Saturday, May 15, 2010

Winter setting in

“People don't notice whether it's winter or summer when they're happy.”
- Anton Chekhov


"Winter Setting In" - watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - Maree©
Size - 11" x 8" unframed

Although the lawn in my garden is still thick and green from all the rain we've had, the veld and roadside is starting to show the effects of Winter - all the Cosmos is gone and the tall thatching grass is yellow and dry, just waiting for the first careless cigarette to be flicked out of a car window - this Black Wattle tree still hasn't recovered from the ravages of last year's fires and got a second dose when the property owner did his fire-break this week. Pity, but fire-breaks are a necessary evil if we are going to be protecting our properties from these, sometimes dangerous, fires.

ITEM ID : WinterSettingIn
PRICE - R850.00 including postage in South Africa


Autumn in Tarlton - Commission (SOLD)

“Winter is an etching, spring a watercolour, summer an oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all.”
- Stanley Horowitz


"Autumn in Tarlton"

This painting was a commission from a friend to do another painting of her garden after I did a small sketch of her garden "Autumn setting in" (which you can see in the previous post). It was my first commission for years and I was scared out of my wits that she wouldn't like it, but luckily she was absolutely thrilled!

The original is watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - 30" x 18" - (SOLD)

Buy a Framed Print, Poster or Greeting card - click below :


Framed print for sale on RedBubble

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Autumn setting in (SOLD)

“Autumn, the year's last, loveliest smile.”
- William Cullen Bryant


Autumn Setting in - this is a small watercolour on 200gsm -
8" x 5.5" - SOLD - Maree©

Autumn is in full swing and the trees in my garden were slowly starting to change colour last month - this is actually a friend's garden on their plot here in Tarlton, South Africa, and I just had to capture her Japanese Maple in all its glorious orange splendour amongst her mostly indigenous trees. She commented that she never knew her garden was so beautiful and that she will be looking at it differently now!


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Monday, May 10, 2010

Daisies for Mother's Day - 9th May 2010

'Tis my faith that every flower
Enjoys the air it breathes!
~William Wordsworth, "Lines Written in Early Spring," Lyrical Ballads, 1798


I did this sketch of some Asters in my garden last month - these Shasta daisies are real die-hards and sometimes carry on right through winter, but require quite a lot of work dead-heading or else they can really look messy.

I received a wonderful Mother's Day card from my daughter in Ballito (on the North Coast of KwaZulu Natal, S.A.), but no flowers this year! so I picked a bunch of these Shastas for the kitchen table for myself and they looked quite perky in my white enamel jug!

This is watercolour done on Moleskine 200gsm - 8" x 5.5" - NOT FOR SALE

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Daisies from my garden

"Earth laughs in flowers!"
~Ralph Waldo Emerson, "Hamatreya"

"Daisies from my garden" - watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - Maree©
Size - 11" x 15" unframed

When it's freezing outside and threatening to rain any minute, and I can't make a field trip to do some sketching, I always turn to my garden for inspiration. Even under the most dismal conditions there is always something to be found - some flower left-over, a few Autumn leaves clinging to a branch or the birds and insects who seem to cheerily carry on, no matter what the weather.

Inspiration taken from my garden - the Shasta daisies are now long overdue on trimming and rather tall and lanky, but they make an ideal study for a quick sketch on a cold and windy day.

ITEM ID : DaisiesGarden
PRICE : R350.00 including postage in South Africa

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African Storm Brewing

"Sunshine is delicious, rain is refreshing, wind braces us, snow is exhilarating; there is really no such thing as bad weather."
- John Ruskin

"African Storm" - watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - Maree©
Size - 11" x 7.5" unframed

It's already April, way past our rainy season, and on one of our recent trips to Harties (Schoemansville), I captured this Autumn storm brewing over a farm on the banks of the Crocodile River, which flows through Broederstroom on it's way to Hartebeespoort Dam in the North-West Province of South Africa.

When a storm is brewing (in your mind or in your life), embrace it as just another delicious experience, like a summer shower. See what you can learn from it, take a lesson from it, because soon the clouds will have a silver lining again as the sunshine bursts through. Nothing lasts forever - not the rain, not the sunshine, not the storm - so might as well accept it into our lives as just another "bad weather" phenomena.

ITEM ID : AfricanStorm
PRICE - R350.00 including postage in South Africa



Friday, May 7, 2010

Black Wattles in Tarlton - SOLD

The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Black Wattles in Tarlton" - watercolour on Moleskine 200gsm - Maree©
Size - 12" x 8" unframed - SOLD

The Black Wattle trees on our smallholding in Tarlton, Gauteng, South Africa, which we are trying our utmost to eradicate, have put up the most spectacular show of browns with their millions of seed-pods in between the greens. How can we even begin to think to destroy such beauty? Yet, for the survival of our own indigenous flora, it is a task we undertake every year in a bid to save some of our own natural growth.

Read more about the Black Wattle struggle HERE.




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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Beach Fantasy

I am forever walking upon these shores,
Betwixt the sand and the foam,
The high tide will erase my foot-prints,
And the wind will blow away the foam.
But the sea and the shore will remain
Forever.
- Kahlil Gibran

Beach Fantasy - watercolour on X-pressit 300gsm - Maree©
Size : 12" x 8" unframed

When one is longing for the beach and not able to get there for another few weeks, the next best thing to do is to sketch it! This one is done from memory of the time I spent at St. Lucia, up the North Coast of KwaZulu Natal, South Africa.

ITEM ID : BeachFantasy
PRICE - R350.00 including postage in South Africa



Saturday, May 1, 2010

At the edge of the Quarry - SOLD

Life is like a quarry, out of which we are to mold and chisel and complete a character.
- Samuel Butler


"At the edge of the quarry" - watercolour on Moleskine 200gsm - Maree©
Size : 12" x 6" unframed - SOLD


About 2km from us is the Tarlton Brickyard - hectares of ground that have been dug up and soil removed for the making of bricks, leaving the earth pitted with deep holes and piles of heaped ground and smoking kilns where the bricks are being baked.

Some might say it's an eye-sore or a scar on Mother Earth's crust, and I could agree, but besides providing the building industry with the necessary raw materials for our housing needs, this quarry provides endless hours of pleasure to off-road motorbike enthusiasts who race along the holes and over steep mounds of earth, flying through the air like movie stunt men! Horse riders also like to visit, putting their steeds through their paces, using it as a cross-country course. Not all's bad that seems bad!


A brick-making kiln in the Eastern Cape, South Africa

ITEM ID : Quarry1
PRICE - R850.00 including postage

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Friday, April 23, 2010

"Keep Out!" - SOLD

"Creativity occurs in the moment, and in the moment we are timeless."
- Julia Cameron

"Keep Out! - watercolour in Moleskine Folio 200gsm - Maree©
Size : - 12"x 8" unframed - SOLD

This farm gate scene is not far from us in Broederstroom, a farm bordering on the Crocodile river, on our way to Hartebeespoort Dam. We stopped to give our puppy a chance to go to the toilet and I was faced with this wonderful gate right in from of me! To hubby's utmost frustration, I actually hauled out my paint set, collected water from the river and quickly started doing the sketch. The frustration was because it took a bit longer than normal, actually putting in the colour right there - normally I would do a preliminary sketch and finish it off at home - this took me just over half an hour, while Dave and Jacko explored just inside the fence, but we were soon on our way and I fiddled a bit when we got home.


Frame suggestion

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Winter Scene

“Winter is the season in which people try to keep the house as warm as it was in the summer, when they complained about the heat.”

Winter in Tarlton - watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - Maree©
Size : 12" x 8" unframed

Winter in Gauteng, South Africa, brings raging veld fires, lands that lie fallow on farms and, in certain areas like Tarlton, frost that wipes clean any memory of green, except for the evergreen Black Wattle trees, which put up a spectacular show of brown seed pods, brightening up an otherwise bleak landscape.

ITEM ID : WinterTarlton
PRICE - R350.00 including postage

Frame suggestion

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Spring Scene

Spring makes its own statement, so loud and clear that the gardener seems to be only one of the instruments, not the composer.
~Geoffrey B. Charlesworth

Spring scene - watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - Maree©
Size : 12" x 8" unframed

Spring holds a special place in my heart - the sight of the first tiny green buds on a tree is like magic unfolding after months of bleak landscapes and an earth blackened by raging veld fires.

ITEM ID : SpringScene
PRICE - R850.00 including postage in South Africa




Summer Scene

“A perfect summer day is when the sun is shining, the breeze is blowing, the birds are singing, and the lawn mower is broken.”
- James Dent

Summer Scene - watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - Maree©
Size " 12" x 8" unframed

Summer - a time of activity - tending to the garden, going out on picnics, going to the beach, fishing or perhaps taking your sail boat out on the lake. And of course, here in South Africa, celebrating a hot and snowless Christmas!

ITEM ID : SummerScene
PRICE - R350.00 including postage in South Africa


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Trees on the beach

As artists, we must learn to be self nourishing. We must become alert enough to consciously replenish our creative resources as we draw on them – to restock the trout pond, so to speak.
- Julia Cameron

"Beach and trees" - Watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - Maree©
Size : 10" x 7" unframed

ITEM ID : BeachTrees
PRICE - R350.00 including postage in South Africa



Magaliesberg Mountain landscape

“You can never conquer the mountain. You can only conquer yourself.”
- James Whittaker

"Magaliesberg mountain landscape" - watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - Maree©
Size - 12" x 8" unframed

For this wet-on-wet scene, after wetting the paper, I sketched the main outlines of my scene using my Rigger and Cerulean Blue. I'm sure many artists use this technique, but I've always been somewhat of a sketchy person, using my pencil, going into great detail with a lot of erasing happening. It's only been the past couple of months since I started practicing painting with no sketching beforehand that I feel confident enough to consider doing this.

ITEM ID : MagaliesbergMountainLandscape
PRICE - R350.00 including postage in South Africa


Sunday, April 4, 2010

Magaliesberg Mountains 2

“Winners take time to relish their work, knowing that scaling the mountain is what makes the view from the top so exhilarating.”
- Denis Waitley

"Magaliesberg Mountains" - watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - Maree©
Size : 15" x 11" unframed

Virtually all over the West Rand (Gauteng, South Africa) the Magaliesberg mountains are visible for miles around.

The Magaliesberg is a mountain range that stretches for over 120 kilometres, extending from Pretoria in the north of the Gauteng Province to a point south of Pilanesberg, in the North West Province, and the Bronkhorstspruit towards the east. The highest point of the Magaliesberg is reached at Nooitgedacht (1 852 metres)


ITEM ID : MagaliesbergMountains
PRICE : R350 including postage in South Africa


Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Four Seasons - Winter

Winter at Harties - watercolour on Ashrad hot pressed paper - Maree©
Size - 8" x 6" unframed

A collection of four small paintings, 8" x 6", depicting the four seasons - Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter - and are all sketched from scenes in and around my area. This is WINTER in the series of the four seasons.

These four little paintings would look good grouped together with off-white matting and Sepia frames.

ITEM ID : FourSeasonsWinterTarlton
PRICE - R250.00 ea including postage in South Africa




Four Seasons - Spring

Spring in Tarlton - watercolour on Ashrad hot pressed paper - Maree©
Size - 8" x 6" unframed

A series of four small paintings, 8" x 6", depicting the four seasons - Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter - and are all sketched from scenes in and around my area. This is SPRING in the series of the four seasons.

These four little paintings would look good grouped together with off-white matting and Sepia frames.

ITEM ID : FourSeasonsSpringTarlton
PRICE - R250.00 ea including postage in South Africa



Four Seasons - Summer

“A perfect summer day is when the sun is shining, the breeze is blowing, the birds are singing, and the lawn mower is broken.”
- James Dent

Summer in Tarlton - watercolour on Ashrad hot pressed paper - Maree©
Size - 8" x 6" unframed

A series of four small paintings, 8" x 6", depicting the four seasons - Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter - and are all sketched from scenes in and around my area. This is SUMMER in the series of the four seasons.

These four little paintings would look good grouped together with off-white matting and Sepia frames.

ITEM ID : FourSeasonsWinterTarlton
PRICE - R250.00 ea including postage in South Africa



Four Seasons - Autumn

"Autumn in Hillside" - watercolour on Ashrad hot pressed paper - Maree©
Size - 8" x 6" unframed

A series of four small paintings, 8" x 6", depicting the four seasons - Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter - and are all sketched from scenes in and around my area. This is AUTUMN in the series of the four seasons.

These four little paintings would look good grouped together with off-white matting and Sepia frames.

ITEM ID : FourSeasonsAutumn
PRICE - R250.00 ea including postage in South Africa

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Saturday, March 13, 2010

King of the (new) Roost

“I did not become a vegetarian for my health, I did it for the health of the chickens.”
- Isaac Bashevis Singer

"King of the Roost" watercolour on Visual 140gsm - Maree©
Size : 12" x 8.5" unframed

'Kingston', the above rooster, was saved from the dinner pot when I bought him, together with a couple of his hens, from Solly, who was going to slaughter him for supper. Hopefully, with the money I paid him, he will now go buy something else for supper!

The above quote made me think... shall I become a vegetarian...?

ITEM ID : KingOfTheRoost
PRICE - R350.00 including postage in South Africa


The Black Pirate - SOLD

"If I didn't start painting, I would have raised chickens."
- Grandma Moses

"The Black pirate" - watercolour on Moleskine 200gsm - Maree©
Size : 12" x 8" unframed - SOLD

This guy might be the reason for one of Solly's other roosters hanging out with only one hen and not associating with the rest of the crowd - as this chap struts past my gate, giving me the beady eye, and not condescending to enter, he seems pretty sure that no-one in the yard is going to challenge his authority - ever!


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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Breakfast is served! - SOLD

robins | worm-hunting | in the snow
A Twitter poem from WATERMARK


"Breakfast" pencil sketch and watercolour on Visual 140gsm - Maree©
Size : 11.5" x 8" - unframed - SOLD

This little chap was giving me the beady eye while I was sketching him, waiting for me to disappear so he could feed his young - aren't people just a nuisance?


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The Fledgling

Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.
Pablo Picasso

"The Fledgling" pencil sketch and watercolour on Visual 140gsm - Maree©
Size : 11.5" x 8" - unframed

My favourite subject to paint - birds. Their expressions say more than a thousand words, and body posture warns of the next move - relaxing, taking flight, being vigilant or not feeling so well. Whenever I see a bird sitting puffed up (a sure sign of illness), I'm immediately relieved if it's feathers return to normal upon my approach.

This baby seems to be waiting patiently for breakfast to be served!

ITEM ID : BirdFledgling
PRICE - R350.00 including postage in South Africa



Monday, February 15, 2010

First Light (SOLD)

early dawn | two-note, two note | who are you?
A Twitter poem from WATERMARK

"First Light" - Acrylic on Canvas - Maree©
Size : 12" x 9"
unframed - SOLD

Sunrise or sunset in the Kalahari Desert in the Cape Province of South Africa is always a spectacular affair. Here I have tried to capture the mystery of the desert as the sun rises over a landscape of golden grass and small red dunes.

The name Kalahari is derived from the Tswana word Kgala, meaning "the great thirst", or Khalagari, Kgalagadi or Kalagare, meaning "a waterless place". The Kalahari desert is part of the huge sand basin that extends some 900 000 square kilometers from the Orange River up to Angola, in the west to Namibia and in the east to Zimbabwe. The sand masses were created by the erosion of soft stone formations. The wind shaped the sand ridges, which are so typical of the landscape in the Kalahari.

In the southern Kalahari desert, which is the driest part, the Kalahari desert takes the form of a stationary dune veld. To the East and to the North of this, the Kalahari desert becomes a flat park-like terrain or savannah.

The Kalahari is not a true desert as it receives too much rain, but is actually a fossil desert.


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Sunday, February 14, 2010

Lonely Shores

There is pleasure in the pathless woods,
there is rapture in the lonely
shore,
there is society where none intrudes,
by the deep sea, and
music in its roar;
I love not Man the less, but Nature more.
- Lord Byron

"Lonely Shores" - watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm watercolour paper - Maree©
Size - 12" x 8.5" - unframed

I've been missing the coast for a while now, haven't been for several months. Miss the sand between my toes, watching the sun rise over a brilliantly turquoise sea, the waves washing up little treasures to sketch... I love just sitting on the rocks, the breeze in my hair, the crabs scurrying around before the tide comes in again.

The beaches in Ballito, on the North Coast of Kwa-Zulu Natal, South Africa, stretch flat and smooth for long distances, ideal for long walks, and some stretches have lots of rocks, offering a place to sit and ponder, but way up the North Coast, at St. Lucia, the beaches are wild and undulating, covered with vegetation. The Loggerhead and Leatherback turtles breed in these waters and lay their eggs on these shores.

If you're interested in seeing a bit more of St. Lucia, click HERE


ITEM ID : Lonely-Shores
PRICE - R350.00 including postage
in South Africa



Thursday, February 4, 2010

Tarlton stream at sunrise

“An ant may well destroy a whole dam.”
- Chinese Proverbs

"Tarlton stream at sunrise" - watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - Maree©
Size : 12" x 8" - unframed

Tarlton and surrounds in Gauteng, South Africa, offers a wide variety of landscapes for the artist to sketch - from flat Savannah to rolling hills covered in indigenous trees and tracts of Blue Gum forests planted originally for the mining industry to flower, vegetable, cattle and ostrich farms. I managed to capture the sunrise on yesterday morning (yes, I was out there at 5am! doing a rough sketch and finishing it off once I got home).

This stream in Tarlton was once again flowing after the vast amounts of rain we've been having, but with no hope of filling the dam as it disappeared through the broken dam wall.

ITEM ID : SunriseTarlton1
PRICE - R350.00 including postage in South Africa



Tarlton Stream

“To be happy in this world, especially when youth is past, it is necessary to feel oneself not merely an isolated individual whose day will soon be over, but part of the stream of life flowing on from the first germ to the remote and unknown future.”
- Bertrand Russell


Tarlton Stream - watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - Maree©
Size - 12" x 9" - unframed


The little stream feeding the Tarlton Dam has been dry for years, but after the recent good rains we have had, it is once again flowing, rushing forward as if looking forward to its destination. Sadly, the dam will not fill up this time, as someone thought it wise to break the dam wall down and allow the water to flow into nowhere, drying up quickly as the feed slows down. It is sad that a part of Tarlton's landscape is forever changed through this action and soon it will be nothing but a dry watercourse again.

ITEM ID : TarltonStream
PRICE - R350.00 including postage in South Africa


Thursday, January 28, 2010

Africa's Wonder

"Let a Person Walk Alone With Few Wishes, Committing No Wrong, Like an Elephant in the Forest"


"Africa's Wonder - Elephant" - watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - Maree©
Size : 12" x 9" unframed


I sketched this young elephant at the Elephant Sanctuary Hartebeespoort Dam, where they provide a “halfway house” for young African elephants in need of a temporary home.

African elephants are bigger than Asian Elephants. Males stand 3.6 m (12 ft) tall at the shoulder and weigh 5,400 kg (12,000 lb), while females stand 3 m (9.8 ft) and weigh between 3,600 and 4,600 kg (7,900 and 10,000 lb). However, males can get as big as 6,800 kg (15,000 lb!).

Some interesting info :
Elephants have four molars; each weighs about 5 kg (11 lb) and measures about 30 cm (12 in) long. As the front pair wears down and drops out in pieces, the back pair shifts forward and two new molars emerge in the back of the mouth. Elephants replace their teeth six times. At about 40 to 60 years of age the elephant no longer has teeth and will likely die of starvation, a common cause of death.

ITEM ID : AfricaElephant1
PRICE - R350.00 including postage in South Africa


Distant shores

"You need chaos in your soul to give birth to a dancing star."
- Nietzsche

"Distant Shores" - watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - Maree©
SIZE " 11" x 7.5" - unframed

A bit of imagination and blue gum trees become pines along the shores of one of our local dams.

ITEM ID : DistantShores
PRICE : R350.00 including postage
in South Africa



Early morning landscape - SOLD

"With each sunrise, we start anew"

"Early Morning Landscape" - watercolour on Moleskine 200gsm - Maree©
Size : 12" x 8" - unframed - SOLD

The sun rising gently behind our Blue Gum forest and, with some imagination, the fields are turned into a wonder-wetland.

This painting is one in a series of paintings done by painting directly onto the paper, no sketching done before-hand. Lately I have found that, unless I am doing something very detailed, like the feathers of a bird, I am eager to get the image onto paper or canvass and don't feel like restricting myself with pencil lines.


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Gum Forest on 84

"Give me a home among the gum trees.
With lots of plum trees, a sheep or two, a kangaroo.
A clothesline out the back, verandah out the front
And an old rocking chair."

"Gum Forest on 84" (1) watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm - Maree©
SIZE : 9" x 12" - unframed

A suggestion of a Blue gum forest - colour put directly onto the paper without any prior sketching. (The "84" in the title is the number of the smallholding where I live.)

ITEM ID : GumForest84
PRICE : R350.00 postage included in South Africa



Blue Gums & Black Wattles - Acrylic SOLD

God has cared for these trees, saved them from drought, disease,
avalanches, and a thousand tempests and floods.
But he cannot save them from fools.
- John Muir

"Blue Gum and Black Wattle trees" Acrylic on Bockingford 300gsm watercolour paper - Maree©
SIZE : 11" x 7.5" - unframed - SOLD

In this painting I experimented with acrylics on a good, thick Bockingford watercolour paper and decided I just LOVE how the acrylics feel on the paper. It's amazing! I think I'm falling more and more in love with this versatile medium.

These trees are on our smallholding and although we are trying to get rid of all the Black Wattles, they spring up faster than you try to eradicate them. The problem is that they produce a huge amount of seeds, which can grow in the most arid and infertile of soils. Even worse, these seeds can live up to a 90 years. And after a first clean-up, even though you have removed hundreds of trees, millions of young seedling appear. It's basically fighting a losing battle. These evergreen trees were originally imported from Australia for our tanning industry.

Now the touchy subject: chemicals. One simply cannot get rid of Black Wattles unless you use a good herbicide. Cutting a black wattle and hoping it will die, is wishful thinking. We do not use any chemicals at all, with the result that we have an on-going battle, but which provides employment opportunities as we hire several casual workers every year to do another clean-up.

The spreading growing habit of the Black Wattle

The flowers of the Black Wattle also causes great outbreaks of hay fever among hay fever sufferers during spring.


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Monday, January 25, 2010

Sunset through the Blue Gums (SOLD)

"Know what you want to do, hold the thought firmly, and do every day what should be done, and every sunset will see you that much nearer the goal."
- Elbert Hubbard

"Sunset through the Blue gums" - watercolour on Bockingford 300gsm
Size : 12" x 8.5"
- unframed SOLD

The smallholding across the road from us faces West and the setting sun made a spectacular show through the blue gum trees the other evening.

PRAYER OF THE WOODS
(A poem fastened to trees in the Portuguese forests for more than a 1,000 years)

Ye who pass by and would raise your hand against me,
listen to me before you harm me.

I am the heat of your heart on the cold winter nights,
The friendly shade screening you from summer sun,
And my fruits are refreshing draughts,
Quenching your thirst as you journey on.

I am the beam that holds your house,
The board of your table,
The bed on which you lie,
The timber that builds your boat.

I am the handle of your hoe,
The door of your homestead,
The wood of your cradle,
And the shell of your coffin.

I am the bread of kindness and the flower of beauty.
Ye who pass by, listen to my prayer:

HARM ME NOT.

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