Thursday, October 29, 2009

SkyWatch ~ Halloween

Enlarge them if you dare....

As the sun was setting, I hiked to the pumpkin patch
to await the arrival of the great pumpnin.

With darkness setting in, strange things came flapping
at my face.

Others, wrapped in their black cloaks, were still
hanging about waiting for the blanket of night to
take to the skies...did I see the glint of fangs?

Shivering a little, I hurried on, breathing a little faster
and desperately curbing the impulse to look behind me.

Passing the graveyard, whisps of grey fog? floated on the
breeze curling around my knees and sending chills up my
spine. I forced my eyes to look away fron the shadows
and stumbled along my teeth chattering in my head.

An owl's wing or was it someone elses, brushed my
cheek, my knees crumpled beneath me and as I looked
up I saw the hanging trees on the crest of the hill....
That was the last straw, I turned tail and stumbled
back past the graveyard, breaking into a run with
rustlings all around, my hands flailing cobwebs from my

when the moon rose darkened in the midnight sky,
bats and larger darker shadows outlined against it.

In a cold sweat, I barely made it back to be met
by witches and skeletons dancing around a bonfire,
ah, the comforts of home.

Thank you Klaus and the SkyWatch team for giving us
this outlet for Halloween.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Watery Wednesday ~ White horses on the Wind

Click to enlarge.

Sea horses galloping
white manes flying
noses into the wind.
Where do they run to
what do they seek
snorting in the storm.
They seek their freedom
they seek their home
far, far from churning foam.

Monday, October 26, 2009

MY WORLD ~ 48 Gold of a Different Kind

While on our recent trip to Sydney, we had to cross
many miles of New South Wales' erstwhile gold country,

now gleaming with a different gold that rewards one's
labour with a little more certainty.

With the blue hills surrounding this wealth of gold,
I could have, like Dorothy, happily sunk down into
a hundred year sleep...woops, seems my bedtime
stories are getting tangled.

The road side weed, Echium plantagenium, covered
the road verges just in time for a welcome colour change.

All photos enlarge so you too may be blinded with gold.

Thanks to Klaus and the My World team for hosting
this informative meme.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

TODAY'S FLOWERS ~ The Life of a Poppy

The Poppies, Papaver somnifera, are still magnificent.
From this shy curtsying bud bending her head,

to the proud young girl standing tall.

throwing off her shackles she invites in her admirers

and shares her bounty with all comers.

They come in droves, all hungering for succour
are sated at her breast.

At night she shuts her doors to rest.

Enduring wind and rain with fortitude and using it to
adorn herself with miriads of rubies

until, reaching the height of maturity and power,
she begins to fade yet increases in beauty
even as she fades away.

Please enlarge at least the last two shots to see the
the wonder of glistening raindrops.

Thank you to Luiz Santilli Jr. and the Flower team
for hosting this beautiful meme.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Birdphotography Weekly ~ Red Wattlebirds

The Red Wattlebirds, Anthochaera carunculata, have
dramatically increased in numbers as our garden has
started to mature.

With Grevilleas flowering for many months before
the Eucalyptus trees begin, food is plentiful.

They are quite large birds, up to 33cm, and can be
extremely frightening when dive bombing my poor
antique cat.

Swooping low over her back and loudly clicking
their beaks, they do not actually harm her, but
give her one h... of a fright.

The red wattles are clearly visible in these two photos.
Wattle birds have a very loud and grating raucous call,
a very unmusical sound indeed, and are not particularly
nice to smaller birds in their vicinity.

The bird was so intent on terrorising the cat at my feet,
that I was standing no more than 2' from it, snapping
away with my camera and it did not even notice me.

There is nothing like getting up close and personal
to catch all its antics.

This year they have had an absolute population exlposion
with a whole flock inhabiting the park. I have never seen
a flock of these birds before.
The vast numbers of Galahs we have had in other years seem
to have moved elsewhere. This year for the first time we have
had Crows and Wattlebirds vieing for nesting space with
the large numbers of resident Magpies.
For more birds around the world, click on the Logo and enjoy.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

SkyWatch and Nature Notes

Yesterday afternoon clouds came welling across the
farm yard

thickening and towering high into the sky....

it was all just teasing...they passed over head without
shedding a single tear.

With the spring rains we have had, we also have the
associated hip high weeds but to compensate, a
population explosion of poppies, Papaver somnifera,
as well.

Since at last we have some water in the dams,

the turtles are migrating up the hill from the tiny
puddle in the dry summer creek that sustained the
life of at least some of them last summer.
The frogs have changed their nightly deafening din
on all sides to an ominous drumming of the Pukel
men with the loud and persistent honks of the bullfrogs..

For the first time since it was planted in the park
some 10 years ago, the candles on the Aesculus
hippocastanum, are alight and , if the season
remains good, we may get our first conckers yet!

There are only five flower spikes...I would have been
extatic with just one!

Time to leave the park. Even the water darkens since
the sun has set.

All photos enlarge as always.

Click on either and/or both Logos and visit the skies
and changing nature elsewhere.

My thanks to the skywatch team as well as to
Michelle of Rambling Wood for hosting these memes.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Watery Wednesday ~ 20 Ducks at Dawn

Sorry, only one today....

it was still pretty dark so I had to pump some light
into the shot. It is a little clearer when enlarged.

Thanks to 2sweetnsaxy we can all enjoy lots of water.

Sunday, October 18, 2009


Sixty years ago today we sailed in through the Sydney
Heads and as we neared the harbour and the city I
stared in wonder at the hills.
Everywhere there were large patches of pink which
later I learned were Magnolia trees. In more than
half a century Sydney has changed and now is
crammed full of houses where before it boasted
beautiful gardens.

Although the spendour has left the cityscape, my
soul still remembers the exquisite beauty that greeted
my eyes on that auspicious day.

We embarked from Naples on the 25th Sept. 1949, my
13th birthday, little thinking that ten years to the day
later I would be leaving Europe yet again to cross the Atlantic.

My brother and sister had emigrated to Australia a year
earlier and sponsored mother and I to follow. Refugees
had little future in Germany at the time and neither the
USA, which only took young single people, nor Canada which
externded a helping hand to families as well, would take us
as we were encumbered with a person over the age of 45
and another still of mandatory school age.

My little brown cardboard sutcase held all my worldly
posessions, a spare set of underwear, a cardigan, a pair
of two piece bathers I had knitted from scratchy homespun
wool, a sunhat my mother had made for me for the voyage
and the few treasures I posessed, two books and a little
crystal vase and another very little one from Pompeii, my
birthday presents, as well as the little cellophane dolly my
papa had given me on the last Christmas before the Russians
hauled him off to Siberia.
All of which turned to ashes in the major bushfires in 1983.

Memories of the early days welled up of yet another language
to learn from scratch, the time spent in various camps, of people
on public transpost sidling away from one as though smitten
with the plague if one spoke in a foreign tongue on public transport...

When totally out of the blue Ces the wonderful Sunday painter
created this very special award for me.

As if by magic, I was lifted out of my introspective
thoughts and surrounded by the fellowship of the
oak nymphs she has created and made to feel special
for the old and weatherd oak that I am.
Ces, I thank you from my heartwood and will compile a list
of further recpients as soon as I can. Thank you dear
Thanks to the My World team we can all wonder the world at will.

TODAY'S FLOWERS ~ 35 More and More Roses

While the last of the Tulips still linger,

the Roses come into their own. As I hung out the washing
this lovely 'Black Boy', oh dear, such a politically incorrect
name, assailed my senses with its rich delightful scent.

I could not resist taking a few minutes to catch a
different angle.

The main rose garden was awash with shades of
pink, here is 'Just Joey' with a touch of apricot.

'Michelle Meilland', never backward in coming
forward, is awash with blooms of palest pink

while 'Bewitched' is just that, bewitching.

Here I give you the soul of the roses, gentle and
ephemerally translucent,

to spring back to vigour and forceful energy as
colour once more suffuses its being, bringing it
back to vibrant life.

All photos enlarge with a click.
Click on the Logo and see thousands more flowers.

To our gracious hosts I give thanks for this meme
which gives pleasure to so many.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Wildwood Dreaming ~ Nature Notes

This post is for Ces, my little sister-friend who
inspires me to experience once again the child-like
pleasure of seeing the world a new every day as
though it had just been created for my delectation.

The wild wood is my refuge
there I can dream of spring...

the poplars waking early
telling tales in silky voices on the wind

wild quinces bank along the creek, pale green
their blushing buds displaying

while the humble plum, industrious as ever,
is weighted down with half ripe fruit.

Dogroses on the eastern side are tardy in their flowering
while in the west their sisters smile in foolsome bloom.

The hawthorns have tight button-buds,
just one, a little bolder,
has opened up her sleepy eyes
to greet the warmth of longer days.

Dragonflies or damselflies, whatever they may be,
hover over water

thick with frogspawn as a morning frost
with promises of concerts yet to come.

The watchful unicorn , her pride by day concealing,
yet holds the golden key to all our silent dreaming.

Thank you Ces for the love and friendship you so
generously share and the immense inspiration that you are.
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