Australia burning

SoulCollage card made years ago

New South Wales firefighter, Greg Mullins: “I’ve been fighting fires for 47 years and I’ve never seen anything like it. But, we’ve known it’s coming for 20 years.”

“It’s climate change, it’s worldwide, and people need to sit up and take notice.” (WBUR interview)

UPDATE: I removed the two attempts at fire maps because they’re not accurate. Mo tells me the fires are burning in “NSW, Victoria, South Australia and they were burning earlier in Queensland and Western Australia.

As Acey noted in a comment to yesterday’s post, one of the beauties of the collage process is that it brings heartbreak out of the shadows. Oh, look! To view pain in the stark terms that images allow is always powerful and sometimes healing.

Two days ago, I was wrapped up in the catastrophic missteps of our government in Iraq (still am). Not really thinking about Australia at all. And then I found this woman and her horse. She was in a stack of magazine pullouts waiting for this moment.

Of course the animal reminded me of the horse on the beach from yesterday’s post. Look at her! A warrior, for certain! I would trust her with a beloved animal. With environmental policy. With anti-corruption efforts.

The stylish woman in the upper left hand corner, on the other hand, has rendered herself frivolous by looking away.

Every once in a while, type shows up in a collage that adds import. For the word, “things” to appear next to a materialistic fashionista while the world burns around her makes perfect sense. We wonder: what will happen to HER horse?

Please consider making a donation to help orphaned and injured animals. Here’s a link for cash donations.

Even though postage to Australia is so astronomical, I know some of you will be moved to make a thing or two. For that reason, I’m offering to mail a couple of boxes to Australia if people want to make nests, mitts, or wraps and ship them to me in Massachusetts. I’m going to refer people to the FB group instead. American shipping hubs have been established.

The first picture below shows what’s needed. If you’re on Facebook, you can join Animal Rescue Craft Guild. They have a tab, “FILES,” where patterns are listed.

Here’s a link to a crochet pattern for nests.

For another post:

UPDATE: thru the FB group, I may have found someone who can offer drastically reduced postage! I’ll keep you posted — so to speak 🙂 Photo below from that FB group. No attribution listed.

30 thoughts on “Australia burning

  1. Liz A

    I keep thinking “Australia is the canary in the mine” … sadly, I fear the politicians are too blinded by money to see what is squarely in front of us all, turning their heads away as the fires burn

    And so, your collage brought this Arlo Guthrie lyric to mind …

    “But just one question still remains
    To which we must respond
    Two roads lead from where we are
    Which side are you on?”

    1. deemallon Post author

      We really are in an age where we are being called to choose a side. I feel this way about white nationalism in our country as well. How destructive the “both sides” approach of our media has been!

  2. nancy

    You images tell the stories of now. It is scary and sad and well, overwhelming. I suppose being proactive, or at least active is a better option than others available. sigh

  3. Mo Crow

    The fire season started early back in September, friends have been fighting fires surrounding their 1000 acre property for 3 months now up on Dorrigo Mountain, they are so remote the rural fire service said they couldn’t help as their resources are too stretched, fortunately they have two rivers that still have plenty of water & are a communal property with able bodied folk, not young but still standing strong.
    Here’s a link to photo essay from the Edge near Braidwood with Paul and Rowena (Paul was one of the drummers with Old Man Crow between 2008 and 2013)
    & the link to a heart breakingly powerful piece by the Australian author Richard Flanagan in the New York Times yesterday

    So many friends have their essentials packed & ready to evacuate up and down the coast, we need rain but with none forecast til the end of the month it’s going to be a long hard summer.

    1. deemallon Post author

      John Janson Moore’s eloquent prose combined with eerie and poignant pictures pack such a punch. I can’t imagine being on edge like that, day after day. The portraits of Paul and Rowena ALONE really really moved me. The hard work of just surviving.

      The NYTimes article makes clear that your government is as bad as ours when it comes to being in bed with the fossil fuel companies. I may have mentioned that I recently read Rachel Maddow’s book, Blowout. Just a stunning exposee of corrupt capitalism with stakes so high it’s hard to even quantify them. I heard on the radio that Australia doesn’t even rank in the top ten countries for carbon footprinting, but when you take account of the country being such a huge exporter of coal, their status changes.

      “Sclerotic and demented” could describe trump.

      Half a billion animals dead?!! Parents abandoning their young. People stranded on beaches. Miscarriages caused by smoke inhalation, the stillborn not even being counted among the dead. It’s all horrifying.

      1. Mo Crow

        and yet we hang onto the dry wry Australian sense of humour, Richard Flanagan notes ‘the bookstore in the fire-ravaged village of Cobargo, New South Wales, has a new sign outside: “Post-Apocalyptic Fiction has been moved to Current Affairs.”’

        1. deemallon Post author

          I just learned that it’s not right. More localized to the south? I’ll get a more accurate image.

  4. Michelle Slater

    Being economically limited all my life, times like these I take a lottery ticket for a dollar with the intention of donating it entirely to whoever can make good use of it if I win. The altar of my heart is arrayed in heartfelt beings and places and all my candles are lit there. PS. If by any once in a lifetime chance, I win, I’ll contact you Dee. The ticket will be unsigned.

  5. Jen NyBlom

    It’s all so mind-boggling tragic and horrifying. I thanked our recent rainy weather with gratitude in my heart, but wished with all my might that I could have magically transported it to Oz. My heart aches for them. I have family in Taz. Climate change is real. The puppets at the top scare the shit out of me.

  6. Marti

    Thanks Dee for providing these links so that we can help:

    Many years ago, our girls had an Australian pen pal from the time they were 8 until 18. Samantha from Queensland had written to our local newspaper, the Sacramento Bee, we lived in Sacramento, capital of CA at the time. For 10 yrs, our girls sent letters, small gifts every month, t-shirts from CA, toy koala bears from Australia. My first taste of Vegemite came from a jar that Samantha’s Mom sent. The hope was that when the girls graduated from high school, somehow they would meet but it did not happen and over time, they lost touch. I pray that all are safe, that Samantha and her family are safe. Researched and found out that over 50 fires are burning in Queensland.

    Whenever tragedy and destruction comes anywhere in the world, we realize that the world is small and we are all a part of it; our tears flow, our hearts bleed and we try to help in any way that we can. but when we know of someone who is living the nightmare, the crack in our heart widens just a little bit more…

    1. deemallon Post author

      Pen pals! I remember those! Yes, those connections make things more personal. There are so many crafters that I follow who live in Australia. Not just Mo but of course Mo.

  7. Anonymous

    Thank you for all this, Dee! I need to catch up on a lot of great stuff here. Since I couldn’t comment on your newer post l have to just say here (and I know you know this, but still): we all doubt ourselves, all the time. If we didn’t, we would not be practicing self-reflection and then Christ Almighty we’d all be DJT. The best dinner parties are the ones where we feel like we need to get our point across and work to listen to others. The problem, I think, is our overbearing culture of devices… none of us get enough *practice* *talking* to anyone, particularly other adults face to face, particularly with whom we feel privileged to spend any time with at all – do we? I certainly don’t. It is a rare event and I’m betting your friends were very grateful for your presence, your voice, whatever you shared however you shared it, and your listening ears.

    1. deemallon Post author

      Hi Maggie. I know doubt doesn’t make me unique I still wish I could find a better way to work around it while in the company of others. I agree: devices, lack of practice. And, this was a like minded group!

    2. deemallon Post author

      Hi Maggie, I tried to reply to your comment on my phone and couldn’t, so trying now on PC. won’t say much til I see it’s working. Ugh! May have to un-install the app and re-install.

        1. deemallon Post author

          I think I reinstated comments but have no idea why they got turned off. I certainly didn’t do it.

  8. nancy

    I too could not comment on the new post. I think we all have our own levels of self-doubt. I am horrible at articulating my thoughts in the spoken word, in person, with others who may disagree or prove me wrong (read that foolish). I don’t believe I was raised ‘debating’ so my doubt is huge, even with subjects I DO know and am passionate about (think ECE: children’s literacy or social/emotional development). Plus, I easily fall into the role of one who has been gaslighted in the past…so perhaps that is a piece of the doubt, past experiences? At any rate, I am glad you speak your mind, what you know here for me (us) to learn from and to know you better. xo

    1. deemallon Post author

      Thanks Nancy. Of course the past plays a role. Wouldn’t it be lovely to step out of those influences like stepping out of a body suit? Sorry about the commenting. WordPress had trouble updating the post and I wonder if that’s partly why.


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