Jack was born in the nighttime…

A Jack Tale from Port Lincoln in the style of Death in a Nut.

by Vanessa Forsyth

Jack was born in the nighttime
in a shack underneath the galahs
he grew up too fast for a childhood
and soon lost the person known as Pa

As years turned in to a decade
he moved house after house with his mum
Jack learned of his illness by accident
shortly after learning to stop sucking his thumb
Continue reading “Jack was born in the nighttime…”

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Omnibus: Visual Journey

As the Omnibus tour slides into Pt Lincoln, here are some visual moments to capture the journey.

omnibus
Pt Lincoln Primary School – writing up a storm!
regional south australia
Pt Lincoln Library

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Omnibus: Day Six

Day Six: 14 March

I had an opportunity to visit a new group whilst I was in Whyalla. On Monday evening I was taken to a hotel where in a back room The Ripples group had their regular meeting. The group was ten strong, all women and formidable in all the right ways.

Ripples is first and foremost a support group for parents of ice addicts. They have plans to develop education and preventative activity within the community. They have plans to grow into a political group who will demand resources to tackle what they see as an epidemic that has destroyed their families and unchecked will go on to destroy others.

I felt very naïve and a little helpless as they explained the force of addiction and the speed of destruction that this drug causes.

I work with very vulnerable people with complicated issues and I work in environments where pain is obvious and just under the surface. My support in these sessions is literature. I am just a writer, with no particular skills in counselling, but I believe that voice, and the ability to tell your story in your way is a right everyone should have.

I went into my usual patter about how poetry was for everyone, how technique was always secondary to honesty and bravery and I tried to assure the group that they shouldn’t be scared. Continue reading “Omnibus: Day Six”

Jack Was Poor

The “Jack Tale” so far…

Jack was poor. Not down-to-your-last-few-dollars-poor but empty-pockets-poor. Empty-pockets-poor and one-plugger-broken and limping-poor. Every fourth step he would have to stop and reassemble his thongs. He gave up and tossed them and so had to go bare foot. It was forty degrees again.

The pavement was covered in a fine yellow powder and the soles of his feet picked it up and began to smell even worse than usual. He sat in the shade of the smelter and watched a grey cloud bloom from the chimney stack and then melt into the baby blue sky.

It hadn’t rained in weeks. The grass was yellow and sparse so the magpies could pick off any creature that dared to break the cover of the shade.

Jack watched the carefree birds strut and eat and he could do neither. Continue reading “Jack Was Poor”