• Lara Flanagan

The ship that was my father’s chair

Updated: Mar 31, 2021

It has been such a big two months, I am weary, and sometimes I have felt a little overwhelmed. If truth be told, I am battling with a few health challenges, and I know that all things considered, I do brilliantly. But sometimes I just have to admit that MS is going to come visiting on occasion and play for a while. I broke one of my self-imposed rules recently and started watching the news so I could make a relatively informed decision on the election. 8 pm on the election night I turned off the TV and went to bed and curled up in the foetal position and told myself that I would never watch the news again.

The threat of the Adani mega-mine makes me sad, and I wonder if we will ever learn. In 50 years when we start pouring into the pearly gates and leaving a world that is in crisis, I have a feeling the bearded man in the sky will say, when we whine and ask him why didn’t he help us, “I sent you flood, fire, famine and drought – I couldn’t have made it more obvious you fools, sometimes you just have to help yourselves.”

Anyway, I am back in my bubble, thank god, as it is a good place to be. I am again reminding myself of the magic of simple things. Archie and Rissie are so happy, and I love seeing them thrive. This age is my favourite so far. They are little people with minds and personalities of their own, and they delight me every day. My little menagerie continues to make me smile. Kevin and Rosie think they rule the roost, but it is really the magpies who are in charge. I love seeing them hopping around the back-yard while they ignore Kevin and Rosie’s outrage. The mornings have been magical, and I am reminded of the world of ‘Once upon a time’ as we walk through the bushland in the mist.

This weekend the kids are with their Dad, and I am celebrating the fact that I have a sport-free weekend. I am so excited. Al is on the way, and I have made brownies and hummus, and Al is bringing movies. According to Al, it is going to be a weekend of chilling, and it is exactly what I need. I have also just finished another poem which I have been working on for a little while; I love putting words to paper (so to speak as it is more fingers to the keyboard) whether it be recipes, or waxing lyrical.

Winter is approaching, and after working out that my chimney was clogged with eight dead birds, I now have a fire going which gives my cottage its winter soul. I was horrified by the carnage in my chimney, but Rhombus kindly put chicken wire around my chimney so it can never happen again. In a happy place, with my happy people.


As a young girl, I loved my dad,

in ways that words can never say.

Yet the years and distance can mean

That time with him often goes astray.

But you see each time I turn a page,

In my mind, dad is always there.

It reminds me of his gift to me,

The ship, that was my father’s chair.

I was invited on this ship,

Way before memories begun.

He turned a page, held out his hand,

Time to come aboard my little one.

Pages turned; a thousand words read.

Eyes opened; I became aware.

Of worlds, and legends as I rode

The ship that was my father’s chair.

There was a passport in the pages.

And worlds that were nightly in my dreams.

Because once you have that passport,

Nothing is ever as it seems.

My earliest friend was Blinky Bill.

He was a very naughty bear.

I held his paw; we were friends on

The ship that was my father’s chair.

Every night I waited for the hour

when I heard the captain’s chime.

Feel the hush as our journey starts

With the words once upon a time.

I fought dragons and vanquished beasts.

Laughed so hard I shed a tear.

Hoped that I could stay a while on

The ship that was my father’s chair.

I fell in love with endless heroes.

I met those who made my mind so bright.

I screamed and told the highwayman

To come again another night.

I sat next to Bess who plaited a dark

red love knot into her long black hair.

I yearned to save them all. Take them on

The ship that was my father’s chair.

By being an intrepid sailor.

I travelled very far and wide.

I found the gifts of hope and courage.

Learned life is not always cut and dried.

My love for words and books grew daily.

Of magic worlds I was now aware.

A precious gift my dad gave me.

The ship that was my father’s chair.

I grew up as all kids must do.

Too old to hear the captain’s call.

I kept sailing though, now on my own.

Those pages would never cease to enthral.

It was only sometime later.

When I explored the great somewhere.

That I yearned again to come aboard

The ship that was my father’s chair.

When I had my own two children.

Only one gift was right for them.

Come on, darlings, be brave and true.

Step up right now and take the helm.

Turn the pages show them the world.

Read of the magic that existed there.

Just hop onboard and join me on

The ship that was my father’s chair.

#SlowLiving #Simplicity #CountryLife #countrykids #livingwell

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