Wednesday, December 31, 2008

254. Happy New Year!

(ABC WEDNESDAY letter 'X' is number 253.)


Another year has passed and  gone;
Once more it's time to travel on.
Maybe we view the year askance:
Will it lead us a merry dance?
The year that's gone was not the best,
But still, so far, we've passed the test.
Think of all that we've come through!
We're pretty feisty, me and you.
Everything will turn out fine
(We hope!) in the coming year, Oh-Nine.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Extra! Extra!


This is an organisation dedicated to lobbying the powers that be, often with success.
Google it to read what it has to say about the present idiocy.
Children scrapping in the yard!
Shaking hands can't be that hard!
'You started it!' we hear them cry,
Over and over as years go by.
Had they known in '48
That their decisions would cause such hate,
Would they have organised the set-up?
Now it seems there will be no let-up.
It was hard for Jews not to have a home,
Always having to drift and roam,
But, now, are they any more secure,
Is Israel safe and is it sure?
Out of the frying-pan they went
Into a fire of discontent.
It's clear the hatred goes too deep;
Who wants a peace no-one can keep?
What a way to start a year!
Faced with enmity and fear!
Strewn with bodies, wreathed in smoke.
Is this the future of which they spoke?
Can't both be adult? Can't both be wise?
Haven't they heard of compromise?

253. X-it!

A little early this week because of New Year.

'X' is this weeks' letter for ABC WEDNESDAY! Not the easiest! But not too bad if you cheat!

My equally dishonest 'X' photograph can be found on my PLUS blog.

Mr X has become redundant!
 Tell him that he can go!
He isn't needed round the place!
As this little rhyme will show.
It's easy to fics what's broken,
It's easy to mics cement,
And sics is a simple number!
So it's time the letter went!
If I'm waiting for an ecsray
It may be my turn necst!
I'll feel ecstremely nervous
And quite a bit perplecsed.
But the letter 'X' won't help me!
I'll just feel rather vecsed
That it keeps on popping up in words
And ruining the tecst!
For sending people kisses
It's very over-rated!
I vote that wretched 'X' should be

ECSIT 2008!
It wasn't ecsactly great!
But still we ecsisted!
We wouldn't have missed it!
I wonder! What's necst on our plate!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Sweet Fruitcake!


I'd rather BE a Fruitcake, than just eat one.
You can recognise a Fruitcake when you meet one.
A Fruitcake's slightly dotty,
In fact a Fruitcake's potty,
Even though you very often meet a sweet one!

A human Fruitcake sees life slightly dented,
Sort of curly at the edges and fermented.
A Fruitcake is quite loopy,
But rarely sad and droopy,
And it's odd the way a Fruitcake seems contented.

So spurn those fruitcakes filled with nuts and butter,
Though they make your greedy heart go all a-flutter.
Concentrate on human kind
And I'm certain that you'll find,
That you're better off with a crazy living Nutter!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

251. Angelic Attitudes.


This is the SIMPLY SNICKERS choice for this Sunday.

(My SUNDAY SCRIBBLINGS entry is 250.)

These two angels seem so far removed from our knockabout world! Yet they have inspired me to recall an oration poem I wrote about a very different sort of 'angel'.


See the angels, calm and mild,
Removed from all that's coarse and wild.
See the wing that's folded neatly;
Imagine voices singing sweetly.
Feel that wave of deep emotion
Wafting over land and ocean!
That takes care of the words required.
But with something else I am inspired.
Talk of angels and I recall
The most unusual of them all.
See below verses I penned
When a certain life came to it's end.
Although a Sceptic, I wanted to say
Something meaningful on that day.

Betty died about four years ago. We both belonged to the same little musical group that toured Nursing Homes. It was called The Lemon Drops. I have now left the group and the leaving has made me look back on past performers. Betty was a one-off, a completely unselfconscious, larger-than-life, untidy, genial woman who made magic for the old people. Her specialty was singing 'the old songs', about the bush and the outback; songs the old folk could sing along to, or, at least tap their feet. How they loved joining in 'Tie Me Kangaroo Down, Sport!'! I am not a believer, but I wanted to write something for Betty's funeral, something which would make her laugh. I don't know what the Minister thought about it,
 but it made the other Lemon Drops cry.

 Here is my tribute to Betty Bohenik.

(See Betty on my 
PLUS blog.)


I've seen pictures of angels:
They play harps and they dress all  in white.
Their long hair is golden and silky
And their diadems shine in the night.
They have soulful and delicate faces
And their silken gowns reach to the ground,
And they fill all the air with their voices,
In melodies sweet and profound.
Each angel resembles another;
They line up as a heavenly choir,
And their golden wings flute out behind them
With the feathers a-shimmer with fire.
Yes, I've seen pictures of angels,
But now things are not quite the same,
For now there's an unusual angel, 
And everyone here knows her name.
This angel is dressed in bright colours,
In yellow and purple and red.
There are corks hanging off her akubra
And a stuffed bird up high on her head.
Her largaphone's beating the rhythm
Of a rollicking bush-ballad air,
And a plastic snake's circling her shoulders,
Its tail tangled up in her hair.
And her theme-song's 'The Entertainer'
Playing as she takes her place
With a bright cheery word as a greeting
And a smile on her genial face.
And all the pale angels are laughing
For laughter is her stock-in-trade,
And they clap their slim hands and applaud her
And forget to be holy and staid.
For this angel has taken to Heaven
The jovial joy of her art,
The gifts of her good-natured clowning
And the warmth of her generous heart.
So, though we're deprived of her presence
And her comedy's with us no more,
If we listen we'll hear angel-laughter
As Betty walks in Heaven's Door.

Notes: an akubra is an Australian hat; a largaphone is a long stick with bottle-tops loosely nailed into it; it is hammered into the ground to make a jangly rhythm.

250. I Believe

This is my response to the SUNDAY SCRIBBLINGS prompt 'I Believe'.
(My SIMPLY SNICKERS entry is number 251.)


I believe that LIFE is just another word for God. 
And LIFE just IS..... there's no two ways about it.
I can't believe a deity created all that's here.
He may have done, but I, sincerely, doubt it.

"How did everything get here then?"
I hear my friends inquiring.
"Why is the world so great and good,
Beautiful and inspiring?"

If I respond "Well, who made God?"
They answer, without blinking,
"Don't be silly! God just IS!
Whatever are you thinking?"
They can accept that God just is
From here to Eternity.
Can't they see I believe the same,
But God is called LIFE for me?

Universes without end
Stretch on into infinity,
Eternal LIFE is bursting forth
Devoid of all divinity.
True, LIFE cares not for human woes,
But neither does it taunt us.
Pure chance rules over everything;
There are no ghosts to haunt us.
I'll be snuffed out when my LIFE is done;
I have no expectations.
And so I have no useless dreams,
No wild anticipations.

"You can't be very happy, then".....
My friends view me quite sadly.
They ignore the fact that I worship,
Deeply, truly, gladly..
The world is all I've got, you see,
So I treasure every day,
I worship the air, the sky, the trees,
The people along the way.

I'm living in a miracle,
But one that I know I'll leave.
I speak of LIFE and not of God,
When I say 'Yes, I believe'.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

249. Star-Sign Unions Three.

Since there are over 70 variations on this theme and I only intend to publish one a month on this blog I am now publishing them more regularly on a new blog called "BETTER OR VERSE" reached from this page.

After all, there must be millions of couples about to tie the knot who are waiting for my approval
 (or, as is often the case, the opposite!)

(See details on my PLUS blog).
I don't know their stars, but I'm sure they're auspicious (tongue in cheek!)


Wow! I'm full of envy now! Your partnership's a glory!
Of all the tales in mating's books, yours is the Great Love Story!
Both spontaneous, full of life, bountiful, attractive!
Your sex lives will (how can I say?) be very, very active!
Gemini has a roving eye, but the body follows rarely,
And Gemini knows that Aries will react if used unfairly!
Both of you love adventure. The great wide world awaits!
And best of all, these lovers, can be firm and friendly mates.
You'll both thrive on an argument and love each great conclusion!
Like two bolts of lightning there will always be a fusion!
Intelligent, that's both of you, ingenious as well,
But Gemini's flirtations may involve 'kiss' but not 'tell'.
Aries makes the decisions; Gemini lags behind
But, in the end, it works out well as you will always find.
You're intelligent, and popular; my goodness! You're the works!
But restlessness may haunt you both; dissatisfaction lurks.
You've got it all and yet you yearn for even greener grass.
Hang in there! For those feelings, as the years go by, will pass.
Keep hold of the friendship! That will see you through.
And how the world will envy
The old age of you two!

Extra! Extra!


Goodbye Eartha!
Who knows, maybe
There was time for one more
'Santa Baby'!

Friday, December 26, 2008

As Time Goes By


I thought I'd remember, forever,
Those 'milestones' of which people spoke!
Weight at birth, then first word, and first friendships!
Forget them? That would be a joke!
I thought that affection preserved them,
Every detail I'd know from the start.
There was nothing on earth could erase them,
Those 'milestones' engraved on my heart.
But, forget them I have, I admit it,
Their statistics now pass in a blur.
And yet at the time, they engulfed me,
Causing such an emotional stir!
Now sometimes my middle-aged children,
Who're parents themselves by this time,
Request a statistic to guide them
And my blank look is almost a crime!
They ask for 'first words' or 'first teacher'!
They ask me 'Did I act this way?'!
I look like an uncaring Mother
For I've simply got nothing to say!
They slip through our fingers, those moments,
Which seemed set in concrete back then.
And I mourn, in contemplative moments,
For they'll never be babies again.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

247. Cybergreetings!


And so we meet in cyberspace,
All members of the human race,
Some from there and some from here,
Some who're far and some who're near.
Gathering to celebrate
An ancient and a special date.
Be devout or have a ball!
Happy Christmas to you all!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


The ABC WEDNESDAY letter this week is 'W'

My 'W' photograph can be seen on my PLUS blog.

I wonder at the wonder
Surrounding a little story!
A baby born so long ago
Now imbued with pomp and glory.
I wonder at the wonder
If perchance it should be true.
And I wonder at the ways of man
And what belief can do.
I wonder at the wondrous words,
Tale-telling down the ages,
And I wonder at the power of books
And their reverential pages.
I wonder at world-wide beliefs,
Passed down through generations.
Widely accepted everywhere
Without any reservations.
We live in a world of wonder
Whatever's false or true,
And it's a wonder in itself.....
What wondering can do!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

P.S. Advert for PLUS

I've just placed a selection of photos on my PLUS blog. These are, chiefly, for my godson, Mike, who is due to visit us next month. I want to whet his appetite. But you're welcome to take a warming peek.


If you're snow-bound, freezy-toed,
Sliding on an icy road,
Visit PLUS where you will see
Warmth being sent to you from me!
(O.K! I admit, I feel quite smug!)
But have fun beneath your cosy rug!
Brenda (Rinkly)

245. Hot Diggity Doggerel.


What is a Writer? I hear you ask.
Who is this person and what their task?
They may be living in garret or hovel,
Writing the perfect Australian novel. 
They may bend their brows over timeless prose,
Through which the course of history flows.
Or maybe they write for Mills and Boon,
With men who smoulder and girls who swoon.
They may be producing a heavy tome
Concerning the goings-on in Rome,
With inspiration from the past;
A cavalcade with a mighty cast.
On the other hand  there's the essay-writer
Whose works are briefer but never slighter.
Memoirs are writings that seek to capture
That well known 'first, fine, careless rapture'
There are writers of speeches who use the pen
To spur things on in affairs of men.
Who use their language to make that spin
That lands us all in the mess we're in!
And then there are  diaries we daily write
Recording our lives before sleep each night.
Although they have no literary merit
They're something others can inherit!
So much for prose! Now we come to verse,
Lyric and long, or short and terse.
There are those for whom the thoughts run deep,
Whose passions shudder and terrors creep.
These words are chosen with lengthy care
And the depths of  souls are then laid bare.
A hint of a rhyme would be out of place
And a rollicking rhythm would be a disgrace.
And then there's the poet we know full well:
The higgledy-piggledy and pell-mell.
Whose simple doggerel  merely hops
From rhyme to rhyme until it stops!
Yes of all the many different bards
Let's remember the writers of greeting cards.
The writers of la-di-dah and chant
Whose words you send to your favourite aunt.
Those poets who write 'the holly berry'
And neatly rhyme it with 'Joy' and 'Merry'.
With Happy Birthday! Glad New Year!
Anniversary,  Festive Cheer!
Lots of Luck or Congratulations!
Even, at times, Commiserations!
Brand New Baby! Hole in One!
Happy Retirement from Everyone!
Although their words aren't smouldering, yearning,
They do help this sorry old world keep turning.

And now it is the holiday season
I write to greet you!
A very good reason.

Monday, December 22, 2008

244. Bah! Humbug!

I belong to a Speakers' Club. Our current topic is 'Bah! Humbug!' Writing the speech gave rise to the poem!


I've been asked to make a speech and 'Bah Humbug!' is the title,
And something rather seasonal is absolutely vital.
Of course, we're all familiar with that old Dickensian phrase;
That  Scrooge expletive rubbishing Victorian Christmas Days.
Being assigned this topic has made me think a bit
And I have to say, in many ways, 'Bah! Humbug!' seems to fit!
My up-bringing was Church of England, very, very staid,
So Christmas was a bit subdued, not a big parade.
Three times to church on Christmas Day, and carols, only, sung,
And the all-insistant melody of church-bells being rung.
We had a special meal, it's true and small gifts were exchanged,
But my father'd find the Christmas of this century deranged!
I turned my back on organised religion as I grew;
I simply felt I could not find the proof that it was true.
But a lingering reverence remains for beliefs that are sincere,
And I even envy other folk who hold religion dear.
I'd  never sneer at people who find church makes them secure;
It must be nice to feel one's future's certain and quite sure.
And there's nothing wrong with Festivals, or even spending cash,
Or buying Santa brooches with little lights that flash;
Or getting drunk at parties and flirting with the boss.
But it hasn't got a lot to do with Christ upon the Cross.
And I feel for True Believers as they find their faith demoted,
With cheap and cheerful Xmas cards having Christian phrases quoted!
It pains me hearing 'Rudolph' sung straight after 'Silent Night'.
And 'Jingle Bells' with 'Hark the Herald Angels'! That's not right!
Angel-fairies, flashy Crib-scenes, anything that's bright and crass,
Mixing Christ with Jolly X-mas, cheap old cheerfulness en masse!
I feel for all the truly faithful, seeing their story treated so.
All that whizz-bang arrant nonsense when they just need candle-glow.
I'm all for a Family Festival, maybe at New Year,
A great big Get-Together, with folk from far and near.
And if Spending Big is part of it, well, it helps the economy;
We could pile up New Year presents underneath a New Year Tree!
The truly Christian Christmas could be a quiet affair,
In which we non-believers wouldn't even need to share.
But the mad conglomeration in which now we all take part
Pains me because, if he were here, it would break my father's heart.
He'd feel that something special had been horribly debased
And he'd miss the gentle reverence which now has been replaced.
Here's to a Family Festival, flash presents, a big feed!
But let's not mix it up with someone's truly Christian creed.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

P.S. Catch-up

(Scroll down for 'Scribblings' and 'Snickers'.)


'I'll write a poem every day'.
That's what people heard me say.
But now I find, I must confess,
Saturday's put me in a mess!
I find I've published three at once.
That makes me an awful Dunce.
This is an extra to put things straight.
An odd little rhyme for Sunday's date.

Saturday, December 20, 2008



What if Santa Claus is late
On that most important date!
If he oversleeps on Christmas Eve
He'll miss the time he has to leave!
What if he gives a grumpy groan
And says 'I want to be alone!'?
What if he simply shakes his head
And says 'I can't get out of bed!
Leave me for just a moment more!'
And then turns over and starts to snore!
What if they tickle him and shake him,
But simply, simply cannot wake him?
He needs to be an early riser
When he's the Christmas supervisor!
 Think of all his preparations!
Maps of all the different nations, 
Weather forecasts to peruse,
Checking every local news!
Laying out his red regalia
(A thinner version for Australia!)
Taking toys down from the shelves!
Dealing with excited elves!
Making sure that each one packs
Toys in correctly-labelled sacks!
Working-out the wind-direction!
Doing a final sleigh inspection!
Counting reindeer! Is one missing?
Giving his wife a final kissing!
If he oversleeps on Christmas Eve,
He'll never be ready in time to leave!
He's got to be cheery, alert and bright,
To deliver the toys at dead of Night.
If he's only delayed by an hour or  two
It just won't do! It just won't do!
What will all the children say
If he arrives on Christmas Day?
The children will see, in a bright blue sky,
Santa and his sleigh go by!
If he arrives then, for goodness sake,
The little children will be awake!
They'll see him then! That will be tragic
And ruin all that Santa magic.
It's too dreadful to contemplate.....
Dear old Santa being 

242. Artless.

                             Paul Klee

SIMPLY SNICKERS suggested a different Paul Klee painting but this one suited me best.

See 243. for SUNDAY SCRIBBLINGS entry.


I know very little of modern art;
I'd better state that at the start.

But here's a work by the great Paul Klee
That well and truly satisfies me.
The colours merge and mystify,
The shapes and placings please my eye.
It's called 'Magic Garden', well so be it.
If he says it's a garden I can see it.
If he had called it 'Secret Spell'
I could have recognised that as well.
The merging colours really count,
But the title? Not a large amount.
Abstract art has a life of its own,
The name of it need not be known.

I taught little children in my day;
They daubed in a really childlike way,
Yet, sometimes, serendipity
Would present a 'work of art' to me.
The colours chosen, juxtaposed,
The splashes, blots, the white exposed
Would form a painting I would keep
For, truly, it could make hearts leap.

Nature itself makes works of art
Accidentally, with each part
Blending, swirling, crossing, climbing,
All with delectably casual timing.
There is no purpose and no title,
Just the vitality is vital.

Here is a work by...... a computer!
No methodology or  tutor!
An accidental set of clicks
Played this most wonderful of tricks.
And, yes, I find it pleases me
As much as the work of the great Paul Klee.
The experts will label my views untimely.
They'll say only humans paint sublimely.
They'll say Paul Klee was a mighty master;
The accidental a disaster!

But how lucky I am that I can see
Beauty in chance AND in Paul Klee!

P.S. 'Anonymous' will respond, for sure!
That comment I will be waiting for!

241. Christmas Upsidedown

This parrot is perched in the branches of the Christmas Bush. We use this tree as part of our Christmas decorations.


In New South Wales at Christmas Time
The summer weather is sublime.
And all the world is in it's prime.
On Christmas Day.
And stars that twinkle in the night
Shine silver soft and burning bright
With an incandescent summer light,
A grand display.

Some folk may miss a winter clime,
Recalled from some old nursery rhyme,
And some far-distant childhood time
When holly grew,
And frost and snow bedecked outside
And sleighs and skates were there to ride
And all the pretty flowers had died
And no birds flew.

But though we don't inspire the bards
And we admit that our back-yards
Don't look like scenes on Christmas cards,
On Christmas Day
Who would exchange this golden glow
For greying skies and swirling snow,
And icy winds that roar and blow?
Not me! No way!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Egyptian Cinderella

This legend intrigues me as it is so much like 'our own' 'Cinderella' story. Yet one imagines both stories to have come into being long before any form of copying would have been likely! Maybe it's chief charm is the fact that, in both cultures, young girls longed to be able to escape the drudgery of daily existence.


In the Valley of the Nile where it flows into the sea
Sat a lovely, gentle maiden, underneath a shady tree.
She was not Egyptian and her hair was shimmering gold,
And her eyes were green as emeralds and lovely to behold.
Her home was Greece, hence she was fair, the envy of her peers,
And, frequently, they taunted her, till she dissolved in tears.
She had been stolen as a child, condemned to slavery,
And many times she sat alone and yearned for  liberty.
The other servants in the house, teased her and reviled,
Saying she must surely be an evil demon's child.
They gave her all the meanest tasks; they scolded and they sneered,
And mocked her strange, exotic face whenever she appeared.
'Go wash the clothes!' " Go chase the geese!' the taunting servants cried;'
'Bake the bread!', 'Mend the clothes!', 'Go and sit outside!'
She spent hours by the river, making friends of beasts and birds,
For they never sought to hurt her with cruel human words.
And she would dance down by the river, circling on her own,
Finding the greatest happiness that she had ever known.
Her master was a kind old man, who rarely cast his eye
Over his many servants when he saw them passing by.
But, one day, he saw Rhodopis, for that was the maiden's name,
And compared her with the others, seeing she was not the same.
He sat and watched her dancing, he saw her costume swirl,
And he began to realise she was a special girl.
He viewed her as a daughter, unusually sweet,
So he bought some lovely slippers for her little dancing feet.
They were made of shining rose-red gold, with leather for the soles,
And the other servants wished that she were dancing on hot coals!
She wore them to the river to dance away her cares,
Far away from the servants with their mean and jealous stares.
A hippopotamus swam up and splashed a golden shoe,
So she took it off and laid it in the sun to dry it through.
But a falcon swooped down, took the shoe and  flew off in the sky,
Leaving Rhodopis terrified, and we will tell you why.....
She knew the bird was Horus, a god in his disguise,
A god that every child was taught to fear and recognise.
She wandered home with, in her tunic, her one remaining shoe,
Pondering as she walked along what she was going to do.
Meanwhile the great god, as a bird, flew across the sand,
Till it came to the palace of Amasis, a Pharoah great and grand.
Amasis recognised the god! Did it herald some mishap?
But .... suddenly, a golden shoe was dropped into his lap!
Amasis had desired a wife for many a long long day,
And now he saw this as a sign that one would come his way.
A glorious barge, with purple sails, was summoned to be rowed
Up and down the River Nile, wherever the river flowed.
With gongs and trumpets sounding out so everyone could hear,
The Pharoah and his entourage declared that they were near.
Rhodopis, wandering on her own, saw the barge float by
And she hid among the rushes for she suddenly felt shy.
'Every girl must try this shoe!' came the proclamation,
'For Pharoah will marry the girl it fits, though lowly be her station.'
Rhodopis' fellow servant-girls rushed to the water-side,
Eager to try the slipper on and become a Pharoah's bride.
They pushed, they pulled, they dragged at it, but all to no avail.
 Their feet were broad and ugly and every one would fail.
Then Amasis spied a lovely girl hiding among the rushes,
And she was coaxed out in the sun, beautiful in her blushes.
And, lo, the slipper fitted! She was all a man could crave,
Although the other servants cried 'She's nothing but a slave!'
The Pharoah then responded, 'She's all that she should be;
She is a perfect Egyptian as far as I can see.
For her hair is like golden papyrus, her skin like a lotus flower,
And her eyes are the green of the River Nile, as it shines at the sunset hour.'
So Rhodopis reached into her tunic, pulled the other slipper out,
And when she stood there fully dressed the courtiers raised a shout.
'All praise to the great god Horus, who has brought us a lovely queen!'
And Amasis said 'A beautiful girl with eyes of emerald green.'