‘Ulladulla Fun Run’ – Fun Run History – Prostate Cancer

Ulladulla Fun Run
Easter Sunday 2006 – Blessing of the Fleet

bright autumn sun warms
harbour parking spaces
trestle-table procured
runners like cars collecting
at early morning traffic lights
stretch out the minutes
idle a conversation
change down for action

red shirted Ulladulla rats
bodies honed by discipline
sinewy and tough more weathered
than the decorated fishing boats
pit against fresh young limbs
eagerly chattering but not so seasoned
their smooth clean cut lines
unknown measure to the task

green light – and away
fast movers quick to tackle
the filter at the gate
while the cautious well heeled
slow to make the grade
watch the front line disappear
in headland track and bush
make the turn before the marshal

challenged by a female back
‘If you can read this you are losing’
sends the body to overdrive
the corner rounded to a sighting
of stolid rat in steady stride
sufficient time to out-manoeuvre
show no mercy, hold the pace
down the pavement to the park

then everyone glad to be home
bodies dripping and talking fast
over-run or not, the run now over
fun remains for those with fuel
a red red-rat shakes hands
polite enquiry as to age
seniority justifying position
to next rat assembly invited

and the fleet bobbing in the background
unduly clean in their church best
bottoms slapping wet
still waiting for their blessing

Richard Scutter

Dear My Word In Your Ear Reader,

This poem was written several years ago and of course the current virus climate has negated community Fun Run and the like activities. Being caught up at home with more hours inside provided the opportunity to reflect on earlier days. Quite a few years ago I went in the Ulladulla Fun Run. The local Ulladulla Rats running group were out in force, all appropriately uniformed in red. Also, It was the day of the annual Blessing of The Fleet.

Given my personal history fighting prostate cancer I thought it appropriate to post this poem as exercise certainly helps in dealing with this male nasty.

I have entered ‘The Long Run’ event organised by the Australian Prostate Foundation to promote awareness where I am recording my jog/walk exercise over September.

For more information here is a link to my Page on ‘The Long Run Site’ where I will be entering exercise detail over the month.

Stay fit and healthy whatever!

All the best, Richard

 

Easter Sunday Sunrise

Easter Sunday Sunrise

not just another day
another day of the same
of the no touch of distancing
of not being able to reach out in the community
of confinement to self
of being centered on the inside
not just another day
no!

this day is different
this day is the one day
the one day that opens into every day
the lifeline to eternal tomorrows
as our own tomorrow ending
is contemplated

Richard Scutter

Celebrate this special day with friends and family!

Smile – A one Word Poem

Arthur Stace was an alcoholic but when he attended a Christianity meeting he was totally besotted by the word ‘Eternity’ and what this word represented. From then on he spread this word by writing it in copperplate with chalk on footpaths in and around Sydney. He did this for 35 years from 1932 to 1967 and became known as ‘Mr Eternity’.

A Wikipedia link

Awhile ago I was in a hurry to write a poem so I decided to choose just one word –

SMILE

But in order to spread this SMILE to the masses I have thought it wise not to embark on a similar promotion spree. As an alternative I thought some words might suffice for all to read – hence the following ….

My One Word Poem
(Dedicated to Arthur Stace who took ETERNITY to be understood)

The first and last line
starts and ends
at the next word.

SMILE.

Go back to the first line.

Short though it be, and like Arthur’s
this poem is an endless journey!
that’s right – you’ve got it
Smile!

But why are you down here,
Ok, you don’t like to read in circles
I guess I will have to repeat things
so – just for you
Smile!

Now, have you finally ingested it?
I mean – is it fully understood
analysed and sunk in
more than skin deep!
Smile!

Now that’s better!
if there’s one thing I hate
not to be fully understood
and have no response –
it is only the one word!

SMILE.

Richard Scutter

… and of course there is another way to disseminate my message when walking down the street!

… and interestingly what word would you choose (I guess love is already taken)

Awash in Smoke – Australian Bushfires

 

SmokePoem

Burnt Bush – Batemans Bay, NSW

Awash in Smoke

in the shock aftermath death knell
on a day hard to happen
a dull blue twist slowly ascends
into the sullen smoke hangover

the stubborn littered ground aglow
as the after-life scrub still smoulders,
like a discarded cigarette butt
menacing cancer

blackened tangled gum trunks
twist fingers into the lost sky
while a dead kangaroo silhouetted
dissolves in the shifting smoke

life stalls in the depressed choke
of the continued fall of dust cladded air

Richard Scutter 9 January 2020

Context –

The current Australian bushfires are unprecedented in their magnitude and destruction. They have been extensive across all States and have destroyed massive areas of bush. And they are still burning at the time of this Post. The current loss is 2,316 homes and over 24 lives coupled with considerable stock loss.

World Wildlife Conservation estimate that 1.25 billion animals have died and of course their habitat decimated. Australia is a very large country and continent and some of the tracks of land involved in the fires are bigger than European countries.

Smoke from these fires has clouded and polluted many towns and cities not directly connected with the destruction and fires. This has been the case in Canberra over the last three weeks. The intensity of the smoke depends on wind direction but on some days Canberra has been the most polluted major city in the world.

The world-wide response to this on-going tragedy has been quite amazing. I give my heartfelt thanks for all this support and to those that have donated to the funding of the recovery effort. Unfortunately the scars are severe and it will take many years for the regrowth to take hold but the bush is resilience and it will recover!

Magical Memories – Christmas reflections

Context …

The following prose poem was written reflecting back on my childhood days when aged eight. We lived in a small village in northern Hampshire, the village and surrounds were the totality of my world. December and Christmas was always a magical time. There was that anticipation of early snow though it seldom fell before Christmas Day. Snow completely transformed the local village scene and it was always fun to get out and play in the white environment. Christmas was equally magical because of times with family and the sharing of presents. I have tried to highlight a few specific memories in the stanzas below. Of course Christmas completely changed the world in a much deeper way but at that time I had little understanding of the significance.

Magical Memories

Christmas is always something magical.
At least it is for me because of early childhood
days. They have continuing home-life warmth
emphasised by the northern hemisphere cold
of December and the walking of narrow country
lanes in the search for holly with red berries.

Coming home from school late in the afternoon
and looking from the dining room bay window.
The air imperceptibly perforating as a soft watery
substance touched the glass and seeing the moist
dabs as they coalesced into droplets sending
a sequence of random runs down the pane.

Occasionally it would snow before Christmas.
Watching the slow parachuting drift of the first flakes
as they disappeared before my eyes and waiting
patiently for firmer definition on the window,
and becoming fixated with the formation of
each imprint before testing for uniqueness.

In those days we had a real Christmas tree with
electric lights which didn’t always meet expectations.
Many hours were spent making chain decorations
which drooped across the room from pelmets and light
fittings. One year the tree was planted in the garden
and over the years it grew quite sizable.

Christmas Day was the culmination of days of preparation.
The traditional end of bed pillow-slip presents and
turkey and trifle, but the closeness of immediate family
is always paramount. I remember my older brother
making me a fort with a draw-bridge. The lounge room
floor was the playground for toy soldier battles and
this became an impressive centre piece for play.

On Boxing Day we usually hosted extended family. They
often had to brave bleak conditions to reach our place.
My uncle Norman had a motorbike with a sidecar and
at times this was used to ferry grandma. The small
kitchen table was brought into the dining-room for
the little children to sit at for their Christmas feast.

After the meal it was recovery time in the lounge.
Often with a musical flavour for my mother
was quite adept at the piano. And we had a ‘Pianola’
that would transform holes into the playing of keys.
The screening of family slides coupled a staccato
of rueful comments with much laughter and tears.

Yes, Christmas is always something magical.
And of course the distancing of the years embellish
the memories of those precious childhood days, so you
could say ‘Happy Christmas’ is engendered by
simply a mind recall. Hoping your Christmas Day is
a real happy one. Merry Christmas!

Richard Scutter Christmas Day 2019

Animal Accident – A personal encounter

Following on from my last Post here is a personal poem in relation to a Kangaroo … not a pleasant experience …

Animal Accident

Empty night road
stars with the moon off centre.
Talking of people met, then
bigger than a Qantas tail plane
highlighted by car light
it was before the windscreen.

Inevitable as judgement day
Tony shouting ‘kangaroo’
the brake screech
rubber hot into the road
and thud!

Shocked stillness.

Dark paddocks alongside
the parked car steaming
and we on centre stage
enter the evening chill.

Inspect the damaged bonnet,
radiator intact and car driveable.

The roo lying in right hand lane
motionless except for a watery eye
alive to our movement.

Dragging the broken body
clearing the road for traffic
streaking her wet internals.

Our car disappears.
The countryside reclaims the night.

The grass verge cradles a dying animal.

There will be no flowers.

© Richard Scutter

This poem was writen several years ago. Thanks to my friend Tony for help in dealing with the situation.

Qantas – Australian airline

Accidents involving kangaroos are common in rural areas of Australia. An organisation called WIRES (Wildlife Injury Rescue Emergency Service) exists to help injured animals.

Marmalade and Vegemite – A Retired Couple Issue

Marmalade and Vegemite

When you get to a certain age
you have to learn a new language,
the language of subtle correction
in interpretation.

Let me give you an example.
While driving your partner may say
that you have to turn left
at the next intersection.

Well, you know for certain
that it is a right-hand turn; so
without comment you do
indeed turn right.

In such circumstances
it is very prudent not to
inform your partner that
he or she meant otherwise.

Care must be taken.
For when at breakfast your
partner may ask you to
pass the marmalade.

And then knowing intimately
the certain likes and dislikes you
pass the vegemite without
a moment’s thought.

But beware, he or she may retort
‘how nice to have warm toast
with vegemite. But I really
did want marmalade’.

And then a heated discussion
on a much hated subject may ensue,
with the insistence that you
are in need of a hearing-aid!

Richard Scutter

Red Rock Headland

red rock headland

The base of Red Rock Headland, Red Rock New South Wales

Red Rock Headland

the first thing you should know
about Red Rock, that is
it’s not Red Rock
Blood Rock is the name
and blood rock it will remain

the sea took up its charge
lovingly far-away
to a place remote, deep
to gracefully nurture
both mother and child
who now rest at peace
in the bosom of her silence

but the sea will never forget
her anger never assuaged
and in indefatigable red rage
continually pit relentlessly
against this headland

for at this headland human flesh
was wantonly herded into her arms
and so, spitting indignation
the surge of a disquiet spray
washes the blood rock red
immovable rock, red rock,
blood rock
for all to witness
a permanent reminder

The NSW National Park memorial plaque on Red Rock Headland …

plaque

In memory of the victims and survivors of the Blood Rock Massacres. Understanding their sacrifice will make us stronger. We as Gumbaingirr people have survived many conflicts over ownership of our traditional lands including a massacre where many were driven off the headland at Red Rock (Blood Rock)

When we checked in at the camp ground I mentioned that I would be walking up to the headland. The receptionist told me it was really ‘Blood Rock’ and told me the history. In the development of Australia there was a lot of pain associated with the mis-treatment of the indigenous population. This must be recognised no matter how uncomfortable.

This poem was included in the latest anthology publication of the ‘Yass Valley Writers’.

Richard Scutter