There are reports of a very long queue of traffic on Andersons Bay Road. Traffic management had to be called. All because people are craving KFC after weeks of going without …

Sitting outside the other day, I looked up …

Aotearoa / New Zealand is now on Covid. 19 Alert Level 3. For myself it won’t make any difference. For Robert, he is allowed to go for a solitary game of golf for a couple of hours. He’s a happy man!

As a country we have done well, successfully stamping down the pandemic to manageable. Three new cases today. All in all, 19 deaths. We are cautiously optimistic for a complete stamping out of the disease in our country.

Closed borders are a key. Anyone legitimately entering New Zealand from overseas, will be quarantined for two weeks. And tracking. An app that will allow people’s movements to be tracked is being designed. Tracking contacts so that the presence of any outbreaks can be traced and contained, is another key. We are thankful to be a small country with a small population. Five million. (Mind you, I can remember when it was only two million!)

Backyard plum …

These days I am feasting my eyes on whatever autumn tints I can find in our backyard.

The nest I spied the other day is beginning to come adrift, cutting its ties with previous seasons …

Talking of feasting … there were reports this afternoon of a very long queue of traffic on Andersons Bay Road. Traffic management had to be called. All because people are craving KFC after weeks of going without …

I didn’t catch this butterfly with its wings open enough to be able to identify it. Interesting fact: butterflies rest with wings closed whereas moths rest with their wings open …

My book will be published in June! Thankfully Mary and Paul at Cuba Press have kept in contact throughout our Level Four stay-at-home restrictions and sweet progress has been made. I will be able to reveal more soon.

It wouldn’t be autumn without a backyard toadstool under a tree …

I have been going through old poems (a twenty-year-old stack!) and was horrified to discover that I have 200 uncollected poems. However that was my first sweep. Looks like I will need to do more sorting and cutting. Autumn is after all the traditional time of harvest.

There are I think two schools of thought about poem backlogs. One is to heartlessly cull, the other, to keep them all, as you never know. I lean towards keeping. Fleur Adcock recently published a book of her poems that had been ‘kept under wraps because they didn’t suit the themes of her last two collections’ (from notes on the back of her poetry book, Hoard, published in 2017). Something to think about …

Like the poems, I am finding it hard to cut down this tomato plant quite yet – not while the fruit is straining to ripen in what is left of autumn …

I am dropping my poems into ‘buckets’ labelled – Place & Time, People & Things, Ageing, Nature, Childhood & Memories … plus a couple of miscellaneous categories.

Out of the 200 poems in the stack, I am expecting 100 poems to be worthy of publication in the next couple of years. (Wish me luck on that one!) Even if I have to self-publish, they will have their day in the sun. They feel like my children. I need them to fufil their destiny.

Too delicate for the wintry blasts ahead, these small roses are making the most of what sunshine is left before calling it quits until Summer 2021 …

The day is drawing to a close. Robert’s allotted golf time will be up. We will go for a walk now; a roam in the gloam. Twilight – that time betwixt day and night. The between time. A bit like life at the moment.

By kaymckenziecooke

Writer from Dunedin, New Zealand.

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