Category Archives: blogging

Story-telling in words, videos, images and sharing

Void – Poem

VOID: JK.Leahy Poetry


A rippling void is dancing across endless waters,

yet returning in the dark night to stab at the heart

The cold wind sings this blackness like its favourite song,

The waves join the wind to mock, jeer and keep rolling by

Birds call, keep strong! fight!

A yearn deeper than the flows of strong murky rivers pushes forward

Thoughts tug at the heartstrings, jarring it with questions and rationales

A child could only wait; for a father could speak at any time

Small Celebrations In November – Family

November is a very busy month for our family and usually it is full of celebrations.


My niece Joycelin Kauc, (picture with my mother) celebrates her 17th today (Nov 10th) in Lae, Papua New Guinea. Happy Birthday!

Photo by Leela Rashid. Chris Harris, JK. Leahy and Nathan Harris

We celebrated Chris’s 17th birthday last Thursday, 6th of November.  We will celebrate Nathan’s 20th birthday on November 16. People ask me how I have managed to have my sons in the same month and on the 6th and 16th. I used to joke that it made it easier for their father to remember their birthdays. I also had many other answers of course, but my favourite response is, they were both Valentine’s Day babies. Let’s leave it at that.

In this picture from last Friday, we did not plan to, but we all wore grey the morning of Chris’s birthday. Families do, do strange things sometimes. I enjoy most things in life and am very grateful for them, but I must say, being  a mother is my ultimate achievement – especially when I see my sons grow into good people.

Chris’s girlfriend Leela Rashid (below right) joined us in a breakfast celebration before school. At birthday mornings, I rise early to cook a pancake tower and dress it with as many sweets as I can. This time, two of us were on diet so we had to settle for strawberries, blueberries and light cream.

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Chris will graduate from high school next week and I have a few small projects to finish up, so I will take a short break (a week) from this blog and respond to any comments when I return next week. Thank you very much for reading Tribalmysticstories.

The only breakfast to celebrate a birthday. Rich, creamy and sweet.

Garden Finds – What Is This Object’s Story?


I have been slowly putting a collection of things I find in our garden together. These garden finds are only objects of my curiosity more than anything else. There are quite a few regular objects like an axe in the above picture and the knife below.  Every object has a story, just like people and places. We have lived in Bellbowrie house for over four years and the collection is slowly building up.


Some of you may know I am a museum curator, so I tend to collect things and then I attempt to tell their story. However, even without my museum work, I am always curious to know the story about each of the things my sons and I find on the property. I have some stories to tell.

Recently however, I have been thinking that since I cannot research and find all the stories about each of my garden findings, I may write some short fiction instead. It sounds strange, but I have thought up some fiction you may want to read.

This month, I am busy writing for the NaNoWriMo, so hopefully, in December I will be freer to write some stories about my garden finds.

Let’s see what you make of these objects I have posted.  Please feel free to tell your story about these objects or make suggestions – unless of course, you know what the real story. If you do recognise of know some of the objects, such as the gun, then, you have to tell us.

An old pistol, or is it real? It is quite heavy. Picture JK. Leahy©
A newspaper from November 25, 1987. Picture JK. Leahy©


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.



Photographer captures frozen soapy water bubbles


Copyright: Angela Kelly

A mother takes her son outside to blow bubbles in the snow and gets inspired to produce one of the most amazing photographic series of frozen bubbles. Found on DNA Art is our cool stuff – a collection of bubble photographs by Washington-based photographer Angela Kelly. The bubbles were created using a simple solution of dish soap, karo syrup, and water blown into a minus 9 degree temperature.

“We blew the bubbles across the top of our frozen patio table and also upon the hood of my car and then we watched in awe as each individual bubble froze with their own unique patterns”. Kelly said.

Copyright: Angela Kelly


The art and life of the leaves

Let’s explore the anatomy of the slow, steady growing and long-lasting tortoise-like leaves. I just happened to photograph one of my favourite subjects, the Philodendron which has tortoise-like leaves.

A study by Dr. Peter Reich is looking at the different responses of tortoise-like leaves versus hare-like leaves to changing environments, such as higher levels of carbon dioxide in the air caused by climate change. As each generation of leaves reproduces, new genetic combinations are created.

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Dr Reich studies leaves.  Basically a study of leaf takes into account the longevity, productivity and nitrogen content. The University of Minnesota Professor compares the life-patterns of leaves to the fable of the Hare and the Turtle. In the race, the hare is winning the race, but he gets too confident and takes a nap. The turtle passes the hare while the hare is asleep and wins the race. In the case of the leaves, Dr Reich compares the tortoise-like leaves to be slow and steady growers that live longer. The leaves that are hare-like are speedy growers and do not last long.

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According to this study tortoise leaves such the Philodendron’s leaves will grow slowly and steadily.  But sciences also prove that the leaves in the tropics live fewer years than leaves on trees in cold climates such as the spruce in Canada.

Below is the trunk of the Philodendron.

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Even a Philodendron’s trunk has tortoise-like patterns. This part of the plant is where my art inspiration comes from.

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3D Printer Can Create and Personalise Medication


Spritam, approved by the FDA for people who suffer from certain types of seizures caused by epilepsy, is manufactured in a layered process via 3-D printing. Source: AP

I was catching-up on my Twitter account and I found this article in The Australian about a 3D printer that can ‘print’ pills or tablets. It is quite extraordinary that a 3D machine can make medicine, however, this is the latest medical technology.

Medical technologists believe that doctors will ultimately be able to print any tablet they want while their patient waits and be able to personalise the dose, shape, colour and other features of the pill. Now, does that not sound weird to you? I guess it may not be so for some of you, but for a Papua New Guinean, we make traditional medicine by hand and using various plants from nature, so it does sound weird to me. I guess you could just about programme any machine to do anything these days.

The US medicines watchdog has for the first time approved a pill that is created using a 3D printer called Spritam.

Spritam has been cleared by the US Food and Drug Administration to be used to control seizures in epilepsy sufferers. The tablets are printed with air gaps to create a porous structure that helps them to dissolve faster than traditional pills.

Aprecia Pharmaceuticals, the maker of Spritam, said that the drug would be the first in a series of 3D-printed tablets to treat diseases of the central nervous system.

The printing of tablets will also be useful in the developing world, where distribution by health agencies is often difficult. Researchers at the University of Glasgow are developing a 3D printer that can synthesise any molecule.


Blue-eyed Object – A Strange Find

blue eye
BIG BLUE EYE: It washed ashore on a South Florida Beach to become one of the year’s weird stories. Now we know: It came from a swordfish. CREDIT: FLORIDA FISH AND WILDLIFE CONSERVATION COMMISSION

Gino Covacci was walking peacefully by the sea on December 9, 2012 when he found this gigantic, monstrous eye still oozing blood. He contacted police and then the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation. Eventually the mystery was solved that it was a swordfish’s eye. Covacci’s find became known in the media as the Big Blue Eye.

The Nightshade Escape – Short Story

Picture by Barbara W. Beacham.

Flash Fiction Challenge

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

The Nightshade Escape JK.Leahy Short Story©

“The team employed the use of Nightshade to get the information they wanted from their captive.”

Viola smiled to herself as she finished the paper and her coffee. “Nightshade”, her ‘weapon’ was right next-door, she thought. All this time, her plan to make his death appear subtle, wasn’t working.

Wearing her garden hat Viola strolled to her neighbour’s yard,  pretending to tidy her garden beds. Her blood roses were peeking at her, but she won’t pick them today, the day was fading fast and in a few hours, Greg arrives.

Crouching, she reached through the fence and cut a few shoots and flowers off her neighbour’s nightshades.  A dog barked loudly and so close that Viola leaped, dropping her hat and all the cuttings. She ran back into her house. Shaken, she watched the large doberman sniffing where she sat, seconds ago.

Oh well, if that dog is going to guard the damn nightshade – the rat poison will have to do, she decided.

Shooting An Aloe – Photography

Week three of bloom. ©JK.Leahy photography.

Photography can be easily addictive as most of you that take pictures know. And, when you have an interesting subject of beautiful colours, it is hard to stop shooting. I have been shooting aloes in my garden with the Nikon D5200 and thinking of ways to make the pictures more interesting because the flowers are narrow and tall.

Week four bloom ©JK.Leahy photography.

I find the aloe itself fascinating for many reasons. The most important reason is that it is a medicinal plant and we all have come across the Aloe Vera commonly eaten, drunk and used in skin products. I used the juice when I was pregnant with my boys for skin-care and digestion. These days, we use the aloe vera for cuts and itchy skin. Aloes are part of the Liliaceae family. There are about 500 species of aloes in the world. They are a perennial succulent and their medicinal uses are traced back to 1500BC where it was known as “plant of immortality”.  Read more here.

Week five bloom close-up ©JK.Leahy photography.

Aloes are very hardy plants and like the cactus – they can grow in very tough conditions. The amazing thing about Aloes are their beautiful flowers, many are intricate and often not what you expect to see.I have a few varieties and each one of them have their own unique bloom. See other colours here.