Australia and New Zealand


In the final days of a journey, whether it has been travel volunteering, a road trip in a foreign land, or just getting in touch with nature in a national park, I usually know what I will write about. Australia and New Zealand have been different. When I landed home at the end of April there was no big story calling to me, demanding that I write it. And why not? Australia and her neighbor to the east, New Zealand, are the seventh of the world’s continents I have visited. I snorkeled in the Great Barrier Reef, helicoptered over glaciers in New Zealand, climbed the Sidney Harbor Bridge! Isn’t that a story I should want to write? Hmmm.

I’m not a poet. I don’t really like most poetry. I don’t know what that says about me. When trying to understand a particular poem, I have thought to myself….why doesn’t the poet just tell me what he/she is thinking, rather than making me guess? So I default to memoir, history, fiction….you know, material that doesn’t frustrate me. But, while I was in New Zealand, someone asked the members of our little troop of travelers to write a poem to memorialize some aspect of our adventure. Groan. Luckily, the assignment was to write a haiku. Yes, three short lines. Even I could do that! And then something sparked and one haiku became five haikus. So in lieu of my regular travel blog, here is my first and only effort at poetry. The good news is….each haiku is accompanied by photos, so you won’t have to guess what in the world I am talking about.

 

 

 

 

Towering red rock
Sunrise sunset shadows glow
Wakeful spirits sigh

 

 

 

 

 

White coral mystique
This underwater reef world
Breathe, swim, deep blue sea

 

 

 

Glacier

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cool blue icy peaks
Soaring over cotton clouds
A million years old

 

 

Hokitika gorge

Place of gold seekers
Turquoise waters lap the sand
They whisper my name

 

 

 

 

New Zealand

 

 

 

 

 

The land so beloved
Born of quakes and shifting plates
Lush green, down under

 

If my haikus have perplexed, annoyed, or even pleased you, feel free to post a comment. And I’ll sign off with some random photos from Australia and New Zealand. G’day mates.

Earthquake damaged cathedral in Christchurch
The men needed to frolic for some reason