Illuminations captures the wonder of the act of creation, the burst of excitement associated with the birth of the new, and the challenges and sacrifice involved in bringing inspiration to fruition.
Reflecting on the impact of the challenge of the new, in both the material and spiritual worlds, several of the poems refer to the advent of the Báb, the 19th century Prophetic figure, whose contemporary message inspired and challenged a sacrificial response on the part of those who embraced His Cause.
Magic Fish Dreaming is an award winning poetic celebration and exploration of nature, people and imagination in Far North Queensland.
Encourages children and families everywhere to hunt for their own nature-based or urban poems.
“Luminous and jubilant,Magic Fish Dreamingexplores an imaginative world of rainforest and cassowary, the flicker of geckos and the roll of quolls. Whimsical poems and exquisite images invite readers to venture into vibrant, magical places…
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So it may be a little quiet on my blogs soon, for the holidays have officially come to an end.
This year, I am aiming to face fears, and not let them to turn into bigger walls. Instead I’d like to deconstruct them and climb over them.
I just over one third of the way through my Masters for Teaching, and gearing up for another prac early this year. This quarter I am also sitting my lantite, literacy tests.
Holidays seem to pass so quickly, especially when you have had a very full and busy year.
Most of the family visited my eldest son (his brother couldn’t make it though due to doing summer school for university and then nation wide covid dilemmas for travel, Brisbane is still heading for a COVID19 peak in coming days) in Melbourne and spend some time whilst managing not to return home with COVID19, even though many in our extended family came down with it.
We visited the graveside of my husband’s Dad, who passed away nearly a year ago. I photo documented this and recorded some memories of it on my memoir blog.
I went on a few short walks, including in Melbourne near where our relatives live. We couldn’t go out much in the end due to COVID19.
I managed to read four books which were my own choice, and not set readings. I wished I could have read even more! I am determined to do more free reading this year, even during university study time. It just nurtures my imagination and relieves anxiety and stress.
I relooked at and began to plan the Fred Murray project and remaining research tasks, and which to prioritise.
We established a worm farm, grew some lettuces, cleaned our garden a bit more, and we watched some dramas, movies and programs, such as ‘Being the Ricardos’ , Lupine, and Kim’s Convenience as well continuing to watch ‘The Wire’.
‘The Wire’ season 3 is the best season so far, with a delving into several ‘social issues’ in a complex and realistic way, but also with some splinters of light, in comparison to the bleaker nature of earlier seasons. It is not a show for the faint hearted, and be warned there are mature viewing moments – this is not one to watch with children. Sometimes I find this show very difficult to watch, but this seasons, whilst still difficult has some poignant moments to ponder on. Bubbles is such an interesting character, who is trying to mentor a young one and overcome his own addictions. In this season he has a lot of dignity.
We’re about to do a massive clean up for the first roadside collection in two years in our area. It will be a time to dig out things we need to rid ourselves of under the house. Not liking to waste things we hold onto them until sure we no longer need them, but some things just haven’t been used in YEARS (time to go). Lately we are learning to divest of things, find good homes, and throw out when no longer able to repair them and reuse.
Finally over these holidays I have reflected a lot on happiness and am endeavouring to be kinder to myself and others than ever before, and find ways to do more kindness even when under a lot of pressure from studies or worried about COVID19.
I haven’t been able to visit or catch up with too many friends in person, but hope I can find ways to gently reach out more over the next few months. We all are so busy, but I want you all to know you are often in my thoughts.
Sometimes I send a random phone text, or email, but I think it needs to be more than that sometimes, and recently I spoke to a childhood friend on the phone after ten years! We had been hoping to meet up but COVID put a stop to that, due to members of both our families being in isolation. It was a wonderful chat though, remembering positives, mostly from our childhood, and seeing how our families are doing as well.
Well that’s all for a while. I have to really focus, but if something thought provoking happens, I will be back! I am planning to share some thoughts on recent events in Tonga, where a tsunami happened and am going to continue as always my writing projects and quests, but if I can one project at a time so I complete more things!
It’s such a relief to know our friends in Tonga are all physically okay, although I know from experience with Yasi, that their recovery process will be ongoing and their communities will be rebuilding.
From my family to yours, all the best with your projects, blogging, studying and community building.
Why not keep on looking for anything shedding light onto your family, or community and celebrate it!
Peace be with you.
Project for the next year!
Note: As part of cultural protocol in Australia the following ‘warning’ must be mentioned:
Warning – This story features photographs of First Nations people who have since passed away. This warning is provided as a courtesy for First Nations people who may find this distressing.
It is a time for healing, a time for sharing, a time for understanding the significance of Birria to so many people, his descendants, and his Baha’i family.
Uncle Fred Murray’s story has been precious to me since I was a teenager and came across a pamphlet created by his dear friend, and former Counsellor, Howard Harwood.
I became curious to know more about in my twenties. so curious I made a trip to South Australia to speak to people who had known him.
Many years, and just before the pandemic I followed this trip up, with another journey to South Australia.
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The function of art is to do more than tell it like it is – it’s to imagine what is possible– bell hooks, Outlaw Culture: Resisting Representations, 2012,
Thursday afternoon Australia, warm afternoon, thinking of the significance of bell hooks to my life.
I find myself back at a university named after an explorer, a coloniser, feted by some, and despised by others. It’s an equally, if not warmer, humid afternoon.
I have just been at a staff meeting, representing the ‘diversity’ of the department, as a post graduate tutor. The auditor, has watched how I have been treated in the meeting.
He takes me aside later, raises it with me – ‘You are more than a token.. they treat you as’ and adds ‘Do you need to talk to anyone? My door is always open.’ I have long since forgotten what specifically was said or done.
Later we have a long discussion, and things come up, students teasing me and ridiculing me for my frizzy hair, racist comments by people training to be teachers and studying literature, and more. Staff members who don’t really care what you think or suggest based on what the First Nations students are saying about the courses – asking questions like – ‘Why isn’t our literature studied by all the students and not just us?’ It’s a raw time – realising that all this education has not made me immune to micro and macro racist agressions. And sometimes I want to walk away from it all – but if I do that where will I feel safe? How will I have a voice and acess to be the change I want to be in the world ? He gives me a list of articles and people he thinks might be good for me to read’ – one of them is bell hooks.
I don’t know who I can talk to about these things. He is a well known Canadian educator who is working on changing the world through the power of books and reading. He will go onto do great work in education – to encourage change. He is in the readings of the Masters in Teaching I am currently doing. I don’t stay in touch, but his effect on my own life is life long, but I will sometimes find it hard to deal with the day in and day out racism.
It is a pivotal conversation – and my reading of bell hooks begins, and later I will read Maya Angelou.
Over 25 years ago, and scanning back over that time my journey to overcome experiences like that, it is really apparent what an up and down journey it has been. Moments of isolation, and despair, moments of understanding and connection.
“For me, forgiveness and compassion are always linked: how do we hold people accountable for wrongdoing and yet at the same time remain in touch with their humanity enough to believe in their capacity to be transformed?“
– in conversation with Maya Angelou, 1998
Like shackles of the past, they are all released to their significance, and a loving heart is unchained and inspired to find kindred spirits to walk in optimism, hope and art with – to find connection. I find them serendipitously in the world of writing for children, and think back on the works of that Canadian educator, who had a great love of children’s books and saw their power.
Thank you to that Educator for a conversation and an introduction to a thinker, who made me keep up my writing, caring, and art.
Thank you bell hooks, for the gift of your writing – thinking – advocating. These days, I see that what you imagined as possible, is more of a reality, but there is still more work to do.