#pinpsaturday 25.03.17


THE ZERO POINT 

You are the dancing feet 

and the soaring wings

Perpetual motion

and stillness.

You are the light 

and the dark.

The turning of the moon.

You are the firs 

and the ash.

The beginning and the end.

Turning, ever turning,

you are everything

and more

….incarnate

Post It Note Poetry Saturdays 

On the back of this year’s successful Post-It Note Poetry challenge, and the passion and commitment with which it was embraced by the tarot community on Instagram, I’ve created a new weekly challenge: Post It Note Poetry Saturdays or simply #pinpsaturday

#PINPSATURDAY

It’s easy to participate, especially if you are a seasoned Post It Note poet. In essence it is a weekly mix of micro poetry and divine inspiration. If you know nothing about tarot, much less own a deck, I’ll be posting the card I’m using each week, and invite you to use it as your poetic catalyst.


1. Choose a tarot card based on the weekly prompt. (This week is is The Magician)

2. Write a poem on a post it note.

3. Photograph the poem and card.

4. Post the photograph to Instagram on Saturday with #pinpsaturday.

Smooth and easy! Looking forward to seeing your poems over the weekend. 

The Ineluctable Weight of Living


It is the final day of the 2016 academic year today. This marks the conclusion of my son’s transition year back into mainstream schooling (and also his first year at high school).

It’s been a hell bumpy ride before I add into the equation a less than smooth year for us all as a family. But you know what, we made it through. We didn’t just survive, at times we have thrived and going into the 2017 academic year we are poised for less survive and more thrive. 

This morning it was the hurried creation of thank you cards for those members of staff who have helped make this year a little easier for us. 

The above is the front of the card which I made for the acting Guidance Counsellor, who will have a few more days next year as the GC for the junior school. I am so grateful for her support and acknowledgement. The first person who said to us: you are doing a great job. The first to say: you have to be congratulated for how far you’ve come this year. 

It is impossible to articulate what this means after years of having blame and shame shunted onto us by successive educational professionals who didn’t want to engage, meet us where we were at, much less offer practical support and understanding. 

We have been so blessed this year. There has not been a single teacher, deputy, or any other member of staff that has not done their upmost to assist us. Right down to the fabulous ladies in the office.

I’m glad that I was able to hand make a few cards to accompany the obligatory chocolate and bubbly, as my act of appreciation and gratitude. 

Block Out Poetry #1

On the weekend I was talking with Adam. I wondered what would happen, the poem we would each create, if given the same page of a book as the starting point. 

I chose page 95 of Wordsworth Classic’s version of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. 

Initial Reflections

Upon taking up my black marker, I realised something that struck me listening to Anna Gibbs’ essay at the Ficto-Critical approaches to a Writing Architecture colloquium I was lucky enough to attend several weeks ago at UQ. There is a physicality in cut up that isn’t there in block out. In cut up you literally take up scissors and glue, dissect and rearrange the page to create something new (at least that is the way it is for me). Block out, in comparison, feels far more passive to me. 

I also realised as I started blocking out words, there is a freedom in cut up that does not exist in block out. There is no ability to shift phrases around. It’s incredibly locked down. 

A Bright Idea


A bright idea 

Lived at the bottom of a well

Took interest in questions 

Eating and drinking treacle 

To fancy herself extraordinary 
Secondary Reflections

My brain was working in cut up mode – looking for phrases to fit together, rather than singling out words and stringing them together. 

Block out is a very different way of approaching the page. One  I’ll need significant time with in order to override the cut up default of thinking. 

The Only Regret

I wished I’d had a copy of the page to do a cut up. There were some sublime phrases in there I wanted to remix. There is no doubt cut up would have elicited a very different type of poem. 

Artfully Present 

The current Venus Retrograde transit through Leo continues to be an artistically auspicious one for me – someone who is usually bent toward the creation of pictures and stories through words than words and stories through pictures.

MY TEMPORARY WORLD, SQUARED

As the photographs show, I’ve been creating in the same medium as last week: basically one side of a Delite’s rice cracker box, two pieces of origami paper unearthed from the bottom drawer of my desk (thank you Daiso for your beautiful, inexpensive paper and thank you past me who wanted to make paper cranes!) and a randomly selected page of Italo Calvino’s ‘Six Memos’ (did I ever tell you the story about how my dog ate Calvino?). The rest is communing with scissors, glue and random acts of meaning.

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‘Arting’ – as I’ve come to think of it, has been a way to remove my mind from the turbulence of the here and now. It’s also been an opportunity to create something unique for the special people in my life. The top square is a birthday present for Kim and the bottom a housewarming present from Rob. (This time I’ve shown them as works in progress rather than as the polished, final piece!)

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Amid the glue — and the chaos that comes with breathing out a little too hard and blowing tiny pieces of paper across the desk (and thus, for a few horrible minutes, destroying the perfect poetry of the words assembled because one of the words can no longer be found!) — there was a gift for me!

EPIPHANY, REPEAT

Many years ago I learned as an editor and a publisher of strange and left-of-field conceptual ideas that the best approach to any project once it had been conceived and entrusted to a group of writers was to step the hell out of the way. The Chinese Whisperings and Literary Mix Tapes anthologies are the results of this ‘letting go’. Of trusting that the writers involved had the capacity to grow an idea far beyond anything I was able to.

I’m learning the same lessons over again, this time through art.

I was afraid the first one of these little squares would be the best I’d ever make and everything after would be dross. The Ego of Perfectionism has always been my nemesis when it comes to art (far less so with writing). It’s an easy way of opting out of my creative expression. I can give in, do nothing because I believe I’ll never be good enough…

… or I can step the hell out of my own way. Let go.

Tuesday afternoon I sent this message to Kim (after messages earlier in the day about getting over oneself in the creative process!)

Lesson 1: every little piece of art has its own energy and dynamism. This means if you step out of the way of expecting anything of it, it can ‘become’ all by itself.

Lesson 2: return to Lesson 1

And at the end of the ‘becoming’ you let it go and so it can ‘become’ again when it reaches its new home.

Then you go back to the supermarket and stock up on packets of Delites, thumb old books in boxes downstairs that haven’t quite made it to the donation bin (in the hope it might be the new cornucopia of found poetry) and wait for the time and space to imperfectly create again.

Thank you to Rowena for the gift (a pre-release!) of She Makes War’s new album Direction of Travel (which I’ve been listening to as I’ve been writing). I am ever so grateful for beautiful, generous friends who bring rays of light in a week of turmoil.