We hope you had a merry Crimbo, and congratulations to Australia for winning the fourth Ashes test in Melbourne. You may remember that the Werewolf of Ozzers thought it was called Gillian Taylforth, until great teamwork by the body, spirit and mind found its real name and worked out it wasn’t named after Mel Gibson.
Werewolf of Oz Memories
This allowed the WoOs to tuck into some scrumptious Holly Valance bubble and squeak before they entered the weird time-travel rock town of Kerang-Kerrang. Bonzo decided to stay, and didn’t return for the Battle of Bri’s bane.
Many of the old characters from the trip did return though, and they have not finished their contribution to the tale yet. Today, we have the last part of the epic battle trilogy, with seven exciting chapters of comedy fantasy still to go after that.
Chapter 135. The Aftermath
Battle of Bri’s Bane Epic Trilogy Poem 3
I lay on the Greenslopes ground
watched by allies all around
Bri’s bane was no more
the acid rain cleansed from floor.
‘We knew not a wolf you would become,’
said Emily’s voice betraying concern,
‘for the bane was not only of Brian’s
but also of wolves and lions.’
‘So wolfsbane is inside you now
but maybe we can work out how
to make you healthy again
I’ll try counting to ten.’
Emily counted to eight
my mood improved to third-rate
on nine I sensed the right line
hearing ten I was fine.
I rose to join the others
my sisters and brothers
in arms and hats we had battled
and Bri’s Bane together tackled.
Hi, it’s Greenygrey. I hope you enjoyed the Bergen photos. While travelling can seem like living a fantasy, Werewolf of Oz: Fantasy Travel by Google Maps is really a fantasy travelling book. I’m sure you’ve all been trying to work out the answer to Holly Valance‘s bubble and squeak teaser; unless you already know it!; so I think it’s time to head down under to the Werewolf of Oz for some comedy satire.
Holly Valance Married Werewolf of Oz on Smashwords
I’m delighted to say that Werewolf of Oz: Fantasy Travel by Google Maps was published on Smashwords yesterday, so it’s available for lots more Ereaders now: 40% of the book is available to read for free.
It is still available from Amazon for paperback and kindle, with image and link at end of this post.
Holly Valance has married billionaire Nick Candy since we met her, so her life has run a pretty parallel course with Grey, who is of course reunited with Green.
Body, Mind and Spirit; and Quiet Hero
We wish Holly and Nick all the best for their marriage. While it was great to meet Holly in these episodes the main theme of this episode is the coming together of the team using the body, mind and spirit attributes they’d previously lost confidence in; as the Lion, Tinman and Scarecrow discovered they had all the courage, heart and brains they needed in the original Wizard of Oz.
And the quiet character coming good.
And no amount of additional ingredients could make Holly’s bubble and squeak smell any tastier than that day we met her on the outskirts of Gillian Taylforth… or was it Mel something.
77. BODY, MIND AND SPIRIT… AND BONZ THINK of MELBOURNE
is no fun
free to dine
is on the line.
We tried to think how the name Gillian Taylforthwas connected to Mel Gibson, but couldn’t work out any significant associations. Then Angry suggested the city might have another name.
I thought that might not be as crazy as it first sounded.
I remembered then that I had indeed renamed it before we arrived, but couldn’t for the life of me recall another name for it.
I felt dejected, but then Cathy gave a pep talk to raise our spirits, before offering to run back to the city to check the name.
I had renewed hope.
Elle thanked Angry and Cathy, and said they’d done enough; she’d like to make a contribution and check the city’s name. So Elle rushed back to the city, and when she returned she said she’d seen a sign saying Welcome to Melbourne.
Yes, that was it; that was its name before I renamed it.
It had been an outstanding team effort; utilising body, mind and spirit in the nick of time. I thanked them all. I wondered if their efforts had also answered the second question, because Melbourne sounded like it could well have been named after Mel Gibson.
I put this to the team, hoping Angry would continue his good mind form. But before Angry could say a word, Bonzo piped up, ‘Oh, Melbourne, that’s easy, I grew up here. No, it wasn’t named after Mel Gibson, it was after that pommie guy, William Lamb – 2nd Viscount Melbourne. Mel Gibson was in fact born in New York.’
We all looked at Bonzo in amazement, before giving him a big hug.
We gave the answers to Holly Valance, and she said:
‘You had your chance
and now you can hanch
on my best and scrumptious bubble and squeak.’
We tucked in.
William Lamb, the 2nd Viscount Melbourne, was Queen Victoria’s first Prime-Minister, and lived between 1779-1848.
pommie – Aussie slang for a Briton.
While Hoppers Crossing only plays a little part in the unfolding story played out over two chapters/episodes, Riddells Creek proves essential.
That is because a riddle creaking with nonsense is set in this episode over four literary nonsense poems. Then the Werewolf of Ozzers try and answer it in the next.
All great travel quests contain many smaller hurdles and tasks before the denouement; physical and riddle; and it was no different for the Werewolf of Ozzers. Most also contain beautiful women, and the Werewolf of Oz is no different.
It is probably different in having bubble and squeak play such an important part in the storyline!
76. HOLLY VALANCE HALTS OUR ADVANCE WITH A GAME OF CHANCE
A frog fellow called Kermit Croaking helped us across Hoppers Crossing, before we got an easy ride with Dennis, Peter and Jack all the way to Gillian Taylforth. We said goodbye to the Easy Riders on the edge of the city, before continuing by foot and paw.
We went walkie
up to Niddrie,
were told of hungry,
by a honey bee,
so we continued northerly.
We were beyond peckish by the time we reached Riddells Creek; so we were delighted to see the Best and Scrumptious Bubble and Squeak stall on the side of the road.
We asked the woman at the stall how much it was for the fine looking fayre on offer. She replied:
My name is Holly Valance
and I’m going to give you a chance
to win all you can eat for free
by just answering a riddle or three.
Travelling Tribe Accept the Valance Challenge
‘We have faced many challenges on our journey,
so one or three more
is not as daunting a prospect
as it might have been a year ago.’
Holly Valance said that was great to hear,
and she was confident we would not err.
Then she revealed our Riddells Creek riddle, which had two parts. Firstly, she asked us to name the city we had just been in; and secondly, whether it was named such because Mel Gibson was born there.
Bubble and Squeak Speak
We got in a huddle,
over a squeaky puddle,
ready to answer the Valance
knowing we could leave nothing to chance
for our bellies were starting to rumble
in need of a big brunch of bubble.
Easy Riders film and actors (Dennis Hopper, Peter Fonda and Jack Nicholson).
Holly Valance (actress/singer).
Mel Gibson (actor)
Hoppers Crossing, Niddrie, Sunbury and Riddells Creek are real places.
Last week, Caroline Gill kindly nominated me to talk about my second poetry collection as part of a blog meme called The Next Big Thing. Caroline also provided the foreword for my book, and has been an expert poetry consultant since the early days of the Folding Mirror form; so thanks to Caroline for nominating me, her advice and poetry.
Caroline and John Dotson have a new poetry chapbook called The Holy Place available, and I’m pleased to say that I just received my copy. From first read it looks full of interesting and evocative poems about subjects I like; such as wondering about life and existence from nature on our planet to the vastness of space.
For The Next Big Thing I answer a set of questions below, before I nominate five other writers to take part next week. Here are the questions and answers:
What is the title of your new book?
242 Mirror Poems and Reflections.
Where did the idea for the book come from?
I’d written about 100 Folding Mirror poems, so I thought I had near enough a poetry collection. I’d self-published a comedy-fantasy book (Werewolf of Oz) on Amazon Kindle earlier in the year, so I thought I would self-publish a poetry collection too.
I also had lots of old thoughts and poems written down, so I thought I could use them as reflections for the mirror aspect of the Folding Mirror poems.
Then I thought I’d have the numbers in the title mirroring too, with two identical numbers either side of a middle one, as two halves of poetry mirror either side of a folding middle line in FM poems. The next number to the amount of poems I had that worked like that was 121, with 242 also working when the reflections were included.
So I then created another twenty or so poems, until I had 121, and mirrored them with thoughts and poems that reflected them somehow.
What genre does your book fall under?
It is a poetry collection.
What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?
I have a Folding Mirror poem that mentions Johnny Depp and Sam Riley playing a couple of my favourite characters in the Dead Man and On The Road movies; William Blake and Jack Kerouac; so that’d do.
California’s first wild wolf since 1924, OR7, can play the Greenygrey parts if it tires of wandering and takes advantage of its celebrity status in Hollywood.
Will your book be self published or published by an agency?
This one was self-published on Amazon Kindle and in book form on Amazon CreateSpace, after my first collection was published by Chipmunka.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?
The poems cover three years, and were previewed here on fmpoetry. The poems were written and published here when they were written, so they were not in subject order.
I sorted the 121 poems into seven chapters: personal-psychological (containing thirty-four poems and thirty-four reflections), social (19-19), culture (15-15), literary (12-12), nature (30-30), travel (6-6) and space (5-5).
That took about a month, and then placing reflections with each poem took another month. So it took about two months to have a first draft.
Final editing and assembling took about another month, so about three months in all.
What other books would you compare 242 Mirror Poems and Reflections to within the genre?
I’ve read collections by Jack Kerouac and Jim Morrison in the past, and Norman Bissett’s Painting the Bridge more recently.
Whether mine is comparable is probably not for me to say.
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
I’ve been writing Folding Mirror poems for a few years now, so it was poets like Kerouac and Morrison originally; along with the lyrics of rock music I’d been listening to since the 1980s.
More recently, it’s been the people who have posted poetry on the fmpoetry site; as well as people who visit, read and comment. I also read a lot of great poetry on other poets’ sites, and many are inspiring.
What else about the book might pique a reader’s interest?
The Folding Mirror poems have been previewed on this site, so if readers like them then hopefully they might buy or rent the book. Especially as there are 121 extra thoughts and poems in the book that are mostly unpublished elsewhere at the present time.
The Folding Mirror is a new and unique form, and readers who have an interest in new poetry forms might be interested. Especially if they like haiku and palindrome poetry.
The poems also delve deep into the (ADHD and bipolarity?) mind of a middle-aged world-travelled PhD graduate with a love for nature; who was inspired by the 1960s/1970s counter-culture, 1980s rock music and 1990s rave and dance. So hopefully it’ll have some interest for people of the same age, or with an interest in those periods of modern cultural history.
The books have also been priced at the cheapest tariffs possible across the UK, USA and EU on Amazon. The main reason for publishing the book was to make the poems available in a structured form, at a low cost, and with extra poems and thoughts to provide more value for money.
Not denying there was some vanity though, or still some lingering hopes and ambitions for superstardom and riches in the future… without sacrificing any artistic integrity of course…
Hi, it’s the Greenygrey. I’ve just been picking out some quotes from the Werewolf of Oz book for our Shelfari page. I didn’t want to use any that give the story away, for those who don’t know it. Here’s the thirty:
“The desert chose my direction, or at least limited my options; I was heading to north and new, and the alternative was south and scary. I was happy to be. Just to be. To be without decisions, pressures and stress. To be the only life I could see. To be able to sing thinking I was in harmony; without anyone to contradict me. Although my feet kept to the road, my mind flew this way and that; to the north, west, south and east horizons; looking north to the future, south at the past, and wondering about what I have missed and will miss to the east and west. Sometimes my thoughts settled into the outback, nothing in nothingness; it was a nice place to be.”
“I just came round to see if anybody fancied coming to the Oo-loo-roo Air’s Rock festival at Uluru / Ayer’s Rock this weekend. There are many magnificent macropod bands there. The way you’re singing it sounds like you could even play there yourselves.”
“I thought we might not survive, such was the dive, but after a minute or three we began to slow down. Elle brought us to our final stop by grabbing us. I had to laugh when Bonzo turned around to me from under her right arm and declared: ‘She’s Got Balls!’”
“Captain Dec replied that he wanted to introduce him to us. After telling him our names, Dec introduced the wine and women loving salty dog as Dai ‘on the Seas’. We had a nice chat, and Dai said he had acquired his nickname to differentiate him from his two best friends back home, a pilot now known as Dai ‘in the air’ and a farmer called Dai ‘of the land’.”
“The Fawlty reminded me of the Hotel Tazmania, which had reminded me of Fawlty Towers. The owner seemed quite confused when I asked for a Werewolf salad; not seeming to know how to make one. I told him it was similar to a Waldorf salad, and he seemed to remember making one of those before.”
“all the donkeys have exclaimed e-ohand most dogs have clapped at least one pawthe coldest ice maidens it did thawand even beavers stopped their gnawonce I told it on the sea-shoreand the waves kept coming back for more”
“I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe: Faster Pussycat screeching on stage at the Rainbow Bar and Grill; I’ve watched Seasick Steve die in a dark shared with Love/Hate. A poison-dart-frog glowing in the Italian Job; Janis and Jimi running wild in the 1970s streets. All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain. Time to fly.”
“We headed back down south once our berry ballooned bellies felt balanced, but we made slow progress; because we took along some sloe berries. However, the sloe berries did satisfy my desire for more berries and set my mind at rest; because prior to berrying them, I’d been regretting our decision not to detour to Dairymans Plains, as it sounded good for a raspberry ripple.”
“My hat seemed to be getting stronger with every step, and provided enough glow for us to see clearly; it felt like I was wearing a green neon sign pointing ahead.I started singing ‘Always look on the bright side of life…’ and the others quickly joined in.”
“She said these were the Alician Fields. They are a natural wonderland for those who have turned the world upside down to improve it before returning it the right way up; where sparkling spring water irrigates the earth from underground, and the sun always shines above.”