“Owl” by Louise McCarthy

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It’s late afternoon as I wander around,

Burnt leaves and ashes still float to the ground,

From the north, quite close, from those grey smoky skies,

From that direction – a night owl flies.

 

The owl is not sure – It’s awkward and clumsy,

But it catches a branch of a tall slender gumtree,

Then falls to the earth, as though it is grieving,

I think for a moment… about unbelieving.

 

The air is so still and a prayer can be silent,

But the owl cries with sorrow – a hymn of lament,

And I look with the night owl, with hope, to the sky,

When from that direction another owl flies.

 

“Leaving” by Louise McCarthy

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One hour until midnight,

A strange and warning silence,

Do we stay – what are the odds though?

Sleep is no defence.

 

The judgment is to leave,

Sad words will not escape,

Sentiment is beaten,

Just a few things can we take.

 

A box of precious items –

 

Photographs, souvenirs,

Silly little trinkets,

A change of clothes, books,

Pillows and some blankets.

 

Tall trees stand surrendered,

The backdrop of our home,

The sky is red and the air is hot,

And tomorrow is unknown.

Wollemia Nobilis – A Native Aussie Pine (and magical Christmas tree!) By Louise McCarthy

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One night a magic happening – our Christmas tree grew tall.

It was a tiny sapling – we’d sat nearby the hall.

The Wollemia NoblisA native Aussie pine.

The miracle of Christmas – a tree that I could climb!

 

Ignoring the traditions, I quietly jumped with glee.

I left my parents sleeping and shimmied up that tree.

Through the hallway ceiling, past the chimney top.

Distant church bells pealing – my watch showed 6 o’clock.

 

Sparkly decorations: silver, red and gold.

Angels sang ‘The First Noel’ – the start of Christmas told.

This Christmas tree so magical – had brought me to the morn,

It brought me to year, the day – when Jesus was just born.

 

I touched the Christmas tree star, now above the cloud.

I noticed, as I looked around – a stable and a crowd.

So there I was a visitor, upon this special day,

And the only gift I had – was a drum on which to play.

 

So while others danced and sang, I quietly played my drum.

In ore I watched this holy scene – then I heard my Dad and Mum.

They were climbing up the tree, exclaiming with delight –

“After all these years our native pine has finally done alright.”

“Remembrance Day” by Louise McCarthy

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Remembrance Day

 

Reminiscing – but disregarding the horror of World War One,

Three cobbers sat, their time of life – the setting of the sun.

They spoke about the good old days – they joked about the war,

Entitled too – for they were there, though they said not what they saw.

 

In silence they reflected for a minute maybe longer…

 

Then one friend with a solemn stare said “If I had my time once more –

You Know I think I’d go again; I’d go again to war…”

And they laughed for if it was true – hindsight’s twenty-twenty.

And in the distance a bugle sounded – and the three friends sipped their tea.

 

Lest We Forget.

“The Farmyard” by Louise McCarthy

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Harriet Heaven-Sent of Eastern Australia,

Packed her bags with her paraphernalia.

She waved farewell as she boarded the bus,

While friends and relatives made quite a fuss.

 

She had made them proud. It was such a surprise,

The day that Harriet won the grand prize.

Harriet Heaven-Sent, a writer of stanza,

An artist, a wordsmith had won the bonanza!

 

Harriet Heaven-Sent had written a ode.

She’d won a year’s residency at “The Farmyard.”

The retreat that inspires the most beautiful writing,

A remote island paradise – so rare; so exciting…

 

And after a year of running the farm,

Where each dawn the rooster crowed with alarm,

And the sheep followed close and the goats liked to munch,

On Harriet’s washing, for dinner and lunch.

 

Where the donkey would bray when Harriet wrote,

He-haw! Hee-haw! Not a melodic note.

And as for the harmony, the horses and cows –

Succeeded in raising Harriet’s brows.

 

Well the list did go on, but there was no escape,

As a burly great bull was parked at the gate!

So Harriet Heaven-Sent stayed for the year.

After which time she changed her career.

 

Yes, Harriet Heaven-Sent – was returned to her home,

She was air-lifted out – the writer of poems.

And to the dismay of all whom she knew,

Became a farmer! – Yes this is true.

 

So each year a chopper drops in a bard

A writer of stanza, to work“The Farmyard.”

And no one knows why but each year’s the same,

The bard returns home with a whole different aim.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“ Boo-book Week” by Louise McCarthy

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Boo-book Week

 

“Boo-book week!” hooted the boobook owl,

Last night from half past two.

“Boo-book, boo-book, boo-book week.”

It hooted as it flew.

And on and on until the dawn,

When suddenly it quit.

Then “Cock-a-doodle-doodle-do!” the rooster crowed a bit.

Followed by, “Bok bawk! Bok bawk!

Bok bawk, bok bawk, bok BOOK week!

The hens clucked on, they did not cease –

All day, bok bawk, bok BOOK week!

 

So that is how I know,

That this week is boo-book week.

Or as the hens prefer to say –

Bok bawk, bok bawk, bok BOOK week

“Moon Theory” by Louise McCarthy

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Moon Theory

 

Before I’d heard,

Before I knew,

That the moon was far away –

Too far to get to in one day,

“Impossible!” I heard you say –

I had thought,

Before I knew –

(I was ready to explore)

That I would fetch a piece of moon,

And keep it to adore.

You see I’d noticed, very often,

Or at least I’d understood,

Others must have done the same,

And so I thought I could –

Piece by piece they’d take it down,

Then build it up again,

Then take it down and build it up –

Again and again and again.