Sunday, April 25, 2010


Late morning on Anzac Day, I went out to Belanglo State Forest (ten minutes away) for the first time to unearth a poem, a state of mind, a feel, an opinion, some sort of new reverence for those golden tourists who were stolen, and some bird species I've yet to add to my Southern Highlands list (it's meant to be one of the only spots down here for emu).

The place is a maze of dull Christmas Trees and dusty roads the shade of overcooked salmon. I didn't find a poem or resonance or any interesting birds. What I got was a bogged Holden and half an hour of digging with thick sticks to try and free the beast with zero fortune. I worried about the drivability of the vehicle. Luckily, a burly, cheery State Forests ranger passed by - on a winch and a prayer, he freed me. Another Great Samaritan saves the day! This time around, I bought him a six pack of Premium Blondes and delivered them to his home at Moss Vale later that day.

The rest of my day revolved around selecting twenty-six pages of poetry for the Picaro Press meets Byron Bay Writers' Festival prize due at the end of the week - the placements of hyphens, commas and semi-colons dominated proceedings. The comp is only open to those in rural NSW. The prize is chapbook publication through Picaro and a launch at the Festival. I have a fair chance of winning. I think. If I don't, the genteel side of philosophy will befriend me and I will go on to the next thing with aplomb and alacrity.

LJ, April 25 2010.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


This American chap, who was an Imperial Wizard of the White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan and pro-wrestler, who's now an evangelical Christian, is coming to talk at a church near where I live. I'm almost tempted to go and hear the bloke speak - see how he turned down a better avenue and realised all the errors in his days - but I'm sure his story will be predictable and there'll be a vast, cringeworthy Hallelujah Factor. It's great this man has left the KKK and found Christ, but why give a guy who was in that backward organisation any platform whatsoever? Still, where I live, there is some palpable racism stemming from Aussie jingoism and southern cross hijacking, so maybe his message is needed.

LJ, April 21 2010.


Last Friday, I drove into the heart of Wollongong to attend an inservice at the Catholic Education Office. Before the inservice, my Hyundai's battery decided to whimper, splutter, moan and have a heart attack outside a major shopping centre. Immediately, a worker nearby downs his tools and comes over to check under the car's bonnet. He then drives his ute up to mine, connects his jumper leads to my battery and brings the Hyundai's guts back to life. When packing his leads away, he said, "People don't do this in big cities anymore." I was thoroughly impressed and offered to buy him a beer, which he waved off. This vignette, though not major, shows there is still a soul in busy commercial areas. I feel obliged now to help out someone who needs it.

LJ, April 21 2010.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


The leaves of my local deciduous trees look like they've been hand-painted with strawberry jam or dipped in molasses... the late afternoons swim in oceans of hallowed golden light... dog walkers smile widely and their old canines show they've still got some new tricks in them... big flocks of corellas feed on vacant blocks... planets show off before stars each dusk... high clouds are whiskered or reminiscent of the eyebrows of elderly men... blokes in fluorescent work tops drink and drink outside the pubs... the earth exhales the cold earlier... we consider heaters and electricity bills... and a cool new design shop in the main drag called 'Made by Others' triumphantly brings Smith St in Melbourne a little closer.

LJ, April 15 2010.

Friday, April 2, 2010


I've just been soaked in American Dread, a new offering from my favourite musicians, Dreadzone, courtesy of Don Letts' radio show on BBC 6. The track is infectious and groovy as all hell... it makes me feel utterly blessed to be alive... I want to jive and bounce from here to Los Angeles! Bring on the end of April, when Dreadzone's new album, Eye on the Horizon, is released.

LJ, April 2 2010.