The Diviner

awesome ripples
Water Ripples – June Perkins

With her forked stick
she walks the surface of the drought.

She walks the future of his farm
calling water to sing through the twig
wherever it may be.

She looks for The Dog stars
in the sky
waiting patiently at the twin’s table

Cosmic dogs with dry throats sing,
‘the land will once again
have need of boats.’

She throws her forked stick
into the expanse of sky, whispers
‘Little Dog and Dog star hunt for water
Give us rain.’

But for now she must find the underground stores
to tide them over until that rain is found.

The Great Dog rises before dawn
at the end of summer.

Now hunting
of the rains can end.

All will feast on her tears
soaking into earth
giving seeds birth to saplings
and a land without drought.

(c) June Perkins

(Not a found poem today, just an imaginative exploration of a Diviner Character – will need to do some more research.)


Sorry Poem – Miranda speaks to her lost child


i am sorry
my lost one
that choosing a name for you has taken so long
it’s just we had to find it for you
when we were swimming in the butterfly tears

i thought
i knew it before you were born
but we you were here and gone so soon
the name we’d picked didn’t seem to fit you
not just right

i thought we needed a name
that said something about
where you were going
and where you came from
perhaps two names side by side
to keep each other company

so it was that Nevaeh
meaning heaven came into my mind
and then Tuwa from Hopi
meaning Earth

i wish you could have felt the earth
beneath your bare feet
just once
so you could remember it

so my little butterfly girl
Tuwa Nevaeh
may your flight
from earth to heaven
be a flight
from the cocoon of the
love from Jackson and i

may you emerge with wings
from the brief touch of our fingertips
and the dreams we had for
you that will never be

Tuwa Nevaeh – tiny princess
forever surrounded by
it’s time for me to name
you and say goodbye

(c) June Perkins

It felt like time to return to the story of Miranda and Jackson, but this time using some of the techniques and styles suggested by Sidman’s poetry prompts. I’ll start with the ‘Sorry Poem.‘ This is a character poem from the series on the Story of Miranda and Jackson.

Riddle Poem

Now here’s a poetry type I’d like to use in my current novel the RIDDLE.

I boom, crash and smash
and love to be recorded for
bbc sound effects for movies.

I can be ominous or
welcomed when there is drought
although my partner when she strikes
can cause fires.
Although she is tolerated more than me
for her dangerous beauty.

I am the sign of the storm
that you might fear as a child
as I give you nightmares
throughout the night.

I show you that sound travels
slower than light.

I send astrophobes under
the covers or tables
as they can never make peace
with me.

I remind you of stories
of halloween.

I am?

(c) June Perkins

Point of View Poem


Draft 1#

To take the point of view of a curtain fig tree
or a wallaby
I become part of the ecosystem
and see myself a part of it
not the ruler of it.

To take the point of view of a refugee
coming by air, or boat
from a camp or via an escape however they can
I see common humanity
and that fate could place me
there but somehow I was
given a home here through my
migrant mother marrying one
with citizenship.

To take the point of view of the
woman with her hijab hassled
in the streets because she represents
what some people fear makes
me wonder what I would feel and do.

To take the point of view of someone
who truly believes they are better
than me because of their colour
because someone told them so
and they were surrounded by others
who believed it so
and I am just an aberration
an exception to the rule
that feels like that would be so hard
to do.
Can I really step inside privilege and
feel comfortable?
Can I find any empathy for those
that have made me and others invisible?

To take the point of view of
person rising up and no longer
respecting people just because
they are born to privilege means
I see the long line of history
stretching back and people
oppressed rising up.
They are finding their voice.

To take the point of view
by walking a mile in someone else’s shoes
some of us have been doing that for centuries

Now we want to take off ill fitting shoes
and walk in ones we’ve made.

We want to walk in our bare feet
free from misconceptions, judgement
and with opportunity
into a future we’ve contributed to.


Today’s personal poetry challenge was a point of view poem. I wrote more about the process of trying to find a point of view poem. Perhaps my actual point of view poem will come into being over the next week. I do love the example poem Joyce Sidman has of Alice Shertle’s ‘A Frog in a Well sees the World.’

Night is a time for Sleep

2013-08-10 2013-08-10 001 022

Night is a time for sleep
The comfort of dreams where skin is clear
I run in the forests as my knees can bend
I am the me I remember again

The comfort of dreams where skin is clear
No more tears of frustration
I am the me I remember again
Fast and focused

No more tears or frustration
Keeping up with the world around me
Fast and focused
I run once again on a fresh cut field

Keeping up with the world around me
I run in the forests as my knees can bend
I run once again on a fresh cut field
Night is a time for sleep?

(c) June Perkins

This poem is a pantoum and works with repetition of lines. I was reflecting on my battle with psoriasis here. But the poem could be read in other ways if I changed the word skin to mind. I’ll play with it a bit more, but here is it’s current form.

You can find some more pantoum information here.  I think, as with Haiku, it’s one of those forms that with regular practice could become enjoyable and more highly realised.  The repetition is good for charged emotions.  I may attempt a few more of these.

Here is a guide if you want to have a go at it too – How to Write a Pantoum Poem.



For Phillip Hughes

No personal memories have I
only the memory of my son loving watching your games
on television.

He knows all your stats
and history as young Aussie cricketers tend to do.
On the day you passed the storms came suddenly
and hailstone the size of cricket balls
fell in the city that we lived.

I waited for my family to return
safely from abandoned cricket training
and mourned for your mother, father, brother and sister.

My memory of hospital waiting rooms
and intensive care still vivid after all these years.

My brother who loved sport
spent years in recovery
from head injuries
went from wheel chair to walking
from no speech to talking
I could sense what might lie ahead for your family
but your’s was a different fate.

The tributes for you flow
from cricketers the world over
young and old
England to India
captains to team mates
to junior cricketers
And beyond

Rugby to AFL and Tennis
politicians and more.

Parents of young cricketers everywhere
feel your parents loss
and like them celebrate their children’s joy of cricket.

Small consolation
you were doing what you loved
and that it could never have been any other way.

The flag’s at half mast at Lords
while celebrations of character not just sporting ability are posted in your honour.
Who can tell why the good are suddenly taken.

So we #putoutourbats
say 63 never out
for he who plays in heaven’s eleven.

One day people might ask
‘What where you doing the day
Phillip Hughes went to the eternal cricket ground
in the sky?’

Many young cricketers everywhere might dedicate
their first 63’s to you.

(c) June Perkins

A special tribute to Phillip Hughes can be found HERE.

Hospital Vigil – Lullaby

(c) June Perkins


I think of you
sitting by the side
of a hospital bed
I’ve been there too.

You wait for one who’s in coma
perhaps induced
and tears are close at hand
but instead you will yourself
to sing your loved one’s favourite songs.

You’ve been told they can hear you
in their coma dreams
it’s then that you remember the power
of the lullaby.

This time your lullaby is
an invoking them to be allowed to wake once more
for head, heart and soul to be healed.

Your lullaby is to chase away uncertainty
to let them know that
in the land of the awake
love for them
is waiting
no matter how long the journey
whether from wheelchair or not
without speech or not.

Love is the lullaby that keeps
us dancing with those we love
beckoning from the world of dreams
to a world of lived courage.


Wake when you are ready
from the land of dreams.

Know that we are waiting
and we will cheer you on.

Wake when you are ready
to make those recovery steps.

We’ll be here always waiting
to cheer you back to us

You are strong
and to your future you belong

Your sleep it serves a purpose
may it make you strong
don’t forget that
to your future you belong.

Wake when you are ready
please return to us.

(c) June Perkins

So today it’s time for a lullaby.

I think I’ll write one for parents and siblings sitting by hospital beds. Thinking of Phil Hughes’ (Australian Cricketer) family today, keeping vigil by his hospital bed. Note within a few hours of this poem Phillip Hughes passed away. A sad day for the Australian Cricket Community.

Cyclone List Poem

school yard tree - straight after Yasi
Tree near our house, lifted by the cyclone – June

The Cyclone Survival Kit
bottled water
some real space cash in case the bank machines out
some filling but light food
maybe some tins and a tin opener if they don’t have those lids that open instantly
a sleeping bag or better still a swag
a small pillow
a torch and spare batteries
some matches
urgent medications
a wind up lamp
some tins
a first aid kit
a safety drill
a knowledge of when to move and not move
a radio
some batteries
a mobile phone
a charger
a tablet
identity papers and bank cards
a water proof bag to carry it all in
commonsense courage
calming love
family unity
friends who you might stay with to go through it
a plan for the pets
a favourite thing of each family member if all is lost
lots of patience
phone numbers written on paper
names of friends who have a generator
memories of last time you went through a cyclone
that you survived.

(ii) Cyclone Yasi

The last time we went through a cyclone
we taped windows
put mattresses against windows
had a theory about the safest room in the house
a phone to use sparingly
children calming guinea pigs and bird
ringing panicking relatives
scary radio and for a while television news
which thankfully cut out when the power went
a disappearing pet bird
rounding up other birds for safety
too many carry bags
lit candles
our windows smashed
doors blown open
carried guitars our eldest son treasured
left my skin medication in the fridge
no time to carry our pets when we had to leave
a sense of direction
little time to make important decisions
difficult decisions
our unity
neighbours who would take us in
a hard laundry floor to squeeze onto
thankfulness when the children slept

(c) June Perkins

So today is list poem day.  For inspiration for this one I read a few online articles on the subject as well as Sidman’s prompt.

What is a List Poem?  The main ingredients for a list poem are that it should be thoughtful, have a beginning and an end and something compelling about the list that makes you want to read it.

Poems worth reading before doing this exercises are Christopher Smart’s poem ‘Jubilate Agno’  and the humourous list poems  ‘Sick’ by Shel Silverstein.

My list poem topic – cyclones.

The New Century is Found

Art by ZedettaArt – song lyric in cut out shape

Star Song

The new century promises
the eternity of song

holding binoculars
in every mood.

a bunch of flitting fireflies
liveth here.

A telescope can show you
songs I’ve heard.

Beyond the asteroid  belt
lie songs like grass.

The giver said
to be a backyard sky watcher
simply go outdoors
and look up to
see creation’s music.

Come and see the road map
locate the Southern cross.

Constellations can be
bright and easy to find
melodies of earth and sky.

Crowds and cities pass away
in journeys from star to star.

(c) June Perkins


Today I created a found poem,  using some of the Jigsaw poem technique.  With the Jigsaw poem Sidman uses a found poem and reshapes the poem.

With the found poem any document that is not a poem is used to construct a poem.  It can be anything from a list, postcard, letter to graffiti, travel guide  and history book.  These are mined for interesting images and words which are thrown up into the air and used to inspire a new work.  It is a collage of words found in other texts.  You can of course add more of your own words to make it all make sense.

I am going to pluck words and ideas out of two contrasting books: An Astronomy  guidebook and The Collected Poetry of John Clare.

I have picked them because of John Clare’s attention to small details – and the astronomy books sweep of the universe.

Looking closer the poem I want to be inspired by is John Clare’s Poem -‘Songs Eternity’, which does have a slightly expansive feel to it, and any section of Robert Burham’s, Astronomy (Home Reference Library) that is interesting.

This is a fun writing game to play.  I found using two texts more inspiring than using a single one.  I wasn’t that keen to write about snow and winter as in the exercise of Sidman.