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A Quarterly Journal
Jeffrey Woodward, Founder & Owner
Ray Rasmussen, General Editor

Volume 11, Number 2, June 2017
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Owen Bullock
Canberra, Australia


Broga, Bega
for Barbara Curnow

We’re going to Bega.

Broga Bega Broga Bega Broga Broga Broga Bega.

We’re staying at Barbara’s house.

Sunset—
swathes of orange lichen
discarded by angels

Slow. Beside the drive, a wallaby with a bushy tail.

the crackle
of walu—
we’ve arrived

A dwelling, full of silence. Socked feet find the meditation room.

in the house
of characterful doors
a framed photo
of a characterful door

the profile
of the Rayburn’s flu
reminds me …

Father’s pot of tea steeping on the shelf above the hob.

A framed jigsaw ornaments the bathroom; orange & yellow tiles, black & white parrots.

A fireplace worthy of a great hall, well-prepared, flares swiftly.

perusing someone else’s books
the cuckoos
in us

“My life is a creative act.” – Ram Dass.

Staying in someone else’s house is like looking at a portrait for a long time.

the candle’s shadow
flat
against the wall

view of the bush
no more
overlit corridors

straight eucalypts
warm warble
of kookaburra

I want to touch the quiet. Sometimes it seems as though everyone’s had a more troubled life than me; nothing attacks me from the past. A bird hovers among ruminations. It’s our nature, too, to look for food, to go where the work is—what we’ve been discussing in our couple of days away from routine.

“Suffering lets us see where our attachments are—and that helps us get free.”

We’re noticing the physical frustrations of growing older.

“Aging represents failure in our society, so each of us looks ahead and sees inevitable failure.”

Driving out on a corrugated road. Wind-shorn flowers; coastal rosemary; sand forms based in erosion. From the headland at Bermagui, peering through the wind.

We freeze on the darkened road home, a wombat waddles across it, and stops. We soak him up.

Trees down the valley sway slightly.

the peace
of the mountains
talking is profane

morning breeze
only red parrots
chatter

losing at scrabble
wanting to get rid of
some “I”s


Note: walu: indigenous word for peeling bark.

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