November Sun


The November Sun has brought vibrant, showy colour to life. Jacaranda trees burst with purple-blue flowers, bright bougainvillea brackets tumble along a bamboo fence, yellow sunflowers salute the sun, the elegant fragrance of gardenia fills the night air, and the roses I planted in May are blooming. A sweltering summer is now palpable and rearing to go.


Feel-good music plays somewhere close-by, barefooted kids careen up and down the street on bikes trailing laughter, fishing lines are cast into the River Mary with anticipation, fridges are stocked with ice-cold beer and humour is on the tips of tongues. I watch this collage of colour and life light up this poky, parochial town and listen to the tone of the season until it dawns on me- like a burnished sun stretching her light over the morning sky-that after living quite a transient life, I am finally home.





Zucchini flowers


At the beginning of spring I sowed some zucchini seeds and the plants have taken off. Looks like I may have more zucchini than I can handle!

As the beautiful flowers unfurl, it’s hard not to pick some of the male stems (leaving a few behind) to stuff and cook.


There are tasty ways to stuff zucchini flowers including using different types of cheese such as; ricotta, parmesan or percorino, mixed with basil, olives, mushrooms or bacon.


I made a herb and lemon rice mixture, adding lemon juice and lemon rind to steamed rice, with some parsley and mint from our herb garden, sauteed onion and garlic and pine nuts. I rinsed off the flowers, filling them gently with a teaspoon of the mixture and cooked them in butter.


Happy gardening everyone!




October vignettes


October mornings; gossamer-gold on a blossoming tree, flecking fields of dew

lilly’s, crocuses, purple salvia, and petunias in bloom

mellifluous birdsong

the vigour of spring

hints of fetid heat, portentous afternoon clouds

the reprisal of summer storms on the tail-end of spring

preternatural calm, a collapsing sky

clapping thunder, heavy rain

Mary River running trammel free

ripening on trees; russet skinned apples, tamarillos and figs

morning têtê-à-tête’s with a new friend

Letting go of the past, moving on, a new beginning
















September; a time to sow

Amaranth flowers with descriptive names like ‘love lies bleeding’, ‘red cathedral’, and ‘pygmy torch’, cucumber, golden zucchini, okra, rosella, nasturtium, pumpkin, bitter melon, sunflower, bean and zinnia seeds have been sown in the garden.


My seeds were harvested from the last seasons spoils, and bought from the local gardening centre where I spend my time loitering about, and ogling their impressive floor to roof seed collection.


And as we sow, so shall we reap.

I’ve harvested red cabbages for sauerkraut, cherry belle radishes and garlic lately. The garlic was a tad small, but I’m optimistic that the next harvest will be an improvement. Regal blue corn flowers which were so eager to grow took long to bloom, but were worth the wait.


To be ensconced in ones work in a garden brings peace, and is restorative for the soul, mind and body.

Happy gardening everyone.

Sounds of September

Out of a tender dawn, the triumphant, callous “COCK-A-DOODLE-DOO!!!” of the rooster across the road (and the inevitable ‘crow off’ as every rooster in the vicinity competes for the greatest crow)

Droplets of water from my hose hitting the earth, giving life to freshly sown seed

The happy morning whinnying of my neighbors horse at the sound of his owners voice

 Effervescent buzzing and whirring of bees glad with warmer weather

Female voices “Ooo-ing” and ”Ahh-ing” over these vibrant spring trumpet lilly’s at our front door


Behind an adjacent fence, the low incessant, grating, mechanical drone of a tractor or digger cultivating land

The quacking of a timirous wild duck trying to get into the chicken coop to play


The cadence of a lone currawong ascending into the dusk like two melodic crotchet notes  blown repeatedly from a flute

 The punctual evening cicada chorus pulsating to an invisible metronome

Manic, high frequency, squeals and calls of  bats devouring our bananas and feasting on the night

Outside my window, the itinerant  flapping of wings and the lonely call of a bird homeward bound (or on a covert mission) petering off into the cool night air








Spring rain fell yesterday, finally.

It fell from a light sky washing these lemon blossom flowers so they appeared a silky ivory. It fell in brusque strokes along the river, an attempt to sweep opaque water from a lingering winter downstream.

Here is a poem called Rain written by Hone Tuwhare from his 1987 book “Mihi: Collected Poems”. He was a renowned Māori poet, orator, activist and writer from New Zealand and is often referred to as New Zealand’s most favourite poet. He wrote poems about  Māori politics, social justice, nature, the sea, and rain, in both Māori and English.


I can hear you
making small holes 
in the silence

If I were deaf
the pores of my skin
would open to you
and shut

And I
should know you
by the lick of you
if I were blind

the something
special smell of you
when the sun cakes
the ground

the steady
drum-roll sound
you make
when the wind drops

But if I 
should not hear
smell or feel or see

you would still 
define me
disperse me
wash over me

-Hone Tuwhare

Hello spring

IMG_5364Spring is here and the atmosphere is redolent of renewal. I collected some flowers and foliage for posies in vases and whimsy indoors. I pulled my dormant notebook from under a pile of clutter to be brought to life again. Its pages are crisp, freshly pressed, beautifully white and wait in anticipation of new words to write.

Happy spring.