In this place there are a number of songs that seem to pop up fro time to time, one is the Beatles’ “Tomorrow Never Knows” with that wonderful line “Turn off your mind relax and float down stream …” On so many levels that is applicable in this place, the Blackwood River, Augusta.
Time softens, flattens, slows,
the blade a pleasing splosh and slurp
as we glide the water,
Dolphins at the bow, Whiting below.
There are memories here
of life seasons.
Kairos, time within time.
My footfall feeling the earth
as we weave the trails.
Either the softness of green,
or the crackle and crunch of the dry.
Blind ends, bends that beckon,
stumps covered in moss and lichen.
The granite is unyielding.
Light plays across the leaves
and bathes the bush in a warm palette
that pleases my eyes,
in reality my mind;
though it really is my heart.
Surely, it is my heart.
Birdsong pushes through
the whispering breeze,
the leaves as triangles and tibrels,
the bough as cello.
Though I hear a kangaroo in the distance,
I cannot see it,
nor the scuttling ghekkos and skinks.
Of course the rain, petrichor abundant.
And rivulets forming little creeks
running home to big sister and brother.
I am in my place in the world.
via Photo Challenge: Favorite Place
Augusta, the place where two oceans meet near a river mouth, and where heaven touches earth.
Above; Early Morning from the deck, looking east across the Blackwood River, and the Southern Ocean beyond.
Above: The Southern Ocean, and part of our routine has been to walk this beach as part of a loop.
Above: The Blackwood River, not far from the river-mouth, and this is part of our regular walking route.
Augusta is my favourite place. Although it would be true to say, I have many fave places, but Augusta would be top of the list. It’s not where I work, and I’m not yet living there full time, but we have renovated an older more compact house to be our next step, and later, into retirement. We fell in love with Augusta 35 years ago when we spent some time here on our honeymoon. And we returned regularly over the years for family holidays, eventually being able to afford to buy a house and renovate it. We work about 1.5 hours away and so we come down for our days off and holidays etc. It is my fave place because it has bush walks, river walks biking and kayaking, ocean and beach, forest. The flora and fauna are magnificent, the views are great – restful and restorative. It is a small community and relatively. For us it is a place of happiness, and where we can be creative too.
via Daily Prompt: Cacophony
The Pied Cormorant, commonly called “Shag”, though this is erroneous, because originally shags and cormorants were distinct, now the term has become interchangeable (though that is now in dispute). The name Cormorant evolved from and is derived from the Greek meaning Bald Raven (φαλακρος κοραξ) and later from the Latin corvus marinus or sea raven. It was orginally thought that the Cormorant was relative of the raven (up to the mid 16th C.), mainly becuase of its hooked beak. In the photo, taken on the Blackwood River a few years ago, the one at the back right is displaying the Cormorant’s particular wing drying habit, having dove into the water pursuing fish. As we passed by they had called out. Now they are not as discordant as a Raven or a Black Cockatoo, but nor are they a sing-song bird that can charm the ear with fine song. Instead they created a raucus cacophany that jarred my ears. But it mattered not, they were simply in their element, and I was an intruder. I was glad to be jarred, to be privileged to hear their conversation. It was like I had been invited to the conversation.
via Daily Prompt: Planet
Photo (mine): Blackwood River, swollen after late winter downpour. The Blackwood sustains several eco communities along its approx. 300 kms from the junction of Arthur River and Balgarup River (near Quelarup) via Boyup Brook, Bridgetown, Nannup, and down to Augusta and into the Southern Ocean. The river has been vital to the forests and natural communities for thousands of years, but chemical runoff, salinity, erosion, and pollution have affected the river over time.
I’ve just finished reading a most wonderful book: ‘Braiding Sweet Grass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants’ by Robin Wall Kimmerer. I would never have had the privilege had it not been for Carol Hand at carolahand.wordpress.com (check out her blog Voices From the Margins).
Kimmerer (a native American) draws together the wisdom in developing a relationship with nature, and she draws out how this has already been done by the indigenous peoples of America, but sadly marginalised since European settlement (repeated on every continent). The book is refreshing, moving, and challenging. It is also deeply distressing where Kimmerer tells how America’s waterways and lakes have been filled with industrial waste and all but destroyed. Kimmerer’s point – that when we despise and treat nature with utter contempt and use it greedily without thought, we kill off our best and much needed friend. As a fan of deep ecology the book resonated strongly, and from a spiritual point of view the ecology, economy and relationships also resonated strongly. An amazing reading journey.
The book is also a reminder that other indigenous peoples have also been ignored, and their wisdom scorned, yet such wisdom would contribute to protecting and rescuing the planet.
Our planet is the only one we’ve got, we need to treat it like someone we really, deeply care for. If we do we can live and breathe together.
via Photo Challenge: Bridge
Alexandra Bridge near Karridale and 26km from Augusta, is both a wonderful kayak launching site and on the opposite bank a camping site. It is one of the best segments of the Blackwood River for kayaking because the tide is weaker and the scenery is wonderful too, so it makes for a pleasant time.
And it was a great day.
via Daily Prompt: Sail
Took this while walking along the Blackwood a couple of months back. Rod Stewart’s “I Am Sailing” came to mind, and that Scottish folk song, “The Skye Boat Song.” And I delved deeper, it reminded me, as sail boats do, of my time in the 3rd East Fremantle Sea Scouts when I was a kid. Sailing isn’t in my blood, but I’ve dabbled and had some fun.
via Photo Challenge: Delta
A photo of the Blackwood River as it was five years ago. To the back left you can see water – this was where the river once ran but the intervening spur of vegetation covered sand before it shows how the river silted up. To the back right the river disappears and enters the ocean. You can see the silt clearly. Beyond the photo to the right would be a view of the ocean eating into the dunes towards the river.
Not long after this photo was taken a new cut was made (just below the tree line in the foreground) to allow the river to flush and to allow boats in and out. The silt at the old river mouth was making it too difficult for boats. The cut was controversial as it was said to be inadequate, however, it seems to be working from my persective, and the boats can easily come and go.
The silt creates the delta effect, that triangle of sand in the river mouth or nearby. The Blackwood is breathing again as the Cut has given it life after silt.
This once proud tree laid down its own life long ago along the Blackwood River, but it continues to give life. This section of tree trunk is an ecosystem. Moss evident along the log, other plants growing off the ends, a variety of insects, gekkos, frogs. A place for birds like flycatchers, wagtails. As its surface breaks down it becomes one with the soil, humous to feed other plants. In that way this tree is still alive, it is life-giving, selfless, redeeming.
via Daily Prompt: Volume
The volume is loud and high. The sound of the water was wonderful as it thundered underneath the road and out into the open again. And the Blackwood River was rising high as the volume of water from upstream surged down through Boyup Brook.
The short video was taken at the crossing at Terry Road, just off Jayes Road. And in the photo you can see that the road had been gouged by the force of the water. It was refreshing because the winter rains flush the river and creek systems and bring fresh water and renewal to the ecosystems along the way.