Shirley has had a 30-year career as a journalist and teacher. She has been creatively writing since she was 5 and had her first story published at age 13. A University of Western Australia graduate, Shirley is married with 2 adult children.
Heights of embarrassment
Between the ages of 16 and 17, I grew by about six inches until I was the tallest student in my high school, not just the tallest girl, the tallest STUDENT period.
Vanished but not forgotten
Even after 55 years, the disappearance of the three Beaumont siblings from a crowded, Adelaide beach on Australia Day 1966, still haunts me.
Unexpected find in the desert
The little hand in the red dirt curled open to reveal something glinting in the blazing, midday sunshine. I stooped down and gently pushed the tiny fingers open to reveal the locket. I carefully unraveled and untangled it and held it up to the light.
Sublime Somerville wail a rally cry
Jimmy Somerville's haunting wail as "Smalltown Boy" begins, before the synth-pop beat kicks in, so typical of '80s dance music, touched me.
Endless summer hot to the touch
Heady aroma of wisteria Fainting on the vine in the midday sun Outside breathless, expectant, shimmering Baking, endless skies pregnant with promise
- Second Place in Gemini Season Challenge
Gemini, unfriend your party twin
Oh my Gemini, you just don't know when to quit, do you? Like the other dual signs, you're a walking, talking, real life contradiction, an enigma wrapped in a mystery and tied with a paradoxical ribbon.
What I wasn't told ...
Red are my stretch marks, Slashed across my belly and thighs, Purple are my leg veins, So knobbly and knotty, Lavender strings just under my skin,
Who's afraid of a fat-ass wombat?
First of all, let me lay my cards on the table and unashamedly declare my bias. I absolutely adore wombats (vombatus ursinus) and, until a family holiday to Tasmania, in 2017, I'd never actually encountered or seen one in the wild.