I think it is about time I introduce myself.
For many years I was a teacher in Sydney and later in Tasmania, and have taught at most levels of the education system, from Infants through to Adult Education. I drove a taxi in Sydney with my husband for a period of time, before running a music shop together in Burnie on the North-West Coast (unsuccessfully). I have dabbled in singing, mostly blues and Latin American folk, I have been an active trade-unionist, and active politically in Sydney. I remain a radical, although no longer publicly active.
In 1988 I commenced Off-Campus studies with Deakin University in order to complete an unfinished degree, and driven by the need to write. It was the best thing I have ever done, and although I had to leave my final Honours year in 1995 – family crises derailed me – I have always been driven by the need to return to my studies.
This year I find myself in a position to return to fulfilling my ambitions. Roger, my husband, and I have been caring for one of our grandsons, who at the age of 6 became extremely ill and had a complete breakdown. It has been a devastating experience for the whole family. This year, however, at the age of 21 and with a new support structure in place for him, I can return to writing and to study.
At the conclusion of this blog is my personal profile on this site.
It won’t take you long to gather I’m not at all comfortable with digital technology. Most of the time my mind is in a fog as I wander around trying to work out WHY I can’t WORK things out. However, I’m going to grit my teeth and do my bloody best. (Note here, I do swear, but in the old-fashioned style of my generation). Well that’s not entirely true either, but I am going to be the ‘decorous’ me for this site.
Something else you will all learn about me is that when I am asked a question, of any sort, I really love to answer. In detail. In too much detail – I also love to ask questions, a fact my classmates exploited well when I was in my high school days. So it can be hard to keep me quiet. The only hurdle in my path is that I am very awkward socially, very, very self-conscious unless I am familiar with the situation I am in, and that always takes time, lots of it. So don’t expect much spontaneous verbal contribution from me – yet.
Most confusing to me is that I BECOME entirely different when I write. I may stumble around and trip over words when I speak, feel intimidated and self-conscious. However, this changes when I put ‘pen to paper’. When I write I am a perfectionist, I am creative, and I love manipulating language and ideas. Frequently I find it difficult to recognise that it is ME who wrote what I read – it is the oddest sensation to read what you write as if you are reading the words of a complete stranger.
Most of all I want to communicate, and I want to communicate with YOU. I WANT you to see the world through my eyes. And yes, preferably agree with my vision, but not necessarily. Life wouldn’t be interesting if everyone saw the world through the same lens. My joy in living would disappear if I didn’t have the opportunity to view the world differently.
Wouldn’t it have been so much easier for all of us if I could work out how to make a direct link between about.me and the much simpler profile below?
I am a 72 year old grandmother of 9, mother of 3, and happily married for almost 52 years. I was born in Sydney NSW, spent my first 43 years living there, but moved with our family to Tasmania in the mid 1980s seeking to leave behind Sydney’s increasing madness. Following our usual gypsy pattern, we moved around the state for some years, living in the North-West, the Midlands, the Central North, before finally settling well and truly in the beautiful Derwent Valley at Black Hills.
It took just under 20 years of discovering Tasmania for us to finally came “home”. I now live under wide skies with glorious views of the countryside, hills and valleys approximately 50 minutes drive from Hobart and 20 minutes west of New Norfolk. Our home is high on an escarpment looking out to Mount Field, and as the photo shows, often wrapped in mist and floating on cloud lake.
Writing poetry is my passion. It expresses my life, the ups and downs, the sadness and joys, the beauty and the ugliness in which we are all immersed. It is in my poetry that you will find ‘me’, and travel with me through the stages of a long life, all its highs and lows, its fun and frustration.
And finally, I’ve recently returned to student life, enrolling in my MA (Writing and Literature) at Deakin University. Just as importantly, if not more so, I write and rewrite so that I can eventually reach the point where I can publish my poetry.