Shelter Journals & Bad Poetry Prophetic Poetry

Not too sure how to pen this one, I think I’ll just tell you how it went and you’ll have to believe me that it’s the God’s honest truth.

So. I left excitable Erwin on Sunday, a town which probably couldn’t get too excitable as you can’t buy alcohol there on a Sunday. But the border isn’t far away and the locals have a lot of experience in moonshine running around these parts. It was a beautiful sunny day and I was hiking on my own as our little hiking group has pretty much split up as Lady Slipper didn’t stay the night in Erwin, Bush Goggles left early and Gandalf decided to have a zero day to rest his feet.

Ahh I’ve got my days mixed up but I’ll continue. Sunday was fairly uneventful. I left the hostel late and it was mainly uphill walking punctuated by some beautiful views from bald summits. That night I found a nice solitary camp and discovered that the defect in my stove that hadn’t been working very well wasn’t due to fuel shortage but due to some blockage and now it wasn’t working at all. Still this wasn’t too big a problem as I just made a fire and cooked with that.

Shelter Journals & Bad Poetry Prophetic Poetry Photo Gallery




Monday was another beautiful day and I stopped at a shelter for some lunch and began reading through a ‘ shelter j ournal ’.

Shelter journals are journals left at each shelter as a way for people to communicate along the trail as well as fill in idle time by drawing pictures and cartoons. This journal had a really bad poem in it and as I continued walking I began musing about adding my own really bad poems into the journals. Pretty much straight away, I came up with one which I penned into my trail blog for posterity because my memory is horrible.

So word for word here it is:

In the nettle You can settle

With a fire of pine and spruce

Then some thunder

Makes you wonder

Should I tent to avoid that juice

A deep rumble

Makes you stumble

As you grab your pegs and poles

Your cooking fire

No longer a pyre

The thunderstorm swallows it whole Pouring rain No refrain

Looks like muesli bars for dinner again

I was quite proud of my little poem even though I had a few doubts as to its literary quality.

Showed it off to the inhabitants of the next shelter so I have proof of my prophetic powers although with complete hindsight I’d change the last three lines to:

Now the hail Big as snails …something…

Yes, it was still blazing sunshine when I left the shelter and I was happily climbing a hill when I heard some thunder. Hmm I thought to myself, thinking of my little poem

Still I wasn’t too worried, the thunder sounded a fair way behind me, and I kept going. Then I felt some drops of rain. I donned my parka and put on my backpack cover but still wasn’t too worried. Then. the rain started lashing and the lightning became frequent and on top of me and I was starting to think of Lightning Bug and worrying that if I did get hit by lightning then I wouldn’t be able to go walking out in a storm again. By now, I was soaked and desperately looking for a place to camp as the storm was getting a bit scary. Eventually I did find a place and the hail started. Now, as my hometown is Darwin, I’m not accustomed to hail, so I wasn’t too sure what it was but it wasn’t too different to rain so I kept setting up my tent. I’d almost finished setting up the tent when the hail started to get vicious. I mean the hail drops were getting huge and hurt when they hit you. My bag was a little away from where I’d set up the tent but as soon as I finished I dived into the tent and left my bag outside to the mercy of the elements until the hail finished! had a cold dinner that night and a slow start the next day as I had to get a fire going to dry my gear and cook up the previous night’s dinner.

That’s the story of my prophetic poem I decided after that experience to leave poetry alone for a while and if I do go back to only write nice stuff: sunshine, smiles and trail magic I think.

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