Thursday 30 September 2010

Willow Manor Ball 2010

Stop Press!
Social Butterfly Helen Chooses man over myth!

Of all Valentino's and rakes,
She first chose Jude Law! Goodness sakes!
But someones said; "Woonie!
Don't be a loonie!
He just doesn't have what it takes!"

Now that has been decided guys, take look at my partner and weep!

We must agree that Woonie looks absolutely gorgeous in her lovely aqua, er murky, er red dresses.
That means three dances I must have with Helen, Blogland's top supporter of poets. But I would love to dance with anyone else who likes Count Basie.

But, What the... ! Oh dear! That damned Jude law must have been so miffed, he stole my clothes!

How could I possibly lose
My ball suit and tie, I accuse,
Jude Law, sneaky dude.
Now I'll have to come nude
'Cause all I can find are my shoes!

This a recent photo.
Well, I acquired it recently from here

I just hope I do not offend anyone but let's face it.
With a body like mine who'd want to hide it!

Get your dance card filled now at the Willow Manor Ball

Magpie 34

Choosing the light of your life.

Don’t decide which one to pick,
Until you know what makes them tick.
This one will fail.
Just like your male,
It can’t perform with no wick!

Pic and prompt at Magpie Tales

Tuesday 28 September 2010

Chivalry is not dead, just sick.

Escape from Chivalry.

The king was in his counting house,
Counting out his money;
The queen was in the parlour,
Eating bread and honey.

The Princess in her pink boudoir
Was trying on her dresses
When in came brother Ced-er-ic,
Full lips and blonded tresses.

He slipped his clothes off quick-er-ly
And ‘fore she could resist
Her newest lacy bodice was
Adorning Cedric’s chest.

Next, he took her flowing gown
And slipped it o’er his head.
Then her rich embroidered cape.
“It’s just not fair!” He said.

A silver tear escaped his eye,
While slipping on her pumps
“The leather, tin and mail we wear
Reduces us to frumps!”

Next he donned her feathered hat
While gazing at the glass.
And smiled in satisfaction
As he whispered, “You’ve got class!”

Then, turning on his patent heel
He called down for a horse.
“Side saddle, silver stirrups
And it must be grey, of course!”

So off they rode into the sun
The stable boy and he,
Holding hands so tenderly
In love, for all to see.

So over hill and dale they rode
Until Kings Cross they spied
And there they lived in happiness
Until the day they died.

Note: Kings Cross is the Gay Haven of 'Sinney', Australia.

Jingle's serious Poetry Challenge can be found

Saturday 25 September 2010

A long day in politics.

Background (if you need it and are interested).

Recent election.
Neither major party won a majority in either house.
One Green and two Independents agreed to join Julia Gillard and Labor in a loose coalition to form a minority government, giving them a majority of two.

During negotiations, all stakeholders agreed that stability was important and the fact the Greens would hold the ‘balance of power’ in the Senate when they took their seats in July was important.
It is complicated, but that swung the Independents. There was more chance of any legislative program being realised if Labor ruled and most agree there is little philosophical difference between the major parties anyway.

In a rare atmosphere of altruism, both Julia Gillard and Tony Abbott for the Conservatives, signed a statement they would provide ‘a pair’ for the Speaker to maintain the majority. (A pair is a long standing tradition that if a member is absent from the house for good reason, ie, cannot vote, the opposing party drops one vote for each absent member to maintain the balance thus avoiding frivolous motions of no confidence etc.)

But that was before the Independents decided to back Labor. Now, Abbott has welshed on that deal and furthermore, will not provide pairs for ministers (trade, foreign affairs, immigration etc) while they attend to duties overseas and it is not hard to imagine why.

Pressure is on from his backers in the big end of town to get him back into government at all costs. Climate change is back, as is paid maternity leave and a huge infrastructure agenda, all needing Federal money and increased taxes, some of which will be sourced from mining boom super profits. Now read on.


A long day in politics.

Imagined phone conversation between Tony Abbott and ‘Digger’ Pitt, mining magnate and major Liberal Party contributor, last week.

Brinnng-brinnng. Brinnng-brinnng. Brinnng…
“Tony, for Christ sake, what were you thinking?”
“Oh hello Digger, you’re not happy! What’s the problem?”
“Promising to pair the speaker at that stupid hug-in. Mate! That’s the problem! Can’t you see what you’ve done?”
“I can see you’re upset Digger, but we thought we’d win them over.”
“Well, you didn't! And now, if those bastards make it through to July, they link up with that shirt lifter Brown, we get the mining tax and there goes my effing profits!”
“Well, how was I to know? What the hell can I do now?”
“What? You’re asking me? Just get that bitch out! We need a new election before July or we’re stuffed!”
“With respect, Digger, it’s a bad look for me to go back on a promise, I…”
“Ha, ha, ha! Don’t shit me Tony. When did you not… paid maternity leave over your dead body, climate change is bunkum? Those two little doozies would have cost me a mint. But this is serious mate. We can’t pay a mining tax AND buy BHP Billiton!”
“But if I go back on that I’ll upset the independents more…”
“So? Just get me a new election and I’ll take care of them. With an Atheist in the lodge and a poofter running the Greens mate, we've got God on our side. I'll hit the media and you’ll win at a gallop!”
“But you’ll still have Greens in the Senate!”
“So they block and you get a double dissolution. Just get me an election and we’ll do the rest.”
“OK, Digger, leave it to me. I reckon I can bring her down.”
“Good boy Tony! Can I tell Rupert you’re on side?”
“Of course, always.”
“Thanks mate, we’ll be watching.”


Friday 24 September 2010

Taliban Dancer 5 and 6 (Concluded)

Scene 5. At sea.

Sfx: Sea, old marine engine, wind, gulls.

Indonesian Skipper : Waheed! We have been sighted by a plane.
Waheed : Australian?
Skipper : I think so. We stop here and wait for the patrol boat.
Crewman : Wreck the engine now?
Skipper : Not yet. We may need to go further towards Christmas Island.
Karima : Tahmina! Come here and put your life jacket on!
Tahmina : (complaining) Mum… It’s too hot.
Waheed : (sternly) Put it on Tahmina. We are all putting them on. See?

Sfx: Plane passing overhead.

Tahmina : Are we sinking?
Karima : No, dear, but we will be getting onto another boat soon and you can’t swim.
Tahmina : Help me please, I want to wear a life jacket too!
Skipper : Here it comes. Smash the motor. Get ready with the sea cocks!
Crewman : Aye Skipper!
Sfx: Birds and sea for five seconds then hammering and breaking as high powered motor approaches.

Skipper : Sea cocks!
Crewman : Sea cocks open!

Sfx: High powered motor closes, cuts, then loud hailer.

Australian Officer : Ahoy fishing boat! You are in Australian waters. Go about now. This is a restricted area! I say go about!
Skipper : (yelling) We are sinking. Motor broken and planks sprung. SOS! SOS!
Crewman : You women! Start wailing now! (They do).
Tahmina : (crying) We’ll drown!
Officer : (yells over wailing and crying) Stand to, we are coming aboard!

Sfx: Outboard motors closing.

Officer : Stand back from the gunwales!

Sfx: Thump of inflatable against hull, outboards cut, boots on deck.

Tahmina : We are sinking! Help! We are sinking!
Waheed : Come with me Tahmina. Give me your hand. We jump in together. OK?
Tahmina : Mummy! Mummy!
Karima : I’m here, go with Daddy!
Officer : Stand back from the gunwales! Stand back! Do not jump!
Australian crew : Can’t get to the sea cocks sir, she’s going down in ten.

Sfx: Confused yelling and splashes as people jump into the water. Screams and crying children and demands from Australians to stay on board.

Tahmina : (screaming) Mummy! (coughing sea water) Mummy!


Scene 6. Christmas Island

Immigration Officer: Name?
Waheed : Waheed.
I O : Papers?
Waheed : No papers.
I O : Why no papers, Waheed?
Waheed : Taliban raided my house, couldn’t go back for passports. They would kill us.
I O : Why would they kill you Waheed?
Waheed : My wife, Karima was running a school for girls, she was betrayed so we ran.
I O : So if you ran, Waheed, how did you pay people smugglers?
Waheed : We sold everything, including my shop land.
I O : You mean your shop?
Waheed : No, they burned my shop but I sold my land to Abdul Raheen.
I O : Yes, Waheed, we know about Mr Abdul Raheen. He seems to be buying up half of Afghanistan!
Waheed : We had no choice. It was sell or stay in Peshawar camp forever.
I O : Not forever Waheed, we do take people from Peshawar camp who wait their turn, but you, Waheed, are a queue jumper and will probably be sent back.
Waheed : Sir, if we had our passports we could have come by air for two thousand dollars and stayed on after our visas expired as most do. But we had to run with what we stood up in!
Karima : Sir, I am a school teacher. I speak English, Afghan, Iranian, Pakistani, Russian and some Hindi. I know I can make a contribution here but if we are sent back, Waheed and I will be dead in a week and my little girl here will have to become a whore and she is only ten years old. I beg you to understand what it was like for us there!
I O : OK Waheed, we will check on your bona fides through channels and meanwhile (mocking laugh) enjoy your stay.
Waheed : Thank you Sir, thank you!
Karima : Thank you Sir and our daughter thanks you!
Tahmina : No I don’t, I want to go to Australia and be a dancer like Lutfi!
I O : (laughing genuinely) And so you might young lady. Who is Lutfi? Is he a great Afghan dancer?
Waheed : No sir he is not. He is a little boy even younger than Tahmina who was taken by a Taliban chief to be his private plaything!
I O : (in the too hard basket) I am sorry to hear that. Next!


Picture SMH

Thursday 23 September 2010

What real women want!

Odore Naturale

Aqua di Parma men’s cologne?
(That) gender bender feromone !
When you’re with me,
I pre-fer to be
Turned on by real testosterone!

Pepe, darling! What is that you're wearing?
Eau de sewer. Like it?
Oh yes, much nicer than your usual odeur du bumsquirt!

Grrrr! Lurve it when you speak French!

Prompt: Magpie Tales

Tuesday 21 September 2010


Jingle Poetry Challenge

We dance around each other
like planets in orbit
Pulled and held by a gravity
We don’t understand.

But we do know
That if we ever touch
It will be the end
of innocence.

Image from Photobucket

Monday 20 September 2010

Taliban Dancer 4 (continued)

Scene 4. Peshawar Refugee Camp.
Karima is alone in their tent, humming to heself.

Sfx: Camp sounds. Shouting off, crying, cooking pans clanging, child running, approaching.

Tahmina : Mummy, Mummy! Letter from Red Crescent! Mummy!
Karima : Here, Tahmina, give it to me. Thank you. Go find Daddy!
Tahmina : Daddy! (running) Daddy! (fading)

Sfx. Camp sounds for a few seconds.

Waheed : (running) What is it? (puffing) What’s wrong Karima? What’s wrong?
Tahmina : (running on) I found him, Mummy!
Karima : Waheed! Calm down! It’s a letter from Mahdi in Asadabad.
Waheed : (still puffing) Well, open it for God’s sake! Open it!
Karima : All right, all right Waheed, I just wanted you to be here. (tears open envelope, unfolds paper) Oh! Here’s money. (Hands to Waheeed, who counts it. She reads aloud).
Dear Waheed and Karima.
Your passports were gone and things are worse here now. The army set up a school and opened the hospital but Jabar came back and blew up the police station with half the men inside. Now they are grabbing every bit of cash they can and nobody is safe here. I sold all the carpets I could but nobody had any money so it all went cheap.
Jabar came back again and demanded to know why I was selling all your stock and beat me up. I told him I had already sent the money so he locked me in and burnt the shop, I smashed a window and got out with singed hair and I'm OK but that is all I can do for you my friends.
I just hope and pray you are OK and that this little bit of money gets to you.
Waheed : There’s less than a hundred thousand here. That’s not even two thousand US! Nowhere near enough.
Karima : How much do we need?
Waheed : Best price I could get was ten thousand Australian… nine thousand US. That gets us onto a fishing boat out of Indonesia.
Karima : What about my jewellery? It’s no use to me here, I can’t wear any of it.
Waheed : I hate to do that, but I guess we can’t stay here the rest of our lives…
Tahmina : There’s more in the letter, Daddy.
Karima : (reads on) There is more bad news. Qasem has taken Lutfi. I warned him to stay with the other children and why, but he said Qasem was nice to him and he wanted to go. Goodness knows what he was promised.
Then a lot of money came by messenger, enough for the rest of us to get out. There was no message but it must be payment for Lutfi so I can’t use it. I am sure he will escape from Qasem and I must be here when he does.
Go in peace my friends

Tahmina : Why did Lutfi go with Qasem?
Waheed : He was lured away to be…
Karima : Darling, he wanted to be a dancer. That is what some boys do. It seems it was his choice.
Tahmina : Then why is Mahdi unhappy about it? Why don’t they leave and come here too?
Waheed : It’s complicated, Tahmina. One day you’ll understand. (stands) I will get Abdul Raheem to come over. Get out the jewellery. (leaves).
Tahmina : Mummy, I’d like to be a dancer like Lutfi and wear pretty clothes and learn music and…
Karima : Come here, my beautiful girl and help me with the jewellery so we can show it to Abdul Raheem when he comes
Tahmina : Can I have your jewellery when you die?
Karima : (laughing) Nothing would make me happier, my dear, but we must sell it now so we can leave here and go somewhere nice.
Tahmina : But I like it here. It’s better than Asadabad. Those men aren’t here and you don’t hide yourself in that silly burqua and I like my friends at school here, I…
Waheed : (off) Karima, can you make tea? Sit here Abdul Raheen.
Abdul Raheen : Thank you. Who is this charming young lady, Waheed?
Tahmina : I am Tahmina. Who are you?
Abdul : Such an outspoken young lady, aren’t you?
Waheed : Please excuse Tahmina, Abdul Raheen, she is very young and knows no better…
Abdul : No, Waheed, I am not offended. On the contrary, in this country women can be leaders and most of us like it that way. What do you want to do with your life, young lady?
Tahmina : I want to be a dancer like Lutfi.
Abdul : That is a nice thing to do. Who is Lutfi? Is he a great dancer?
Waheed : Ahem… She doesn’t know what she is talking about, Abdul Raheen. Karima! Is that tea ready?
Karima : Coming! Is Abdul Raheen here?
Abdul : Hello Karima, you have a very smart daughter here, she should do well where you’re going. I’ve been there and I know.

Sfx: Tea cup clatter, then tea is poured as dialogue continues.

Abdul : Thank you. So you need more money.
Waheed : Yes, we need at least ten thousand Australian to get us there and we have only two… and Karima’s jewellery.
Abdul : All right, I will give you the best price I can. Let me see it.

Sfx: Clinking of bangles and rings as Abdul handles each piece.

Abdul : I can take all this but I can’t give you more than two for it.
Waheed : But that’s not enough...
Abdul : I know, I know, I haven’t finished.
Tahmina : Do you pay a lot of money for a dancer like Lutfi? Qasem paid a lot for Lutfi!
Karima : Shhh! Tahmina, shut up!
Abdul : (laughing) How much do you think you are worth, young lady?
Waheed : (Angrily) Abdul Raheem! This is not what I brought you here for. There is no way…
Abdul : (laughing more) No no no! Waheed! You misunderstand. Your daughter is charming and I would like to see such a lovely young lady get her wish. So I have another proposition for you. Do you still own your shop?
Waheed : (still suspicious) Well yes, what’s left of it!
Abdul : OK, I’ll pay you six thousand US for the shop.
Karima : But there is no shop. Jabar burnt the shop. There’s nothing there!
Abdul : Waheed. You can’t burn land.
Waheed : But it’s worthless, you can’t be serious!
Abdul : My friends, Asadabad has many thousands of years of history and please God, one day the Taliban will be gone and it will be rich again. I can wait.
Waheed : (now calm) I was hoping to go back myself some day, but I’m happy to sell it to you, Abdul Raheem. More tea?




Saturday 18 September 2010

For Sam Liu

The Blind Men and the Elephant.

It was six men of Indostan
To learning much inclined,
Who went to see the Elephant
(Though all of them were blind),
That each by observation
Might satisfy his mind.

The First approach'd the Elephant,
And happening to fall
Against his broad and sturdy side,
At once began to bawl:
"God bless me! but the Elephant
Is very like a wall!"

The Second, feeling of the tusk,
Cried, -"Ho! what have we here
So very round and smooth and sharp?
To me 'tis mighty clear
This wonder of an Elephant
Is very like a spear!"

The Third approached the animal,
And happening to take
The squirming trunk within his hands,
Thus boldly up and spake:
"I see," quoth he, "the Elephant
Is very like a snake!"

The Fourth reached out his eager hand,
And felt about the knee.
"What most this wondrous beast is like
Is mighty plain," quoth he,
"'Tis clear enough the Elephant
Is very like a tree!"

The Fifth, who chanced to touch the ear,
Said: "E'en the blindest man
Can tell what this resembles most;
Deny the fact who can,
This marvel of an Elephant
Is very like a fan!"

The Sixth no sooner had begun
About the beast to grope,
Then, seizing on the swinging tail
That fell within his scope,
"I see," quoth he, "the Elephant
Is very like a rope!"

And so these men of Indostan
Disputed loud and long,
Each in his own opinion
Exceeding stiff and strong,
Though each was partly in the right,
And all were in the wrong!


So oft in theologic wars,
The disputants, I ween,
Rail on in utter ignorance
Of what each other mean,
And prate about an Elephant
Not one of them has seen!

John Godfrey Saxe's ( 1816-1887)

Pic. Wikipedia. Mural in Malaysia.

Friday 17 September 2010


Hollow diabolo,
squeezes future
into now.

Momentary awareness
gone to mem'ry
too soon.

Look up Magpie Tales for more poetic fun.

Thursday 16 September 2010

Taliban Dancer 3 Continued

Taliban Dancer

Scene 3. Pakistani border.

Sfx: Army vehicles and shouting.

Soldier : You there! Get down off the truck!
Waheed : I am coming down, please put the gun away, we are not armed.
Soldier : All get down off the truck! Come now, hurry you up!

Sfx: feet hitting the road, grunts as loads are lifted

Waheed : There are three of us and we seek asylum in your country. This is my wife and daughter.
Soldier : Money?
Whaeed : Not much, just a few hundred afghanis.
Soldier : That won’t get you past temporary, so you’d better give it to me.
Waheed : But we need it for food, transport, medicine…
Soldier : No money, no pass this point. So I take your money anyway and you starve here.
Waheed : You can’t be that cruel. We have so little…
Soldier : You’ll make it to the UN camp in Peshawar and they’ll look after you there, so don’t waste my time…
Waheed : But it is all we have left…..

Sfx: sound of slap. Tahmina cries.

Soldier : Hand over all money. Now!
Waheed : No need for that. (sound of jingling coins) Here’s the money.
Soldier : Open the gate!

Sfx: Grunting of people loading then revving engine, fading.

Karima : Are you all right?
Waheed : Yes, I’m OK. If I hadn’t resisted they might have searched you.
Karima : That was a smart, hiding most of it under the my burqua. Never thought I’d be happy to be wearing the stupid thing!

Sfx: Truck motor straining up steep hill, fading.



Each turn,
One hour

Glass upturned,
Starts again.

Each turn
One year

Tree upturned,
It dies.

Magpie Tales goes GREEN!

Thoughts at a funeral


Like all big happy families
We have rules.

One drawer for undies,
Two pairs of shoes.

Three books, one radio
Two pictures, not big.

Monday, sing-along with Ted,
Excursion Wednesday.

Bingo Friday, Communion Sunday
Both Catholic. Har har!

Even days, spaghetti on toast,
Cheese sandwich, chop three veg.

Odd number days, porridge,
ham salad, sausage and mash.

Doc Tuesdays, teeth first Thursday
Hairdresser last Monday.

Shower at five, inspection at six
Lights out by ten.

That’s about it. Questions?
Yes. When can I die?


Note: My own experience of nursing homes is of overworked and caring people, dedicated to the welfare of their clients. But some clients might have a different point of view. Picture from however, is typical.

Monday 13 September 2010

Taliban Dancer Scene 2.

Scene 2. Carpet merchant’s store. (Imagine rugs and other goods displayed)

Sfx. Soft Eastern music, sounds of fabric being moved around.

Waheed is talking to his friend Mahdi.

Mahdi : I’ve no idea what you can do. If you don’t pay them, they burn your shop!
Waheed : I know, Mahdi, but everything I own is in these rugs. I lose them, I’m finished!
Mahdi : I know that, but you have no choice…
Waheed : And we can’t depend on those damned Americans to stay, they’re just as likely to pack up and go and then where are we! It’s a madhouse here!
Mahdi : It’s getting worse. And I’m worried about that mongrel Qasem too. He’s been talking to Lutfi.
Waheed : Lutfi? Why would he talk to Lutfi?
Mahdi : Waheed! Lutfi is a beautiful boy, unfortunately. And you know, if he decides to make him a dancing boy, he’ll just take him!
Waheed : (with compassion) Oh, Mahid, that’s terrible. You can’t let them do that! He’ll think he is going to learn dancing but they’ll all fuck him up the arse until he dies or goes mad. He’ll never be the same!
Mahdi : You’re telling me? You know where I’ve been. I just hope they leave him be and if they don’t I’ll just have to get him out.
Waheed : Well, you know my plan, so don’t forget, I’ll help if I can.
Mahdi : Thanks. I know. But if I were you, I’d pay up and shut up. Complain to nobody and hope it all ends one day and you survive. You shouldn’t even be talking to me about this. They’ve been asking where my girls are too and ….
Karima : (bursting through door in a burqua) Waheed! (trips over something) Damn this stupid buqua! (looks around, sees Mahdi) Oh! Sorry Mahdi, I didn’t see you there through this blasted thing.
Mahdi : What happened. Is Elina OK?
Karima : (Ignoring Mahdi) Waheed! The men are coming. They know about the school! They’ll come here next! I don’t know what to do!
Mahdi : Elina! What about Elina?
Karima (quickly to Mahdi) We sent Elina home. Halina is with them. Don’t worry Mahdi. Waheed! They’re coming, they're coming!
Waheed : (To Mahdi) Can you take over here? I can’t go back to the house with those bastards there but you know where everything is. The plan starts now.
Mahdi : I’ll be all right. Go before they get here. Get a start on them. Have you got money?
Waheed : Not much, just what I took today, a few hundred and the damned passports are in the house. Shit! They’ll find them!
Mahdi : (sounds of coins) Here, take this.
Waheed : Thanks!
Mahdi : And I’ll look for your passports when they’ve gone. You could get lucky. And I’ll sell this up as quickly as I can and send you the money. Hurry.
Waheed and Karima : (departing) Thank you Mahdi! Thank you! Thank you!

Sfx : Beaded curtain moving, then boots, men running, clanking of guns.

Jabar : Where is he? Where’s Waheed?
Mahdi : He isn’t in today. I think he’s up in Kabul buying.
Jabar : When did he say he’ll be back?
Mahdi : Maybe tomorrow, but he asked me to help out for the next day or two.
Jabar : If he turns up here call me. (sound of writing, tearing paper) Here’s my number.
Mahdi : Who will I say you are?
Jabar : (sound of blow) You know me, smartarse! I am Jabar. Tell him Jabar!
Mahdi : (with exaggerated servility) I’ll call you, Jabar, I’ll call.
Taliban : And tell him if the money isn’t ready when I come back, no more shop! (sound of blow) Got it?
Mahdi : (with whimper in voice) Yes Jabar, I’m sure he’ll pay. He will pay.
Jabar : And who are you?
Mahdi : I am Mahdi, son of Farshad.
Jabar : Farshad the happy. Ha ha! ha! Come on!

sfx. men leaving, laughing, guns clanking, fading.

If you want to read the entire play now, go to:
and please leave a comment. Your comments keep the post alive.

Pic 1 A World in Progress.
Pic 2 The Guardian.

Friday 10 September 2010

Taliban Dancer.

A Radio Play.

Karima : teacher, wife of
Waheed : father of
Tahmina : child.

Halima : wife of
Mahid : friend of Waheed, father of
Elina : child.

Jabar : Taliban leader.
Pakistani soldier.
Abdul Raheen : Pakistani money lender and fixer.

Indonesian fishing boat skipper.
Indonesian crewman.
Patrol boat officer.
Immigration Officer.


Taliban Dancer.

Scene 1: An illegal girls’ school in a semi ruined house in Asadabad, north east Afghanistan. Damaged walls are draped to create privacy. Girls are learning English. On the wall, a whiteboard with sentence: ‘Hello, my name is Karima’.

This is to prepare actors for characterisations. There may be no need for an explanation at performance.

Sfx. Children calling off, village noises

Karima is teaching.

Karima : (tapping on whiteboard) Repeat after me. Hello, my name is Karima.
Class : (sing-song repeat) Hello my name is Karima.
Karima : Good. Now Elina, say the greeting using your own name.
Elina : Hello, my name is Elina.
Karima : Good. Now, Tahmina, you try.
Tahmina : Hello, my name is Tah…
Halima : (enters, breathless) Karima! They’re coming!
Karima : Who? Who’s coming?
Halima : The men! The Taliban men. Hurry, that silly bitch Sabia told her husband about the school and they’re coming. Hurry!

Girls begin to whimper and cry.

Karima : (to girls) Quiet now! (they quieten) It’s OK. Put on your hijab and go home. Just go home! (pushes them out) Walk normally by the back lanes, do not run. (calls to daughter) Tahmina! Go with Halima! (to Halima). Halima, split them up, send them by different ways! OK?
Halima : Yes, I understand, you go… and hurry. We’ll be OK. Tahmina and Elina, take my hand. (calls as she leaves with the girls) Don’t forget your burqua!
Karima : (Alone and struggling with the garment) Damned burqua!

Karima stumbles out.

To be continued...


Picture is of Shamsia, a 17-year-old young woman who had acid thrown into her face last November, by men who attacked students and teachers at a (banned) school for girls in Kandahar.

If you want to cheat (read the other five scenes now) go to ABC Pool and click on the title to access the text, but please leave a comment because it keeps the play alive! Do not be put off by the pen name 'Drof Yar'. I don't know why that site requires a pen name either!


It took two thousand years before the Roman Catholic Church issued a retraction. The Pope admitted that all Jews were not guilty of Deicide. Although St Paul had a bit to say on the matter, it was Melito, the bishop of Sardis, his feast day April Fools Day, who nailed it in 167 AD, giving bigots across the ages an excuse for anti Semitism that peaked with Hitler’s ‘Jewish Solution’ and continues today.

Now we have another idiot, Terry Jones of Gainsville, blaming all Muslims for 9/11. His “Dove World Outreach Centre” (that is really funny) could become the symbol of a new era of religious violence. What does he want? ‘Ethnic cleansing’ of America?

Jewish leaders, Christian leaders, leaders ‘of no faith’ have all denounced ‘Terrible Terry’, and of course, Muslims are outraged. So what can be done to douse the fuse?

Sure, many people are anti Muslim, maybe as many as those who are anti Semitic, anti war, anti any race or religion not their own and some are anti being anti, but there are millions of American Muslims who were as appalled as anyone when Bin Laden’s gang of criminals brought down the Twin Towers, killing thousands of Christians, Jews, Muslims and people of a dozen other faiths.

It had nothing to do with religion but everything to do with resentment growing from US pre-eminence in the world economy. Like the Jewish joke says: “Please God, tell me. If we are your Chosen People, how come the Arabs got the oil?”

The antidote may be the veiled woman behind the glass. If she is Muslim, her moment has come.
Now, like no other, is the time for American Muslims to yell to the world that Terry Jones and his fifty fevered fools is not America. Muslims must speak to Muslims if this self serving mischief maker is to be negated.

No matter that the US (and her allies) may have gone into Iraq and Afghanistan with the best of intentions; poverty, hopelessness and resentment are being used to polarise huge populations against America. The story they are selling is that Christian America is waging war against Islam and Terry Nobody, hate pedlar of the pulpit has given them the big one. He has insulted their god and when God is under attack, anything goes. Speak up Muslims!

Sorry guys, there is nothing funny here. I had not intended to post this today, but Willow's Magpie Tales arrived a day early in the antipodes and this is urgent!

Wednesday 8 September 2010


So we have a result of sorts.

A left of centre labor/Greens/Country Independent government that, as Bob Oakshot said, will be ‘ugly in its beauty’. If it works, it will usher in a new era of cooperation for the benefit of the country as a whole. So much reform was negotiated the mind boggles.

Bob Katter, member for mining and sunburn, had little choice but to go with the pro-mining, anti-climate-change-action parties of the right or employ full time security to augment his ‘five locks per door and a gun under every bed’. Miners are good with explosives!

Now we ‘Watch What Happens’. As the song says… “When someone.. Starts believin’ in you..”
In this unlikely coalition I wonder who will blink first! And will ‘Malcolm in the middle’ cross the floor?

I apologise to my friends who are separated from us by oceans. This is basically local politics but as in many political reforms, we in Oz can claim to have been first. So you might like to keep a watching brief and in the meantime, take a look at what your own Green parties are doing.
Pascal’s wager applies here too. Even if you doubt the science, it is more prudent to assume climate change is man-made and fix it than wait until it is too late to act. Major parties cannot take the electoral risk so we must get Greens in.

PS. Interesting firsts. Adam Brandt, first Green in lower house, Julia Gillard, first female PM, first Atheist PM, first unmarried PM. Times they are a-changin'!

Tuesday 7 September 2010

Marriage and other rides of my life.

A roller coaster.
All happy.

Concentrate on the laughter.
See only joy,
buy a ticket.

One Way, no return,
no worries.
Safety in numbers.

Watching ahead.
At the gate,
smiles, excitement, easy.

Nearby, others leaving.
‘Been there-done that’.
Fake laughter, disappointment.

No, not me,
I’ll be OK.
The queue moves.

Abandon caution, take the step.
Seat for two.

Sharing with a stranger.
Bumping bodies on the way to the high,
differences refreshing.

repeating the mantras.
Hoping for satisfaction.

Pregnant pause.
Seat belts tighten,
brakes off.

Control gone.
Noise, excitement, fear,
We drop.

Pressure of twists and turns
Ups and downs, grinding together.
Hurting, threatened sanity.

Then for some, lost ego.
Too much,
And we jump.

On the outside again.
Looking in at laughter,
crying and living.

We toss a coin
and buy another ticket.

Image Source

Saturday 4 September 2010

Greens are good for you.

Responses to my 'Katter for Speaker" post indicate a desire, particularly among my American friends, for a new deal. So why is this on my blog? It is a fact that unless America comes on board, the rest of might as well give up. So read on and please take the links. It could empower you and bring you joy, even in the sea of political anger currently surrounding us.

I could quote maybe fifty comments from Americans, but have chosen the three most recent.

"...lucky you to have a 3rd alternative...we just have dumb and dumber mixed with questionable finances, dubious behaviours and racial bigotry...what a mess"
"...they are so good at dodging and weaving, double talk and deceit."
"Here, the powers that be are under so much tax paid protection, they don't have to admit to ANYTHING. It's the rest of us that have to live with paranoia."

There is anger and frustration at disempowerment in these comments. That is good, but only if it can be channelled into a positive outcome and it can. This should help concentrate your anger (and Bob Casey is one of the 'good guys'!)

Greens here are funded by members and citizen donations so we are not under any obligation to deliver for an interest group. Policy is decided by grass roots people like you and me, not Wall St or Pat Robertson. We ran our whole campaign (in my electorate) on a $3,000 budget. Both major parties had budgets in the tens of millions nation wide, but we still managed to poll 18% here. Under our preferential system, the Green vote doubled our Federal representation from five to ten. Our 9 Senators now guarantee that no major party can pass legislation without Green support.

That does not mean Greens are running the country, it just means we can now negotiate amendments that push bills closer to what we want. To see what we want, click onto Green Party and to see what Greens are doing in the US, click on American Green Party.

You will be told "Green parties are bad for the economy", so you need to think about that. It helps to know who is saying it and why, then consider that the greenest country in Europe is Germany with over 40% of its energy from renewable sources and growing. It is also the strongest European economy and the only federal government in the world that includes Greens. If labor forms government here, Australia will be the second, albeit with only one Green in the Legislature.

So it's up to you guys. Contact your local Greens and have a look at them. If you like what you see (a bunch of gentle malcontents who laugh a lot while plotting peaceful revolution), join, have your say and slowly, slowly, change how politics is done where you live. "A thousand mile journey starts with one step." (I wish I first said that!) But this I did. What would a post from me be without a limerick!

Translation: Libs=Republicans, Labs=Democrats. Greens='what you see is what you get'.

The Libs care for little but wealth
And Labs seek the same, but by stealth.
So, if you care
For the trees, streams and air,
Vote Green. It’s good for your health!

I dare you. Make the call, check it out then use blogsville to create change!
Pics: Courtesy Bob Casey and American Greens web sites.

Friday 3 September 2010

Katter for Speaker

State of Play. Austalian election, 2010.

I hate to bore you with more local politics… no I don’t.
We still do not have a government. We have Adam Brandt (Green, Melbourne) and Andrew Wilkie (independent, ex spy) from Dennison Tasmania, supporting Labor and three independents still to decide which party to support so no party can yet claim a majority..

I say the only sensible outcome now is Tony Windsor for Speaker of the House, Bob Oakshot joins Labor and Bob Katter stays out in the hot. He can’t be included because no Prime Minister could ever meet all his demands. But then again, if he isn’t included he could, at a whim, bring down
the government. So what can be done with him?

In the interests of stability, he must be offered the position of Speaker!
Then imagine how he, self confessed paranoid, (five locks on his doors and a gun under every bed in the house, I was told), would handle the job.

“Mr Speaker…”
“Are you talking to me?”
“Yes, Mr Speaker, I was merely following procedure by addressing the chair. What I was…”
“Well, don’t waste my time on bloody procedure, get on with it!”
“Yes Mr Speaker, as I was saying, Mr Speaker, there is a matter of…”
“Listen mate, what’s your name again?”
“I am the member for O'Connor, Mr Speaker.”
“How hard is it mate? I asked your name, not where you live in fairyland. What’s the name your mother calls you. What’s your name?”
“My name is Wilson Tuckey, Mr Speaker.”
“So your mother calls you Wilson Tuckey?”
“No Mr Speaker, Mum calls me Bunnykins.”
“Wilson, I am tempted, but in here I will call you Wilson and you call me Bob. OK?”
“Yes, Mr Speaker.”
“Wilson, listen to me. I never wanted to be a Mr Speaker, I just wanted to be Bob Katter, rough head from the bush, shit stirrer and good old boy totting up my super. So humour me and call me Bob.”
“Do you want me to call you Bob in here, Mr Speaker?”
“Yes, Wilson, I do.”
“All right then, but what do I call you at the pub?”
“Mate, at the pub I need to impress, so you call me Mr Speaker!”
“OK Bob. Now listen Bob, I reckon it’s time to get the big retailers off the farmers’ back. I say we line the bastards up and shoot a few and the others’ll soon get…”
“Point of order, Mr Speaker! The member for O'Connor is using unparliamentary language and…”
“Sit down wanker! Bunnykins has the floor! (I could get used to this!)”

Just kiddin' Bob... er Mr Speaker.
Note: I am fairly certain nobody, not even his mother was ever brave enough to call 'Iron Bar' Tuckey Bunnykins, so I assure him this is all in fun. Pity he lost his seat this election. His commnets were always worth a wince or a laugh.

Pips and all!

My father told me this story.
During the Great Depression, his large family could never afford luxuries, so one time at school, he begged a bite of his friend's apple.

My dad said:

"Please give me a bite, nothing more,
Or maybe the core, I implore."
But his friend kept on chewin’
And said; "nuthin doin"
"Cos there ain’t gonna be any core!"

Prompted by Magpie Tales