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Showing posts from October, 2008

Calling softly

Near where I was sitting thinking, there is cliff wall with the soft drip, drip, from the hanging swamp above. If you come to this spot at twilight and wait quietly for the night, the ghostly glow of glow worms will light up the darkness. Words to walk with: From the Little Green Orchard by Walter de La Mare "Yes, when the twilight's falling softly In the little green orchard; When the grey dew distills And every flower-cup fills; When the last blackbird says, 'What - what!' and goes her way - ssh! I have heard voices calling softly In the little green orchard Not that I am afraid of being there, In the little green orchard; Why, when the moon's been bright, Shedding her lonesome light, And moths like ghosties come, And the horned snail leaves home: I've sat there, whispering and listening there, In the little green orchard."


I sat down on rock by the waterfall, thinking. I was thinking about today. I am vacating the city apartment and going back to living full time in the mountains (but commuting to the city each day). I'm looking foward to it! Words to walk with: Thinking by Walter Wintle "If you think you are beaten, you are; If you think you dare not, you don’t. If you’d like to win, but think you can’t, It’s almost a cinch you won’t. If you think you’ll lose, you’re lost, For out in the world we find Success begins with a fellow’s will; It’s all in the state of mind. If you think you’re outclassed, you are; You’ve got to think high to rise. You’ve got to be sure of yourself before You can ever win a prize. Life’s battles don’t always go To the stronger or faster man; But soon or late the man who wins Is the one who thinks he can."

Adelina Falls

Down, down, down the steps to the place where the falling waters can be seen -- Adelina Falls. Words to walk with: The girl's name Adelina \a-deli- na , ad (e)- lina \ is a variant of Adelaide ( Old German ), Adeline ( Old German ) and Alida ( Latin ), and the meaning of Adelina is " noble kind ; small winged one".

Making a good choice

At the top of the cliff, in the dry sandy soil, there was a profusion of yellow pea flowers , rice flowers , smokebush , heath and native iris to name a few. I found pink hakeas as well and since I have not included them before was keen to get a good shot. Unlike yesterday's flower, Hakea not at all easy to capture. The flower grows along the branch where leaves also stick out. I just could not get the right bits focused so in the end made a choice (hopefully a good one) of this more abstract rendition. Words to walk with: The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost "Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, And sorry I could not travel both And be one traveler, long I stood And looked down one as far as I could To where it bent in the undergrowth. Then took the other, as just as fair, And having perhaps the better claim, Because it was grassy and wanted wear; Though as for that the passing there Had worn them really about the same. And both that morning equally lay In leaves no ste


I was inspired by a recent post by James at Points of Light which showed the same lighthouse photographed at different times in different light conditions. I thought it's time I visited the South Lawson waterfall circuit again to see what might be different this time around. This 2.5 km circuit which takes in five waterfalls starts at the bottom of Honour Avenue. I have walked it quite often but perhaps never at the height of the spring flowering. I was amazed at the profusion of flowers I found, all of them familiar from other walks I did during my year of learning. Today's flower is a Drumstick ( Ipsopogon anemonifolius ) -- wonderfully photographic with it's neat symmetry. Words to walk with: From The Broken Drum by Edgar Guest "There is sorrow in the household; There's a grief too hard to bear; There's a little cheek that's tear-stained There's a sobbing baby there. And try how we will to comfort, Still the tiny teardrops come; For, to solve a

The meditation of my heart

A small moment of contemplation near the little waterfall at the end of the my walk. Something new tomorrow. Words to walk with: Psalm 19:14 the Holy Bible "May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer."

Blameless, innocent

The track climbs up and down steps on the way to the Lyrebird Dell a large cave overhang with picnic tables. I rested here, lulled by the sound of the creek with its fringe of ferns. Last time I was here I was silly enough to retrace my steps because I wasn't sure how long the rest of the walking track would take. The weedy escaped garden plants also by the creek should have been enough to tell me civilisation was nearby. This time I kept on going and found I was quickly back to the picnic area with hardly a climb to the finish. Innocence in the sense of ignorance is not always a good thing. Innocence in the sense of blamelessness is. Words to walk with: Psalm 19:13 the Holy Bible "Keep your servant also from willful sins; may they not rule over me. Then will I be blameless, innocent of great transgression."

Who can discern

Yellow pea flowers were beginning to appear in profusion along the path. Regular readers will know that there are quite a lot of different pea flowers to be found in the mountains. And they all look similar, but just a little different. Different flowers. Different leaves. Different sizes. Take a close look at today's photo and you'll understand you'll why I am so easily confused with identifying them -- these are all different varieties. Words to walk with: Psalm 19:12 the Holy Bible "Who can discern his errors? Forgive my hidden faults."

More precious than gold

I kept an eye out for the last flowers of the autumn/winter banksias. Musing: Psalm 19:9-11 the Holy Bible "The fear of the LORD is pure, enduring forever. The ordinances of the LORD are sure and altogether righteous. They are more precious than gold, than much pure gold; they are sweeter than honey, than honey from the comb. By them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward."

Giving light to the eyes

This eucalypt basking in spring morning light against a backdrop of endless blue sky made me think of a post on Richmond on Thames Daily Photo by Chuckeroon. I've felt sad for that magnificent tree reaching up to grey skies in what seems to have been a particularly dreary English summer. This particular eucalypt (of which there are thousands of different types) is known by the common name of Blue Mountains Ash . Words to walk with: Psalm 19:8 from the Holy Bible "The precepts of the LORD are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the LORD are radiant, giving light to the eyes."

Making wise the simple

I don't have the trouble or surprise of last year identifying many of the flowers. I welcomed the little pink finger orchids as old friends. These were on the track above the Pool of Siloam . I chose not to walk down to it this time ... too many stairs. Words to walk with: Psalm 19:7 from the Holy Bible "The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul. The statutes of the LORD are trustworthy, making wise the simple."

Nothing is hidden

Last year I was surprised by grass flowers . This year I am fascinated by the detail in something as common as grass. Words to walk with: Psalm 19:4-6 from the Holy Bible "Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world. In the heavens he has pitched a tent for the sun, which is like a bridegroom coming forth from his pavilion, like a champion rejoicing to run his course. It rises at one end of the heavens and makes its circuit to the other; nothing is hidden from its heat."

The skys proclaim

The Lyrebird Dell circuit starts at Gordon Falls Reserve near Leura. My husband settled down to enjoy a good book and this view while I walked the 1.5 km circuit. Please join me over the next few days on this short bushwalk and a mediation on Psalm 19. Words to walk with: Psalm 19:1-3 from the Holy Bible "The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge. There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard. "


There are lots more shops in Leura, including the upstairs shops where I never go. I always think of upstairs being the place for junk. I will come back and show you more some other time, maybe even upstairs, but tomorrow I am going to take you on a bushwalk. Words to walk with: Upstairs by Carl Sandburg "I too have a garret of old playthings. I have tin soldiers with broken arms upstairs. I have a wagon and the wheels gone upstairs. I have guns and a drum, a jumping-jack and a magic lantern. And dust is on them and I never look at them upstairs. I too have a garret of old playthings."


But even outside the shops temptation prevailed. All it took was a tiny smile from the lady at the street stall for us to willingly yield. Words to walk with: From The Kings Breakfast by A.A. Milne The King asked The Queen, and The Queen asked The Dairymaid: "Could we have some butter for The Royal slice of bread?" The Queen asked the Dairymaid, The Dairymaid Said, "Certainly, I'll go and tell the cow Now Before she goes to bed." The Dairymaid She curtsied, And went and told the Alderney: "Don't forget the butter for The Royal slice of bread." The Alderney said sleepily: "You'd better tell His Majesty That many people nowadays Like marmalade Instead."


There are so many yummy things in the shops. Time to run before I empty my purse on wasteful indulgence. Words to walk with: From on old hymn by Horatio Palmer "Yield not to temptation, for yielding is sin; Each victory will help you some other to win; Fight manfully onward, dark passions subdue, Look ever to Jesus, He’ll carry you through. Ask the Savior to help you, Comfort, strengthen and keep you; He is willing to aid you, He will carry you through."

Freddie and Fanny

The guys in yesterday's post may well have been reading about Freddie Mac and Fanny Mae. What strange names for financial institutions, they seem better suited to these jolly fellows seen in the toy shop in Leura. It's horrifying to see the great economies of the world struggling to stave off a depression. My parents spoke of the hardships their parents endured to keep their young families afloat during the Great Depression. And we have been living the good life thinking such a thing couldn't happen again. Today is Blog Action Day where bloggers around the world are writing on the topic of poverty. Unexpectedly, the cold hand of poverty is begining to creep towards the respectible lives of those around us, starting with the aged and frail. Our parents spoke of the way people helped each other in bad times. May we each use this time as a wakeup to help others in need, not only those near but also those afar who's daily lives are always a struggle. It's sobering t

Lazy days

Oh the joy of a lazy start with the morning papers and a good cup of coffee. Leura is replete with places to indulge in such liesure. Words to walk with: From Laziness by Robert William Service "Let laureates sing with rapturous swing Of the wonder and glory of work; Let pulpiteers preach and with passion impeach The indolent wretches who shirk. No doubt they are right: in the stress of the fight It's the slackers who go to the wall; So though it's my shame I perversely proclaim It's fine to do nothing at all."


A reminder of the jars Mum filled but hers were never packed with this artistic care. These are at the fabulous Leura Deli cafe a good spot to eat, one of my favourites. The ABC Shop has a new book on preserving Year in a bottle by Sally Wise. I'm so tempted to buy it just to look at, I know I'll never preserve a thing. Year in a bottle -- that's an interesting thought -- is this year worth bottling? Words to walk with: Counting in sevens by Judith Wright. "Seven ones are seven. I can't remember that year Or what presents I was given. Seven twos are fourteen. That year I found my mind, Swore not to be what I had been. Seven threes are twenty-one. I was sailing my own sea, First in love, the knots undone. Seven fours are twenty-eight; Three false starts had come and gone; My true love came, and not too late. Seven fives are thirty-five. In her cot my daughter lay, Real, miraculous, alive. Seven sixes are forty-two. I packed her sandwiches for school, I lo


Magical Moontree candle shop -- beautiful, fragrant and mysterious. Words to walk with: Another Haiku today from Yosa Buson "Lighting one candle with another candle spring evening."


Elizabeth Rosa's shop also has other sensuous delights like these gorgeous rice papers. Words to walk with: Hiaku by the famous Japanese poet Kobayashi Issa "A lovely thing to see: through the paper window's hole, the Galaxy.


Though I am a computer person from way back, when I choose to write instead of type, I prefer to use a fountain pen, with black ink on plain white paper -- much to the amusement of the increasingly youthful people I work with. My delight in beautiful writing instruments is well fed at Elizabeth Rosa's store on Leura Mall. Words to walk with: I wondered who coined the well worn phase "The pen is mightier than the sword." Apparently it was Edward Bulwer-Lytton in 1839 for his play Richelieu.


Up the highway from forlorn Lawson is vibrant arty/crafty/wealthy Leura. Today I am starting a new series showing some of Leura's lovely shops. Words to walk with: Leura -- a pretty name for pretty place.

The house that ...

This is a forlorn state of Lawson's shopping centre in light of the highway widening I have written about recently. Words to walk with: From the nursery ryhme The House that Jack Built, used for no other reason than it's where I remember first learning the word forlorn though I didn't know what it meant any more than I understood what a crumpled horn was. "This is the maiden all forlorn, That milked the cow with the crumpled horn, That tossed the dog, That worried the cat, That killed the rat, That ate the malt That lay in the house that Jack built."


While not yet in flower this purple bud and native iris were bursting with potential. I expect it will turn into a Rush Lily . I am much smarter about what I am seeing the bush than I was this time last year. The abstract appearance of this photo got me thinking about abstract poetry. Wierd stuff. Words to walk with: From Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll "'Twas brillig, and the slithy toves Did gyre and gimble in the wabe: All mimsy were the borogoves, And the mome raths outgrabe. "Beware the Jabberwock, my son! The jaws that bite, the claws that catch! Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun The frumious Bandersnatch!" He took his vorpal sword in hand: Long time the manxome foe he sought– So rested he by the Tumtum tree, And stood awhile in thought. "


Things really were tough photographically so I settled for late afternoon light on the grass. I have grown quite fond of grass (in the bush not in my back yard), it's interesting. Daylight saving started today. Words to walk with: From The Daylight is Dying by AB Paterson "The daylight is dying Away in the west, The wild birds are flying In silence to rest; In leafage and frondage Where shadows are deep, They pass to its bondage— The kingdom of sleep"

Light at play

Even though it's spring there was not a lot happening along Victoria Falls road. I ended up playing with the light on the gum leaves, something I always enjoy. Words to walk with: From the Holy Bible John 8:12 Jesus said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."

Victoria Falls

After the art gallery at Blackheath we went for a drive out along Victoria Falls road at the end of which is Victoria Falls lookout. This is in fact a misnomer because you can't see the falls from the lookout, just an expansive view over the Grose Valley. It's apparently a walk down a 'steep grade' to get to anything like a view of the falls which are no doubt not much more than a trickle. I don't know because anyone who has been following this blog for long will know that 'steep grade' is not something that I indulge in Words to walk with: Penned by David Livingstone on seeing the magnificent Victoria Falls on the Zambezi River in Africa. "No one can imagine the beauty of the view from anything witnessed in England. It had never been seen before by European eyes; but scenes so lovely must have been gazed upon by angels in their flight." You could say the same of the beautiful Grose Valley.


When I am out doing the cafes I generally like to take in the galleries too. Perhaps one of the most famous poems set in an art gallery is Robert Browning's dramatic monologue My Last Duchess. I like this poem, its interesting to recite. Even though it is quite long I learnt it by heart when I was driving down to the city each day and spending more than an hour in bumper to bumper traffic. They say memorising things is good for a health brain -- it certainly beats listening to talk back radio. Words to walk with: From My Last Duchess by Robert Browning. "That's my last duchess painted on the wall, Looking as if she were alive. I call That piece a wonder, now: Frà Pandolf's hands Worked busily a day, and there she stands. Will't please you sit and look at her? ..." You will find the full poem here to read the whole drama.

Chocolate cake

Exhausted from mowing I decided to undulge in a more favoured activity -- afternoon tea at a nice cafe. This flourless chocolate cake was served a the Bakehouse on Wentworth at Blackheath. Words to walk with: A traditional nursery rhyme "Pat a cake, Pat a cake, baker's man Bake me a cake as fast as you can; Pat it and prick it and mark it with a 'B', And put it in the oven for Baby and me.