Asked about a Category 5 cyclone

A few days ago, I was in a creativity bubble and not paying attention to weather news for the first time in years.

I received a call from ABC podcasters the Signal, who wanted to interview someone who knew what it was like to be in the pathway of a massive cyclone.

Here is a link to that interview. It starts at 7.35 but do listen to the whole thing.

When a Hurricane Hits (This link won’t stay up indefinitely but for now you can listen to it).

I had a take home message, about communities dealing with the aftermath, long after the media have stopped paying attention to the community.

It is so sad, that the brilliant Aftermath project, which tackled this process not only for cyclones, but for floods and bushfires, and was done by the now dismantled ABC Open is no longer on line for people to turn to.

You can find my cyclone recovery posts stored at my personal blog HERE

The photograph collage below is a map of some of the people, events and processes that helped a community find their smiles again after a cyclone has been and gone.

I will soon be sharing some of those stories perhaps on a panel for CREATIVE RESILIENCE  September 21st at COMIC CON Brisbane.

Thinking of the people in the Bahamas and other people affected by Cyclone Dorian. All the very best in your recovery processes!  May you all have a recovery journey full of kindness and good humour.  Wishing everyone stability as soon as possible.

You will be in my thoughts!

Much love

June

 

To check up on the people in the Bahamas presently visit

CNN

BBC

After Yasi Blog Tour

10626409_540921646044528_2682742883154716591_o

After Yasi: Finding the Smile Within is going on a virtual book tour, commonly known as blog tour, blog hop or virtual book tour.  A big thank you to all those listed.

Best comments for each blog will be given a PRIZE, either a free copy of the ebook or a choice of a signed print of one of the photographs from the book. Would absolutely love it if you retweet, reblog and share this post – and the blog hop posts, to all your friends.

The After Yasi Blog Tour includes visits to:

Jan 27   (Tuesday) http://open.abc.net.au  ABC Open  (guest blog, June Perkins, storytelling tips for covering the recovery from a natural disaster)

Jan 27   Karen Tyrrell http://www.karentyrrell.com/

Jan 28 (Wednesday)  Dimity Powell (interview) http://www.dimswritestuff.blogspot.com.au/

Jan 29 (Thursday) Charmaine Clancy (tips for writing about a natural disaster) http://charmaineclancy.com/

Jan 30 Jedda Bradley  – (interview)https://www.facebook.com/jeddabradleyartist

Jan 31 (Saturday) Carol Campbell  (review) http://writersdream9.wordpress.com

Jan 31 (Saturday) Gail Kavanagh  (review) http://gailkavanagh.com/blog/

Feb 1 (Sunday) Owen Allen (focus Dance) http://owen59.wordpress.com/

Feb 2 (Monday)  Ali Stegert (focus children and youth after a cyclone) http://ali-stegert.com/

Feb 3  (Tuesday) Melinda Irvine http://businessonblue.com.au/

Feb 3   Wrap up and thankyou blog from June https://pearlz.wordpress.com

You can find sample pages and more details of the ebook here: http://gumbootspearlz.pressbooks.com/

You are welcome to attend from wherever you are in the world -the online launch -February 3rd.

See the facebook page: The Launch Link: https://www.facebook.com/events/866286073402069/?pnref=story

*This schedule is still subject to  minor changes but I will post any changes closer to lift off. Apologies the visit to Michele’s blog has had to be postponed due to unforseen circumstances.

Hooray Ebook After Yasi Ready

afteryasiFINAL1Just letting you know the ebook of After Yasi is now available for $4.75 (Australian Dollars). Currency converter here http://www.xe.com/pca/input.php

(That’s about 2.56 pounds and $3.86 US dollars)

Full of interesting links to blogs, videos and photo sets on the recovery after yasi and a slightly adapted version of the coffee table book version (slightly fewer photographs in the ebook.)

Most of all this book is a celebration of the optimism of the Cassowary Coastal community and a reflection on the ways creativity in many forms played an important role in lifting people’s spirits.

https://authors-unlimited.org/book-member/after-yasi-finding-the-smile-within

Sample here: http://gumbootspearlz.pressbooks.com/

On February 3rd 2014 an online launch event will be happening. You can participate from wherever you are.

Feel free to join the event at the link here https://www.facebook.com/events/866286073402069/?pnref=story and follow what happens on that day.

A blog tour in the lead up to the launch will be announced soon.

Reviews can be found HERE

Blue Bonnets

I wrote this poem a few years ago, but in light of the recent events in Texas it seemed a good time to share it publicly.

At the time I penned it a mother had suddenly lost her husband and I was extremely moved by her situation. The poem is not specifically about her, but more about grief – and then I read the legend of the Blue Bonnets and the poem took shape.

The poem has taken on new meanings for me in the wake of recovery from cyclone yasi, which it seems we only now start to truly feel relieved from.

When the newspapers and  most media go, and headlines diminish families are still left rebuilding, recovering and having to learn to let go to truly be free in the spirit. This is by no means easy. Yet somehow we get there in the end, and stories have a power to help us make it the point of renewal.

 

Funerals like rain
Fall from clouds
Young boys say ‘goodbye’
As father’s lowered to the ground

Mother stands alone
Tears become her shroud
Funeral goers utter not a sound.

She hears blue guitar strums
She’s pounding melancholy’s drums.

Texas and Tully are so far apart
Yet they share skies
Where hawks and ibis fly

Storms and troubles rock both their shores
Warn their people to depart.

She tells her children
the legend of the Texas Blue Bonnet flower

A young girl gave up her warrior doll,
The last reminder of family,
To invoke a higher power.

She burnt her warrior doll
Its head dress of blue feathers
Offered up its ashes
To the North, South, East and West Winds
So hunger and loss it would tether.

She cried herself to sleep.
Let her memory weep.

When she awoke
Never before seen flowers,
Clambered the mountains
Birds made their bowers
People drank from hope’s fountains.

The mother with the shroud
Inside’s the little girl
Who’ll burn her own warrior doll
She knows what must be done

She’ll let her dreams unfurl.
She’ll wait till all sleep then
Pull out her favourite guitar
Take those blue cords
Burn them, banish them

Scatter their ashes,
North, South, East and West.

The dry season will begin
Floods have had their fun
A looking- to-the-future music
will now begin to grow.

By June Perkins

blue bonnets
Herself- Flickr Creative Commons

Gumboots Festival Time

gallery circle of boots
Gumboots 4 Peace – Circle of Boots – June Perkins

It’s that time of year again when Tully gears up for the Golden Gumboots Festival.

My daughter is considering entering the Golden Gumboot Quest.  We’re not really into quests so how has this happened? In fact, the last time a child of mine entered one was my eldest son as a baby in a shopping centre and we won because he had eyes like me, let me see we won a small sash saying ‘ he looks like his mother.’ I am still not sure how we were roped into that one either.  I think we might have been passing by.

But my daughter, a keen artist, feels a float and an interesting dress for quest night would be loads of fun.  I think we better keep her plans top secret for now. I think the motivation is that we feel the need for a bit of fun, joy and gumboots activity after all the cyclone recovery stuff, time to be silly and just go with the flow.

All we know so far is that she must go to the Grand Parade, be available on the night of the Festival for the announcement of the winner of each Category and that she also has to prepare for a quest night, and have a sponsor. I think I may have already tracked one down.

Now for other helpers – and equipment and more information and some hard work.

Will I survive being Mum to a daughter in a quest? Probably, because it’s primarily for fun, and we’ll fund raise for some worthy cause.

Do we care about the result? I don’t think so.  We just want a float that rocks and I can’t wait to see watching my daughter take to the stage, she seems to like that a bit now she’s a teenager.

Anyone got a ute?