A short break for Tribalmystic Stories

Picture by JK.Leahy©

Dear friends, thank you for your continued support of this blog. I will be taking leave from Tribalmystic Stories for one week to pay my respects to my late cousin George Leahy who passed away last night. George was an important person in my life. He has his own story, which I will tell one day.

I will respond to your comments when I return. Thank you.



In the park – Poem

Watercolour by JK.Leahy© Title: “In the Park” (Mt Cootha Botanical Gardens)

In the Park – JK.Leahy©

Restless is the breeze

where light has ceased

Alone, I sit in the dark

where we kissed in the park

Heightened heat burns

And time rhythms heartbeat

I wait in the park

where our footsteps left a mark

Years worn boulders and

seedlings aged into forest

Grave is nearing

for our meeting in the park

My Cootha is one of my favourite places in Brisbane. My closest friend and my son’s godmother Marina works in the temperate gardens. Often when I visit her, this wooden contemporary bench is where we sit and have lunch. I painted this watercolour for her as a gift. The poem is just an observation of people who come to sit in the temperate gardens.

The Fate of Little Luigi – Short Story

Picture credit: Barbara W. Beacham.

Mondays Finish the Story is a flash fiction challenge by Barbara W. Beacham. The story requires 100-150 words (excluding the first sentence). The challenge runs from Monday to Sunday. Here is my short story for this week’s prompt based on the first sentence below and the picture.

The Fate of Little Luigi – JK.Leahy Short Story©

The family had no idea that little Luigi would grow up to be a…murderer.” 

The shock was too much to bear as police led Luigi away from the courtroom. He caught his sister’s gaze and his terrifying eyes softened. Martha turned to her mother; they both buried their faces in uncle Dino’s old, smoke-soaked coat.

“It’s not him, it’s not him – I know… I know,” Martha cried. She felt the 65-year-old Dino’s grip tighten as he led them to his car, barreling through the flashing media cameras and the crowd. Many had come to see New York’s District Attorney Martha Luciano’s brother sentenced today.

“Grim Day for Luciano Family”, headlines screamed across the streets in earlier hours.

Three days later, Martha brought Luigi the aged Polaroid of the family that he had asked for.  Her eyes salted as she tried to smile. Trembling, she leaned closer to her beloved 26-year-old brother.

“I can’t Luigi…you can’t go to jail for me,” Martha sobbed.

(You can read my other short stories by clicking on the top menu on Tribalmystic Stories home page)

Endangered List – Australian species


Picture: Wikipedia: The ornamental snake

How many species are extinct?

The Australian Government keeps track of endangered and extinct species through the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act list. Australia is home to one million diverse species in the world.

The above slithering creature’s safety has caused a stop to a coal mine in Queensland.

ABC News reported a recent Federal Court decision setting aside approval of the Carmichael coal mine in Queensland has sparked debate about whether courts should have that kind of power.

The court was sidelined because the government had not properly considered environmental advice for two vulnerable species in the areas.

The pictured ornamental snake (Denisonia maculata) is on the EPBC list as vulnerable. It is one of two animals that were the cause of this court decision to overturn the mine approval in Queensland.

The fact check has confirmed of the 266 extinct species in the world, Australia lost 25. Pictured below, the Tasmanian Tiger is one of them.

From ABC News File: The Tasmanian tiger was declared extinct in the 1930s. Surveys to determine whether the Tasmanian tiger (Thylacine) was extinct or not began in the 1930s.

Extinct species
USA 266
French Polynesia 89
Mauritius 46
Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha 36
Australia 35
Source: IUCN Red List tables 6a & 6b


The Accidental Artwork – Art Experiments

Photo: Gums Leaves in Little Ruby plant dye on watercolour paper. 2015. JK.Leahy©

I love the accidental artwork. That’s why I enjoy art experiments.

I set out to do another art experiment in my garden this morning. It was a beautiful day for it. I ended up accidentally shooting the leaves intended for my experiment in another artwork, totally unplanned. The accident in the experiment looked too interesting to not photograph.

Photo: Acacia leaves (and one gum leaf) in tea on watercolour paper. 2015. JK.Leahy©
Photo: Acacia leaves in tea on watercolour paper. 2015. JK.Leahy©








After laying out the materials, I applied water and dyes. Then, I pinned everything down with glass. I noticed reflections and water bubbles sneaking into my work. They had their own colour and shadows. That was when my artwork plan changed. It was the experiment that came out of another experiment, the kind  of ‘accident’,  we artists love. Something you did not expect, never meant to or planned to create but it becomes yours. A gift from the universe.

Photo: Gums leaves in Little Ruby dye on watercolour paper. 2015. JK.Leahy©
Photo: Gums Leaves in Coffee and Tea on watercolour paper. 2015. JK.Leahy©









The images were shot with a Nikon D5200 using both macro and 18-55mm lenses. We shall re-visit the work, after all the water dries up in a few days. Thank you for reading about my experiments, please let me know what you think of my accidental artwork in the images.

A PhD student from Guam wins American award for his poetry


Craig Santos Perez, a native Chamoru born and raised on the Pacific Island of Guåhan (Guam), migrated with his family to California in 1995, and does not return home until fifteen years later.

From from unincorporated territory [guma’] emerges from the tension between arrival and departure to map the emotional and geographic cartographies of migration.

Featuring a variety of poetic forms (including lyric, narrative, documentary, and conceptual poems, dramatic monologues, and prose essays), the poet highlights the everyday struggles of staying connected to native origins and customs, while adjusting to new American cultures and terrains. Furthermore, this collection draws attention to, and protests, the violent currents of colonialism and militarism currently threatening Guåhan, a US territory since 1898 and a “strategic” location of US geopolitical power in the Asia-Pacific region.

Perez’s first two poetry books were published in 2008 and 2010.

Read more on Omnidawn

Craig Santos Perez WordPress

Oliver’s Sandwich

Short story

Flash Fiction Challenge for Mondays Finish the Story with Barbara Beacham.

Picture by Barbara Beacham.

Mondays Finish the Story is a flash fiction challenge by Barbara W. Beacham. The story requires 100-150 words (excluding the first sentence). The challenge runs from Monday to Sunday. Here is my short story for this week’s prompt based on the first sentence below and the picture. (This story is set in Australia where we like to use the term ‘mate’ meaning friend).

Oliver’s Sandwich –  JK.Leahy©

“I see absolutely everything.” Oliver said and stopped. Drawn in by a large black shimmering eye, he placed two fat little fingers up his nose and tried to push them as far as he could.

“What are you doing mate?”

“Trying to find cheese”, the three-year-old replied, ignoring his mother.

“Cheese! Where are you going to put it?”

“On my sandwich.”

“Get your fingers out!”

Oliver pulled his fingers out of his nose and poked the large eye on the tree-trunk. The eye was soft. He pressed harder. Something gave and sucked him into the tree.

“Maaa ummmm!”

Then, minutes went by.

“Oliver! Oliver! Wake up!”

The little redhead stirred. He eyed his mother and sister Georgia.

“You fell and hit your head on the tree mate”, his mother said trying to hug him. Pushing her hands away, Oliver said, “my cheese sandwich?”

“Oh Oliver…” his mother said.

“Never a dull moment”, Georgia agreed.


(Note: Oliver is my friend Celise’s three-year-old son. He has fiery hair and large blue eyes and is an inquisitive and mischievous little boy. Oliver also has something to say about everything).

A Tender Bloom – Poem

A Tender Bloom – ©JK.Leahy

A succulent bloom. 2015. JK.Leahy photo.©







Blooming succulent

Tender is her child

Radiant a beauty within

Softness is her skin

A spirit of iron built-in

Petals bruise at touch

Yet, in arid menace

Where dew is languished

She steals her solace

And thrives defiantly