an elbow without clipping someone’s head.
“Sorry mate, not much room here, eh?”
A deflated “ken oath” reply
Gripped with the unabated, unsoothed fear whether anyone knows we are here at all, wasting our heartbeats waiting for service
Dehumanised to little numbered queue tickets on quickly fading scraps
From a machine you have to stand in line for as well
The numbering system makes no bloody sense
So you can only hope your hieroglyph will appear on the screen we all worship
Eventually directed by a patronising synthetic voice to a numbered counter
Even the staff have no names
Finally served by an automaton, no doubt human at some point in her life
No sign of any such now after years in this wretched workplace
A week’s wages evaporates to change the registered name – a full two minutes work for the clerk
“No we can’t print out your new rego here”
“I’m sure that was possible before computers”, I joke
No smile of mateship, no hint of empathy
“You’ll have to await the post”
(and beg any police officer not to treat me like a car thief in the meanwhile)
What did I get for half a thousand dollars? What value added here? How has the world been made better?
Ned Kelly, where are you? They’re still robbing us blind! But not only our money is sucked away by the machine.

Small Stone for:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/smallstones/permalink/135376139960313/

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2013-01-23 Small Stones – Dazzled Dragon

The road coils in the headlights

Trees curling inward overhead

Stars and a half moon peer through the canopy

A brown glint on the roadway scales up to a bearded dragon

Dazzled and disoriented

(Isn’t it supposed to be night time?)

A deft twist of the wheel and he passes safely ‘neath the roaring monster

The night returns

(Why did I cross this road?)


Small Stone for:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/smallstones/permalink/135179186646675/

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