I’m pleased this morning to be able to talk about a new range at The Potting Shed – a collection of garden and conservatory furniture and sculpture by local Southern Highlands artist, Joe Vinks. These pieces are truly stunning works of art – expertly crafted from fallen timbers, predominantly gum, and embellished with gum and casuarina nuts. They are rustic, elegant and witty. Most of Joe’s commissions are for international clients these days – since a major ski lodge installation for a high profile Australian in Aspen launched him in America, his work is now in demand around the globe. So naturally we are pretty excited to be able to show several of his works. Below a beautiful console table, a round occasional table and decorative sculpture, a two seater garden bench, the ‘Outback’ chair, the Bushman’s chair and two versions of his plant ‘wraps’. These bottomless pots are not only strikingly lovely – they are a very clever design enabling you to move large potted plants, from place to place with ease. Joe will make gates and all other items to your exact dimensions so if you have a particular need, please let us know. In the meantime, do come in to The Potting Shed and view this gorgeous and very Australian collection by the talented Mr Vinks.
I subscribe to a site called Listserve where “one person a day wins a chance to write to the growing list of subscribers.” Through this random global lottery, one of the 26,000 subscribers is drawn and they’re invited to share their ideas with others via email. That winner gets 24 hours to prepare their ‘essay’ and to present their views, advice, favourite movies or music .. or whatever takes their fancy, to the world online. It makes for interesting reading. Yesterday the winner of Listserve was from Queensland, the first Australian I’ve seen listed. Her name is Larsa Al-Omaishi and she gave us this poem. I asked her if I could share it with you, as I found it very moving and thought provoking and beautiful.
Where are you from?
By: A Third Culture Kid “Where are you from?” He asks with a smile I’ve heard it before I’ve gone through this trial “America.” It’s not untrue I lived there awhile Traveled its highways Going many a mile From deserts to peaks From cornfields to shores I’ve seen many states I’m keen to explore “No, where are you really from?” Where was I born? That would be Montreal “So you speak French?” No, not at all I moved to Toronto When I was young But English is not My mother tongue “Okay, but, where are you originally from?” My parents were born In the heart of Iraq Upon hearing the phrase He sits back in shock “So … you’re Iraqian?” It’s Iraqi, my dear Watson “Then what languages do you speak?” In what language do you laugh? In what language do you cry? In what language do you cope When a loved one lays to die? In what language do you love? In what language do you hate? In what language do you comprehend What’s chance and what is fate? In what language do you smile? In what language do you frown? You see it’s all the same my dear From New York to Cape Town In what language do you feel The sting of war and pain? In what language do you lose your home And then rebuild again? We are not that different Ignoring race and creeds We are all but human With human wants and needs In the hospital you’ll see Emotions raging high Carried on by wave and wave Of hello and good-bye Some are taken far too young Some taken when it’s right Some coming in to join the world And blinking in bright light Some realizing far too late The love they should have shared Some accepting their due time And going well prepared Let me share with you a fact That few will understand Inside that operating room, my friend There is no human brand You all look the same inside Appendix, heart, and lung Kidney, liver, spleen, and bowel Pancreas and tongue When we put you on that table To try and save your life Skin colour is of no concern To us or to our knife I don’t categorize myself By a patch of land I don’t identify myself By merely where I stand I don’t say I’m only a part Of one particular race At the end of the day, at the end of the night I am merely in one place We all come from the same dirt We’re Earthlings in our blood And borders are but foolish lines Drawn in clumpy mud Where am I from? I’m from The World The same is true for you And with that I’ll leave you here I bid you all adieu. Larsa is studying medicine and surgery at The University of Queensland. She asks that you vaccinate your kids.