Tuesday, 12 November 2013


Frank Hurley
29 Oct 1917 copyright expired


Can you hear the footsteps
of all those weary souls
traipsing over sodden fields
with worn boots and socks with holes...
Can you feel their heartache
so far from hearth and home
many looking for adventure
as foreign lands they were to roam.
One by one, they ventured forth
at first, their heads held high.
One by one, their mates did fall
they knew their time was nigh.
On and on, they fought so brave
for freedom was their goal.
Those with no tomorrows
did give their very soul.

(c) Crissouli 2013


Monday, 23 September 2013



Artie's... Artie Shaw's band
evoking memories of a bygone era…
was life really so simple then?
"Blowing bubbles… in the air…"
The melodious warble of a clarinet
the rise and fall of perfect notes
swirling skirts of crepe - de - chine
tantalising snatches of fragrance
from bruised corsages
and perfumed hair…
carefully pinned and rolled, 
or gently waved
with the help of sugar and water.
Bulky suits, double breasted,
wide lapels,
pleated and cuffed trousers
and always, shining shoes.
Greasy palms, partly from anxiety
partly from pushing back brylcreemed hair.
Sawdust on the floor
fresh flowers mingling with half filled ashtrays..
huge bowls of punch
secretly laced with alcohol
by foolhardy, fancy free boys…
A furtive embrace
on moonlight swathed balconies…
The young, trying so hard
to look sophisticated -
the sophisticated -
 trying so hard to look young.
Cars with running boards,
lamp lit avenues, lined with trees,
and shadows…
the beckoning welcome of a light
shining through velvet draped windows.

Beautiful notes, beautiful music
beautiful memories.

© Crissouli

Image courtesy of ClipArtHut


(c) expired


They rode by the Diamantina
and alongside the Barcoo and never saw
another living soul.
They crossed the Haddon Corner
where the days are hot and long
and never thought
they'd ever reach their goal.

But there they met a fellow
with beard of salted grey
who told them of a place
that he'd once been.
They spent the night in dreaming
as young men often do
of the rich life that their new friend
said he'd seen.

In the shadows of the Beal Range
they packed again their swags
and made off
in the early morning light.
With their pans upon their shoulders
and strong boots they'd always worn
these two young men did make a splendid sight.

All day long, the adventurers bore
the sticky tiresome heat
and ever brushed
at buzzing swarms of flies.
They trudged along till day was night
and cooling shadows fell
giving welcome rest
to itchy, swollen eyes.

They found again their old campsite
that they'd made among the trees
and settled down
to rest their weary bones. 
They talked of Clancy of the Overflow
and of others that they'd heard
and slept once more
ignoring ghostly groans.

For at this unimposing campsite
some knew there once had been
a ghastly night,
of deeds so very foul
when a man had once been murdered
for another's pot of gold
and this evil deed
had made him ever prowl.

Not knowing of this long gone time
they dreamt the night away
with golden thoughts 
still racing through their mind.
They never woke to see the ghost
with beard of salted grey
who had ensured
that no gold would they find.

'Twas many years before they found,
at the campsite near the bank,
their whitened bones
still in their bloodied rags.
'Tis said the ghost with beard of grey
makes eerie sounds at night..
and still, it's said, he preys on men
who carry mining swags.

© Crissouli


(c) unknown


The quiet stillness of the dawn 
envelops me
wrapped in a cocoon of peace
and solitude
I, at first, feel tense
so much to do
yet, too early for most.

Time to relax, yet I shower, 
not willing to let the first
rays of sunlight elude me.
In the distance
a bird calls to it's mate
welcoming a new dawning.

Time to sit and think
and write
to welcome God's gift
of a brand new day.
Too late, the haunting bark 
of the dog next door
shatters the stillness of the dawn.

Then, once again, peace
and quiet…
a steaming cup of coffee
my only companion.
Thank you, Lord,
for these Blessed moments
and, more importantly,
a time of renewal.

© Crissouli

Monday, 26 August 2013



I'm one, I'm one, 
I'm really one
The days just rush on by
I have to write, I really do
Sometimes I wonder why...
There are things to do
And places to go
And dreams as yet unfolded
With so much that still awaits
I sometimes feel unmolded!

The words do come, 
The dreams do stay
The sun is ever rising
Please come on by 
And share with me

It really is surprising!

(c) Crissouli

Thursday, 25 April 2013


Mother dear,

I meant to write every day, I truly did...
you are always in my thoughts....
I miss your laugh, your smile, 
I even miss your rousing at me 
for not chopping the wood. 
I know I promised that once I got home 
you would never have to do it again.

Did you get the poppy I sent you? 
They are such a beautiful bright red
and I know how much you love them. 
I hope the censor didn't take it out of the envelope.
I forgot to say Thank You for the socks
I know they took you a long time to knit them all
I hope you don't mind, but I gave a pair to my mate
His boots leaked, but the socks helped. 

I promised to fix the fence as well
I am sorry, Mother, I really am,
but it's good that you got our neighbour in
you might need him to help a bit more.
You taught me never to break a promise
but sometimes, you can't help it.

I'm sorry, Mother, that I can't see your smile
I long for your arms around me, I'm cold
as I sleep among the poppies in a Flanders field
No need to keep knitting, Mother
I have enough socks now
Sorry, Mother, for not keeping my promises
Today, I did write, with all my love.

(c) Crissouli

                                            (c) chrismilne

Saturday, 13 April 2013

A Trinket Or A Treasure

A Trinket Or A Treasure

A trinket or a treasure
It means the same to me
For holding on to this small thing
I feel that you're with me.
I feel your touch
So warm and kind
As if you're asking me to see
That though the years
 They do us part
You are a part of me
I may not have a photograph
To see your kindly smile
But still I feel your presence
As if you linger for a while.
Please know that I am grateful
For this link that we have shared
Know also that you still do live
In the heart of one who cared.


Saturday, 19 January 2013


I love leather... I would have walked on hot coals to have a  
leather satchel like the one that I saw in the second hand shop...
such stuff as dreams are made of. 

I always longed to go to a solid brick school, with lots of timber and surrounded by  
beautiful gardens. Instead, I simply had to put up with quaint timber  
schools, lots of light and open spaces and surrounded by huge Moreton  
Bay figs, some literally hundreds of years old, which we were  
forbidden to climb. 

I would have taken notice, I really would, but  
it's very hard to hear a yelling teacher calling out "ChrisTINE, for  
the last time, come down from that tree, or ELSE!!" Hard, because the  
branches I liked to sit on were a long way up. One hot afternoon, the  
grade teacher went marching into battle, at least that's what she  
looked like, straight down to my parent's shop, and demanded that my  
mother do something about me climbing trees as "she is setting a bad  
example". My mother got her Irish up and asked if I had ever fallen  
out of a tree, or if I ever pushed anyone out of one, or even up  
one...   "Well, no, but..."

"No?" said my mother, and gave her her best glare, "Well you had  
better get about your business and let me get about mine."

"Well, I never" said Battling Bertha, as we called our dear teacher....  
she really was ok. " Maybe you should" said Mum. The teacher left, Mum  
took a deep breath and I came out of the back room, all smiles.  
Whack. Through tears, I asked why.. when she had stood up to the  
teacher. I was told in no uncertain terms that Mum letting the teacher  
know that she thought it was ok, was one thing, but me causing  
problems and then the teacher needing to come see Mum was another.  
From then on, I never climbed the trees, in school hours. I know I  
digressed, but it still brings a smile to my face when I think of that  
day and I reminded myself when I mentioned the trees.

Crissouli (c)

Sunday, 6 January 2013



It is with great pleasure and surprise that I accept the Nomination by 
Pauleen of Family history across the seas to be included in 
her selection of five blogs she has chosen to nominate for 

"Blog of the Year 2012 Award ".

 I feel I am in very good company as you can see by her nominations 

Congratulations to all.

 Now it is my task to nominate others... not by any means easy  
as I follow and enjoy so many blogs and choosing just a few
 means leaving many other great blogs out this time.
You may find that you are following some of these already, if not, 
I hope you will read a little and see why they have caught my attention.

written by the wonderful Angela 
who takes us on a journey through history or introduces us 
to the charm of Ireland today. 
She writes with such passion and enthusiasm 
that you can't help but be swept up 
in her always interesting posts.

written by Janet who invites us to learn more about the history 
of Irish settlement in Connecticut in particular 
and has led to her very much sought after book 
released last year.
Her articles are so comprehensive and written 
with such feeling and understanding that, 
even though I have no connection 
to those whose lives she explores, I find her blog 
compulsive reading.

I can't overlook Catherine who is always so modest 
about her work, but doesn't recognise the power she has 
to lead us through so many emotions...
One minute, I am battling to stop the tears flowing, 
the next I am laughing out loud. 
This incredible natural writer simply shares 
her ancestors, her life, her thoughts and feelings 
so well, that the reader becomes her friend.

written by Damian whose passion and love of history 
have taken me on an amazing journey and taught me 
so much about the Irish participation 
in the American Civil War and the attitudes 
of those times. His diligent research 
and copious links to other reading provides 
so much more than the normal tales of history.

Though Pauleen nominated me for this award, 
I can't overlook her always intriguing blogs. 
I have learnt so much from reading her tips on research, 
her guidance towards helping us to be better researchers 
has been invaluable. Pauleen has a great way of exploring 
the story behind the facts, so you really feel attached 
to those she writes about, and look forward to even more 
tales to come.

Sincere Congratulations to all my nominees and 
Thank You for sharing your wonderful blogs with us all.

The ‘rules’ for this award are simple:
1. Select the blog(s) you think deserve the ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award
2. Write a blog post and tell us about the blog(s) you have chosen – there’s no minimum or maximum number of blogs required – and ‘present’ them with their award.
3. Please include a link back to this page ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award –http://thethoughtpalette.co.uk/our-awards/blog-of-the-year-2012-award/ and include these ‘rules’ in your post (please don’t alter the rules or the badges!)
4. Let the blog(s) you have chosen know that you have given them this award and share the ‘rules’ with them
5. If you choose, you can now join our Facebook group – click ‘like’ on this page ‘Blog of the Year 2012’ Award Facebook group and then you can share your blog with an even wider audience
6. As a winner of the award – please add a link back to the blog that presented you with the award – and then proudly display the award on your blog and sidebar … and start collecting stars… For further information on collecting stars, just click on the link provided in Rule 3.