This site was created as a bulletin board for our members and it was a surprise to have 200 views from 11 countries in our first month.  Again, welcome.

I apologise for the bombardment of advertisements on our pages.  It is part of the condition of having this “free” website.  We are also being bombarded with emails from WordPress urging me to take up a ‘plan’ at a minimum of $5 a month to be rid of their advertisements.   I had wondered why anyone would want to advertise on our humble site with just a handful of ‘followers’ and under a hundred visitors.  I think I get it now–the advertisements are inducements for us to take up a plan.  I should have known that there is no such thing as a free lunch.

Attendance was down to four of us yesterday; Hayley had work commitments and Julianna was attending a Shenyun Chinese dance performance.  We hope to see them next week.

Terry brought some poems that he, as an English teacher hands out to his students.  He had us read some of them to him and shared his interpretations with us.

Alice brought us her translation of the Ko Un poem as promised and after some discussion Alice agreed to keep working on it.  We look forward to seeing the result. Alice is still trying to decide on a project for June but she has found several poems to choose from.

Helen revealed her frustrations as a translator and her decision to start creating her own work.  For her June exhibition project she is going to draw inspiration from an image or painting (she is an artist) then write a piece about it in three languages i.e. three different pieces.  She will not translate them all and have nine pieces to show.

I shared a story from my memoir about my grandmother whose body was dumped in some wasteland between two villages in China and how I found her decades later.



A tree was growing

from Grandma’s grave

when I found her


stabbed in the heart

The only pain she feels now

flares from those empty eyes

hollowed by years of longing

as they searched for her sons and

sons of sons to tend her grave

Those prayers she sent

and incense she burnt

had all gone up in smoke

Those sons and sons of sons she favored

left her impaled in unfamiliar grounds

when all she sought in life was to return

to the place where her girls were given away

Seeds sown by a tempest erupted between her bones

pinning her like a carcass to some strangers’ bed

as she arched her empty breast to the sky

beseeching reprieve–no lips

no mouth no tongue to seek

the grace she used to pray for

for her sons

and sons

of sons

Mary Tang 鄧許文蘭