ONE MORE STEP, one more breath……rested today after a long, deep, uninterrupted sleep, the first for such a long time. Contemplating Courage….the strange complexities and variations of it. Being forced to clean and empty my house (a compelling force that drives me like a harsh north wind), takes almost all the courage I have (and then some).

And yet, when faced with the dilemma of a trapped, deadly, Eastern Brown Snake some years ago…..I didn’t hesitate. Some garden netting I’d left lying in the bushland nearby, was caught in great ruffles behind the Snake’s head, slowly choking it. It was helpless and I felt responsible. So, with a prayer offered up to the Snake Clan, I knelt down, held it behind the head with my left hand, and began the long, slow process of cutting through the netting with a cheap, rather blunt, little penknife I always carried in my pocket.

The day was fiercely hot, filled with heat shimmer and the screams of cicadas and cockatoos…..the rescue process, dream like, as I bent to the task and continued cutting…..continually speaking to the snake, til the last few strands of net were falling away.
People talk about the Kundalini, rising up through the spine…..As the snake felt the net loosen, a powerful surge of energy shot up my left arm all the way to the shoulder….two more snips and it was free….but dazed and dehydrated it pushed forward into the pile of netting. Standing, I leaned forward, grabbed it by the tail, and pulled it free….a few powerful S-bends like a brown wave, and it was gone.

Drenched in sweat, fear hammering in my kidneys…..I stood up, drank some water, and went home.



They stand there, still
Stark, dark fingers of Accusation
Pointing upwards
Against a pale blue sky
“Look, they say
Look what you did to me”
Ring-barked for economy
A long slow death
Some would call it
And the beasts
Below, who graze
Search endlessly
For shade

MA©️. Winter 2018
Memories of Nimbin, late 70’s
(Photos below of “What once was”)



I lean down to feed more sticks into the fire, keeping the heat high as the rich aromas of rabbit stew with wild onions, mushrooms and foraged greens fill our small cabin. Mouth watering. As the wind whistles under the eaves, I walk to the open doorway looking for him.

It’s a precious time with everyone gone momentarily, on business, hunting, visiting with neighbours, so, it’s just Jamie and me.

And there he is; the late afternoon sun casts a red gold glow on the sycamore trees, the leaves shifting and shimmering with the small breeze and, as I stand watching him, he turns towards me, his body outlined in gold as the sun sinks behind him, as the air cools, as he stretches and shifts the long muscled lines of his body.

I’m already wet with wanting……wanting him.

He sees it in my eyes, my smile, and leaving the plank of timber he’s been sawing, he carries tools back to the verandah’s sheltered shelves, puts them tidily away as I move towards him.

I can smell his sweat, the sharp scent of our earlier sex……

He gathers me in against him as I reach up to kiss his mouth, take his lower lip between my teeth, then, murmuring against his neck, “Come, food is ready, you must be starving.”
He laughs softly, “Aye, I am, but not for food, not just now, anyway “, and reaching down, he lifts my skirts, one big hand cupped around my waist, the other finds it’s way to the cleft between my legs.”

I cleave to him as he makes that small, soft moan deep in his throat. “Christ, ye’re already so wet”, and pulling me against him, he kisses me deeply, as I feel the laughter rising up in him, feel him hard against me.

“Eat later”, he says, and taking me by the hand, pulls me towards our fur covered bed. I can feel the heat of him.

My phone alarm rings, the harsh jolt of reality breaking through this beautiful dream, and yet, I can still hear the echo of his voice,
smell the strong male smell of him.
My face is wet with tears.
Was it really ONLY a dream???


Desire…..part 2

In my dreams
He comes to me
Wide mouth tilting
At the corners
Of his lips
I am ready
I whisper
He comes then
To me
Are you mine???

Eyes lit
From within
He smiles
He is ready
I can see
And softly steps
Towards me
In my dreams
No one else
But he

Skin on skin
He reaches then
Touches me
Brings me home
In my dreams
There’s only

This one
This love
This fire
This light
My man
My love
My richest sin
My kin
In my dreams

MA ©️ Spring 2016

Time flies

Time Flies, Somewhere Somebody Dies…..

Bracing myself
For the terrifying ravages
Of daily life
The deep dissatisfaction
Of food shopping
Account paying
Who will
If I don’t
Yet, where is there time
To dream
Live life fully
The bed needs fresh clean linen
Weeks ago
Days of dishes
Piled neatly in the sink
No time for Art
For writing the words
Cluttering my mind
Like a swarm of bees
As I think…..

Soft grey clouds
Of shed hair
From cats and dog
Drift about the floor
While I dream of
Culloden moor
Jamie and Claire
How will they fare
And Iris’s want gathering
To plant before
Night falls
My heart calls out
In desolation
For maybe rather
A wild nesting place
Than this domestic socalled grace……

Nick Cave mourns in
Deep soft tones
His heart ‘s love’s
Long Black Hair
And I care
For all and every living soul
While dwelling in
My prison hole
Of hard won security….

Why me
Who’d live like
Beloved Ravens on the wing
Harsh voice broken
As I forget to sing
For daily duty calls
I sip a fiery taste
Of single Malt
Butt out my cherished
And get up
Go out the door
Armed with Iggy Pop
And Lust for life
To fortify me
Against mediocrity
And so
Food shopping
Accounts paying
Into the car
I go

MargaretArlen , Winter 2016

Breaking Taboos…ln the cabin by the lake.

There was, after all, nothing to fear. Her body remembers, instinctively.

And coming apart, suddenly shy again, but he grabs her quickly by the hand, turns her towards him, smiling….brushing dirt, twigs, dried leaves from each other’s clothes, hair, she feels safe once more. Trusting him.

He opens the door, leans down smiling, removes  the last dead leaves still caught in her hair, beckons her, inviting.

Inside, sparsely furnished with a single bed, a cupboard, a wood fire stove, small table, some wooden chairs, two windows letting light stream onto the wooden floor, the patterned rug, and through the door, late afternoon sun shimmers on the still surface of the lake.

He brings her water from the outside tank, rummages around in the cupboard, finds a loaf of heavy bread, cheese, chutney, apples and a bottle of wine. She sits watching his swift, graceful movements, his hair come loose, falling forward momentarily hiding his face, his beautiful bones. She sketches him with her eyes, tracing the fine lines , and catching her watching him, he laughs suddenly….”I love feeling you watching me”,  hands her a glass of dark red wine, leans in, kisses her, and floods her mouth with the first taste of it, mingled with him. Neither of them are really hungry, and as dusk descends she wants to go out to the water.  So very peaceful here, soft sounds of birds twittering to each other as they settle for the night, a flight of ducks skimming across the surface , then quiet descends. They don’t talk, perhaps there will be time for that later, for now, the peaceful bliss of this bright new thing seems to fill them both…a quiet ease.  And all through the night, on the small single bed, they couple and join, again and again….her hunger excites him. And in between, exploring each other, wordless touching, fingers drifting over bone, hair, warm flesh and soft, full lips,  she feels herself drowning, lets every last thought leave her mind, leave fear behind, holding him, holding him.

Excerpt from Breaking Taboos, an Erotic Fantasy


UNDRESSED, unshowered, unlikely…..
It’s mid afternoon
Cramped hands
Anxiety ignored as I continue to compile my Poetry
Into Book form
Writing my life’s work down upon the page….
Feeling stressed but exultant….
I will still have gut eating debt
My house will forever need cleaning
But, but….
What if I ignored the need….
It would be as if I never

August 2017



Not a feeling of nausea
But a longing so deep
It beats in your blood
Floods your guts
Bleeds through vein
And bone
Right to the hidden marrow
It won’t let go
And in your shell like ear
Or mind’s eye
The darkening thundrous sky
Curves over a stormy sea
Gulls wheel, and scream and cry
For teeming fish below
Not for me
Who, washed up
By the high tide
Land locked
Screams silently
As the moon rides
The ebb and flow
Within…..and I go
In endless dreams
Down to the water’s side
To swim

MA Winter 2015



She loves the afterglow….that lull, when two bodies cease the great struggle towards the “Little Death”, when the pulse quietens. Loves to explore the unfamiliar territory of his face….to go beyond his eyes, touch his still wet lips with delicate fingertips…..trace the strong planes of cheek bones, the thick dark stubbled hair around his mouth and chin, finding the lovely unknown terrain, of him…..and then returning to the pull of his gaze, his strong beautiful face, and finally at rest….looking back at him, into him. Those clear blue eyes, the soul of him.

Excerpt from Breaking Taboos