Last year, while reading various poetry collections, I was inspired by the poet's ability to capture their landscape. The majority lived in cities, so their scape was urban and rigid, full of noise and movement.

It inspired me to try and capture, not the area I live in, but the road I live in and walk. I wanted to try and put down what I felt, heard, smelt, what was 'different' about this place. And I then gave myself the challenge of writing a 'walking' poem about my road in the four seasons.

 I began in the autumn- a night walk. As you can see my road is not a paved main arterial road, it is an unmade road (although recently was graded and has that oil screen on top to try and suppress dust). Our house is at the bottom and as you walk along the road becomes narrower and steeper. The 'regimented' gardens of exotics such as masses of agapanthus and laurel hedges give way to native forest.

 It is a good walk, an invigorating walk.

On most days you will meet no one. There will be no cars, no people. A dog may bark as you pass...sheep will bleat....someones chickens cluck and the call of Puffing Billy's whistle will be heard.

Some days you will meet a fellow walker, the occasional car. You may meet an echidna, fox, wallaby, kangaroo, rabbits, owls, deers, kookaburras, parrots, wrens...the locals if you will.

 With the task ahead of me I wrote a winter poem - set in the day. Winter here is often cold, misty rain conceals most of the surroundings- and walking through the mud, runnels and potholes is an adventure in itself.

As I wrote these poems I really had to focus on what was different, how did the road change through the seasons. It was a great project because I had to think. Really think.

I didn't want a group of poems about how lovely the trees are....that's not what I wanted to capture (and not my style).  I had to walk this road and absorb what was there.

I also didn't want to state the seasons- as in Spring walk etc...rather I wanted the words, the atmosphere I was creating, to tell the reader when this was.

It has been a very interesting attempt. I've learnt never to take your surroundings for granted. That the bush is rarely silent. And that trying to capture 'nature' is very difficult, without making it sound cliche and twee.

But how can you go wrong with such surroundings?


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