Category: Life

  • Maman, squeeze me a lemon

  • 2011: words failed me, but the cutlery was staunch.

  • Nice work if you can get it

    Perhaps in order to prevent collisions with its plate glass windows, the local swimming pool has near-life-sized transfers on the glass, of young swimmers frolicking. This morning, we watched the window cleaner charge his squeegee and make the first bold sweeps. I walked into plate glass once. We’d just finished walking the Milford Track and…

  • Walking home from the pool

  • Monday’s shoes

    Now, I’d better get on with some work.

  • Evening miscellany

  • Things don’t always turn out the way we mean them to

    I was poking around the sunny vege garden on Friday when I noticed I wasn’t alone. A black rat was also sauntering and sampling, grasping and nibbling on salad greens. In fright, I leaped into the nearest room and snatched the cat from the bed. She sat where I planted her on the flagstone, dazed…

  • One woman, many mountains

    It strikes me, writing this, what a flimsy vessel a book is for recording the plethora of exploits Pat Deavoll has put herself through over the last thirty-five years. Nonetheless, in this handsome volume published by Craig Potton, Pat’s fine, unobtrusive writing makes vivid her favourite places on earth: wild, remote, very high places reached…

  • Bones, beans, beds

    The day started with a lit candle that I sat and didn’t look at while I tried not to think either. A nice young man cranked my arm and shoulder into positions it was reluctant to adopt. However, progress is being made. I blogged over at Rosa Mira Books, wondering where in a sex shop…

  • No rhyme or reason

  • I had a happy birthday

    Thanks to all my friends and family and the sun and the dog and birds and people who inspire me, not to mention life itself…

  • Doings

    Oil is spilling. Marchers are occupying. An egg is cooling.

  • After Steve

    Yes, we too would be lost without our Apples. By these means we have bitten into the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. We are changed. The question’s being asked, who can take the place of Steve Jobs? I guess the answer has to be no one and everyone. David…

  • Read it

    I felt myself to be in skilled and steady hands with Laurence’s (6th or 7th?) novel. Boden Black is a young butcher who spends a formative few summer days in 1955 helping build a hut high on the flanks of Aoraki-Mt Cook. His consciousness is pierced by events — the relentless narration by a conscientious…

  • Saturday

    I thought the tomato probably wanted to speak for itself. I brought it inside and had a look at it: When it’s grown up, closer to Christmas, we’ll hang a few of these on it:

  • Auscellany

    While in Australia I went out looking for wildflowers but it was too hot to snatch more than a couple. Well, that’s my excuse. All that foliage is a fiddle to draw. I chose simpletons. I read only one book (and started another): May Sarton writes in Journal of a Solitude: ‘… we have to…

  • Sydneyside

    We seem to be on a camera-free holiday (is it a holiday? perhaps a 75 percenter) but have a few pics from when we were here last year in the Bouddi National Park. I didn’t make it quite as far along the rocks this time — I had bare feet; the stones were sharp, and…

  • Biddy, day two

  • Biddy

    Biddy’s deaf now. She can’t hear the cracked tones with which she asks for her dinner. Or the caught-a-mouse yowl that’s replaced her former mild enquiries. From being stand-offish and remote, she’s moved in close. Where I am, there Biddy wants to be. What could be nicer than a sunny table top with a lumpy…

  • Ridiculous

    There are so many deep and serious questions to ponder at present, in particular, which is also to say, in general, how to make the best response to each moment of life in this ravaged, beautiful world. However, I find that my drawing pen refuses sobriety. When it revels in absurdity, what can I do…

  • It’s happening

  • A longish weekend

    First, there was high tea at the high table in the Hippopotamus Room for the BNZ Literary Awards. (This article highlights Chiao Lin, the young writer I chose as winner of her section. Too typically, she is under-mentioned elsewhere.) From Wellington, Kate and I hit the road. Pretty much the first thing I did was…

  • Domestic mandala

  • Small wonders

    In the mail today: Next week I will shuck off my slippers and therapeutic neckscarf, and scratch about for something that will pass as ‘business attire’, catch a plane to Wellington airport, and thence be professionally driven to the BNZ Literary Awards, where I will add my voice in praise of NZ writing, especially that…

  • The reader

    I saw this small one on my way down to town at lunchtime. S/he (I couldn’t tell which) was tucked well away from the school playground, where the other children were zooming about. I couldn’t help thinking it looked like the kind of child who would be absorbed by the fiction of Joan de Hamel,…