How to get High on a Friday Morning at the U3A Art Group

by Lise Day

It’s a cold morning as we arrive old and grey
straggle in burdened with canvas and board
used yoghurt cups, ice-cream bakkies, jam jars
brushes and pencils, spiky and stiff.
We invade the stale air of the dining room
with lingering smells of last night’s fish.
Carefully spread our plastic protectors
so no drops of paint on carpeted floor.

We squeeze our fat tubes, paint blobs out
Raw sienna, burnt umber, lemon yellow
shrieking orange for Tony’s stripey cat.
May mixes cobalt and ultramarine blue
for a paradise island shimmering scene.
Madeleine talks of internet dating
as she paints a hibiscus in opera pink.
Sylvia, who brings her little dog Boo,
brings life to a parrot crimson and green.
I choose water colours which psychedelic
run and merge messy and quick.
No problem with flops, just flip over paper
begin again on the other side.
saturated with colour, intent on creation
we are heady with turps, high on inspiration.



by Candy Rohde

flows around corners
topped by a cloche with a quill or
a Stetson sprinkled with dew,
billowing clothes cut from
bright parachutes, spitting sparks.

I’ve seen her soar on flying fish wings,
nosedive into black Blue Holes,
slough her skin under vines of a banyan.
I’ve startled her doing a headstand
sprouting lines from Ondaatje, or
pirouetting on the ceiling
spinning the salad.

A solitary child, she winced
when red marks slashed her words,
until Imagination airlifted her to a new planet.
When she sighs, Spontaneity floats her
high on a hot pink trapeze,
or rolls her out on a long Bacchanal.

She unplugs the phone,
ignores dull requests, but
never says no to a joll with
Curiosity in day-glo.
She hurls open windows,
lets dust bunnies breed,
makes Adversity tango,
if he knocks on her knees.

She puts Interruption on a ship that won’t dock,
wills Distraction to become hooked on the slots,
exiles Boredom to make budgets and lists,
craves to practice euthanasia on
Li-ter-al Ex-pres-sion
for sucking up her oxygen.

As difficult to seduce as a rocket trail,
she will, when riding on the shoulders
of Imagination,
offer a similar thrill to skydiving with swallows.
To leash her would be as reckless
as bottling angels on horseback.

She may even introduce you
to her friend Mystery,
the one feeding her dutiful dung beetle
passion seeds to make him