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Illuminations featured at Panacea Poets

A huge thank you to the Queensland Poetry Festival team for the invitation to be part of Panacea Poets.

In Panacea Poets, Queensland Poetry Festival administers a twice-weekly booster of short readings from wonderful poets via their youtube channel.

QPF will deliver these soothing doses of poets-in-iso indefinitely.

It is such a great honour to be part of a project to apply the bird of poetry to the experience of the Pandemic, and to maybe inspire listeners to draw on their strengths and optimism.

So many esteemed and inspiring poets – Kirli Saunders, Stuart Barnes, Charmaine Papertalk Green to name just a few, do check out the playlist! I’ll share a few of my faves from time to time!

Here is my reading!

New Pathways Continuing

Poetry being written behind the scenes for now.

Gumboootspearlz

‘Nature never did betray the heart that loved her’ William Wordsworth

And so it begins again. The new pathway towards becoming more of an educator alongside writer. Another quarter of University and this time I am learning about the Humanities and English curriculum and curriculum in general. Curriculum, pedagogy, assessment! How do we modify them for diversity in classrooms?

But oh how I miss nature, when trapped indoors reading, typing and researching. Have I betrayed her precious trust, in being too much indoors? Does she know she is in my heart?

I could take my laptop and study outdoors I suppose, but she would distract me, and in the time before spring, the Brisbane winds are chilly, and the winds of COVID also blow state after state into lock down. Perhaps the wind is not safe here either.

This semester I am keen to achieve a greater balance, between university…

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Fractured Fairy Tales and Ridiculous Rhymes

Poetry and stories for children…

You can preorder from HERE

Gumboootspearlz

Ta, da! Cover reveal!

Wonderful anthologies, from Anthology Angels, are produced annually, and proceeds go to a different charity each year.

This year Anthology Angels are ambassadors for Walk for Prems and profits from the anthology will be donated to Life’s Little Treasures Foundation.

I have contributed a ridiculous rhyme this year, inspired by my family’s pet guinea pigs!

This is the third anthology I have been part of, and it’s truly a special one to contribute to especially thinking of the children and families enjoying the books and the charities it supports. Writers and artists contributing have big hearts, as do the anthology angels production team.

Many congratulations to the contributors and to Jen Horn and Kayt Duncan, for the cover and design, and to Michelle Worthington.

More links for preordering, and events online or in person if possible, where the authors will read some samples will be shared…

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Reviews of South of the Sun

So this was launched on the weekend!

Gumboootspearlz

South of the Sun is an enchanting illustrated book of fairy tales – but not the kind you read to children at bedtime.

They are strictly for grown-ups. Often dark, the stories visit places where things don’t end happily ever after, where a single decision can haunt you forever.

But there are also tales to make you laugh out loud, stories of sweet revenge and scenes of sheer delight in the work of magic and the fey.

Discover stories from emerging talent and leading award-winning Australian writers including Carmel Bird, Sophie Masson, Cate Kennedy and Eugen Bacon, along with artwork from foremost illustrators such as Lorena Carrington and Kathleen Jennings.

June: Reading from Into the Songwood

Reading South of the Sun feels like collecting shells or pebbles or feathers: the stories belong together but are strikingly individual. Here you will find the hilarious and the bittersweet, the poetic and the…

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A Universe Within

Time to share a poem…

Gumboootspearlz

A Universe Within

This love gives
            does not demand
It flows 
It grows
             It heals
             the ill winds
             that could  destroy
             the universe within . . .

It says        
     'true friendship
respects space for
           Family
and does not worship
Workaholic 
          attitudes.'

Instead it means 
People Pray 
over a 
park table
            punctuated by birdsong . . .

For this love says  
              'I don’t care
              where you come from
                      or when you are going
                       my heart will beat
                        and travel in 
                                a suitcase    beside you . . .

I respect the time you have
            given again and again.
            
You do not need to tell me
            all the hurt 
                   – I know
                  unspoken stories
                  we both hold close
                  to our hearts

We are still 
                Unstitching 
               Traumas 
               woven into our hearts
               to 
              make new
              Patterns.


(c) June Perkins

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Keep your chin up! Go Running with the Wolves…

Working on new poems, and on being strong! How about you?

Gumboootspearlz

Today, after a hiatus to make it through my first semester at university, I thought it would be timely to tackle ways to keep your chin up as we head into another snap lock down, and maybe everyone around you wants to discuss the sorry state of the world’s health, or maybe they just want to forget it all, and are seeming a little uncaring. Ah the balance.

What can we do you think? I am heading into the following list!

1.If you haven’t watched it yet, watch Wolf Walkers!

And learn the song, ‘Running with the Wolves.’ And even better sing it! IF you want some extension maybe read some Fairy Tales for children or adults, or read some deep stuff, Clarissa’s, Women Who Run with Wolves.

2. Work on that unfinished poem or story!

No time like the present. Pull out your notebooks, or look up old…

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Neighbourhood Songs (1)

Playful cockatoos

My neighbourhood is full of birds, cockatoos, ibis, magpies and pigeons.

The magpie song, will be one I can never forget

It has people who care about others in the street.

Who might even lay down their lives for each other

if something fearful should be whispering in the streets

The listener on the doorstep, who feeds all the birds, and takes our bins in and out.

A neighbour full of stories and care.

It has people who left who come back to check on people in the street

because their Nana told them too.

It now has claimed my life for nearly seven years.

It is an old tumbledown house, fixed up rental, made as loving as at it can be.

The people inside are more important than the walls surrounding them.

It is a backyard full of songs and stories, and people watching the stars.

It is a place where the broken hearted gather in their search to be strong.

It is Ridvan stories written on the pavements in multi-coloured chalk.

It is walking with writing friends and their dogs

praying in the park with friends.

It is the place where two books are born and created.

It is the last place my eldest son will live with us before heading off into the world.

It is a place where we discuss world unity, and what will cure COVID 19 and all the other world’s ills.

It is the place of visiting musicians from around the globe, filling our hearts with stories.

My neighbourhood is

a place where people leave shimmers in each other’s lives.

But how can it be closer?

How can it be a hub of unity in diversity?

(c) June Perkins

Back to University

Gumboootspearlz

So there may not be too much going on my blog, but behind the scenes is another story.

I recently made the monumental decision to return to university to study a masters of teaching!

My goal is to become a high school teacher of humanities and literature, and or work in curriculum design and education innovation and to continue to write for youth and children.

This week I will hand my first year essay in on the topic of ‘behaviour management. ‘We have been learning about the movement from traditional discipline to management to engagement, and the power of evidence based research to inform teacher practice, amongst other things, over the last few weeks.

I love popping into the class discussions online, and attending our collaborates as well. Some brilliant people are changing their professions, and will be taking some amazing life experiences and a diversity of cultural backgrounds into…

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Hand of Many Colours

Gumboootspearlz

The girl on the sand
shifts it to where she is now.
She thinks, ‘it’s so many colours
even though it’s said to be yellow.’

She shifts the sunlight
with a subtle tilt of her head
her laughter echoing as
she’s saying, ‘this will be what I remember.

No baggage for me
I’m no outsider to this place
I’m a proud member of the human race.’

Girl in the sand
with the hands of so many colours
even though they look olive
shifting the world with a tilt of her hands
and a simple upturn of her smile.

Echoing grandmother’s drive
passing on mother’s wisdom
catching the light of father’s jokes
drawn from Pacific and Indian Oceans.

He knows laughter is a potion
to the loneliness she sometimes feels
when her gem is not seen by the people around her.

He knows she can find that shining within
she can…

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From the Archives

Gumboootspearlz

The last month I’ve been working on creating folio samples for applications and checking my archives for works that had potential, but just need more editing.

The above picture is of a poem from a Writing Group Anthology from 10 years ago! Under One Sky with the Licuala Writers.

I enjoyed writing this poem, capturing childhood with my children and a memory of a trip to Kiribati. Maybe I will write more pieces like this! My children are all grown into adults, which makes poems like this especially poignant to read.

Last week was a super productive week, making entries to writing competitions, and anthologies, as well as preparing some new picture book submissions.

I was especially pleased with edits on the picture books. Leaving them for a while really helped, and resulted in a magic day when I looked at them and just knew what to do to polish…

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