Reflections on the wreck of St Martin de Porres

52 rolls

Feb 2014 Toyo Fomopan Xtol(1.2)Adonal(1.200) 5

The sea is a perilous place, and far more so for refugees drowning off Australian territories or turned away, by a callous government and navy that seems to have lost sight of humanity.

This country is founded on migration by sea, but refugees from post-colonial conflicts, or, wars of attrition where this nation has sent troops have been unwelcome. Clearly there is something wrong in the perception of a government, and nation, that can be so easily moved by bigotry as an organising principle in politics to reject refugees on the basis of colour, culture or religion. Historically there was the “white Australia” policy and threat of the “yellow peril” from the north, then the fear of refugees from Southeast Asian wars, and now Tamils, Afghans, Iraquis, Syranians, Sudanese and many others are dealt with suspicion. The logic of calling a refugee illegal eludes me. It is if by using…

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52 rolls

When wind rushes through eucalypts rustling the leaves and creaking the boughs, I feel at ease in the knowledge that the spirits of the old ones are present. Some years ago, at a welcome to country never forgotten, an indigenous elder observed that the old ones could be still heard in the forest on the breeze and in the leaves welcoming us too. It is on still windless days, when it is hot, that the trees will shed their branches. The old river gum by the banks of a river, or a spotted gum in the coastal forest will shed a branch, self pruning in its own time.

In indigenous culture, particularly in this region, traditional spirit beings were thought to live in the sky and “it was believed that the spirit of each individual came from the sky-world, via the trees, and at death returned in the same way.”…

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Horses are people too!

52 rolls

It is easy to anthropomorphise horses – from centaurs to winged steeds, knight’s chargers or fabled horses of the west, this most incredible of all beasts is often credited with human or even godlike attributes – but spending time around them, one learns very quickly that each has their own horsenality.

Feb 2014 Fed-2 Xtreme100 Adonal(1.50) 5
Ahri is a left brain introvert – quiet and confident, but sometimes a little fearful of the unknown.

Feb 2014 Fed-2 Xtreme100 Adonal(1.50) 13
Spirit is a right brain extrovert, who is becoming more left brain as he gets older. He loves to play, and enjoys human company. The farrier thinks he could be a super horse.

Feb 2014 Fed-2 Xtreme100 Adonal(1.50) 1
Zim is a right brain introvert. He was probably more left brain when he was younger, but now just prefers the company of his paddock mates to people. He clearly has a devastating impact on film. Seriously! He could be supernatural.

Feb 2014 Fed-2 Xtreme100 Adonal(1.50) 11
No, not really. It is the light…

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Rainforest in the clouds

52 rolls


Silence always seems to presage doom in the forest. In a mist, when clouds descend on the rainforest and the bellbirds cease their chiming, the quiet eerily portends fate befalling. The ringing call of these tiny, rarely seen birds, echoes though the tall timbers, the coachwoods, cedars and blue gums, swamp mahoganies and stringybarks. Over the lichens, around the orchids, through the bracken and tree ferns, the sound of bellbirds somehow seems assuring. It is their absence I notice, feel and am alert too.

I am wary of visiting our temperate rainforests when it is hot or windy; I prefer the cool overcast days, when the air is not moving or the leaves rustling. The light is muted, the pungent smell of moist earth mixed with decay fills the air, and multitudinous shades of green are revealed in the variety of shapes, forms and species of plants.

Beneath the escarpment…

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