The Mozzie – Colleen Keating


I am excited to have a poem in every magazine of The Mozzie this year  (2021)!

summer anguish is in the January edition

water clock is in the February edition

when  you can only take photos from the window is in the March edition

Thank you to Ron Heard for his dedication to Australian poets and poetry. I know for him there have been many hardships, loss and  sadness, and maybe times it is not easy to go on but he

The Mozzie is a small press poetry magazine that publishes the work of established and emerging poets.

An independent poetry magazine, it  publishes over 400 poems a year. 2017 will be its twenty-fifth year of publication.  The Editor Ron Heard lives in Brisbane “among the heat, rain and roof possums”and is  the author of the verse novel The Shadow of Troy which regular readers of The Mozzie  followed episodically  poem by poem , month by month .

It was reminescent of my wonderful Ancient History lessons  at High School. In the final year I studied at the Honours level and our teacher was an elderly nun Mother Oliver IBVM * who had survived throat cancer  and taught our small class of 4 girls by speaking into a megaphone  that rested on the desk. We waited upon every whispered word and we loved our time with the text Peloponnesian Wars by Thucydides, an Athenian historian who served as an Athenian general during the war. His account of the conflict is widely considered to be a classic and regarded as one of the earliest scholarly works of history. The History is divided into eight books and tells the story of the Peloponnesian War which was a war fought in ancient Greece between Athens and Sparta—the two most powerful city-states in ancient Greece at the time (431 to 405 B.C.E.). This war shifted power from Athens to Sparta, making Sparta the most powerful city-state in the region.

  • Besides being a scholar and  lover of Ancient History Mother Oliver was also the author of the story  of Mother Gonzaga Barry IBVM , the founder of the Loreto Order of Religious Sisters in Australia which is called   “Love is a Light Burden” by Mother M. Oliver, I.B.V.M. Published 1950.  My signed copy is very precious and is one of the inspirations  for my writing.



Memorising paragraphs of Thucydides like the above i can see  how I developed  my awareness of justice and deep belief in the following.

Silence in the face of evil is itself evil. Not to speak  is to speak, not to act is to act. Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Sydney to Melbourne by Colleen Keating

It was exciting to receive  in the mail the latest copy of The Mozzie and to find my poem Sydney to Melbourne published. Thank-you to the editor Ron Heard  and team for the your dedication to poetry and poets.



The poem reminds us that the journey is more important than the destination.

Some of you will remember these slower days.

We made the trip with the family in the late 70’s to visit my sister who was living in Melbourne  at the time and  the memory reminded me of the poem Ithaka  by C.P.Cavafy where we are reminded to enjoy the trip, any trip, not only longing for a journey’s end. It is a metaphor that can be extended to many of life’s processes.

In more recent years when we drove to Melbourne I felt sad that time seemed of the essence.


Sydney to Melbourne

As you set out for Melbourne
in nineteen seventy-nine
your road is a long one
country towns stirring the spirit
awakening the mind
Mittagong Marulan Glenrowan Gundagai
Wodonga Benalla Wangaratta
aromas of pubs parks and bakeries
monuments of explorers local heroes
and one of a dog
sitting loyally on a tucker box
re-enactments of bush rangers
and the hanging of poor Ned

Your road is a long one
with pub counter-lunches
Chinese cafe paragon milk bars
ice creams and fruit stalls,
op-shops for old books and ‘antiques’
a fruit-fly stop and car inspection
on the border by the Murray
with its paddle steamer on the go

Brown-painted Colonial Inns
bill boards promising a pool colour TV
and luxury ‘breakfast in bed’
passed through a secret door
with the local ‘rag’
by a man in shorts and long socks

and then a repeat of the day before
visiting museums and galleries
war memorials and a climb on a canon
a walk over an historic bridge –
your road is a long one.

Not like today on the dual lane freeway
with grey concrete and bitumen
blur of vegetation
in a confining corridor
a blinkers-on journey
blind to all the signs beckoning
but the large M meaning
a Highway Service Centre ahead
a one stop for all needs
our country by-passed