How I am Writing my Memoir


From Family Albums – June Perkins

I am so thankful for my blog because it has made me regularly record my life as it happens and as remembered.  As I write my memoir my various blog posts have been a rich resource to mine.

But now I must go beyond the blog.   And in this journey beyond I turn to: friends and family who were there at the time, sensory triggers of a vivid nature like thunderstorms and tastes of food at the time, photographs, and offline resource of journals and letters mostly kept before 1993.  I often send the stories to people to gain their insight.  I like to call on the muse of ancestors and the power of prayer and meditation as I write.

Reflecting on life past sometimes I find gaps that need filling in.  I am truly hoping those boxes of memory papers will help me out !

The three photographs above represent, early  motherhood,  graduation from University of Melbourne, and the days when my hubby and I were first going out.  He had a one bedroom flat and a pet cat called Claws Depussy. He had put all of his worldly belongings into a car and traveled on the boat across the bass strait from Melbourne to Tasmania.  A year after we met we were married.

I used to write diaries for my children, and keep notes of many meetings that I went to.  I still try to write them a letter a year of what their lives were like.  I hope to pass these onto them one day when they will mean more.

The other two major challenges are to consider what  would people like friends, family and general public find interesting  or inspiring about my life and what am I able to publicly share.

As I weave the threads this is what is emerging: the role of cultures from both my Mekeo Mum and Aussie English Dad; the role of the Baha’i community,  the power of writing and art in my life, the significant positive impact of some amazing people on my life (some well known and some who should be), portraits of people who have inspired me directly and indirectly significant life events – motherhood, surviving and recovering from a cyclone,  completing phd studies, and moving country to city.

As I come to the end of my first rough draft of the memoir I am wondering how best to present my memoir, and if I have it right for what I want to achieve.

This is my mantra for the memoir to help me as I head closer and closer the editing process.

This memoir is an exploration of landscapes, dreamscapes, writing scapes, culture scapes,  and the getting of wisdom from Tasmania to Queensland.  A Mekeo/Australian girl’s daily and remembered life.

(c) June Perkins

Grey and White


I don’t mind that people dye their hair, but why did someone mind that I didn’t dye mine. At the moment I have chosen to not worry about the grey starlight in my hair…

Originally posted on Ripple Poetry:

cloudgirl4 - Copy

Grey and white streaks
begin to lace themselves through my hair

I embrace
the signs of wisdom
chasing through me there,

And all around me others dye
and tease their hair to conceal their age
but that is their affair.

I don’t mind that they want to do this
and hold onto their esteem
but why does one say to me
‘You should dye your hair
you look so ancient and so old’

I explain to her
when I was younger
I looked younger than my age
and am happy to embrace
the white and grey that now
dance through my life.

She cannot take a hint
and simply doesn’t understand
I don’t need a bottled colour
to conceal the process I’m now in
and now she wants to know the colour of my youth.

Why do so many worship forever staying young?

I am happy to see silver starlight

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Handle with Care


the morning news unsettles
and reminds
for many there is no luxury
to look for daily balance

only the beginning of an end

lives blasted out of the sky
children bombed on the beach
apocalyptic movies due
at the cinema soon

and on the way to when healing arrives
the places where there is the

beginning of a beginning

every moment
is now handle with care

the places where tear drops
bomb the hope just out of reach

longing for the time
visions of one world
might be in the real world soon

the temporary bandages we put on things
attempted treaties delicately achieved
are never enough

when will we make way for the time
when unity might
beam its sunlight
through leaves of green
to blind the apocalypse of now?

(c) June Perkins

The PhD Journey


Excavating memories of working towards a PhD, looking back it was an epic journey

Originally posted on Following the Crow Song:

i have a dream wall

Passed this wall every time I took the bus to university

Retracing the steps of the PhD journey, I come across memories of: reading with Indigenous writers in Sydney, meeting with an interviewing an esteemed-passed -away Indigenous actor, visiting a women’s dreaming camp with Aunty Anne Thomas, and typing whilst rocking a baby on my lap, and more.

The Phd was a massive quest, spanning three countries, three universities, four supervisors, the birth of three children, a year off for full time work, living in three states of Australia and my husband completing his PhD. I look back and wonder that it was ever completed.

The journey of the Phd included: conversations with artists, carvers, writers, actors, about how their creativity empowered them, travelling overseas and attending conferences where friends were made, including an international playwright’s conference as a delegate for Australia, and the getting of wisdom and courage.


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