Monthly Archives: January 2010

paroles mesurées de lundi

On the whole, I do not find Christians, outside of the catacombs, sufficiently sensible of conditions.  Does anyone have the foggiest idea what sort of power we so blithely invoke?  Or, as I suspect, does no one believe a word of it?  The churches are children playing on the floor with their chemistry sets, mixing up a batch of TNT to kill a Sunday morning.  It is madness to wear ladies’ straw hats and velvet hats to church; we should all be wearing crash helmets.  Ushers should issue life preservers and signal flares; they should lash us to our pews.  For the sleeping God may wake someday and take offense, or the waking God may draw us out to where we can never return.

Annie Dillard.    


This has been tumbling around my heads for days.  An obstacle that keeps tripping me up: and I stumble over and around it.  It has disorientated me and kept me up at night.  The remedy to an undiagnosed illness; the solution to an unsolvable problem. 

I am not sure I want either option. A sleeping God or a waking God.

A sleeping God can’t hear me or see me.

A waking God is expectant and wary.

But the truth remains – I do not, and cannot, understand the power I so effortlessly summon.  I do not and cannot understand this God I presume to love and worship.  I try, of course, but my options are limited. 

I expect this God to be merciful and just and gracious.

I find that he is distant and faceless and too big – which is not as frustrating or as hopeless as it sounds.  It just is. 

I would be lying if I said that I longed for the day that the waking God unleashed his power.  What would that look like?  Would I survive it?   

I ask, cover my eyes and count to 10…do I dare peek? 

I don’t see anything.  I don’t hear anything.

And then there is a warm, gentle, breathe on the back of my neck.

I close my eyes. 

For now, this is enough.

slow readers book club

Am I biting off more than I can chew?

I love this idea and I particularly like exploring the idea of an online book club.  But is it one thing too many?  Between kiddies, Uni, Italian Classes, Popular Penguin Book Club, and everything else, is it too much?


Because I am notorious for writing lists I have spent the last day or two putting together a spreadsheet of our family’s weekly activities for this year.  It is going to be busy! Which is how we like it (relatively).  But it also means that when all our regular activities begin there will be less time for one-off special adventures.  So we have tried to tick a few things of our ‘we really must do that’ list (another list!).  A couple of the extra special things have included going to see the National English Ballet Company’s Angelina Ballerina.  It was a delight. We loved it and were enchanted by these amazing dancers (dancing with mouse heads and tails attached!).  It also induced spontaneous dancing to occur at the Arts Centre – the perfect way to end a night at the Ballet!

We also went to the Melbourne Museum today, which was fantastic.  The girls loved the dinosaurs and the weird giant squid.    

Next on the list is the Supper Market at Abbotsford Convent on Friday night.  We love a good market and the girls love choosing from the great range of possible foods and eating outside in the grounds of the beautiful old Convent.  While routine and timetables are necessary (for me) I do love special adventures with special girls.

paroles mesurees de lundi

There was nothing graceful or fluid about his movements.  He was barely able to shuffle one foot in front of the other.  He moved awkwardly and slowly. 

But he moved.  Everyday… he moved. 

Around and around the block where we live.   His back so bent his nose was parallel to his torso and his eyes never glanced upward.   His shoes were tied on with pieces of string and he always wore his winter coat despite the summer heat.

Cars tooted him, people crossed the road to avoid him, dogs chased him barking their agitation.

He was part of my landscape.  Whether I saw him in the mornings driving to kinder or in the afternoons walking to the supermarket, I always saw him.  I liked his consistency and his determination.  I liked seeing him.  When I first ran into him I would say hello and try and talk to him about the weather; but he didn’t want to talk, he just wanted to walk. 

I have come to realise that what is innate in him was different to what is innate in me.  Despite our shared humanity, we are so inherently different that there is little common ground between us.  Even, perhaps, that what makes me human is not the same as what makes him as equally human. 

I miss him when I don’t see him. 

I don’t even know his name.

quotes to simmer by (it is going to be 43C here tomorrow…)

Pludek: You see, Berta?  Instead of a total victory one time or a total defeat another, he prefers to win a little and lose a little each time.                                                                                                                                                                                                           Mrs Pludek: Such a player will always stay in the game.

The Garden Party by Vaclav Havel, Act 1, Scene 1

Week after week, we witness the same miracle: that God, for reasons unfathomable, refrains from blowing our dancing bear act to smithereens.  Week after week Christ washes the disciples’ dirty feet, handles their very toes, and repeats, It is all right – believe it or not – to be people.

Annie Dillard

paroles mesurées de lundi

I have recently realised that I read to escape and I write in an attempt to discover solidity and clarity. 

And so ends any secret desire I had to ever write fiction (which I didn’t have, so I’m not too bothered!). 

It is an interesting juxtaposition.  I pick up a book and am instantly transported somewhere else and into someone else’s context.  I have succeeded in removing myself from my little world. 

But I write in hope of discovering truth and grace in my little world.  Perhaps I have needed to do more escaping lately, but I seem to be reading a lot more than I am writing.  However it is also the time of year for taking it easy and relaxing with a good book so I am not too concerned about my avoidance of putting pen to paper. 

A lovely friend of mine, on her blog (, has introduced ‘Illustration Friday’s’ where she shares illustrations from children’s books.  It is a lovely idea and I am going to unashamedly copy her (thanks Bec!)!

So let me introduce ‘paroles mesurées de lundi’ (which is French for ‘Monday’s measured words’).  I will attempt to put pen to paper (fingers to keyboard) and start writing.

This is not a New Year’s resolution!

It is because I need to get serious about it.  

I need to get disciplined.

I need to challenge myself.

And I need to pursue this thing that I have secretly loved and held tightly to my chest for a long time. 

Let’s see what happens…bring on Monday!