Wednesday, May 10, 2023



Where to begin…sitting at my keyboard, I guess this is as good a place as any to start. Below I’ve expressed some personal thoughts in three poems I penned… 


                                       A mother’s enchantment at baby’s first cry            

                                      Wonderment at the new life expelling a sigh

                                      Contentment profound as it suckles her breast                 

                                     The grasp of her hand as she lays baby to rest

                                     Witnessing smiles first words tentative steps

                                     Calm warm assurances when tears are shed

                                    Curious eager anticipation for what lies ahead

                                    A love so complete impossible to be compared



                                            A lover’s caress in moments of despair

                                           A friendly smile when none seem to care

                                           Absolute understanding to listen to share

                                           Heartfelt devotion feelings ever so pure

                                          Profound emotion shall forever endure



Brilliant sunsets merit worshipping

 Balmy refreshing showers of spring

Invigorating environs as they pass

  The sweet scent of freshly cut grass 

On a bright warm summer’s morn

Tender green leaves proudly adorn 

Majestic trees standing in waiting

To welcome a new day’s dawning

  Gossamer clouds skies of azure blue

 Awakening within a sense of déjà vu


Friday, April 28, 2023



                                                        As Time Goes By...Frank Sinatra....


ANZAC Day Dawn Service 25th April, Elephant Rock, Currumbin

Time certainly is flying by at a rapid rate of knots.  At the pace it’s going, if it doesn’t watch out, it’ll be booked for speeding. Perhaps that would be a good thing, making time slow down a bit. Don’t look now but, very soon we’ll be half way through 2023!  Someone removed the sand from the hourglass and replaced it with quicksilver aka mercury when we weren’t looking, or when we were sleeping.

On Tuesday, just passed by, 25th April, once again, ANZAC Day fell…a special day here in Australia when we honour our men and women of the Australian Defence Force, and those of our best mates from across “The Ditch” (New Zealand)…who fought, and fight. alongside us…past and present.

From the Elephant Rock Dawn Service held at the Gold Coast’s Currumbin Beach, through to the afternoon (AET) in witness to the Villers-Bretonneux Dawn Service in Northern France, tears filled my eyes constantly…tears that overflowed frequently.  As time goes by the depth of my emotions felt never lessen.  As time goes by, we must never forget the valiant deeds of our men and women of the Forces. They deserve, and are worthy of our gratitude and our respect.

It’s very disturbing humans still haven’t learnt, nor heeded, lessons from past horrors. Are we slow learners, or just plain ignorant?

Old-fashioned, I am…and old, am I.  Both are impossible to disguise. So be it.  

In years of yore, back in the 1700s to be exact, (I wasn’t around then, if that’s what you’re thinking) author, Jonathan Swift, in a moment of great wisdom said, “Everything old is new again…”  Further along the track, Aussie entertainer, the late Peter Allen, played and sang the similarly named song, while also kicking up his heels, and all that jazz.  As time went by, I forwent kicking up my heels.

Once upon a time, Friday night dances were held in local halls.  On Friday nights, Gympie’s (the town in which I spent my childhood and teenage years) RSL Hall was a hive of energy.  The young, old and “in-betweeners” clad in their Friday night finest crowded the floor while performing the Fox-Trot, Quickstep, Waltz, the fun Progressive Barn Dance etc., etc, et al.  Over in a far corner those feeling hip dodged the Quickstep, and chose to jive away to a rocking beat. Each Saturday night country dances in the outer realms were well attended, too. The dances were not to be missed. And, then, to add to the fun, record hops became hip. No wonder we were trim, taut, and terrific back in the day. As time has flown by, the trim, taut, and terrific part has passed by. I’m referring to me, of course. I’m no longer a spring chicken…these days I’m an old winter hen!

Much time has gone by since hula hoops became the craze of the day. Every kid in town, including me, had a hoop. Yo-yos made their resurgence around the mid-50s.  Between hoops and yo-yos, we kids of the era enjoyed loads of fun times   Spinning, twirling, and defying gravity simultaneously became challenges worth attempting. We didn’t care if we tripped up. As time went by, with practice, every now and then, we mastered the feat, with both feet still on the ground, and our pride intact.

Upon a shelf here my high school Oxford Dictionary sits gathering dust, as does my Pitman’s Shorthand.  Both, like me, are ancient.  As time’s gone by, I guess, shorthand is old hat, too.

Returning to ANZAC Day…I was a “goner” from the commencement of the Elephant Rock Dawn Service.  It was a bleak, cool, damp early morn. Amongst the crowd a father and his young daughter sat. The child looked like she was around the age of seven years, give or take.  The little girl, curled up on her father’s lap, snuggled up closely, hugging him and nestling her head under her father’s chin.  Holding her close, the love shared between the father and his little daughter was palpable.  The scene tore at my heartstrings. My unexpected, uncontrollable tears flowed freely.  Suddenly, like a giant boulder, the reason for my feelings of deep sorrow hit me. Not once in my life have I ever experienced the loving arms, the tender embrace of my father’s arms around me.  He never played a role in my life, other than the obvious one of how I was created.  My late brother and I never knew our father…and, likewise, he never knew us.  Our parents separated when my mother was pregnant with me.  That sight of the little girl and her father really struck me.  Sad, though, it was (for me)…it was a beautiful moment….one, I know, I will vividly remember….

As time goes by…the memories, and the thoughts, the wondering do not diminish, nor do they go away…..


Quick Chick: Preheat oven 220C. In bowl, combine 1tsp salt, 1tsp paprika, 1/2tsp garlic powder, 1/2tsp thyme, oregano, parsley, or other herbs of choice, and 1/4tsp ground black pepper. Coat 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts in 1tbs olive oil; generously rub spice mix over chicken; place chicken in baking dish; cook 20-25mins, until cooked through.  Rest a few mins, then serve.

Fasta Pasta Spring Chicken: In saucepan bring 2c salted water to boil; add 1-1/2c pasta of choice. Cover; cook 10mins.  Cut 2 chicken breasts into strips; chop ½ medium onion and ½ red capsicum.  Heat 1tbs olive oil in pan.  Add onion and capsicum; sauté 1-mins; add 3 minced garlic cloves; sauté 30secs, until lightly golden. Add chicken, 1/2tsp each salt, pepper and garlic powder; sauté until chicken is browned, and almost cooked through. Add 1c marinara sauce; simmer 5mins, covered.  Drain pasta; add pasta to chick mix; add 1/2c shredded mozzarella; turn off heat; top with grated Parmesan; serve.  

Chicken Stroganoff: In pan heat 1tbs olive oil; add 600g diced chicken breast or thigh; cook on high heat, 5mins, stirring, to brown all over. Tip chick and juice onto plate. Lower heat; add small knob of butter to pan; melt; add 1 diced onion and 100g sliced mushroom; cook 3mins, until lightly browned. Add 2 crushed garlic cloves, 3tsp smoked paprika, salt and pepper, to taste, plus chicken and juices; cook over low heat, 3mins, or so. Add 150ml sour cream; heat gently; don’t boil. Turn off heat; add 2tbs chopped parsley. Serve with cooked rice, pasta, mashed spuds or crusty bread, and green vegetables.