Monday, March 30, 2015

Tuesday Poem - 'Fickle' by Beth Spencer


At Anglesea Park my new friends
invite themselves to lunch
but don't bring a thing.
(Where's the manners in that?)

Their eyes follow each loaded fork
but when I offer carrot and salad,
after an initial flurry of excitement, they decline.

They peer shyly across the wooden picnic table
leaving me to carry the bulk of the conversation.

Then one gets up on the table top showing off
orange dancing shoes. Another ruffles a white pelisse.
A third creeps a little closer, confidingly,
on the seat beside me (enthralled by my story).

Until a car pulls up
and paper cups of hot chips emerge
(with a couple wrapped around them)

and suddenly I'm alone.

I had the good fortune to be on a panel with Beth Spencer at the
Newcastle Writers Festival recently. Oh, it has been so many years
since we were at the week-long Five Islands Press workshop down in
Wollongong. And an equal joy to read her new book 'Vagabondage'
(UWA Publishing) which is as light as a breeze, and dark as a buried bone,
and it tells you the whole sad story – without boring you for a minute.
Quite a feat that. Quite a coup. My only conundrum was which one to
choose for my blog. Spoilt for choice. Couldn't pick between them.
So I went for a trip to Frankston to take my library books back and
told myself something would happen that would help me choose.
And there was a woman in a car with the window rolled down and a tub
of hot chips – and a hundred hundred avian friends clustering around.

Now available as a kindle ebook at Amazon --
Or visit Beth's website at


  1. delightful poem and lovely comment. Thank you Jenny and Beth!

  2. Really enjoyed this poem this week. Thanks!