Bellingen Poets in Nimbin 2010

Bellingen Poets in Nimbin 2010
Taking Home The World Cup!!!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Welcome home Pip!

A big welcome home from all of Bello Bards and Bellingen residents.
Pip Wilson is back home after many months recovering from a head injury.
He will be back posting on the Blog asap!

Next Bello Poetry Evening will be in 2011!

Marty is going to be overseas until next year and it is the silly season so the next Bello Bards Poetry Meet will be at the end of January.

Also we are hoping to get up A Poetry Slam event as part of the inaugural Bellingen Readers and Writers Festival - April 8-10.

At this stage it will be individual poets competing for a prize ($500, plus runner up and peoples choice prizes; but there will be 3 rounds, 3 min time limit on the poems ( possibly one open round )and 3 judges ... poems must be original and performed!

We are looking at by 2012 having teams of three poets compete, i.e. from regional NSW and beyond!

So all you slam poets, spoken word artists, performance art writers, rap, punk & hip hop (sub) Urban word performers ...GET WRITING!!

More info will be posted as soon as we have things locked in!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Australian Poetry Slam coming soon!

The NSW State Final is being held Fiday 19th November
8pm, Sydney Theatre
Richard Wherrett Studio
22 Hickson Road
Walsh Bay, Sydney

All the winners from slam heats across NSW will compete for a chance to win $500 and a place in the National Finals in December

The winner of the Australian Poetry Slam 2010 will be awarded all expnenses paid invitations to participate in writer's festivals in Bali and China in 2011.

Nimbin World Performancer Poetry Videos up and running!

You can see all the finalists performing !
check it out!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Yoga for the mind

© Copyright Fiona Kendall 2010

Rise from the ashes
of your past,
functioning, balanced
with open heart.

Confident, able
true believer
conquoring doubt, loving
the hand that feeds ya.

Built a castle
from the ruins
abundant gardens
all your doin'.

Glowing fire
warms the soul
happy moments
laced with gold
erase the old, and
begin to unfold.

Replaced with hope
a positive mind
gone are the blinkers
in touch with the divine.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Friday, August 13, 2010

The Spirit of Woodford Awards

There is another opportunity for Bello bards, storytellers and the like to reveal their talents to the world, with The Spirit of Woodford Awards and The original Stories and Yarns Performance Award … check out their website for details and application form… 5- 15 mins long … a CD or DVD must be submitted by September 15 2010. Finalists will receive a free Ticket to Woodford festival and be in to win a prize of $2000 and kudos I believe!

Thursday, August 12, 2010


A strong showing by Bellingen poets at the 2010 Nimbin Performance Poetry World Cup was capped when Hydes Creek’s Elizabeth Routledge won the cup, or half of it; the judges were unable to decide on a single winner, and split first prize between Elizabeth and Sydney’s Tug Dumbly.

The other trophy on offer, the coveted people’s choice award, was also won by a Bellingen poet: Craig “The Darkwood Clarion” Nelson, whose persuasive paean to the power of P proved profoundly popular with the punters.

The event held over the last weekend of July, attracted a field of 48 poets from as far afield as Canada, the UK and Ireland, as well as contingents from each of Australia’s capital cities.

Northern NSW was represented by Bellingen and, of course, Nimbin, which boasts the highest density of performance poets per head of population in the southern hemisphere. The standard of poeting was extremely high, and the competitors included three former winners, of which only one (Tug) made it through to the final.

The Bellingen team comprised of four poets – Liz, Craig, Brian Hawkins of Boggy creek and Fiona Kendall from east Bellingen (also called Sawtell) – as well as around a dozen support personnel in the form of psychologists, massage therapists, life coaches, groupies and a babe-in-arms.

Unfortunately there were more poets than prizes, and two of the Bello bards went home empty handed.

However Brain would certainly have won “best hat” , had such award existed, for a creation adorned with hard-earned lyrebird feathers (those birds can run!). Similarly, had there been a prize for best prop, it would surely have gone to Fiona, who delivered her powerful “Confessions of a single mother” from inside an ornate confessional box.

Hundreds of Nimbonians and visitors crammed into the memorial hall for Sunday night’s final, and were royally entertained by a diverse company of poets.

Liz’s winning poem, “Fresh Meat and Intercourse”, is a funny, biting and tender meditation on love and sex, particularly as manifested in a small town. It elicited hoels and guffaws of recognition from the audience, and was worthy winner of what most veterans agreed was the best Performance Poetry World Cup ever.

You can hear Liz and Craig do their winning poem at this month’s Bello Bards poetry night, on 27th August ( free entry, venue TBA – check http://bellobards, for updates. Alternatively, the video of the final will shortly be online at

Sunday, August 8, 2010

While we are all delighted with the success of our local poets who went to the Nimbin Performance Poetry World Cup, our return to Bellingen was soon met with the bad news that Pip Wilson is in hospital.

A foundation member of Bellingen poets, creator of this blog and a man of many interests and talents, Pip was airlifted to John Hunter Hospital, Newcastle, NSW, a few days ago with severe head injuries.

Encouraging news today is that Pip is showing signs of recognition of his family.
The cause of his injuries are unknown at this stage, but Bellingen police are apparently treating it as an assault.

Our thoughts are with Pip and his family.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Pics from NPPWC 2010

We will let you know when the NPPWC is up on YouTube!

cheers Liz

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Congratulations to Craig Nelson, etc

Although I've not yet become informed of the results of BELLO BARDS at the Nimbin Performance Poetry World Cup, the grapevine tells me that Bello Bard Craig Nelson won the People's Choice at this event. This is a great and deserved honour to Craig and to our small but dedicated troupe of scribblers. I hear, also on the Bello grapevine, that Brian 'Birdman' Hawkins also did well. Congratulations, Craig, and Hawkeye, you have remarkable talents. You and Cup-winner, Liz Routledge, have made me a little afraid ever to compete alongside you, but I hope to do so next year if I can. Well done, Bello Bards. You have done our group and our shire proud. I hope you will inform the local and regional press, and the Bello Bards website, ASAP, with a news item and a photo. Well done, all of you, my friends! And watch out -- it's my intention that next year I will compete for the prestigious cup. Meanwhile, bask in your well-earned glory. I am so proud of you all.

Just in Case!

I would just like to clarify ...for those of you who don't know me, Craig or anyone else on this blog for that matter ... I forget this is the world wide web... the comment I made about the Peoples's Choice Winner and the freudian slip ...I was just kidding!!!!

Judges versus People

Controversy continues as the dust settles in the aftermath of the 2010 World Performance Poetry Cup.

People's Choice winner, me, takes umbrage at co-winner Elizabeth Routledge's so-called freudian slip that my award was 'bought'.

I can tell you, and Ruth will testify, that I went to Nimbin broke.

I couldn't buy anything other than the goodwill of the audience and a couple of schooners before my performance in the heats.

Sure, I have friends in Nimbin who came along and the Bello crew was there and Ruth may have thrown in some extra votes (although she denies this).

I wouldn't ask anyone to vote for me, unless they like my poetry.

The People's Choice award could be open to abuse, but I have it, I love it, and fuck the judges (apart from those who chose Elizabeth). Those who elimanated Brian deserve to be jettisoned.

OK, OK, I'm biased and judging, as we know, is something to be avoided and who would want to do it?

I love all the Bellingen poets, but Brian sang in the semi in a way that made the audience soar. They laughed and they cried and they were with him every step of the way in a consummate performance. As evidence, if you need any, a past winner of the cup, Lanky Len, turned to Brian with open arms when it was announced that he hadn't made the final and said, 'I am so sorry'.

We were all sorry, disappointed, gutted that the bloke I consider among the best living poets I know, was cruelly culled from the final.

That's the way it goes in competitive cups with judges.

Which brings us back to the people's choice. What more can I say?

 Well done Bello.

Congratulations, Liz, and an explanation

Congratulations, Elizabeth, in winning The Cup. We are all so proud of you, representing Bello Bards, and for your own talent and voice. A word of explanation: I have tried many, many times to make comments on Bello Bards, usually in approbation of the poetry of Bello Bards contributors. But for unknown reasons, perhaps because officially I am the 'moderator' of this group, every method I have tried has failed to allow me to post comments. But I can write posts, so, again, congratulations to you, and to all. Thank you for representing our small but significant salon of very talented writers. You have all been in my heart over these recent days. I'm just sorry I am unable to post comments. Looks like it's stuck there unless I find a way to be able to post my comments. Anyway ... well done, Liz, and all of you!!!

2010 WINNER of The Nimbin performance Poetry World Cup!

Shock Controversy ! Cup split between two finalists!! Will they cut The cup in Half!

No! Absolutely NOT! Elizabeth Routledge takes the Cup home to Bellingen, telling her co-winner Tug Dumbly that he's already won before so she has first dibs!

No in all seriousness, I am thrilled and privileged that the judges put me up there with Tug who is a brilliant , polished and experienced performance poet / satirist. I was blown away by the skills and energy of the other finalists and many of those who didn't make the finals( Randall Stevens, Brian Hawkins {semi-finalist}...),it was a fantastic weekend, intense, funny, entertaining and full of colourful characters in the iconic town of Nimbin, NSW , Australia. It was doubly exciting when Craig Nelson bought (oops freudian slip)the People's choice trophy home to Bello as well!

I want to thank Susie and Bob of Upper Tunatable who put up the Bello crew and of course Iain , Marty, Ruth, Sally and Rosie for being there and sharing a great weekend. We all thought Marty was joking when she insisted we would bring home the cup! Thanks also to Gail and all the other organisers of the Nimbin Cup ... it is a special event... one that we can go on and develop with a sister Cup in Bello ???

A round of applause for Fiona who got up and delivered her Confessions of A single Mother behind the confessional box but in good voice ... many in the audience related to her words. Brian Hawkins was as usual a unique, precious and confidant voice over the weekend and Craig has started a trend ...that could be around for a long, long time with his Ode to the letter P ... it got the audience going!

There were so many outstanding performers , some old stalwarts on the scene Robin Archbold was by turns hilarious and heart wrenching, David Hallett and Zelly were in great form ( as was Ruthie - spellbinding...over the time limit but.... time is not a kouri construct!)and Candy Royale a previous winner was also excellent. But in my opinion it was the young poets who were fascinating : Doubting Thomas powerful, Darkwing (wig is good too!) Dub,Steven Smart and Randall Stevens (funny and smart all of them!); in the girls camp Sophia Darcy-Cole was outstanding and Betsy Turcot and Jarrah Schmah who were in the finals were all intellingent, clever, funny poets.

I could rave on! It really was a fantastic weekend and I am on a high ... it's taken me nearly half a century to win a Cup ! I was crap at sports ... now I am the winner of a WORLD CUP !!!!!

Thanks again Gail and co. for welcoming us into the Nimbin community spirit...spirited community ... I am excited about judging next year already ...

Peace, Love and mung beans... Elizabeth Routledge xx

Monday, August 2, 2010

I'm glad to be alive

© Copyright Pip Wilson, 2010

When the sun is smiling and I am warm
I feel a part of nature and I'm glad to be alive.
And when the sky is cloudless and as blue as babies' eyes
I love to feel the heat of day, I love to be outside.
But also when the friendly sun is hidden by the storm
and rain is pelting hard upon the flower beds outside,
I'm happy for I know that soon the day will dry its eyes,
so, wet or fine, I'm almost always glad to be alive.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Chocolate sticks

© Copyright Pip Wilson, 2010

Chocolate sticks!
Chocolate sticks!
I love my chocolate biscuit sticks.

Nice and tasty
all for me
I eat them all
Crisp and yummy
Chocolate sticks
I gobble them quickly
They go so fast
They taste so fine
I bite them, chew them

I eat them now, I ate them then
I eat far more than nine or ten.
I’m just a little kid of six
But I can eat those chocolate sticks
As if my age were ninety-one
I’ll eat those bickies by the ton!
Chocolate sticks!
Chocolate sticks!
I love my chocolate biscuit sticks!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

World Poetry Performance Cup

A troupe of Bello Bards are off to Nimbin this weekend for the World Poetry Performance Cup.

Looks like Brian, Craig, Fiona and Liz will be performing with welcome support from Ian, Leo, Marti, Ruth, Sally and Rosie.

Contestants have eight minutes to strut their stuff through heats, semis and, hopefully in all cases, the final.

So, barrack for the Bello Bards this weekend.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Letter to Death

© Copyright, Pip Wilson, 2010

Dear Death,

Please don't take any more of my friends. Cunt.

Death, please, please don't take Gobbo.
Illustrated man Gobbo, with scars across his chest, uninterrupted tattoos adorning his mystical face, and neck and legs and arms -- and, I'm told, also his man-chop. Gobbo, who has an astonishingly beautiful new wife (named after a daughter of Poseidon, but possibly her parents got the name from 'Wonder Woman', a TV show I’ve yet to see), who I'm pretty sure one day will have had enough of Gobbo and do a midnight flit. He also has: a darling baby daughter, loved by him, and who his goddess will take on her midnight flit; in Grafton Prison, a teenage son, who he misses and wept about to me; and a problem with anger. Gobbo, who understands old Fords and break-and-enter, but not as much as he thinks he does about the Illuminati, and paganism, and Egyptian "herio-glyphics" that supposedly foretold antigravity machines. He's one of those kinds of blokes you don't see much, and hardly know, but you sort of … love. Our vibes are always deliciously sweet -- me, his wife, their baby, and him. I fed them a grand meal at my place and I tried very hard not to look at his missus, not just because of my love for Gobbo, but also because, some time before the time I loved and lusted for them both, I'd properly started to learn to respect Honour. And Gobbo's wife and Gobbo each have some (incoherent) human kind of Honour, I can tell. So …
Oh Death, please, please, I beg of you, please don't take my friend Gobbo.

Death, please, please don't take Asya.
Asya, who cried on my breast in the dark, around the Kings Cross corner where others couldn't observe, so people wouldn't gossip that this little girl was giving her body to me. I wasn’t after it anyway – although I suppose that’s not entirely true. Asya: middle class, Russian Jewish and smart, 19 years old, silly, as lonely as a wet Woolloomooloo rat. Asya, who people tend not to like; who I find annoying but can't ignore or turn my back on, and not because of sex. I think that so far I'm the only human being she could ever really talk to, but that will improve for her in time. She phones me too much. I hate phones; she doesn't get it. I can only take her in small doses. I care for her right to the marrow of my ridiculous bones.
Oh Death, please, please, I beg of you, don't take my friend Asya.

Death, please, please don't take Ronald Lawyer.
Ronald Lawyer, who nearly got disbarred by the Law Society because of using cocaine and crystal meth, and whose placidity soothes me; who sometimes snaps at me and seems not to notice his transgressions -- not enough ever to apologise. Coke and ice ten times a day would do that even to Gandhi, so give Ronald a break, you unfeeling cur. Ronald's eyes, when he shares his truth, are beyond my present capabilities, and make me ashamed. His courage is unadvertised and unnoticed behind his meekness and slight stature. Even his peers don't realise he has suffered like Prometheus. Unlike me, I think he might be constitutionally incapable of the slightest resentment. If you absolutely must take him, please don't call him Ron. He prefers Ronald.
Oh Death, please, please, I beg of you, don't take my friend Ronald Lawyer.

Death, please, please don't take Deanne.
I know she likes a fight over "issues", and I think she applies street bullshit to beliefs, and she really gave me the shits one night over coffee (she paid for hers -- I was impressed). But she says "I love you" to me, not that either of us wants to root the other at all, and "I love you" is a phrase few men have told her, and fewer have told her with sincerity. She lived in Hell for 19 years. She was probably pretty when she started on the street, when she was just 14. She's buried three husbands who had this disease. She deserves a chance at a man who doesn't grunt and smell like you, Death, and chuck cash on the bed. She's using again, and hawking the fork on Macleay Street again. Struck by Compassion and Panic, I went looking for her and found her. Bought her coffee and cake. It was really nice.
Oh Death, please, please, I beg of you, don't take my friend Deanne.

Death, please, please don't take Chee.
He nearly always smiles when he sees me and we sit awkwardly in the Tropicana. His skin is like porcelain; his silence is excruciating. With people pressed fearsomely around him in a language not his own, he sloughed off the Dragon, but some of Chee's meat and skin and spirit were left behind. Like most of us. He is always alone. People don't notice him. He has a mother and sisters in Shanghai, but you took his brother because of this sickness we share. Chee lives near Gobbo. That's about all I know. Except that he's tired of wearing other people's pyjamas in detox wards, and that he's very gentle.
Oh Death, please, please, I beg of you, don't take my friend Chee.

Death, please, please don't take Maori Woman.
She could smash the bridge of a nose with that look, and there's probably no denying she's cracked a few noses with her fist. I told her I don't approve, and she forgave me. Spare her, you bastard. She's tall and straight, not that I care, and has long blonde plaits because her grandfather or some ancestor was a Norwegian merchant sailor or something. She lets me tell her I love her, and maybe no one else may do that but me, or her lover, The Yellow Rose of Texas -- who is always depressed, calls herself "as ugly as a mud fence", and is obviously a bit jealous of me (but I still like her a lot). I like to think that Maori Woman and I keep each other in a little special secret hiding place. She told me she's only a dyke when she sleeps with women, and I learned a real lot from that. Men more handsome and charismatic than I might get to be with her. We hold hands a lot. Sometimes, without a word, she suddenly love-hugs me really slow and long, and when she does, we are returned to the poison decades we shared before we met. When we hug those hugs, we are still Hansel and Gretel quivering in the Wicked Witch's oven. She has some kind of heart condition. When she was very ill, it was me she phoned for help, and I felt so honoured. So I rushed her to hospital, and that night I wept; I wept all alone for hours. The tears fell in big drops on my keyboard. She stayed at my house for a few days to recuperate and I cooked for her -- I gave her my bed and I slept on the couch in the living room. And I didn't try anything on her, because of Dignity, Respect and True Love. Only those. Sometimes I'd give anything to fuck with her; sometimes the very thought of it makes me feel creepy, despite her beauty inside and out. Too incestuous, maybe. She restored my Faith in Woman, which took some doing, you mongrel. She doesn't understand why, nor particularly want to know. She's funny that way. She is brave and remarkable. I will love her, sort of, all my life. And vice versa, I get the impression.
Oh Death, please, please, I beg of you, don't take my friend Maori Woman.

Death, please, please don't take Morgana.
I know she's skinny and has a whine where a voice should be, but she rode in my car whenever I needed to do someone a good turn -- someone who, like me, has vomited in gutters and alleys far too much for one lifetime. She shot up in the same McDonald's toilets as me in Port Macquarie, but different years, and she thinks I have interesting hands. Do you remember her? When she beat you last time, all she had was a green garbage bag of clothes stolen from washing lines. She can't read much, but she knows almost every lyric penned by Jim Morrison, who I can't stand. She once nodded off on a gas heater and burnt off her entire front and tits. Once, the ambulance blokes said that, according to official records, they had brought her back from overdose 82 times. She reckons I could be David Bowie's brother, "No fuckin' shit". Regardless of all that, I like the woman.
Oh Death, please, please, I beg of you, don't take my friend Morgana.

Death, please, please don't take Murray the Moocher.
Remember him? You had him by the throat in the red-and-blue flashing Newtown night, but you left him because you were interrupted by a shouting crowd. Remember, please remember! He was too sad and fat and alone, and you thought he was not worth the effort. He's happier and even fatter now, since he put down the spoon and picked up the fork, and never forgets the name of any brother or sister plucked from your fangs. Murray phones me way too much as well. He grows pretty good roses and spends too long on Foxtel, and no one comes to his house unless they're punted out of rehab. He always has a spare bed, even though he gets ripped off time and time and time again. He spoke kindly to me when I was too buggered to go with you. He's a good man at heart, not that I can make you care, I guess. And he helps other people, you bastard.
Oh Death, please, please, I beg of you, don't take my friend Murray the Moocher.

Death, please, please don't take Sexy Sara.
She can't go back to her parents' commune in the hills of northern New South Wales, and her pretty face and enormous jugs won't survive Sydney's streets, so please let her be. She said if she has just one shot for relief, within two days she'll be in Kings Cross with some ugly, smelly guy's cock up her arse (she quite enjoys selling pussy, but she hates doing anal except with a lover, and loathes men who stink). Don't be that guy. Find some old woman instead. She's scarcely lived more than two decades, and if you spared an old boiler like me, you can spare Sara. She's been kind to me, and I've been kind to her, even when I wasn’t foolishly hoping to bang her.
Oh Death, please, please, I beg of you, don't take my friend Sexy Sara.

Death, please, please don't take Mister Blister.
In recent years he learned how to stop stuttering, and how never to hit a man or woman again. He looks strange; pretty weird, actually. We all know it. He knows it. He's hopelessly trying to learn Spanish because day and night he dreams of getting a Filipina mail-order bride. He once got fitted up by a crooked copper and was sentenced to four years in Long Bay – 30 months' non-parole. It was a set-up and everyone knew it, probably even the judge. Later he got stabbed by two real crims in the yard just for reading poetry by Samuel Taylor Coleridge. But he says he got away with more than he paid for, so he considers, all being told, that the tally is square. As far as I can tell, he harbours grudges against no one in the entire world, except maybe his mother, and from what he's told me, she deserves it. Sure, sure, he's a dreadful bore, but Jerry the Nose reckons he once saved a kid from drowning, and we both love Robert Crumb comix. We hug each other slow and long, a bit embarrassed.
Oh Death, please, please, I beg of you, don't take my friend Mister Blister.

Death, please, please don't take the Flower Girl.
Sometimes we also do the Hansel and Gretel quiver thing. Not her -- please don't take her. She lost 29 teeth, and, for a while, her mind. She's been in 42 detoxes and seven rathouses. She hawked it on filthy Macleay Street for 16 years, but never, ever pinched a drunk john's wallet. She never cut the gear with sugar, and she never, ever taxed a deal, whether selling to friend or stranger. She lives for her niece. Do you even understand that? She lives for her niece! Half the time she wants to go with you … but fuck you, fuck you, FUCK YOU!!!
Oh Death, please, please, I beg of you, don't take my friend the Flower Girl.

Death, please, please don't take Crazy Bo.
He's not even crazy any more -- it was just him coming off the methadone, cheap rotgut vodka and tablets. He used to rave about trains and big-arsed women and some pawnbroker who stole his watch, and he interrupted me all the time till I thought I'd walk away from him, but I'm usually not that sort of man. I think he might get a woman one day, which is all that he wants. Sometimes he still blanks out. He doesn't smell as bad as he used to, and now he can breathe between sentences. Even when he was mental, he wouldn't hurt a fly. Once, when he was tripping in Sydney, he woke up six days later hugging a telegraph pole in Brisbane. When he was only eight his uncle fucked him up the arse. One day, maybe, he won't be so down on himself. He has the saddest, saddest eyes, and I have cried for him heaps of times too. Well, only about three times, maybe four.
Oh Death, please, please, I beg of you, please don't take my friend Crazy Bo.

You always spat them back before, many times each, as you did me. You don't want them now. You certainly don't need them now. Take really old people, or really bad people. I can give you 25 names and addresses off the top of my head.

Who will be here in ten years? Why did you let me loose from all those close calls?

I won't say, "Take me instead”, because I hate your guts so badly, after all that I’ve seen you do, and I'm not that good a person. Never pretended to be. Just, please, please, please ... pass my friends by.

Fuck ... fuck ... FUCK!!!!!! DON'T YOU HAVE ENOUGH OF THEM ALREADY??!!!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Death of Nordvag

© Copyright Cherie Pugh, 2010

Well its bad news for you
and its terrible for me:
the Norvag's been abandoned
to the mercy of the sea.
We once crewed a gallant ship
that sails my memory,
the strong and beamy Nordvag,
from the salty Baltic Sea.

Brian sailed her to Toronto
on his dream journey,
and we voyaged over oceans
from Bermuda to Fiji,
around the Caribbean,
across to Hawaii,
from New Zealand to Australia,
through unknown territory,
and many times we risked her life
quite accidentally.

In truth, she was a noble ship
well built of Baltic wood
with Dragon carved in bulkheads,
copper Mermaids on her hood,
dolphins carved in bookshelves,
and dancing round her bow.
She was a sight with bellied sails,
when we stood at her prow,
but how I think we'd weep and wail
if we could see her now.

When she turned to face the storm
in the Caribbean Sea
off the Golfo de Pirates
she showed her quality.
When the ocean was a foaming hell
that made other vessels flee,
she surfed waves full masthead high
and lived triumphantly.
Now the Nordvag lies forgotten
At the bottom of the sea.

Every time I hear the sea
crashing on the shore,
I think of the Nordvag
and the time I knew before:
the mad adventures we survived
in our floating caravan,
the Nordvag riding on the waves
of unknown, foreign lands.

When I was a gypsy girl
and the wicked world did roam,
the Nordvag was my soul's abode,
My only, ever home.
And when my life comes to an end,
We will together sail,
and roam the oceans always,
me at the wheelhouse rail.
For the Nordvag has a soul like mine:
unfettered, ever free,
and we cannot forget her,
and her gift of liberty.

But now its time to weep and wail
and write sad poetry,
for the Nordvag lies forsaken
in the cold and cruel sea.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Bello Bards' last rehearsal for the World Cup

We had a poets' gathering around my firepit at 'The Ponderosa' today, last rehearsal for the Nimbin Performance Poetry World Cup It's a good team from Bellingen. Unfortunately, I won't be going, but Bello Bards will do us proud! Contact me if you want details: wilsonsalmanac [AT] Put BELLO BARDS in your email subject header for any communication at any time, so I don't miss it. Go Bello!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Next bardie fireside meet

2pm, Saturday, July 24, 23 Dowle as usual. Hope to see you there ... it's the last one before the Nimbin Cup.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


© Copyright Brian Carter, 2010

I am but a poor man in a world full of riches
The earth provides me with many bright gems of light every day
As I am seeking them all the time....
I look beyond the fake film of impatience, concrete and insecurity
To the blend of hope, calm and tranquility of natures creatures
and the busy and peaceful human being.

I am in Bororen (Boroaren) on the Bruce highway
With fifty road trains an hour
And fifty rail trains a day, not a hundred metres from my sleeping abode.
The trucks abound only ten metres to the bitumen from my cubby
At June and Ray's cuddly little roadside caravan park.
But I do not hear the trucks and trains when I wish to sleep.

The transport is a mechanical symphony that rocks me to sleep
As I seek different sounds and tunes in their engines and drivers.
The trains are like my train set as a child
That I built out of match boxes and blocks
A world full of toys now come to life
Their blinkered image as they snake thru the trees,
Viewed from a distant forest and wilderness.

The express ''Tilt'' train worms its way at great speed
Past blinking trees, like a silver catterpillar,
Seeking refuge from a hovering bird.
Bororen is a small highway town in Queensland near Seventeen Seventy
And the Southern most point of the Grand Barrier Reef.
Like many small Australian towns, almost lost in its own infinity.

A town charged with gossip, drive, spirit, instinct, survival
And a smothering layer of natures best overlay
On busy lives and commercial, smoking, noisy, orchestral transport system
Of trains, trucks, caravans and campers going North, South and West
Leaving East for me and a few locals.....
All honoring work, retirement, lazyness and holiday ethics of daily lives.

The main shopping strip...the length of a good Rugby try
Or a long Aussie torpedo punt
Dressed up with the Bororen Hotel...Motel
Housing still the aura of the Aussie outback
With all its hats and smoking suspicion and apprehension.
The allready delectable rude timber ''Daves little creations''....
With creatures, culture, sculpture bewitched by imagination.

A general store held in time with 1870 still hanging out its curtains and product
For all to view and be enticed by the joys of jumbled words and product...
And 1960s westerns and sitcoms on an in house ten inch TV mmmm.

A memorial in the rail side travellers park honoring all by faith in the young
To continue to defend all that is revered
And bless those fallen in that task...hopefully of the past
But still fringed by conflict in other parts of the world
where we offer our duty to ourselves
The earth beneath us
The creatures around us
The time we have given
And the mistakes we have made.

Best of all is the gentle sights, sounds and smells
The passing cattle trucks offering the nose something to remember
The often operatic jumble of mechanical noise
Occasionally suffocating the gentle sounds of the birds
With the endearing silence of the forest and country road...
When all creatures hear a new pin drop and go silent for seconds
To compute any danger in the intruders presence, shape and sound.

The daily acceptance of stopping a good yarn in the middle
To allow a loud, symphonic truck to go past
In the middle of a mechanical rock opera!!!
Then to repeat the story without a blink.
The benefits of a trucks sounds preventing occasionally
Another boring story told many times before!!

A fine country road heading east over the busy highway
And main railway line, with its magnetic, straight lines
Narrowing North and South to beyond or to nowhere it seems.
The Eastern country road that belongs to me alone at times
With some locals dashing everywhere.

I set off from the operatic prattle of the main street
Past the comfort station that absorbs tourists and truck drivers alike.
A meeting place for drivers bringing huge metal monsters
For mining purposes, North with police and transport entourage
That take up all the road and much of the landscape
As they trundle past, offering great drama to the symphony of metal,
motor, scale, magnitude and imagination.

Past the railway signals that offer ''proceed'' to me
Into this calm and peaceful sound of busy, noisy ''Avarian'', silent natural wonderland!!
The country bitumen glides thru these charming and calming everglades
Of wetland, road verge, distant eroding hills, fringed with white trunked trees.
Pastures of many grazed grasses, harvested all day and night by
Kangaroos, cattle horses, bustard, snakes, lizards, ibis, quail,, thrush
Wagtail, predatory feathered kings of the air
And a throng of infinite small birds, insects, spiders.....

Joined at many roadside ponds by by singing frogs, yabbies, paddling small fish and dragonflies
With the ever present mosquoito and midgee!!!
The air and grasses filled with red winged parrots, honey eaters, rainbow lorrikeets,
ring necked lorikeets, galahs, many families of red backed wrens, kookaburras, kingfishers and more.
All stop in awe as a pair of brolgas fly low overhead
Like peaceful B52 or Lancaster bombers watching all below
As masters and gods of the air.

The Brolgas often standing like graceful sentinals or roman soldiers
Then lowering their heads to graze.
Brolgas are in tune with all around them
With awesome raising of their wings and bodies
To show off their size and power.
Rising into the air at a low level
to tip the earths fringes as they fly low over the earths busy pastures....

Then offering their croaking call as the time for all to close down
Curl up under wing or in the trees, hollow or burrow
And go to sleep to avoid the adventures, dangers
And predators of the night.

As I walk at my gentle observing pace, seeking all movement
Or new sights ahead and at all peripheral levels
I observe to my right and left the gentle speed I travel
As an aware human being, as the trees and landscape
Gently glide past and beside me.

I am but a poor man, offered riches and riddles every day.
Observed by my eyes, ears and invisible senses
Searching for details obscure to most
Who search mostly for plunder.
I am but a poor man in a bed of riches
offered by the spirits of infinity and powers of observation....
and understanding.
In Bororen you can observe everything that matters
And everything that doesn't matter!!!!
Depending on the slant of your observation, calm and patience
At the time.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

A blessing to my loved ones

© Copyright Pip Wilson, http://www., 2010

When the concrete sets around your eyes
and failure's demon heaves heavy on your chest;
when all is lost and bands of broken dreams obtrude your brow,
may mother Moon wash you in her white beams
till all your cells are young again
and torrents of ecstasy whoosh! up your being.

When dams of tears unyielding ache,
for fairness isn't in the rules;
when mealy maggot men expropriate
the prize your mind's eye still implores,
while women of jagged ice squeal above like banshee bats …
may the sunset song of eucalypt and oak and bloom and grass
lay you down in ancient mystic beds of healing
till you slumber unafraid with the silent warm babies.

When one and yet another poison plastic chalice
scald your hand in this your turn for futile hell;
when fumbled chance and yet another,
and opportunity and possibility sink sad beneath your divinity;
when your hands are bound and cannot punch
the wily smoke that chokes your hopes,
and bed again alone adds aching loss to loss …
may misty light float through balmy groves
and play upon the darkling sea
till all around is jasmine dew
and fountains of amethyst and agate rain your night.

When guilty gales around your face
are filth with city grit and wasted days,
may all your hero wizardry
light up your golden lamp, and may it blaze!

Bello ramble

© Copyright Pip Wilson,, 2010

Oh this is what it's like sometimes
oh this is how it goes.
A wild colonial boy
in the Bellingen 'Truman Show'.
and this is what it's like sometimes
and this is how it goes.

And it's endless sky and it's mists of grey
and we must do it again.
And it's hi-yi-yi and it's hi-yi-yay
for don't we love Bellingen?

My first wife was the Hyde St clock,
for I said she was always wrong.
I said I was off to the crossroads
she said she couldn’t come along.
And just sometimes I get it right –
think it’s the times I do it alone.

My second wife was the footpath
on the east of Lavender's Bridge
'cause she was on the wrong side.
Thank Christ we didn’t have kids.
Something she said split us apart
and something that I did.

I remember there on Hyde St
I was in the greengrocer's shop
it was about 19-and-76,
the grocer he leapt up,
lowered the roller door with a crash
I wondered what was up.

And it's endless sky and it's mists of grey
and we must do it again.
And it's hi-yi-yi and it's hi-yi-yay
for don't we love Bellingen?

And all was dark within that store
and by the spuds stood I,
and the grocer peeked out through a crack
until the funeral passed by.
When Mrs Reid's cortège had passed
he flung the shutters high.

And I looked out into the street,
for Mrs Reid the town was shut
till shopkeeper after shopkeeper
opened all the shop doors up.
For that was how it was, my friends
and on that I won't shut up.

And it's endless sky and it's mists of grey
and we must do it again.
And it's hi-yi-yi and it's hi-yi-yay
for don't we love Bellingen?

And my third wife was the Bellinger
'cause she was new but old.
My fourth wife was September
for she was hot and cold.
My fifth wife I remember
took my silver for her gold.

And my sixth wife was a black cockatoo
whose cry said rain was coming.
My seventh I called the valley,
she set my heart a humming
she set my heart a humming
a billion cicadas drumming!

And it's endless green and it's endless blue,
at the wharf the cedar's still loading.
And lay down me with corroboree
and remember my heart exploding,
for this deep soil and my youthful toil
and may I leave nothing owing.

And it's endless sky and it's mists of grey
and we must do it again.
And it's hi-yi-yi and it's hi-yi-yay
for don't we all love Bellingen?

Vastlands of innocence (for July 4)

© Pip Wilson, 2002 - ’10

"We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness."
United States Declaration of Independence

"O beautiful, for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!
America! America! God shed His grace on thee,
And crown thy good with brotherhood, from sea to shining sea ..."
Katharine Lee Bates, 1904

In the vastlands of innocence,
Liberty and Justice
sang to a southland and we heard the call.
We are torn, we’re all born on the Fourth of July.
Purple mountain majesty washed over all
Australia’s red rocks and her blue mountain pall.

O vastlands of innocence,
manifest destiny,
great people, just people, people just the same.
They pulled down their king for a trivial thing,
and raised up another who sullied their name.
O beautiful, for spacious skies and Richard Nixon’s shame.

In the vastlands of innocence,
in the wide dreaming,
mansions of marble and motels of mud.
We marvel and wonder when we hear distant thunder,
will it bring rains of plenty, or does it speak flood?
Jefferson, Franklin, or movies of blood?

O the vastlands of innocence,
Swaggart and Leary,
they send us provisions at our own behest.
Marlboro and medicine, Manson and Edison,
they ship us their best but then ship us the rest.
O would that their captains would heed our request!

In the vastlands of innocence,
by the blue harbour,
‘W’ dared and he ventured to touch
on his favourite oration, The World’s Greatest Nation.
Sweet Jesus forgive him, he ain’t travelled much,
and vanity in vain, isn’t vanity as such.

The vastlands of innocence,
Fonzie and Whitman,
adored in dark theatres and the rockets’ red glare,
we never will hate them, condemn or berate them
and part of our hearts is in their love affair.
But we must implore that the rumours of war
will wither like whispers in yesterday’s air,
like the whimpers of babies, like Mary’s last prayer.
The blood-spangled banner of hunger’s unfurled –
let the vastlands still sing the Pursuits, for the World.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Want to enter competitions?

Check out and post your poems and other writing...
ongoing contests, reviews etc
Bello Bards Meeting July 3, 2010

Apologies for the delay in posting …(school Holidays and preparing for family trip to New Zealand !) …cheers Liz

Attended by:

Marty Guy, Misty Hanley, , Fiona Kendall, Iain MacDonald, Craig Nelson, Ruth Powley, Elizabeth Routledge, Pip Wilson, Sheree and Russell

At 3pm we met around the pit fire in Pip’s garden. Fiona read excerpts from her intended poem for The Nimbin World Poetry Cup – “Confessions of a Single Mother”. Craig read his “P’ poem and was spot on 8 minutes and looks like a serious contender for the cup (should we start betting?), Liz read “Fresh meat and Intercourse” but was under by a minute!

Marty to put an announcement in The Courier in the near future... outlining the impending journey of the Bello Bards to Nimbin!

Meeting again tomorrow, SATURDAY JULY 10 TH at 2.00 PM … same place!

If you have a poem and want to perform it at Nimbin come along and get constructive feedback!!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

A meeting for proposed Bellingen Writers Festival

Those interested in helping to plan a Bellingen Writers Festival are invited to email Brian Purcell bgpurcell [AT] regarding a meeting to be held in North Bellingen, Wednesday, July 14 at 5:30pm.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Green –eyed.

© Copyright Elizabeth Routledge 2005

My lovers eyes are green
but his soul cannot be gleaned
I talk, I open, I reveal.
I would give it all away…
No … not my heart, not my soul
which is well protected
not like Ned Kelly’s in 80 kilos of steel
but sealed in a net, like spiders threads
delicate but strong.

I feel. I feel.
I feel our hearts beating.
I want to peel away the layers
and find the jewel.

I breathe my lover in
I know his smell
but the rest of him?
A perfect stranger.
Alluring, beautiful
hesitantly offering
small kindnesses
small hurts.

A few steps forwards, sideways, backwards
an anxious dance, the dance of lovers
when no one is quite sure of the steps
no one is leading or sure of where they want to go.

He looks into my eyes and I look back
tongue-tied, mutually mute.
He talks to everyone, but me…
and I…feel. I feel…
I feel lonely.

He moves amongst the people like a graceful horse
bestowing charms; Flexing, prancing, stretching
all glorious muscle planted in the ground.

My lover cooks for me
meals full of richness and flavour
His hands like an artisan
he moulds bread, hacks weeds
picks fruit straight from the tree.
He says what you see is what you get…
I have to disagree.

He likes kissing but is hesitant with intimacy
He likes hugs but is … lazy … with foreplay.
He knows about my clitoris
(but not the crook of my arm, my wrists, my belly…)
He likes fucking slowly
He likes cheesecake, his own cooking.
He likes me.

The first thing I see in my lover, long before he was my lover.
His skin. Like a child’s, clear, unlined, unblemished, unscarred.
Unlike mine, lined with life stories, scars, silvery stretch marks
veins, spidery or blue, mottled and swollen from carrying children
dimples, a baby belly, suckled breasts that tell a female tale…
She’s fat, she’s thin, she’s sad, she’s happy, she frowns
Smiling lines, laughing lines, weary shadows.

My lovers eyes are green.
He smoothes the bed cover over his bed
so that the pattern perfectly aligns.
He talks about commitment like he is trying it on for size…
I don’t think it fits, it constricts, like a suit and tie.
It roles off like a drop of water on oily skin.
He thinks it’s what I want to hear but
I am emerging from a connubial nightmare, so
I am curious about him
but he’s too scared to let me in.

I sit alone
I watch him over blueberries and a latte
restless, he gravitates back to me.
His eyes flicker over the crowd
sometimes he strokes my hair tenderly, he kisses my face
he places his hand in the small of my back like he owns me
like he’s guiding me back to him, for a moment
he unfolds, unfurls slowly, but not completely.

The seed of the end was clearly seen in the first hours
covered in a rubble of passion and soft kisses
fragrant caresses and earthy sighs.

How time can wear a lover down
beyond acceptance
to look for greener grass.
My lover had green eyes.

How we ended the middle east war...

© Copyright Brian Carter, 1991

It was 1995, the war in the middle east was into its 805th year
There was nothing else to do but introduce the enemy to cricket.
Thus the 904th round of negoriations saw the question asked...
Do you want to play cricket?
Winner goes home
Loser fills in the holes!!

It seems there was nothing left to do
In order to resolve the fighting and end the war.
Their intelligence was good but....
Would they know enough to work out the game of cricket?
There would be a fair chance we could lose them in Gully
Or catch them out in slips.

All were dressed in camoullage greens
And 19 were killed when the umpire tossed the coin....
To decide who was to bat.
We put 16 in the field
When we were sure they were unclear about the rules!
We had there 21 batsmen out by lunch
For 8 goals 6 points and made $480.00
And an arms deal, by lunch the next day.

In the eighth innings, 9 home runs were scored
When we blew up the wicket and the scoreboard.....
After 5 days and the mining of the field
We won by a nose
With a third trailing by the length of the straight...

It was a great moment for the world
When peace was finally brought to the middle east by cricket.
All the world then put in
To send ships to those purged and burned nation
In order to bring home all their holes
To distribute to other places.

The war was completely bowled out
By a sporting rout...
Sport, if all cultures allowed, could end all wars
With the greatest tradition of all...
The handshake and drink at the start and the end of the game!!!!!!

Monday, June 21, 2010

For a grieving family

© Copyright Pip Wilson, 2010

By beaches of white shining, where the turquoise tide returns
the sound of children's laughter rings through eucalypts and ferns;
the kookaburra answers with his old familiar song --
they will be forever young.

The crystal healing waters from the mystic mountains flow;
the wounds are sweetly mended where the herbs and flowers grow.
There is a place not dreamed of, nor ever told by tongue
where they are forever young.

The children are not distant, for the place in which they live
is in our hearts forever with the blessings that they give.
Listen! They are playing now, their limbs again are strong --
they will be forever young.

At evening, when the kookaburra hurries to its nest
and we grow ever older, the little ones will rest
beneath the holy arbour with the fruit so heavy hung --
and will be forever young.

Sunday, June 20, 2010


© Copyright 2009 Craig Nelson

I ain't here to tell you nothin',
You ain't here to sell me more,
So, don't come knockin'
On my front door

With you proselytising,
Pontificating, puritanic crap,
'Cause I'll tell you what I think
And you won't like that.

We're not suffering today,
For some 'everafter' model,
You can stick that notion
Up your arse and twaddle.

Take all social chronicles,
Politics and religion,
Soothsayers, oracles,
If they're statues, I'm a pigeon.
Kev's Ute

© Copyright 2009 Craig Nelson

Kevin has a ute.
What does Malcolm drive,
A roller, a beamer,
Or take a taxi ride?

I thought they had Com-cars,
With drivers 24-7,
But, it seems, to have a ute
Is a liberal notion of heaven.

The richest man in parliament
Versus one with the richest wife,
If Malcolm doesn't have a ute,
He hasn't had a life.

A touch of Aussie envy
From an eastern suburbs swell?
Even if he had a ute,
Could he drive it well?

Imagine either of them
Sculling rum until they fall
Into swags, in the tray of the ute,
At a bachelor and spinsters' ball.

Throwing doughnuts in a paddock,
With 15 mates aboard,
Spotting for kangaroos,
Because that's what utes are for.

For awhile, I thought them real blokes,
Despite impressions from afar -
They used a week of question time
To debate the merits of a car.

Then, upon reflection,
I made a pretty harsh call:
Kevin's ute is a Mazda -
Nothin' Australian in that at all.
23 September 2009

© Copyright 2009 Craig Nelson

The world is upside down
When the sky is ochre,
Desert dust shrouds us,
And a joker,
On the radio
Quotes a boffin
Who claims
16,000 tonnes of dirt
Blow by every hour.
An apopalyptic warning
Of our wanton ways.
The wind howls,
Close the shutters,
But there are too many
And the clatter and bang
Of windows and doors
Leaves a land-lubber stranded.
Trees stretch their limbs,
Wave and dance and frolic
In the face of our frivilous ways.
It is not a day
For outdoor activities.
Even birds are ensconsed
In their indoor equivalents.
Yet, I heard a chirp,
A call, perhaps,
That we can still fly.

Report on meeting, Saturday June 19

I'm sorry if you phoned apologies for being unable to attend the Bello Bards meet at my place at 3pm yesterday. My phone is on the blink. While I think of it, I should also mention that I have telephonophobia and rather severe tinnitis, so all my family and friends have known for many years that I would rather pick up a spider than a phone, and therefore they email or text me. I can't put my mobile number on this website, for obvious reasons, but if you wish to text me, quite a lot of Bello Bards can give you my number. Otherwise, please email me: wilsonsalmanac [AT] Thank you.

Two of our troupe, Lyn Thiry and Russell Atkinson, attended the meeting around the fire. It was hardly what one would call a "quorum for a forum", as 78 invitations had been emailed to friends of Bello Bards, but it was convivial. No agenda items were put before the group because of the small turn-out. Please leave comments here whether you want to continue having regular meetings, or not. I am happy to put them on at my place, and my flatmate is very obliging, but if there's no point in my doing it, then there's no point in my doing it.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Australian Poetry Centre course, 'The Business of Poetry'

Lyn Thiry, one of our crew, has drawn my attention to the Australian Poetry Centre and that it is "running an online workshop offering poets the chance to develop a strategy for earning an income from writing poetry without compromising their style or craft.

"The course will be run by Marcus Powe (, starting Monday August 2nd, and run for ten weeks, ending Monday October 11th".

The course costs $200. Click here for further information

Thanks, Lyn.
Pip Wilson

Friday, June 18, 2010

A Living Body of Land

© Copyright Annabella Bray, 1995

what a living body of land

Is this country that i love
The gentle curves of the green hills
Fold into each other
Like the folds of human flesh
So sensual, soft and alluring
The fuzz of green trees nestling down
Into the secret valleys
The downy grass rolling over the slopes

In this season of bare boned trees
I feel the hard packed frozen earth
Stiff and cold beneath the lukewarm rays of a distant sun
And the brittle bright glitter of the vast night dark sky
Wind tousles my hair as it gouges concave hollows out of helpless clouds
That pile up monster high on the mountain tops
All gargantuan shape and bulk, signifying nothing
But the whiles and whims of the Valhalla gods

As they bend to earth
Embracing the Mother, the female form

Creating A Work of Art

© Copyright Annabella Bray, 1995

I want my soul to be stripped naked before you
I want my Dorian Grey portrait to be exposed
The hound dogs to sniff out my soft underbelly
And leave the bones glistening in the pale moonlight
And when the marble statue falls from her pedestal
And lies shattered on the floor
Take the handful of clay that remains
And fire it in the furnace of your love

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Poets with Names ending M-Z

Please send your poems as attachments to
cheers Liz

Poets with surnames or pen-names beginning A-L

Please send your poems as attachments to almanac [AT]

See 'How To' at

Cheers, Pip

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Search without Struggle

She sits, staring, out the window
wondering about the future that never comes
as the moment she's waiting for
is always now, and
always will be now.

She feels as lonely as a piper playing pee'brokh
as lost as a sailor without a ship.
In her veins she feels 'Eros' and 'Caritas'
she yearns enlightenment
yet pulls the grass to make it grow.
In her hands she holds atoms and electrons
then wonders where consciousness has gone.
She knows with intuition a million summers
and winters have just past.

So when death comes again
she decides to greet it with a song.
Time, humanity's illusion.
She questions where she went wrong.
At that moment she gave to an outstretched hand
she understood the goodness in all.
She realizes the sun alone illuminates this universe
and ventures on the second half of life
prepared to sweep the many veils
from her sleeping eyes.

Copyright 2007 Iain MacDonald
A Fond Kiss

The taste of our first kiss
Hidden, draped under
The cathedral dome
A giant fig draws elixir
From the aquifer
Deep below our feet
Far from the villagers gaze.
The shade, the leaves
Dappled light
The miracle that is your lips
Orange, daffodil and painted twig
Longing for tomorrows
With prayers and bells
Sweeter days
September birthdays
Presents of your sweetness
Your delicious eyes
The scent, the taste
Of you.

You lay there in the shade
Your very presence made the day
As we lay in the winter sun
Looking into your eyes
Reflecting gems
I saw myself, how I look
When I adore you
I have surpassed my dream
You are the lady
With the deliberate voice
Threading precisely
What you mean
Pearls of wisdom
I store in my jar
So glad I know you
I walk around you
My planets orbiting star.

Copyright 2007
Iain MacDonald
My Celtic Heart
by Iain MacDonald

Oh rowan tree
Purple heather
Raven's rock
Celtic carving!

I know you miss me
Wait there patiently
It has been a long time
What has become of me?

We grew up together
I smell and touch you as I speak
This thought may make the reader sad
This is not the intention I had.

I relate to quantum theory
Involving strings and rubber bands
In fact we've never been apart
We always hold hands.

Oh rowan tree
Purple heather
Raven's rock
Celtic carving!

At birth the Celtic
Was carved
Into my heart.

Copyright 2006
Peripheral joy

Peripheral happy, joy out the corner of my eye
a humble affection accompanied my days
whether in peace, anxiety or fear
he was always there, a sideline of content
by my side, always, a childlike always
a golden blur on a grey day
a wet leather nose flaring joyously
at a multitude of delicious doggy smells
the thump of his tail when I looked at him
and smiled, even so briefly
the warm spot left behind on the kitchen tiles
when I shooed him out.

The ancients had their words for love, grand agape
Eros, storge (with a hard g), filial love and friendship
the tender affection, furry love, unconditional
of no less value, still love, and in your absence, still missed.
The love of a dog, a golden Labrador with soppy eyes
fringed with red/ gold lashes and a gentle mouth
you could only call velvety, golden moss
carrying a raw egg, unbroken, or delivering
a tiny field mouse into my hand, drenched in his saliva
shivering in shock; after being rescued from cat play.

I still see him out the corner of my eye, when I drive
In the left hand mirror, his head out the window
the loose skin around his eyes and muzzle rippling
in the back draft, sniffing the breeze, like a gourmand.
I still see him in my peripheral vision, walking the beach
me, melancholy or not, collecting stones and driftwood
his whole body radiates with pleasure, an ecstatic gallop
a curious trot, a race into the surf and a satisfying roll
in the coarse sand. What more could you ask for?
Every so often he races back to check in with me
jumping his gratitude, pushing his wet nose into my hand
grinning his joy in sharing this glorious day with me.

My daily companion, walking with me every day
sitting at my feet or waiting for me to shower or toilet
tripping over him, complaining about his shedding
his doggy smell. His modest needs left me free
with my thoughts, yet not alone
his comfortable, comforting presence like old slippers
undress, and worn favourites.
Every day he greeted me, close to human tears
when I came home, at last, at the end of the day.

In memoriam “ROLY” died in the Bellingen floods, February 17, 2009.
Copyright 2009 Elizabeth Routledge

Thoughts on the nature of poetry

© Copyright Russel Atkinson, 2010

Though artists, architects, dancers, musicians and sculptors would no doubt object most strongly, it is my contention that poetry conveys the essence of them all. It is the supreme communication art in which all the others can be found.

Poetry has the sounds of music, the colours of paintings, the rhythms and movement of dance, the fabrications and structure of architecture and the shapes of sculpture. Nothing else can convey meaning as unequivocally as verse. A poet can express in a few sentences, ideas and truths a book is needed to explore. True poetry is the art of essence. Like sculpture, everything irrelevant is chipped away.

Poetry seeks to express the essential faculties of human nature, which reveals every aspect of human becoming as it explores the nature of the imagined, actual or beautiful. It is the expression of human thought, feeling and emotions. Every sentiment, every idea that touches the human heart and sends a thrill into it through devotion, love, awe, reverence or fear, humour, wonder, frustration, heart-rendering separation, sorrow, or the great joy of desire fulfilled after a struggle against difficulties - the expression of every one of these emotions in language is poetry. Genuine revelation of the human heart appeals to people of all ages and times however they may be separated by space or time, racial, national or a thousand prejudices.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Sometimes when it's raining

© Copyright Misty Hanley, 2010

sometimes when it's raining
and we've been far apart
it would be good to have a chat
it does good for my heart

but you have phone a phobia
and i am lost for words
and so i have to write to you
in order to be heard.

New co-admin of Bello Bards blog

Elizabeth Routledge has generously accepted the role of co-administrator of our blog, and has learned the ropes with the alacrity we all would expect of her. Welcome, Liz.

Pip Wilson as co-admin will post poems (with optional copyright-free pictures if they are offered) for those of our mob whose surnames or pen-names begin with letters A-L; Liz will do the same for M-Z bards. Until further notice, please send your poems as explained at ... therefore, until further notice, kindly submit poems and pix to Pip Wilson via email at wilsonsalmanac [at]

Per capita, Bellingen Shire might well be a contender for the most poetic district in Australia. Bello Bards must have hundreds of poems, as we have heard hundreds at Poetry Nights since March, 2007. So please submit them -- all will be published, none will be rejected unless in the case of defamation of other serious legal matters.

Your two admins would love to see your poems here on Bello Bards blog, and I'm sure others of our tribe would as well. Are you too shy to post them, or concerned about copyright? Then please leave a comment in the Comments section below so we might all discuss such matters. We all have these concerns, but I, for one, relegate them to the 'Don't Be So Silly, Pip' box that I keep under my bed. It would be to my financial advantage if someone stole or plagiarized my work. I would consider it an honour and a chance for lucrative litigation. It is also to my advantage if readers criticize my work. This is what is commonly called a 'win-win' situation. So, send in your poetry.

The only way that the Bello Bards blog can grow and thrive is if Bello poets submit their works. Your poems will be treated with the respect they deserve, with a rare opportunity not granted by many publishers of poetry: your work will be entirely unedited and available to the public for written applause and/or comments, just as they are at our poetry nights. So, please keep sending them. We would like many more.

You are welcome in this place; there are no dictators here, and there are many people of a friendly disposition who would delight in reading the works of your mind. Again, friends, I say: send in your poems, and do so often!

Desultory talkin' World War III philippic, or how I was William F Buckley'd into agreement

© Copyright Pip Wilson, November 3, 2001 till any date in the future unless otherwise announced

When I was walkin up the stair
I met a man named Tony Blair.
He wasn't there agin today
and he won't be there in the morning.

Along come a man, George W Bush,
Beady eyes and smarmy moosh;
he's bombin from the Hindu Kush
in the cold and snowy mornin.

I looks agin and what'd I see,
a dandelion as big as a tree,
bigger'n Bush and bigger'n me,
it jist grew up in the mornin.

George rode up with his 10-gallon hat
and carryin a baseball bat.
"My friend George what you want with that,
an' yer big ol' hat in the mornin?"

He says, "See this big ol' baseball bat?
I's gonna whup its ass with that.
Gonna knock it down an' lay it flat,
An' it won't git up in the mornin.

"That dandelion, he's a E-Vil weed,
he's full a li'l old E-Vil seeds."
I said, "My friend, best you succeed,
we don't want sin in the mornin."

He took that bat and whupped the ass
of the dandelion, and well you ask
what other things did come to pass
that cold 'n' snowy mornin.

Well all them seeds did fly around
like parachutes, without a sound,
an' some of them they come to ground,
an' they all took root next mornin.

I walked on up them stairs again
and passed by old Afghanistan.
An' I heard them souls all cry in pain,
an' they woke me up this mornin.

BELLO BARDS June 11, '10 barbie report, & Nimbin World Cup

Greetings, Bello Bards and lovers of poetry,

Expecting and organizing for some dozens of our mob, last night's Bello Bards poetry around the bardfire was, sadly, attended by very few (apologies were sent by Marti Guy and Steve Grey due to ill health), but we did pass some resolutions and also read some poetry in convivial circumstances. As the Winter Solstice is upon us soon -- "When the days lengthen, the cold strengthens" -- until the weather is warmer, 'The Ponderosa', Wilson's home at 23 Dowle St will hold Bello Bards meetings indoors around the slow combustion stove. As always, please BYO grog and tucker. Friday night Bello Bards gatherings, every second Friday night at 6:30 pm at 'The Ponderosa', are unrestricted in terms of food and beverage.

It was decided by our small crew to have weekly meetings every 3pm on Saturdays, at 'The Pondereosa', for practising and perfecting our poems for the Nimbin Performance Poetry World Cup. We can help each other improve our poems and their presentation, so Bello Bards will be a force with which to be reckoned in Nimbin, July 31 - August 1, 2010. It was decided by acclamation that no alcohol be consumed at these Saturday afternoon Bello Bards sessions. We might drink afterwards; perhaps even adjourn to the Federal Hotel at about 5pm after we work on our poems and their presentation. At the meeting, we all hoped that future meetings will be well attended both for the pleasure of poetry, and for preparation to win the Nimbin Cup.

As yet undecided: transport and accommodation for the Nimbin Performance Poetry World Cup.

Below are the minutes of the June 11 meeting, kindly recorded by Liz Routledge.

Abundance and gratitude,

Pip Wilson
Local scribbler and, with Liz Routledge, co-administrator of

PS Our troupe has many hundreds of poems not yet submitted. Please send your poems, old or new, to wilsonsalmanac [AT] with the words BELLO BARDS in the subject header. Yours truly will post those poems by people whose surnames begin A-L. Liz Routledge will post those from poets whose surnames begin with the letters M-Z. The "How To" is clearly posted at

**)Ø(** **)Ø(** **)Ø(** **)Ø(** **)Ø(** **)Ø(**

Bello Bards minutes
As recorded by Elizabeth Routledge, June 11, 2010:

Present: Misty Hanley, Iain MacDonald, Elizabeth Routledge, Pip Wilson, Brian Carter, Nick and Belle, Stu and Emily and Lyn Thiry.
ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE NIMBIN WORLD POETRY CUP (and were too lazy to find out for yourself):-

The NPPWC is an annual performance poetry competition held in Nimbin NSW Australia.
The terms and conditions of performance are:
Poets have 8 minutes to perform 1 or more poems.
The competition is run over a weekend with heats and semi-finals held in Nimbin Cafes and the grand-final held on the Sunday evening in the Nimbin Town Hall.
Poems must be the performers' OWN work and must not have been previously performed at the NPPWC.
Performer Poets will be marked on a number of 'attributes' including content, diction, presentation and timing.
Good use of time will be marked by the judges and poets may be penalised for being over time, or running too short.
There is a people's choice award as well as the judges' decision; winners, runners up and encouragement awards.
It is the responsibility of each performer to arrive at their venues on time.
Poets may use an instrument for accompaniment (not a band).
Poets may use props where appropriate.

Entries close Monday July 26, 2010.

All performers will be notified of their venue and heat time by Thursday 29th July 2010.

HEATS: Saturday July 31st
Heats to be held in Cafe's within the Nimbin village.
SEMI FINALS: Sunday August 1st
Semi-finals to be held in Nimbin Cafes from 11am
GRAND FINAL: Sunday August 1st

~ from 7:30pm at the Nimbin Town Hall ~

Verandah Cafe open 6:00pm + After Party.
Entry $10
Nimbin Performance Poetry World Cup 2010

* Entries Close Monday 26th July 2010
* Competition is held on the 31st July and 1st of August in Nimbin NSW Australia.
* Poets have 8 minutes to perform 1 or more original poems.
* Poems must be the performers' OWN work and must not have been previously performed at the NPPWC.
* Good use of time will be marked by the judges and poets may be penalised for being over time, or running too short.
* It is the responsibility of each performer to arrive at their venues on time.
* Poets may use an instrument for accompaniment (not a band).
* Poets may use props where appropriate

Entry Form
Please see

Friday, June 11, 2010


Copyright © Pip Wilson, 2001 - 2010

(To the tune of 'Deportee (Plane Wreck at Los Gatos)' a 1948 poem by Woody Guthrie, later set to music, and popularized by Pete Seeger.)

Since many a month we’ve heard not of uncle
and cousin who walked to the Pakistan side.
They said they would get on a boat for Australia
where people are good and will listen their cry.

Our cousin and uncle left home in the summer
when the last pound of rice was our food for three week,
before we ate bark and before we ate grasses,
they went to Australia to be refugee.

Our cousin and uncle were gone when the big planes
scared us away from our village so cursed.
Oh can it be that our uncle to calm us
promised that life could not get any worse?
Goodbye Homayoon, take care of Aziza,
protect my small daughters, Miriam and Farida.
I will send you ten dollar for food for the winter
when I get to Australia and be refugee.

But some say the boats cannot make for the sailing,
and some say Australia will push them to sea.
And some say that uncle and cousin be drownded.
And some say you never hear from refugee.

Let go of my shirt, do not cry my Farida,
I will walk only night through the mountain and snow,
So, insh’allah, Taliban will not catch me,
and, insh’allah, God will care me as I go.

We beat Alexander, we defeated the Buddhist,
We defeated all armies, we beat Genghis Khan,
Three times did the British run away from our courage,
The Russians did run; so will Uncle Sam.

We should happy the river three years without water,
the bridge the big planes will never be bomb.
Eight days I will get to Peshawar, my brother.
I will rich in Australia and send money home.
Goodbye Homayoon, take care of Aziza,
protect my small daughters, Miriam and Farida.
I will send you ten dollar for food for the winter
when I get to Australia and be refugee.

And rice will be yours for to eat when I get home
with one hundred dollar and Aziza will cook boulani.
And one day America will catch that bad Arab
who bombed California, and we will be free.
Goodbye Homayoon, take care of Aziza,
protect my small daughters, Miriam and Farida.
I will send you ten dollar for food for the winter
when I get to Australia and be refugee.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

I think it in banana

© Copyright Pip Wilson, 2010

I write it in cherry.
You read it in berry
and like it.

The shame is that cherry
I cannot abide.
What shame you don't taste
what I think or I write.
And berry's a flavour
I do not much like.

How holy would be
our poetical karma
if only I wrote and you read
in banana.

Rainy Daze

© Copyright Fiona Kendall, 2006

Butterflies flutter,
hearts do too,
plans come and go,
dreams do come true.

Matters of your once shattered heart,
rise to the surface,
you wonder,
how did this start?

Right time,
same place,
when we came,
face to face.

Cup's half full

© Copyright Fiona Kendall, 2005

Driving hot streets and lonely roads,
lost in fantasy,
each day,
it grows.

Standing round, the human carousel,
reality dawns,
then it begins,
in real life,
it's bottom of the bin.

Worlds within worlds,
many exist,
caught between,
truth and myth.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

To 'the ladies'

© Copyright Pip Wilson, 2010

When I was in fear of losing my livelihood
Because I came into work a bit tired one morning,
And said to two of my colleagues,
Who I thought were my friends,
"Good morning ladies",
And they railed against me most fearsomely,
And hissed at me, and threatened to report me to Management,
I, being quite a quick learner, quickly learned to say
"Good morning women", or "Good morning womyn",
However it is spelled,
So, whenever I came into work tired,
And perhaps not thinking completely clearly,
Or not tired,
Or into any social situation where females were present,
I leaned how to speak.
Because I am a coward, but also I know
On which side my bread is buttered.
Because if I was dismissed from that horrible job,
I would not have been able to pay my rent,
Nor my grocery bills, my electricity, phone and Internet,
Nor buy my children food, nor clothes, nor birthday gifts,
And I would have been evicted, and homeless.
So I learned the correct manner of diction.
Because, also, I do not care much for living under bridges.

I've had too many mates who've lived under bridges,
And they assure me it’s not as good as it sounds.

So when I hear womyn call each other
"Girls", "chicks", "ladies", "girlfriends" and "bitches",
I thank Providence
And my own sense of pride, cunning, tenacity and strength,
And my uncanny ability to survive
Almost all "kicks against the pricks",
As the Good Book calls it in the Authorised Version,
That I still have a mind that works – quite well, if I might say so myself,
And that I have never been evicted from any home,
Never had my electricity cut off,
Never had my phone cut off,
And, believe it or not,
I have never, ever missed a meal in my life,
Unless I was on a fast,
Done for my own purification
And for a dash of reasonableness in the world.

And I have never lost a job for a slip of the tongue --
I have only lost a job or two
For what I considered then, and consider now
Very deliberate, honest, reasoned, reasonable assertions of the tongue.

Goodnight ladies, ladies goodnight.

Monday, May 31, 2010


© Copyright Lyn Thiry, 2009

She is gone now
by her own hand,
we who are left behind
gnash our teeth.

The closer the blood
the deeper the cutting,
what if's and if only's
muttered through shame.

Shame that we didn't,
couldn't rise higher, reach
the last fragments of a mind
we may still have recognised.

Shame before our fellows,
her lack became ours.
Shame before our God
that we didn't see the nails
perhaps even handed her
the hammer.

I like to think she and her
god huddled together
in the trenches of her mind
and she was given an early mark.

But she wasn't my grandchild
so what do I know?


© Copyright Lyn Thiry, 2007

Day saw Evening approaching.
She began to flush pink,
remembering their last encounter.

Sometimes he would swamp her lustfully.
No matter how hot she had been,
she always disappeared willingly into his arms.

This time he approached slowly, seductively.
Holding her close,
whispering into her ear, teasing her,
alluding to the family jewels,
sparkling and unattainable.

She didn’t mind.
She knew her role as mistress,
understood she could never wear starlight.

They had been lovers forever.
Like most old lovers
they knew how to please each other.

He never lied to her.
It was always as he promised.
She could wake up, dress as she chose,
do whatever pleased her.
He would always return.

Eyes opening wider she smiled,
beamed rather; casting her light
further into the morning.
Only the smallest hint of him remained
as she turned her head to the east.

Mother Moon

© Copyright Russell Atkinson, 2010

From round to crescent, glistening bright,
you calm daughter of the night,
seem supreme, beyond our cares,
sailing silent, your rarer airs.
But as wife of this blue sphere,
you are busy with your housework here;
pulling seas and oceans about,
moving atmospheres in and out,
affecting the life of we clever fools,
you govern the flow of molecules.
It is you who know,
when to reap and when to sow,
you, mistress of our mind,
beat the rhythms of our kind,
dance the water in the rills,
move in and out the fish's gills;
by you all liquid things are sent,
for water is your element.
Full or new, how busy you,
with the earth since time's begun
you set the clocks with brother sun
and let them run.

Amazing! Wonder of all time!
Growing from primeval slime,
and from the chaos that gave it birth,
man now walks the planet earth.

Bush morning

© Copyright Russell Atkinson, 2010

Stream clean dusk and reeds,
High cloud, flattened back,
To horizons gold beamed and purple
In the autumn cool;
Birds glide to shallow water-reeds to rest –
Winged eddies
In the chill crisp air.
Others come
Flying through the thick quiet;
Perfect passing like the
Slow breath of sleep and fulfilled waiting.
Wings rise and fall
Away with the black forms flying,
Slowly, slowly,
Through the high
Matter – free sky,
While down
In the stream thicker water swims the fish,
Down, deep down,
Under the draped green willow.

On solid earth banks
The dew-silvered grasses grow high,
To the silent sitting,
Cud-chewing cow’s cold morning muzzle.
The morning chorus fades away;
The sun is rising higher;
Only the magpie sings,
And the rabbits are back in their borrows.


© Copyright Russell Atkinson, 2010

Dance the air with the falling leaves,
The fruitful earth, its ripening sheaves
Let the merry movements weave,
About the arcane void where our hearts beat.

Chant to the beat of the cosmic drum,
While topsy atoms spin and hum,
Rhythms, movements all succumb,
To the silent void where our hearts beat.

Move with the sea and the rollicking waves,
Sweeps of sand they pound and lave,
Dirge the gloom of a sea weed cave,
Down to the void where our hearts beat.


© Copyright Iain MacDonald, 2008

On the road to Ballina, I leave before first light
Stop to peruse a hundred books, on the way
To discover the doings or beings of secret masters.

The carpenter with calloused hands
White witch, bare back rider with her book of dreams
We knew each other in another life
I saved a child from butcher’s knives
She gave me shelter, others would not
We even fought, bare knuckled warfare
Bruised and battered, lost and won, we smile
We’ve lived in the abode of truth
The only sacrifice, happiness and woe
Others scoff, it’s their loss
They know not the school of rules.

I pull over to take a rest north of Maclean
In fields of sugar cane, all I see above me
skies of stars and galaxies, Is it in this field
I’ll find the Book of Wisdom
The Holy Grail?

So much sugar, too much sugar
A breakfast of chocolate bars
Highs that crash, empty calories
Sick of sweeteners, no sustenance
No food for thought
this is no troubled Israel
somewhere in between
the farmyard and a water wheel
where in hell is the precious jewel
I keep on looking, for, like a fool
I find the Book of Nonsense.

How and what to understand?
I come across a man
Selling a cool car, circa 1958
The maker made in 1964
There are some things I can’t explain
I am a man who gives more or less
Who juggles inward and outward
knowledge or wisdom
When I die I dedicate my life
To my next.

I keep thinking, thinking
Thinking about my story
Your story, their stories
Six billion stories
How to know them all
There is only one story ...

60 in a 50 zone
3 more points and I’m a collector
Tired, relentless truck drivers
Fume up guzzling liquid gold
Delivering goods we think we need
That will help to destroy Chinese countryside
Push up the price of oil

This will slow us down
Maybe we hope.
Why do we do what we do?
Where are we going?

One long slow curve, my hands on the wheel
Eyes in front, focused
In the rear view I see love behind me
More ahead. A wave of love. Tidal
Can we have too much?
Don’t love in vain.

Finally Bal – li – na
I’ve had grander receptions
A tired, sad man whose son
wrecked his house, lost in a haze of drugs
Sixty thousand in damages
He wails in jail, cold turkey, shit life
Once he was a little boy, playing
how he became a man distressed
Distressing his family in this way?
Life has not turned out the way he imagined
the way he planned; he has prostate cancer
his wife emphysema, at smoko the ambo whisks her away
the lady next door refuses to let me use her hose
she pays for this water don’t you know!

Where is the book of wisdom for Human machines
Who’ve lost their way, service long overdue
you laugh at connotations, machine wrapped in flesh
is life meant to be this way?
True masters know
Everything is as it should be
Recently I was, and again today
Reminded again, again, again
It will always be this way.

Everything has consequence
You do this you’ll get that
You do that and you’ll get this
We continue to destroy Our home, our planet
We did this. We got this.

My trip to Ballina was worth it
I discovered a holy grail
The book of wisdom can wait
Life is beautiful. Life is
Is is is is ...

Cherish this beautiful planet
When and if it does expire
There are billions more
Beauty in all the pain
We never
We never
We never die.


A blessing to my friends

© Copyright Pip Wilson, 2010

When the concrete sets around your eyes
and failure's demon heaves heavy on your chest;
when all is lost and bands of broken dreams obtrude your brow,
may mother Moon wash you in her white beams
till all your cells are young again
and torrents of ecstasy whoosh! up your being.

When dams of tears unyielding ache,
for fairness isn't in the rules;
when mealy maggot men expropriate
the prize your mind's eye still implores,
while women of jagged ice squeal above like banshee bats,
may the sunrise song of eucalypt and oak and bloom and grass
lay you down in ancient mystic beds of healing
till you slumber unafraid with the silent warm babies.

When one and yet another poison plastic chalice
scalds your hand in this your turn for futile hell;
when fumbled chance and yet another,
and opportunity and possibility sink sad beneath your divinity;
when your hands are bound and cannot punch
the wily smoke that chokes your hopes,
and bed again alone adds aching loss to loss,
may misty light float through balmy groves
and play upon the darkling sea
till all around is jasmine dew
and fountains of amethyst and agate rain your night.

When guilty gales around your face
are filth with city grit and wasted days,
may all your hero wizardry
light up your golden lamp, and may it blaze!

The Mercy Seat

© Copyright Iain MacDonald,2009

Thoughts of someone’s romantic heart

Reaching Shiraz, St Tropez jazz

Ruby red eyes reckless

Cobalt blue, lemon and salt

The spark that ignites

She warms the mercy seat

Learns to forgive, fragrance still lives

Lonely raven sings, a song of truth

Lifts the spirits of wounded hearts

Curl the blemish of barren fields

Deeply breathes and shines with crisp imaginings

Let’s scrape the shine of blunted teeth

Shake the bones of devil’s pride.

The Love Circus

© Copyright Iain MacDonald,2010

How I longed
for Love to
fall from a tree
envelope me, wrapped
In poetry
sprinkled handfuls of confetti
flashed memories
A past life
of you and I
Blue glass, sunlight, lemon tea
your wrists
your eyes
your smiles
I’m lost those eyes
in time;
Are we real?
my heart says yes
my mind talks, talks, talks
It says;
we might be two sea horses floating
smiling as we
go by how
sublime accepting
are things obvious ?
are we transparent ?
people see what
makes us tick or
are we transparent but
they can’t see
what’s happening to us ?
We became
a circus
everyone’s come to see
the clowns hey
we’re serious
Love has come to town
tomorrow the same audience.
a new circus comes around.