Australian Masked Lapwing (Plover)

Australian Masked Lapwing (Plover)


Australian Masked Lapwing (Plover)

quick steps, quick steps
masked lapwings two, in concert brisk
like law lords at court, in deep
conversation, natter, natter, natter
what’s the matter?
guilty I say
what say you?
natter, natter, natter,
parading grandeur,
doubly resplendent, in feathered robes,
the legal garb,
with hands clasped, in arrears
dress pinned, perhaps
busy day, busy day
must be on our quick step way
kak, kak
kak, kak, kak


For Selma in the City 😀 – we talked about the plover legal fraternity some years ago (finally I got around to writing the poem).





the man wakes from a (one eye open) sleep

with the sore back on a hard bench

stretch and groan, early, to steer clear

of the passers-by sneer and eye-roll

with quick turn of the head,


and they move along …


at home

way back when

the boy woke from a (one eye open) sleep

with the hard and fast pounding hand of panic

pressing his heart, and iced-up breath in his chest,

as he waited for grave footsteps

and a stale beer breath fog,


and he couldn’t move,


and he can’t move on.


Note: this poem is not based on any one individual.

If you live in Australia and need someone to talk to – you can contact Lifeline (Crisis support and suicide prevention).



A delicate balance,

A delicate balance,


A delicate balance,

spinning in deep space

but hanging on with a weak grasp,

grounded by gravity

but rooted in a skeletal soil,

breathing in the thin

swathe of gases embracing this earth.


A fragile kiss of life

on the eucalyptus lips,

lips which will then part

and exhale for us all

who breathe today

but maybe not tomorrow.



Note: Photo by Gabrielle Bryden

Bundaberg Flood Anniversary (Haiku)

Bundaberg Flood Anniversary (Haiku)

It is one year (this week) since the devastating floods of Bundaberg in Queensland, Australia 2013.

The town is still recovering – roads are still being fixed, some houses are still empty, some residents are still displaced. But great progress has also been made and the people of Bundaberg are nothing if not resilient.

Here is a photo of a boat, out of place on a footpath near the Burnett River (which is the river that flows through Bundaberg); unceremoniously dumped by the floodwaters.

If you look closely (with a microscope 😉 ) you will see the owners have written ‘not abandoned‘ on the back of the boat. They are warning people to stay away from the boat as it is waiting to be salvaged.


resized floods Bundy 2013 by MB (640x478)

not abandoned

blame the Burnett River

who stole you

resized bloat by Michael (640x479)

Photos by Michael Bryden

For all those affected by the floods, keep on keeping on!


Zen Duck

Zen Duck

duck school - Copy

mother duck teaching

her budding  ducklings the way

sunlight and shade


Note: The mother Muscovy duck is the one on the left with the red around the eyes – her name is Spankleshank (named by the girl 🙂 )

Nudder Note: We gave away 14 ducklings and a rooster on the weekend – this is a good thing 😁

Flight of the Penguin

Flight of the Penguin


Flight of the Penguin

On land the penguin reminds us
of the portly Hercule Poirot,
quick little bird steps and jerky
body roll, in black and white.

Ungainly chubby shuffle,
wings flare with a scare,
squawking and screeching
squabbling and beseeching,

like a malodorous kindergarten,
(that’s being polite)
of flamboyant youngsters,
who haven’t washed for a while.

But the sea is where they shine,
‘better out than in’ – not for a penguin.
Who said they cannot fly?
In the chilled deep they soar.

They belly glide on an ice slide,
launching into an azure slushy
that would restart an arrested heart,
graceful arc and near silent entry

into the dark blue big easy
(marine milieu connoisseur).
Consummate deep diving pro
with the ultimate gear to go:

flipper wings and slickest body,
heavy diver’s weight belt bones,
waterproof suit and insulating blubber,
paddle-like feet to propel.

Born to be seaborne flying
and dining on the tastiest krill,
fresh fish, and succulent squid,
and all of these perfectly chilled.


Note: A re-post because it’s been a crazy week and penguins cheer me up 😒

NudderNote: Image by Glenn Grant (acobox free images)