Twitter / WayneVisser
Wednesday, 30 September 2009
Tuesday, 29 September 2009
Saturday, 26 September 2009
TWINKERING (Vb, Pr P)*
By Wayne Visser
Making changes, swift and small
That seem to matter not at all
Yet send us forth on tangled ways
Into the heart of life’s great maze
* Word invented by Indira Kartallozi.
Wednesday, 23 September 2009
Tuesday, 22 September 2009
Something fun and educational for the kids ...
ANIMAL ABCs - WHO'S WHO AT THE ZOO
By Wayne Visser
If you don’t know just what to do
Or you feel mad or sad or blue
Why don’t you go down to the zoo
And check what’s what and see who’s who?
(This rhyme gives you a clue or two)
A Is For Aarvark
There is no better place to start
Than with the wacky weird AARDVARK
With donkey ears and piggy nose
And monkey tail and claws for toes
Could there be a stranger beast?
And that’s not all, he likes to feast
His sticky tongue on termite ants
(The kind you don’t want in your pants!)
He’s rather shy – you would be too
If you looked like him down at the zoo
B Is For Bear
Now can you see (but please don’t stare)
There is a fuzzy wuzzy BEAR
She could be black or brown or white
Or blue with spots (no, that ain’t right!)
She likes to munch on juicy fruits
Or smoke a pipe of bamboo shoots
But don’t you kiss or hug her tight
She’ll bite your head off with one bite
(except for teddy bears like Pooh)
Which bear will you see at the zoo?
C Is For Crocodile
See that log with a toothy smile?
Don’t be fooled, it’s a CROCODILE
With scaly skin and googly eyes
His wangled teeth should win a prize
But don’t say “ugly”, if he hears
He’ll start to cry crocodile tears
And mind you don’t stand on his head
He’ll chomp you like a piece of bread
He lived when dinosaurs lived too
And now he’s living at the zoo
D Is For Dolphin
If you prefer a friendly grin
Then you should meet the dear DOLPHIN
You’ll find her in the swimming pool
She thinks her moves are super cool
She’ll flash and splash and show you tricks
Like fetching balls and doing flicks
She makes a happy squeaky sound
And gobbles fish up by the pound
What’s more, she counts to twenty two
And waves to greet you at the zoo
E Is For Elephant
What’s next? Let me give you a hint
It’s huge, yes it’s the ELEPHANT
He sucks up water through his nose
Then squirts it out just like a hose
He likes to bath in dirty mud
And when he runs his feet go thud
But if you’re quiet, you’ll hear him rumble
That’s his language of the jungle
He’s just a gentle giant who
Gives kids free showers at the zoo
F Is For Fox
Now if you look inside that box
You just might find the wily FOX
They say she’s clever and she’s sly
And you may ask the question “why?”
It’s just because she likes farm hens
And steals them right out of their pens
Or maybe it’s her bushy tail
That covers up her secret trail?
Nobody really has a clue
But you might spot her at the zoo
G Is For Giraffe
A creature that will make you laugh
Is super-tall, it’s the GIRAFFE
His neck is stretched to touch the sky
He must get dizzy, it’s so high!
You’ll see him eating purple leaves
Right from the tops of thorny trees
Since he’s so tall you’d surely think
He’d need a straw to help him drink?
I have no doubt he will see you
But will you see him at the zoo?
H Is For Hippopotamus
Down by the lake, what’s all the fuss?
My gosh, a HIPPOPOTAMUS
She opens up her mouth so wide
You see her breakfast deep inside
And when her head is not submerged
She gets her ears cleaned by the birds
And that’s not all, I swear there’s more
She walks across the zoo lake floor
I bet when she yawns, you do too
But don’t get tired, you’re at the zoo!
I Is For Iguana
While you’re eating your banana
Why not visit an IGUANA
You’ll find him in the reptile pit
Counting flies and spitting grit
His forked tongue licks his lizard lips
He wants to taste your fingertips
His other treats are mice and bugs
And if he’s hungry, even slugs
Imagine finger-mouse-slug stew!
That’s what’s for dinner at the zoo
J Is For Jackass
Now tell your mom you’re not being crass
But can you see the wild JACKASS?
He’s not a donkey or a horse
He’s half way in between of course
They say he’s stubborn (not just thick)
He likes the carrot, not the stick
And if you only feed him straw
He will protest – “hee-haw! hee-haw!”
And if you’re called a jackass too
At least you’ve seen one at the zoo
K Is For Kangaroo
Guess who’s hopping glad to see you?
It’s bopping, bouncing KANGAROO
I’ll tell you something, she can box
She’ll knock you right out of your socks!
And mommy kanga’s got a pouch
Where baby roo can just hang out
With all that jumping, kanga makes
The most delicious roo milkshakes
I’m sure you’re mighty thirsty too
From all your bouncing round the zoo
L Is For Lion
I hope that you have nerves of iron
It’s time for you to meet the LION
As you well know, he’s king of beasts
And he thinks kids make tasty feasts
When he roars, your legs will shiver
And his teeth will make you quiver
But in the zoo he’s behind bars
So thank your lucky lucky stars
He’s just a pussy cat that grew
And now he’s king of all the zoo
M Is For Monkey
Now what’s that over there, come see
The swooping whooping mad MONKEY
Look! He’s making silly faces
Oops! He’s chewing on your laces
Eeew! Now his finger’s in his nose
He’s just like you, without the clothes
Even though he is more hairy
That’s just evolutionary
He’s from your family tree, it’s true
He’s like your cousin at the zoo
N Is For Nightowl
Let’s not forget the feathered fowl
That fly the skies, like Miss NIGHTOWL
She likes to hunt for squeaky mice
And scoffs them without thinking twice
Her head can turn the whole way ‘round
(Just like some mothers’ heads, I’ve found)
She sees so much with those big eyes
That’s probably why she’s very wise
She’s knows ta-whit, ta-what, ta-who
She is the brains behind the zoo
O Is For Octopus
It sure would be a shock to miss
The multi-coloured OCTOPUS
Go shake his hand (don’t hesitate)
He’s holding out not one but eight!
His skin can change to different hues
(It’s hard to find him matching shoes!)
And watch him close, or when you blink
He’ll squirt your shirt with purple ink
He’s got not one heart or just two
But three, as you’ll see at the zoo
P Is For Platapus
If there’s a prize for wackiness
It goes to the cute PLATAPUS
He has a bill just like a duck
But cannot quack (what rotten luck!)
He swims in streams just like a fish
But has no fins (to swash and swish)
His tail is like a beaver’s (flat)
But he lays eggs (imagine that!)
It’s like his parts are stuck with glue
From other creatures at the zoo
Q Is For Quagga
To spot the next one will be tougher
Have you ever seen a QUAGGA?
Half her body’s streaked with straight stripes
Like the zebra, in blacks and whites
The other half is brown and faint
As if she just ran out of paint
And even though she’s so distinct
The sad thing is, she’s gone extinct
(That means there’s less than just a few)
But still, her photo’s at the zoo
R Is For Rhinoceros
There’s still a few treats left for us
Can you find the RHINOCEROS?
He’s got two horns upon his nose
(But not the kind a jazz band blows)
And if you tried to tickle him
He wouldn’t feel it through his skin
His eyesight is not very good
I bet he thinks you’re made of wood
(Let’s tap your head, see if it’s true)
Now what else is there at the zoo?
S Is For Snake
I’m ssssure there can be no misssstake
That ssssilky rope is Mrssss ssssnake
She likes to sssslither in the ssssun
Or sssshed her sssscaley sssskin for fun
Ssssilently she sssschemes and plots
To tie her ssssupper up in knots
And then she sssswallows as they ssssquirm
Like ssssucking up a sssslimy worm
Sssso sssstep back if she sssstares at you
Or you’ll be ssssnack food at the zoo
T Is For Tortoise
Slow down, you wouldn’t want to miss
The peaceful plodding Sir TORTOISE
If you’re patient and kind as well
He may just come out of his shell
It’s true he’s slow around the track
Because his house is on his back
But still he won the rabbit race
By sticking to his steady pace
His slowness helps him grow old too
So he’s the grandpa at the zoo
U Is For Unicorn
What magic beast has just one horn?
Of course, the fabled UNICORN
It’s possible to see her, but
Only if your eyes are shut
And only if you have been kind
Then she appears there in your mind
Her mane is laced with pretty flowers
And you can ride her back for hours
I’ve heard all wishes can come true
If you just glimpse her at the zoo
V Is For Vulture
Now here’s a bird that’s lacking culture
Have you ever seen the VULTURE?
His beak is hooked, his shoulders hunch
He likes a bag of bones for lunch
I hope at home you never eat
The way he does (on rotting meat)
He’s always fighting over food
Quite simply put, he’s vile and rude
But give a bird respect that’s due
He’s cleans things up around the zoo
W Is For Whale
Look over there, a mighty tail
I bet that’s from the big blue WHALE
She’s bigger than a car or house
So big that you feel like a mouse
And have you ever heard her song?
Sometimes it’s several hours long
I wonder if she dreams big dreams
And if she’s happy as she seems
Why don’t you ask her if it’s true
When next you see her at the zoo?
X Is For X-Thing
I’m sure you’re wondering what is next
Well, so am I, it’s called an “X”
That means it’s anything you like
Maybe a monster nicknamed Mike?
Or dinosaur without a head?
Or peanut butter fish called Fred?
It could be just your favourite cat?
Or zog from space, come for a chat?
Whatever you decide to choose
We’ll see that X-thing at the zoo
Y Is For Yak
It’s nearly time for going back
But first let’s go and see the YAK
He used to live in far
(A place you’ve never seen, I’ll bet)
He’s like a cow, but he’s more bold
His woolly coat’s made for the cold
His milk is used for buttered tea
I think that’s weird, would you agree?
It’s good to find out something new
What better place than at the zoo
Z Is For Zebra
Last but not least is dear Debra
She’s the stripy friendly ZEBRA
She made the trip from
Where wildlife is fantastica
She’ll tell you how when she got flyin’
She’d outrun the fastest lion
Now she lives a life more tranquil
And she’s secretly quite thankful
She’s always happy to see you
And hopes you’ll come back to the zoo
So now you’ve done the thing to do
(I hope you’re not still sad and blue)
And since you’ve been down to the zoo
To check what’s what and see who’s who
Why don’t you tell a friend or two?
For more poetry, see http://www.waynevisser.com/poetry.htm
Monday, 21 September 2009
Saturday, 19 September 2009
By Wayne Visser
What was your last epiphany?
It could have been a life changing
Either way, your world was suddenly different, you saw things in a changed light, your perspective was profoundly shifted.
Looking back, you realise that you were not seeing new lands, but seeing with new eyes. Epiphanies are like that.
Our paradigm – the basic pattern which structures our thinking – changes.
We spot the underlying assumptions that shape our world view and we begin to question our most cherished beliefs.
We start to entertain the possibility, perhaps for the first time, that our way is not the only way, that what seemed self-evident and factual is really value-laden and subjective.
All the greatest discoveries in history have been made this way.
The scientific breakthroughs and technological inventions that changed the world can call be traced back to an epiphany.
The earth was unquestionably flat until Copernicus had the courage to imagine it round.
Time and space were undoubtedly fixed until Einstein had the insight that they are relative.
In retrospect, some epiphanies seem blindingly obvious.
And not just with the benefit of hindsight – something more powerful is at work.
So why did they take so long to occur?
Because as humans, we are prone to a kind of mass hypnosis.
We are creatures of habit, vulnerable to suggestion.
We believe because others believe, accept the truth because there is general consensus about its validity.
Epiphanies are the ultimate habit-breakers.
They are often dramatic because they have to be, to break the mould we are trapped in, to shatter the house of mirrors we think is reality.
They feel like earthquakes because they shake up our neat picture of the world, forcing us to put it back together again in a different arrangement.
Because, like Humpty Dumpty falling off the wall, once an epiphany has occurred, there is no going back to the way it was before.
This may all sound rather intimidating, and indeed, epiphanies are not for the faint hearted.
But they should be welcomed, not be feared, anticipated, not avoided.
Epiphanies are the true force behind evolution.
Progress is never straight forward and the learning curve is never smooth.
Evolution occurs in great leaps, step changes.
These discontinuities are the way we break with the past, free ourselves from the limitations of our old modes of thinking, take the game to a higher level.
The question then becomes: are epiphanies beyond our control?
Do we have to simply wait and hope that one day inspiration will strike?
The answer is no.
Although epiphanies are never predictable, we can make their visitation more likely.
By learning to be open to change, by constantly questioning our assumptions, by not clinging so tightly to our beliefs, by deliberately exposing ourselves to diversity, by engaging with those we disagree with.
We also need to cultivate our imagination.
Grand epiphanies are the cumulative effect of numerous humble insights.
Before the Big Bang, there were lots of little sparks.
Admittedly this kind of shapeshifting can be frightening.
Every caterpillar makes its first flight as a butterfly with trepidation.
But look at the result – the newfound freedom, seeing the world from a totally different vantage point.
Can you recall how liberating your last epiphany made you feel?
How that unexpected realisation reinvigorated your lust for life?
The Christian tradition reminds us that epiphanies are a manifestation of something numinous – a higher power, a greater wisdom.
Are you ready to touch the sky?
Today may just be your day for an epiphany to strike.
Tuesday, 8 September 2009
By Wayne Visser
In the land of bow and spear
Of chieftain and warrior
Of hunter and hunted
You are the silent gatherer
The unsung provider
The hidden basket
We raise you up
And speak your praise
In the shifting sands of power
You are the pyramid of constancy
Against the fierce winds of time
On the endless plains of possibility
You are the gentle matriarch
Leading the way
Through the fickle seasons of life
In the thirsty dust of desperation
You are the baobab of sustenance
In the quenching earth of faith
You gather the tears of the world
And in the midst of mourning
You find reason to smile
You gather the tribes of the world
And in the chaos of squabbling
You sow seeds of community
You gather the stories of the world
And in the firelight of remembrance
You keep the spirit burning
The music of every place
Moves to your swaying hips
And shakes to your stamping feet
The children of every time
Suckle on your ample bosom
And fall asleep to your lullaby
The victims of every tragedy
Seek solace in your arms
And find comfort in your voice
You gather the light of the world
And in the darkest caves of evil
You spread your luminescence
You gather the orphans of the world
And in the villages of your heart
You give them a place called home
You gather the elders of the world
And in the sacred councils of trust
You show us a better way
When our past dries to a trickle
You are the river delta
That reunites our memories
With the sea of history
When our days are drought stricken
You are the tireless pestle
That grinds our hardship
Into the flour of wisdom
When our future lies in shadow
You are the wild prophetess
That divines our destiny
In the pattern of bones
In a world of folly and fear
Of division and diversion
Of begetting and forgetting
You are the mighty gatherer
The harvester of wholeness
The maker of peace
We honour you this day
And forever more