Tuesday 16 November 2021

A long time...

 I have let this blog slip, not intentionally, our 'unprecedented living times'- yes a cliche has put me a bit off kilter, but rest assured I am still writing and submitting, but success at publications are indeed hard.

But I continue to write poetry and here the 'School Magazine' NSW has created a little you- tube of my largest poem to be published in School Magazine November Touchdown edition.

I will always write a poem when I wish to teach one of my strategies and this is a short poem but every word counts.


Spring Walk

Also a little brag, 'Footprints on the Moon' 
 published in February by UQP made the shortlist of this award, very happy that a verse novel can recreate history!

And finally another happy creative place- a little snapshot of part of my garden.

Saturday 29 May 2021

An Occasional book review


By Claire Saxby Illustrated by Jess Racklyeft

Iceberg by Claire Saxby illustrated by Jess Racklyeft  2021 Published by Allen and Unwin


I have been a fan and friend of Claire for a long time now and am just blown away by this non-fiction Picture Book.    The poetry in the text mirrors the splintery, cold and icy world of the Antarctic.


‘In the pale morning an iceberg calves- shears from a glacier 

and plunges to the ocean in a haze of sparkle-frost.

The iceberg is flat-topped, sharp and angular

and carries ancient weather in its layers of ice-clothing;

a coat for each year volcanoes blew

and black ash fell like snow.’


Claire uses repetition: ‘If this world looks empty,

Look closer.’  It forms a motif and a continuity for the narrative.


And as the narrative unfolds and the gorgeous blues, white and black of Jess Racklyeft’s artwork also unfolds.  Then the colour of summer delights with orange, smudged yellow and the most delectable squid and jellyfish are revealed in fold out flap pages.   We have a whole undersea panorama of movement reflecting shadow and filtered sunlight.


The world around the iceberg reverberates with squid, krill, birds, orca and short-tailed shearwaters.  It is fascinating to be drawn into this icy world and to recognise the importance of an iceberg calving!  Love that description!  I remember when Claire first shared her Iceberg poem and I pointed out that I found an iceberg calving strange (as an ex dairy farmer) She reassured me this was the correct terminology and what a visual and literary feast we have now in this book.  A precious gem to read, share and reread again.


Thanks Claire and Jess for a great book!