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Jeff Thorpe
Posts: 347
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2010 3:54 pm


Post by Jeff Thorpe » Fri Sep 17, 2021 2:47 pm


© Jeff Thorpe 15 September 2021

Winter twenty twenty-one, others have been colder,
but this, in Covid’s shadow, saw us looking o’er our shoulder,
a new strain of virus, promptly labelled Delta
has reduced our southern neighbours to a state of helter-skelter,
so far, Sunshine State snug with some semblance of order,
helped largely by short lockdowns and closure of the border,
one wonders though the outcome when cockroaches come through
as no doubt they will, in their colours of sky-blue.

So, to take our minds off a possible Armageddon,
escape cabin fever and legs distinctly leaden,
the spouse and I cut loose and headed up the range
to the Garden City to taste its horticultural Grange,
around the annual Carnival time with flowers all the go
we really hit the jackpot with umpteen parks aglow,
surely lifts the spirits, I’m sure you would agree,
bringing home the message “best things in life are free”.

First stop on the rota, the lovely Laurel Bank Park,
bar raised high with this place, an exceptional benchmark,
dazzling floral garden beds no rainbow could exceed
wisteria walk of violet hue and then to intercede,
Thomas the Tank Engine hedge complete with carriage seats
set in 4.5 hectares bound by inner city streets,
a picnic lunch enjoyed amidst this overwhelming splendour
happy basking in all and sundry that nature could render.

Appetites whetted, Queens Park next vista on our list,
any visit to Toowoomba, this Green should not be missed
and certainly in Springtime when flowers call the tune,
colours so magnificent even pessimists swoon,
we were no exception though we’d seen this show before
the sheer brilliance of the display lures us back for more
the park getting ready for the week end’s festivities
enjoyed each year by thousands, whatever their proclivities.

A change of scene in afternoon, “Ju Raku En” before our eyes,
the USQ Garden showing Japanese landscape highs,
three km of paths around tree groves, islands and lake
cherry blossoms and azalea hill plot a culture break
from the annuals and bulbs of the seasonal garden plots,
this a garden of expansion empty of plants in pots,
the traditional design having appeal of its own
100,000 annual visitors shows garden lovers condone.

No rocking of the cradle needed post our day in the sun
delights of Toowoomba’s nightlife we were forced to shun
an early night beckoned as our parks tryst not ended,
there was more to see at further venues recommended,
six degrees minimum experienced that night
though tucked up in our motel bed the cold had little bite
some ten hours in the kip had us ready as could be
sunny twenty forecast, joy for tourists to sightsee.

The Queensland State Rose Garden, set in Newtown Park,
a place we’d never heard of but, gee it lit a spark,
some two thousand roses in a twelve hectare abode
including playground and sports oval, this a mother lode
our visit just a couple of weeks before the plants will bloom,
imagine in October when the buds will ooze perfume
on our bucket list for next trip to Darling Downs
explore more fully these delightful grounds.

On to a perennial favourite, idyllic Picnic Point
with parkland, walks and lookout, never does it disappoint,
flowers a flush of colour when carnival comes around
we suckers for punishment, each time they just astound,
garden beds well tended, no place for weeds to hide,
coach loads of visitors come from far and wide
perched up high in the Great Divide’s crow’s nest
the nation’s flag flying in the breeze unstressed.

Homeward bound but, one more garden not to be by passed,
Spring Bluff railway station, had we saved the best till last?
20K off the highway at a bend on the main line
a stunning contoured garden, anything but benign
flowers in profusion atop walls of wood and stone
shrubs and cherry blossom trees strategically sewn
and we were rewarded with a grain train passing through
it appearing round the bend tooting horn as if on cue.

One hundred photos taken, going straight to the Pool Room,
memories of two brilliant days devoid of doom and gloom,
pandemic woes forgotten if just for little time
a full display of nature working at its prime,
yes, one could do worse than view Toowoomba in the Spring,
perfect spot to get out for an inexpensive fling
we certainly enjoyed our stay, applying to the task
before returning to the home front and slipping on the mask.

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Shelley Hansen
Posts: 2016
Joined: Sun May 04, 2014 5:39 pm
Location: Maryborough, Queensland


Post by Shelley Hansen » Sat Sep 18, 2021 6:22 pm

Thanks for a great virtual tour of the one and only Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers, Jeff!

It's been a few years, but I could feel the breeze on Picnic Point!! :D

Shelley Hansen
Lady of Lines

"Look fer yer profits in the 'earts o' friends,
fer 'atin' never paid no dividends."
(CJ Dennis "The Mooch o' Life")

Jeff Thorpe
Posts: 347
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2010 3:54 pm


Post by Jeff Thorpe » Sun Sep 19, 2021 2:52 pm

It's good to see an event not cancelled by Covid Shelley. The words for this poem just tumbled out, the impression our visit gave.

Regards, Jeff

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Maureen K Clifford
Posts: 7793
Joined: Tue Nov 09, 2010 10:31 am
Location: Ipswich - Paul Pisasale country and home of the Ipswich Poetry Feast


Post by Maureen K Clifford » Tue Sep 21, 2021 3:10 pm

Terrific write - well done - and a respite indeed to spend time at the Carnival of Flowers - I didn't make it up there this year but have seen piccies and as always magnificent, especially the Japanese Garden. Glad you found respite and inspiration from your trip. :D
Check out The Scribbly Bark Poets blog site here -

I may not always succeed in making a difference, but I will go to my grave knowing I at least tried.

Jeff Thorpe
Posts: 347
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2010 3:54 pm


Post by Jeff Thorpe » Tue Sep 21, 2021 4:24 pm

Thank you Maureen. Toowoomba looks to have gone all out for this year's festival - and good on them.

Cheers, Jeff

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