Sunday, 28 July 2013


Is taking time out for yourself too difficult?  Do you go on a guilt trip every time you take some me time?  Why is that do you think?

We seem to have become conditioned to a life of frenetic activity these days despite all of the labour saving devices and modern technology that are out there to help us in today’s modern world.  We are generally speaking, more time poor and more stressed than our ancestors were.

Our ancestors well understood the thought behind the phrase – take time to smell the roses – and did just that.  Their days generally speaking were dictated by the weather and the seasons, the rise and fall of the sun and moon.  Early to bed early to rise was a fact of life not dictated to by bars and clubs that stayed open until the early hours of the morning, or movies that were available on TV screens all night.  They worked hard, they slept well, ate better and were thankful for families and friends and the blessings they had.  Can we say the same today?

Taking a little time out was something that was often enjoyed as a family with the family coming together to play board games, or enjoying a family picnic.  Shock, horror… they even held conversations around the dinner table without the interruptions of text messages and mobile phones.  Reading was a pleasure – parents even read to their children.  As books were possessions more likely to be available to those people who were well heeled and as not everyone was able to read – the person who could recite a yarn or a poem to an audience were valued guests.  Our earliest communication means was always word of mouth and like the game of Chinese Whispers the end story no doubt wasn’t quite the same as it started out, but nonetheless the story was told.

Poetry became a method of people remembering the story to pass it along.  The rhymes and the rhythm seemed easier to remember and tended to stick in the brain as it were.  In exactly the same way that children learn and remember nursery rhymes and I bet, even if you are well past those childhood years that you still remember the words to Humpty Dumpty or Mary had a little lamb.

So perhaps, if you feel that a little time taken for yourself is not a bad thing and if you would like to lose yourself for just a while amongst some four legged tails, green fields and the Australian Bush.  meet a few characters, have a bit of a giggle and a bit of a sigh then perhaps you might like to read my book -  Aussie Tails and Aussie Males and one or two other things.

Saturday, 27 July 2013


Maureen Clifford ©
The Scribbly Bark Poet

Her son was born – he did not move - she tried to make him wake
then stood aghast and stared at him. This must be a mistake.
Once more she shook a shoulder small then fell down by his side
and wrapped herself close round him, her stance her pain implied..

The babe was badly malformed – a cruel and sad defect
no bottom jaw was there to see – this babe was not perfect.
In every other way it was, but this one would not feed
so nature took the one recourse and showed mercy indeed.

We tried to raise the Mother – her grief was pitiful
she wouldn’t leave her babies side – she thought him beautiful.
She noticed not the gaping wound – the hideous awful grin
She saw the beauty of his soul – the innocence within.

We covered up the tiny corpse with sacking from the shed
and got a halter on the ewe, led her away in dread.
We knew if she survived the night that nature would be kind
and dim the memory of the little lamb she left behind.

Her cries all night just broke your heart; she called and called in vain.
We’d disposed of the little lamb – he did not bear a name.
Another orphan lamb we’d found and he cried for his Mother.
Perhaps the two together would be solace for each other.

And so it was – she took to him – let down her milk to feed
the little bloke disconsolate, a little bloke in need.
We watched in wonder as she washed his tiny woolly head
and muttered mother talk to him, as he butted and fed.

But never have I once forgot the anguish that ewe felt.
She mourned for her small lambs loss just as I would mourn myself.
Don’t ever think that animals are devoid of emotion
they live and die, they love, break hearts and show their young devotion.

For in their psyche nature rules – the strong outlast the weak.
Nature at times is harsh and cruel and havoc she can wreak.
But mostly mother love is strong – it’s what ensures survival
of every species here on earth. Love welcomes each arrival.

Monday, 22 July 2013


Just sharing a couple of old photos I came across in a clean up -  One way back in 1965 of a very pregnant me age 16  with my Mum and Beauty a little mongrel cattle dog x we had back then and my Boxer Dog Blossom - taken back in the 80's when she was a little different as she had a long tail which I refused to dock.  A boxer dog with a long tail was unheard of back then so she stood out in a crowd.  Now of course and rightly so it is illegal to dock and boxers with tails are the norm.

Blossom was a gorgeous dog - my son's first  fur - sister  and she participated in everything we did including enjoying the pool -

She's gone, along with others who
are in my heart , whose love I knew.
I hope that there's a place above
for animals so dearly loved.
For she deserves to play all day
and chase big rabbits far away.

For here on earth we shared a bond.
She was always quick to respond
to my call.  Love was always there.
She sits no more beside my chair.
She comes no more, can't hear my call
her picture still is on my wall.
My Blossom.

Blossom chilling out in the pool - photo taken in the early 1980's - don't know who she was poking her tongue out at.

3 Beauties   lol

Wednesday, 17 July 2013


 Just having a bit of fun with some Haiku styled poetry and some old photos from the property - love the Photoshop concept I can make whatever I want pretty much to suit.  That's innovative.

Went up to Warwick just recently and already there are new born lambs on the ground and it is so cold that I felt sorry for the poor little things.

The country up there at the moment is looking pretty good and the days are glorious .  Acres of blue sky and the blue hills in the distance the the blue blossoms of Pattersons curse in the paddocks.  It is so pretty even though it be a weed.

and of course they make good wine at Stanthorpe -
and what better reason to drink it than because you want to send a message in a bottle.

They do have beautiful  blossom trees growing in Stanthorpe and Warwick and the gorgeous reds and golds and purple colours of the leaves in winter are a delight but the photo of this tree in an old cemetery was taken by a friend of mine in Victoria - thanks Heather.

Warwick is celebrating its Jazz and Jumpers festival at the moment and the trees in the main street are brightly garbed in winter woollies.

Monday, 15 July 2013


When my son was a little boy his Aunty Carol used to give him Butterfly Kisses and wide mouthed froggy kisses that would have him giggling and rolling around laughing.  I wrote this for him.  He is no longer a little boy but in his mid forties - but the little boy is still inside and he hasn't changed all that much.  If you would like to hear it just click on the title...

 Butterfly kisses 

Friday, 12 July 2013


Something I put together using some music and sound effects to back my own poetry - if you want to have a listen just click onto the title here...............
The Mother calls

Monday, 8 July 2013


The first issue of The Australia Times POETRY online magazine is soon to be released on the 23rd July which will complement the range of magazines they already have up and running.  I am very excited by this because the Editor is actually me - I like to think my old Grand-dad  would be proud.  He was also an Editor of  a UK newspaper - The Middlesex Chronicle.

You can see from the photo above that the magazines cover a wide range of interests.  Something for everyone just about.

If anyone would like to contribute to the mag please use the Contact button on this link -