Gone Writing in the Rainforest


So I’m off for a few days – with a notebook, camera, and other writers.  I am heading into the  rainforest.

My family are staying behind, but will be busy enjoying catching up with some of the extended family and going to an AFL match in Brisbane.

I was so happy this morning as I have steadily been working on my memoir as other projects progress, and have now almost completed writing my childhood to teenage years.  The draft is at 25,000 words.

So far I have a firm focus of looking at the powers that helped me to deal with racism as a child growing up.  The threads in the narrative are beginning to come together in a way that pleases me.

I have a picture book manuscript to do some more work on before sending off to my mentor again, and will take that one  and a few others on retreat with me to refine its ending.

Enjoy your weekend. I am sure I will have plenty to say after returning from the retreat.

Although perhaps I will be too busy writing to say much!







Bread Crumbs, Stars and Cassowaries

Sending out twitter stars, and social media bread crumbs to lead you here   KICKSTARTER MAGIC FISH DREAMING.

There is a super fun poem about cassowaries going into Magic Fish Dreaming; it was inspired by seeing them everywhere searching for food when the cyclones had been through.  

This young cassowary had headed into Tully after cyclone Larry and was looking for food.

He was later relocated safely back to his rainforest home.


(18 days to go in the kickstarter campaign)

So Tall Now

My eldest son is so tall now. Yet, in him I will always see  the tiny tot, looking up at me, asking ‘Are we there yet?’

Yet, I look up at him now!  He is surrounded by green lights of the rainforest.  I can see all the music in him around him, just for a moment.

so tall now
So Tall Now – By June Perkins

We went walking through a butterfly rainforest at Tully Gorge recently. Everyone else was at the BBQ, getting it ready for the 23rd anniversary of me and David and so my eldest came with his photography mad Mum.  I found the Licuala, which is such an emblem of the Cassowary Coast.

This was a plant I didn’t know before living here, but now will forever be in my vocabulary and metaphorical reach.

licuala tully gorge
Licuala Tully Gorge – by June Perkins

Yet, the most butterflies we saw were back near the BBQ, while our walk turned up mostly licuala plants  (as above) and greenery with sunbursts.

I trust manual focus and my telescopic lens for butterfly pics. Even though they can be  flighty, if they are busy eating, they almost forget a photographer is lurking.

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Butterfly Flight – By June Perkins
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Butterfly Landing – By June Perkins
Looking up to a Butterfly Landing
Butterfly Landing 2 – By June Perkins

Even though the water was tempting we didn’t go swimming as there were crocodile signs up, very unusual to see that in this commonly rafted river.  I was happy because I photographed the butterflies.

The children enjoyed their sausages, steak, salad and chocolates.

My hubby did a grand cooking job.

We met a family from Mackay camping at the Falls, and somehow shared cyclone stories with them – and all of us wondered about people in the bush fire affected areas in Tasmania.

The rain sprinkled, and the sun began to go down.

My eldest son, didn’t once ask, ‘When are we leaving?’ which often teenagers longing for their friends and computer screens tend to do.  Instead he was in the moment, with us his family; listening to cyclone stories, in the greening rain, laughing with his siblings and noticing things like toy gorillas hidden in the hills.

(Account of  our January 6th Visit to Tully Gorge, for Anniversary BBQ)

Walking in the Rainforest

Our first trip back to the Licuala Rainforest after Cyclone Yasi was full of greenery!

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Licuala rainforest8

We just did the short children’s walk, partly due to the heat and because youngest had left his shoes behind (so easy to do in Queensland) and we’d bought him thongs for the walk.

It was encouraging to see so many healthy licuala palm leaves.

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I enjoyed abstracting the leaves.

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And looking for sunbursts.

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The children loved their outing, and want to walk further next time, maybe beginning much earlier in the day, and with suitable footwear.

Youngest took his thongs off back near the car as they were a bit big.

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We all enjoyed our walk back in the glorious green.

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(c) June Perkins, text and images

Finding out about Rainforests in Australia

pathways to peace

Originally uploaded by gumbootspearlz.

In my web wanderings today I found some wonderful educational work on Rainforests.

The Wet Tropics Management Authority on their website have had permission to put PDF of fact sheets on many topics, such as bats, butterflies, foodchains, plants- and on top of this there is a teacher and students resource with units for Prep through to year 8 which make use of many creative teaching and thinking strategies, just as thinking hats, bloom gardeners matrix, the multiple intelligences, games, composing poetry, and role plays to explore issues of caring for the rainforest and the nature of the wildlife and fauna there.

If you are a teacher or parent wanting to educate your children about the Rainforest in Australia this is a great site for supporting you in your in efforts. If you want to also see creative teaching methods applied to a particular teaching unit this is a very interesting site that demonstrates this.  I can’t wait to encourage my own kids to explore this site and  do some of the activities on it, particularly as they are studying plants and food chains at the moment.  There is also in the rainforest explorer units a consideration of Aboriginal people living in the wet tropics environment.