Happy Anniversary

I won’t tell you that the world matters nothing, or the world’s voice, or the voice of society. They matter a good deal. They matter far too much. But there are moments when one has to choose between living one’s own life, fully, entirely, completely—or dragging out some false, shallow, degrading existence that the world in its hypocrisy demands. You have that moment now. Choose!
Oscar Wilde

where the llama sleeps

Frog Whispers and a Chorus of Crickets

Hear that?

Silence… such profound silence I hold my breath

lest I break the spell…

First coffee, on the sunstruck veranda

dappled light as cascading sun trickled through tangled vines…

… below me, on overgrown slopes, chickens ranged far and wide

a pure white peacock drifted gracefully by followed closely

by two fat brown hens…

… a white llama grazed on juicy grass, eyeing me

in a friendly way as he passed

in the treetops  crow and kookaburra cackled and laughed

at jokes only they knew…

Watching as the sun slid behind olive-green tree-tops

sky a still pale backdrop behind the verdant canopy

roosters strutted, raising their voices to the vault of heaven

– and I stood in awed silence before a shrine to Mother Earth….

Darkness crept in, in slow moving increments

crows and kookaburras chortle sporadically

silence prevailing between echoes…

– eyes closed for a meditative moment

and I smiled…

such earthy treasures soothed my soul;

A faint blush softly crimsoned the underbellies

of streaky grey clouds, quickly fading to wispy shades of apricot

Venus greeted me as the sky paled blue to grey

shadows clinging deep and dark to the heavy treeline…

… such profound silence I forgot to  breathe

suddenly expelling air in a shuddering sigh

of quiet contentment;

The unruffled silence deepened –

frog whispers … chorus of crickets

and the homely popping of wood

as flames danced merrily in the fireplace…

I ate my supper there, sitting on the step

in front of the fireplace

homemade soup…

… I ate it straight from the saucepan

savoring every mouthful;

Hear that?

Silence… such profound silence I hold my breath

lest I break the spell…

*

First Night

I made a bed in front of the fire

so I could lose myself in the toasty warm  marmalade glow

wrapped in warmth eyes grew heavy

and I dozed…

Unfamiliar sounds filtered in from the darkness

beyond the windows… took me a sleepy moment

to realize, a horse, snorting noisily

stamping a hoof on the soft ground-

– and though I dragged myself from my fire-warm nest

to peer out into the inky blackness

I saw nothing;

how still it was… how dark

and so blessedly quiet

there were no cars

no late night train

no dogs barking in tandem echo

a few drowsy crickets and the sighing breeze

and me.

First Morning

Kookaburras and Roosters

A lone kookaburra greeted me at 6:45 am

when I ventured from the morning fire

to greet the day beyond the picture window…

pastel sunrise simmered softly

glowing through latticelike branches

a renegade breeze rained leaves

in billowing swirl

skimming across the scuffed wooden floor…

Winter chill swept across my face

as I bid the kookaburra good morning;

Whipbirds echoed

in the still morning

woodsmoke and bush essences mingling

with drifts of nag champa…

… Kooka is a constant companion

watching me as I spill thoughts onto the page

from time to time he swoops to the slanting ground

rummaging through long grass and weeds

iridescent smudges on each wing

bestows color to his many specks and flecks

of off-white and brown

a smattering of greys add charm

to his dapper appearance…

A kingfisher joins  Kooka and I-

– a little timid he sits at the far end of the veranda

watching us…

… he outshone Kooka in hues of vivid blue

fading to deep chromatic shades…

two roosters continued to sound-off

– each one crowing with crested pride

from opposite corners of the meadow

… occasionally brown-horse snuffs the ground

blowing nosily through his big soft nose

content to browse on lush nibbles

crowding the creek’s edge.

Kookaburra on the back veranda

rooster bragging at the door

crows calling from sunlit branches

not wanting to be ignored

winter blossoms bright in treetops

in shades of fuchsia flushed…

I feel my soul let go, surrendering

to Nature’s trust….

*

Midday Meditation

Sun-sitting

– wintersun a warm embrace

eyes close as thoughts hover

in soft and tender smiles…

… breasts rise and fall in a sigh

as tranquil ambience infuses the moment

twitter-chitter of unknown birds

soughing breeze, so gentle it brushes my face

in a hushed whisper…

Somewhere not too far away

a crow repeats his 3-ark refrain

ark ark ark… ark ark arrrk

I almost fell asleep-

– but ravenous clouds swallowed the sun whole

stealing my puddled warmth…

… is that what he is doing, that crow – calling in the rain?

Still with that rhythmic 3-ark refrain…

The breeze graduated to Boisterous Wind

heady with bush scents, it scurried fallen leaves

across the veranda floor

settled momentarily

then raced through the tree-tops

all helter-skelter…

12:10 pm… the day grew dark

shadows clung to tree trunks and polished wood alike

the wind pushed open doors  closed

chasing itself

through tossing tree- canopy

– darker still for midday

birds fell to silence

except for a rogue rooster

crowing at his own echo…

… a smattering of rain fell, the darkness persisting…

… beclouded by layers of grey

the day still held a measure of tranquil beauty

–  varying leaves overlaid in a mantle of greenery

swirled in lively game with the wind…

…  from time to time a pipe wind-chime

gonged with tingling resonance

and still that cocky rooster chortled

at his echo, tossed back by the wind…

*

Second Morning

Whip-birds and mist tickle through the canopy of trees

morning overlaid in damp shades of grey

leafy treetops washed fresh by rain add a profusion

of green to the day…

Seems quieter, after the rainy night

kookaburra visits, in waterlogged flight

the farm animals hushed and not in a rush

to leave the cover of their night pen

even the crow a distant echo … ark ark ark…

… so quiet I hear each individual raindrop

dripping off sodden leaves…

The early morning dimmed… lit by a twilight rain-glow…

… and down it came, clattering on tin roof

splattering on a million leaves

puddle-ing on the drenched earth

rivulets form as water makes its merry way

downhill, through weeds and herbs… across dirt tracks

and into the creek…

nature speaks her gratitude;

The rain fell in a silken grey curtain

hazing the treeline and hills beyond…

… the sky a vast expanse of startling white

interspersed with layers of ashy grey

the land took on a deeper hue… bark stained dark

and leaves in breathless array of green to jade…

… thought inducing weather, reflection in each drop of rain-

– other rain-days, different but the same

– gumboots in puddles

-running hand in hand for cover

– kisses from wet lips that tasted of love and coffee…

Such memories tumble in freefall, and having no control

of this deluge of rain-induced reflection, I let

the memories fall

surrendering to the mood of day drenched in grey.

Of Rain and Roosters and Nature’s Song

It had been an indoors kind of day

sojourns on the veranda to watch the rain

a few hens ventured out to inspect the sodden ground

– mist and rain creating echoes of sound…

… I drifted through the hours, content to float in dreams

of yesterdays and tomorrows and might-have-beens

happy to listen to Nature’s song

knowing in my soul this is where I belong…

As darkness enveloped my world

I sat by the fireside, watching as the flames danced

rain fell and from time to time

I heard the snuffle of llama bedded down nearby…

… I almost cried

with contentedness and the thought of leaving

on the morrow…

It took an empty woodbox to send me to bed, but still

I could not sleep… thoughts tumbled in on top of each other

how could I make this a lifestyle, not just a fond memory?

*

Morning dawned to the melody of rain and roosters

the sun briefly shone through the rain,

adding a glorious rain-glow to the start of day…

… soon I would have to go away

retracing my steps to where I belong-

– but in truth, I belong here

or someplace just like it…

surrounded by rain and roosters and nature’s song;

*

As I was transported back to ‘reality’

I fancied that I heard

the wind chime say goodbye to me.

*

day 6.jpg

Whipbirds in Morning Mist

I feel it so keenly, now I am back from the silence of my rainforest retreat… that unseen pressure of suburban living spaces… pressing in on all four sides.

Horizon close and confining hovers just beyond rooftops and low mountains.

No concept of distance here, everything huddled close-at-hand… no open spaces that lure the soul’s eyes to linger in faraway gaze…

How blessed, at least, to dwell near those low mountains floating in winter mist beyond the rooftops… richly wooded in verdant layers of green… I hear the catbird call out in the still morning… the whipbirds bell-like echo clear and musical in the cold air.

A timid female bush turkey wanders across the lawn, looking for tidbits;

they have adapted to sharing space, roaming the neighborhood, wandering down to the creek… roosting in trees at night…

– they have adapted

why can’t I?

Somewhere a dog barks… a power drill grinds into wood…

Sun and mist and remnant rain cloud

play musical chairs with the morning

a magpie warbles in such honeyed tones I pause in my reflection

to listen to his sweet melody.

*

Yes, I feel that unseen pressure of suburban living spaces

pressing in on all four sides…

Still,  how blessed I am to share that space with catbirds and whipbirds

and mist on winter mornings.

*

But I will always remember the silence of that rainforest retreat

where the beauty of Nature is complete.

*

Sharon

2015

*

These thoughts and photographs were written and taken

of my stay at the Rainforest Organic Farmhouse

surrounded by stunning rainforest, bushland

and an abundance of wildlife;

My short stay there soothed my soul and fed my spirit

and I was very reluctant to leave.

Host and owner Janine is a lovely warm woman who has created a place of comfort and welcome, peace and tranquility.

This little book is in appreciation.

*

Sharon Lee Goodhand June 2015

sheleeme@y7mail.com

Ante-Post-Meridiam Twilight

Tumbling untainted joy
skinned knees
and trees
so high I could pretend I didn’t hear mother’s voice-

Tree-climbing is only for boys!
how often she screeched that, I could not count;

Ahh… the purity of those sweet scented days
that wafted by on the scents of childhood-
swamp-water-up-to-my-knees scents
fish-and-chips-wrapped in newspaper scents
pungent with vinegar and tingling saltiness
living in the dreamtime of innocence…

No halting the winds of change though
skinned knees heal and children grow
time ebbs and flows, as season blows into passing season…

Clinging to shreds of childhood dreams
yet eager to venture beyond the grip
of parental embrace, perhaps too soon it was
or mayhap too late, I took the road to independence-

And lost myself
in those early postmeridian days
lost in late nights, catty fights
waking…. where I shouldn’t be waking
taking what I shouldn’t be taking-
– but that was a passing faze, a mere scene embedded
into life’s diorama
– my inner child shook me silly, beat me up, willy-nilly
I didn’t sign on for this!
How wise she was, my inner child;
I think she saved my life.

Trading bar-room- emetic for the sweetness of motherhood
and those healing places where ancient trees grow-
I taught my children how to climb
limb by limb, how recognize the perfect branch
for sitting on
how to share with the breeze their secret soul-song…

… but, and it seems there is always a ‘but’ with me
one that pulls me up as time ebbs and flows
as season blows into passing season
– but…. life presents obstacles of no rhyme and reason
and for a while I lost myself, in soul-consuming sorrow
          only shadows haunted each tomorrow
dreams merely empty reflections of yesterday…

I lived and loved and lost, in the postmeridian of my days
forgot how to smile, while time stood still in silent eyes
I guided children as they grew, but no longer knew
who I was…

Time doesn’t stand still though
does it
and I woke to discover I was aging
an old crone looked at me from the neglected mirror-
– she looked a lot like my mother, in many ways…
… the crone tsk tsk’d shaking her graying head
and then she winked
and whispered… don’t you think
it’s time… time honor your self?

Twilit days flow with twitterlight
  and as I watch grandchildren grow
I grow too, reconnecting with that me
I was long ago.

*
Poetry and Image Sharonlee Goodhand Imageweaver ©

Wake Me Up When the Madness Ends

Another year has come and passed
The innocent can never last
Wake me up when madness ends

I tried to put my best foot forward
Tried to be the strong one
Done my best to be there for family
and friends…
… I’m weary now, my spirit aches
Wake me up when the madness ends.

Here comes the pain again
Falling from the sky
Pain from all corners of the world
And I here’s me asking why
… why has life become this way
Is this really who we are?

Another year has come and passed
The innocent can never last
Wake me up when madness ends
Wake me up when madness ends

And then perhaps I’ll have the strength
To carry on, fix what’s wrong,
Wake me up when madness ends.
*
SharonleeGoodhand Imageweaver 2021

Endings & Beginnings & Things that Dwell Between (Goodbye 2020)

*

I  tend to get somewhat reflective at years ending
not sad as such, more full-of-thoughts
and this year there is so much to reflect upon.
I feel like I have been holding my breath
and treading water for 12 months…
and wonder how this year has affected others…?
I know many are unaffected,
those who are less ‘involved’ in the bigger picture…
those who are merely irritated
because they can’t play golf
or go to theme parks or cinemas
or on their overseas holiday…
Many HAVE been affected though, some through loss of
loved ones or diminished health or
loss of work… affected by poverty homelessness or fear…
— confusion is strong in the human world at the moment…
denial of many matters is rife… doubt is high…
… I feel these emotions come to me
from many far away places
on nights when my street is sleeping
and I sit by the window in company with the stars.

And I wonder… do I do enough to help readdress the imbalance?

… … … so the journey continues…almost New Years Eve in my corner of the world…by almost I mean today is the last day of 2020 in Australia, so I thought I would share my thoughts now…

…I try to end the year with some philosophical gem…but I don’t have one…I have a lot of fears…fears for our survival as a Global Race, fears for the continued safety and stability of this One Earth of ours…I am appalled and concerned about so many issues…high on the list is the  ill-treatment of our own Global race… inequality… imbalance of social acceptance… cruelty to animals, pollution, litter and the inadequate disposal of billions of tons of garbage worldwide, added to this garbage waste this year has been tonnes of Covid related waste- disposable masks and gloves…

Can we do better as a Global Race? Being mindful of how our actions & the impact they have, affect life Earth others-  people plants & animals? Yes we can. So why do so few take this responsibility seriously?

Putting aside my fears, I am also filled with admiration gratitude and respect for the many who ‘keep the candle burning’… who shine a light on every discordant moment and bring a ray of hope & healing in seemingly dark hours… thank goodness for them, the candle-holders, the light-bringers… the helpers and healers.
And how blessed am I to know so many exist amongst my family and friends, even when they don’t recognise the light that they are!

I wonder, as I do every new year…could this be the year that promises to hold the changes I have been yearning for… will unrealized dreams see fruition? Will I find that elusive “something”
I know I’ve been looking for?

I would like to say,  it’s an honour to know you all and thank you all for the connection and shared strengths, the talks and support and all the memories we made in 2020. Wishing you good health, peace and contentment for the new year, filled with inspiration and many reasons to celebrate and grow.
Remember, each and every one of you has so much potential already existing within you, we are all capable of creating monumental changes and seeing the fulfillment of our dreams & desires. You are all strong & vibrant, filled with beauty & light, just believe in yourself and watch life blossom.

Wishing you all a Fulfilling & Fruitful New Year

Peace & Bright Blessings, Sharonlee

**

Letting go

Letting go of yesterday
releasing tarnished dreams
fantasy is all well and good
but nothing is as it seems…
reality is here to stay
like it or like it not, life is for living
I’m told we only get one shot…

but what are these strange visions
that softly softly dwell
so deeply inside me
showing me places I cannot tell…

woodsmoke spirals in fragrant drifts
into a earthy scene
is this past life
… or simply a vague and unreal dream…

I hear the drums… echo
and feel them vibrate in my very soul
an ancient beating cadence
that belongs to days of old…
a pattering of feet
dance with a freedom I’ve never known
and I feel so certain this place was once my home…

rippling voices sing  in poetic measure
of seasons past and yet to come
of earthy untainted treasure…
of sunsets
and sun rises
of stars that shine in an endless sky
of the rivers’ chuckling song
and the passage  of the moon as it sails…

barefoot children  squeal with uncontained delight
they have no  worldly worries
and do not fear the night…

letting go…..of yesterday
releasing tarnished dreams
fantasy is all well and good
but nothing is as it seems…
but what are these strange visions
that softly softly dwell
so deep inside me
…. showing me places I cannot tell…
and yet
these are the places
I seem to know so well;

sharonlee©

Hipsterical…

I wonder if perhaps I have gone a little crazy…

*
Hipsterical…

Art is Sharonlee

Hipsterical emotion destroyed
by madness rapidfire minutes and hours in tatters

-long-drawn-out moments
that saw
angelheaded
hipsterical hippies
destroyed by an emotional angry fix for Peace…
Reality warps madness
into superimposed insanity
minutes that took
weeks

and
reached
out across
the aura of elements shiversing the Universe…

… my
soul pulsates
and reaches out across
a void that
took
weeks
… and lifetimes
to navigate –
– through universes of every hue

dragging along the
imagined dreams and
impressions
of Life
greying
beneath bright
tatters
burning for
jazz
And love
and
cosmic connections
traversing the Universe…
*
Sharonlee Goodhand 2020

War of Angels (Edited)


*


She’d been wondering lately, on a lot of things
of all that seems so different
and all which seems the same…
on love and life and madness
and disenchantment
for want of better name…
… for all she ever thought she knew
might just be someone’s game…

She didn’t want to be the last man standing
no telling what will be in store
Earth rides waves of chaos
because
the angels are at war…

The angels riled at gods and man
they cursed the devil too
We are broken and betrayed
all this mess and chaos
is the monster that you made!
Yet still we fight for freedom
to right all that is wrong
still we fight for humankind
and keep our healing strong…
… and only love & truth will we inspire
But sadly still
too many
are getting caught
… … … in the Crossfire.

She didn’t want to be the last woman standing
no telling what will be in store
Earth rides waves of chaos
because
the angels are at war…

And in the war of angels
They wrote the epitaph for the world.
*
Sharonlee Imageweaver

Motion Image- Sharonlee Goodhand