Spoonbills, ducks, molars and mist


I’ve been walking to work the last few weeks, mainly because the wind has temporarily  abandoned Dunedin. When it’s blasting up the harbour I have no hesitation in catching the bus or taking the car!   On Monday I was lucky enough to see two spoonbills having a quick snack in the shallows. I encounter the ducks daily – either sleeping or wandering about –  and a family of rabbits are based nearby – they are quick to scatter at my approach.


the molars

And the molars! Well they have been controversial and  I was totally agin their positioning, preferring them to be outside Dunedin’s Dental School. But as time goes by these six wisdom teeth have settled in nicely and I have to admit I quite like their placement.

Bayfield fog

There was a heavy mist this morning and as I walked across the park a beam of sunlight hit this house – the house had no lights on. Within seconds the light was gone and the mist enveloped everything again.

Last harbour view before I turn towards the city – the sun trying to break through the mist.

And back to Poems in the Waiting Room!

Our postie  has been loaded down with poems this week – he’s delivered bundles of them to our place.  They’ve arrived from Invercargill, Timaru, Nelson, Christchurch, Napier, New Plymouth, Waiheke Island, Dunedin, Kapiti, Auckland……

A big thank you to all the librarians who have displayed our competition poster in their libraries. Several entries have had accompanying notes saying they saw the competition advertised on their library noticeboard. In the post today a rest home resident sent a delightful letter with her three poems thanking us for our cards and the opportunity to enter the competition.

My role in the competition is the gatherer – the holding point for all the poems, the banker, and scribe-noting down who has sent what, along with addresses. On March 1 I’ll be handing all the poems, minus any distinguishing names or marks, to Emma Neale who will judge them purely on appeal and appropriateness of content for our poetry cards.

There is still plenty of time to send your entry in. So, pen to paper or fingers to keyboard!

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6 Responses to Spoonbills, ducks, molars and mist

  1. Frances Rabone says:

    Hi Ruth

    I love your reflections today and hope the wind stays away to give you more opportunity to observe “spoonbills and ducks etc”

    Just thought I’d check that my poem arrived alright. It’s just that Wellington wasn’t mentioned on your list and I wondered if it had gone astray.

    It is called “Jailbird”. Great you have had such a good response.

    Best Wishes


  2. missusmo says:

    Gorgeous photography, Ruth. Do you find your poetry much influenced by photographs such as these? I know I do. Sometimes just the walk alone is enough to inspire, but other times it’s nice to have the photo as a prompt. 🙂

    • ruth arnison says:

      Thank you M! I think just walking with the camera makes me look more keenly at my surroundings – phrases and words come to mind and are tucked away for future use. I haven’t ever written a ‘photo’ inspired poem but visits to Dunedin’s art gallery have triggered poems!

  3. I love your photos Ruth! The one of the house – a captured moment, literally, is astonishing.

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