Thirteen Ways of Considering Black Birds, a new audio work

Who doesn’t like an advent calendar?

I loved them as a child, opening the small windows every December morning to discover a brightly coloured miniature world. This version is an audio calendar.

Here are the first two sections released today [18 Dec, No 22] of ‘Thirteen Ways of Considering Black Birds’, by John Laidler and myself – wonder, beauty and nature. A staccato call on the edge of a cliff facing the Pacific Ocean puzzled us. We caught a glimpse of dark feathers, but couldn’t identify the bird. Wallace Stevens numbers the sections. And the piece is a riposte to 13 ways of looking at a Blackbird.

I happen to have a photograph of a black bird on display in Coffs Botanic Gardens. The request was for a photograph taken in October. I was lucky, I had 5 minutes on the 31st, no time to go into the gardens so I got a shot of the Bowerbird.

I never look happy having my photograph taken, because I’m not.

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