Well, this Lost Shark has been busier than usual this past month, but it has been the best kind of busy imaginable. I have now (just about) finished processing all of the orders received as part of the Ocean Hearted Flood Relief Project and I am thrilled to say, that the response has been staggeringly positive.
So far I have posted off 104 books, totalling a massive $1560 and on top of this, I also received a further $145 in extra donations. And of course, I pledged at the very beginning of this project to contribute $5 for every book sold, so I will be throwing in another $520, which brings the total to $2225.
I cannot thank enough, the 50+ people who got behind this project. Together, we have achieved something that I consider to be remarkable.
So from me and the many Queenslanders who will benefit from your generous support, I just want to say…
thank you, your hearts are the size of the ocean.
It is worth asking —
home, are you coming home?
The water — not you, not I — has returned
to its banks, no longer quick enough
to take a body.
A brackish heart is fickle, come on,
you can make it.
Let me hold you now,
the river has no hands.
Where the river has receded
the land is bare —
the heart that is between goodbye
There is no sweet taste here
to remember you by, no
warmth to crawl into.
It is true —
a fox may gnaw its foot off
to survive a trap.
you saw nothing.
And if seeping could be sudden
the brown of it seeped suddenly
into your bones.
You were in the kitchen, baking.
In the distance, too far away to hear,
the river appeared, coursing through the fabric
of trees, down the middle of a country road.
Turning to your daughter, you leaned over,
burnt caramel on your lips,
and kissed her —
the very hint of bitter.
It is worth remembering —
the drenchings in murraya scented breezes,
sunscreen lotion creaming the collar of your shirt.
In the dry season, the raw heat
of summer, that first downpour.
That first downpour, just when
the pollen starts to thicken.
I learned about rivers
by falling into,
the depth of you.
There is rain coming:
town, country, city, seashore are at risk.
Seagulls are everywhere,
in the heart, in the heat
There is rain coming
and I must leave,
leave you before the flood.
* There are just a couple of days remaining to get behind the Ocean Hearted Flood Relief Appeal, so if you can, dig deep and spread the word…
The wonderful folk at QLD Writers Centre have banded together with local literary luminary, Rebecca Sparrow (The Girl Most Likely) to create the brilliant, Writers on Rafts project, to raise money for the Queensland Premier’s Flood Relief Appeal. More than 150 Australian authors, including Nick Earls, Tara Moss, Kate Morton, Mem Fox and this Lost Shark have climbed aboard the raft to pledge their support, offering prizes such as signed books, school/book club visits, manuscript appraisals and the opportunity to be immortalised in print by having a character named after you.
So how can you get on board you ask? Well, to enter Writers on Rafts go to http://www.writersonrafts.com
From there, you can purchase as many tickets as you like in as many categories as you want! Every ticket is one chance to win for a lucky person in every state and territory. And most importantly, every dollar goes directly to the Queensland Premier’s Flood Relief Appeal to help victims of the Queensland floods. The draw will be conducted on Friday February 25 and QWC’s goal is to raise $10,000 through Writers On Rafts.
So, if you can help out, please do… your support is precious in helping to raise much needed funds to support the victims of the Queensland floods.
And please… spread the word!
every cloud turns
into a dead lamb
Thank you to everyone who has supported the Ocean Hearted Flood Relief Appeal. We are just a hair away from the $2000 mark now, and there are still six days to get behind this and lend a much needed hand… so, if you can dig deep, spread the word via your networks – both social and real – if you can shout the details from the roof top or whisper them into someone’s ear, your help would be greatly appreciated. Places like Rockhampton have experienced secondary flooding this week caused by serious storms, so there is still much to be done to rebuild this beautiful state of ours.
I will post full details of funds raised once the project closes on January 26.