poetry

Bold and true
Beautiful abandonment
Belonging to just a few
Behold its sweet song of sorrow

Whistling at winds of change
The spotter on the lookout
Shot down by denial
Such is the disgrace

The hunter’s rifle smokes
As it chokes out that flame
The fanfare never arrived
For that song bird that whistled so true

[Dedicated to all the whistleblowers for the sacrifices they make for our freedom.]

This is a battle over truth and freedom of the press. But the debate has been shifted to focus solely on one man, because it is much easier to vilify a man than freedom and democracy. Freedom will be plucked from our hands if we debate it on the merits of one man.

A long time ago Martin Luther King

Sought justice for his minority,

But his white friends demurred, “That’s not a thing

Four months after her release from an Israeli prison, Palestinian poet and photographer Dareen Tatour received the Oxfam Novib PEN Award for Freedom of Expression in The Hague in January.

What do you need to lead our nation?

It was a cold and blustery day in Sydney on June 23 when poet Candy Royalle laid down her warrior gloves and breathed her last. The queer, Arabic, literary and protest worlds bowed their heads in shock and lamented her loss.

Candy was a proud Palestinian-Lebanese queer woman and an electric poet and performer. She was ferocious on stage, offering audiences a heady mix of lesbian sexual liberation and searing anti-colonial orations.

PNG has asked that someone be tasked

To examine Manus as a destination

For tourism indeed, so let’s take heed!

They’re awaiting a recommendation.

               Dear Sir or Madam

For your disposal I have a proposal

For the Manus tourism survey,

They need some actions, they need attractions

For the industry they want to purvey.

You’ve heard of those recessive genes,
And the masterful dominant types?
We could hope Malcolm’s progressive genes
Throve alongside his conservative stripes,
Even if mostly the latter prevailed.
Whereas Abbott’s mix of political genes
Seemed extreme, then more extreme when unveiled.
But Malcolm’s drum-banging terrorism scenes,
“Keeping us safe” (and Muslims uneasy)
By locking up ten-year-olds, now indicate
His progressive genes are feeling queasy.
He’s Abbott without the flags, so to state.

In unity with all at Standing Rock today we do stand
To the many First Nations elders, brothers and sisters protecting their water and lands
Protectors not protestors defending Mother Earth
For they know life with no water has no worth.
It's common sense you know, there is no tricks
Basic science teaches us that oil and water don't mix.
Since this pipeline began nothing has gone right
Explosions, spillages and loss of life
The worst spillage 840,000 gallons North Dakota 2013
Over 18 million people living downstream.

Ink In Her Veins: The Troubled Life of Aileen Palmer
Sylvia Martin
University of Western Australia Publishing, 2016
328 pages

In 1939, a young Australian woman grabbed the international headlines when she threw red paint onto the doorsteps of 10 Downing Street, whilst distributing leaflets hidden in copies of the Ladies Home Journal.

The action by Aileen Palmer was to protest the blood that then-British prime minister Neville Chamberlain had on his hands for selling out Spain and Czechoslovakia to European fascism.

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