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The Avondale Poets
Grace Platt

Grace (McLachlan-Buckley) Platt
  is another great granddaughter of 
"McLachlan of Avondale"  in Australia

Mount Macquarie

Old Mount Macquarie lavender blue
Out in the distance I gaze at your view
Studded with pine trees great & tall
My heart lifts with joy at the beauty of it all.
In the valley below is a pretty scene
Historic Carcoar in fields of green.
In summer autumn or when winter winds blow
Onward the beautiful Belubula flows.
The stately hospital stands on the crest of a hill.
It has provided fine service for those who were ill.
Carcoar Showground's splendour, few could surpass
True beauty is there as long as time should lastr.
Lofty church steeples rise to the blue sky above.
This picturesque town I truly love.
Into the past my memory strays
Long years ago to my childhood days
When my brother & sisters roamed the green hills
And we played barefooted in the winter's chill.
Ah, Mount Macquarie you change not at all.
Your beauty is endless. I still hear you calling.

-Grace Platt

Grace (McLachlan-Buckley) Platt, second from left &
her three sisters, circa 1950 on the farm @ Carcoar NSW

 Historic Carcoar

Little Carcoar, tidy & clean,
Pretty hills surround in green.
Mount Macquarie rises high
Against the blueness of the sky.
Belubula River flows on down
Through historic Carcoar town.
Old buildings line the village street
With shops, banks & homes so neat.
Proud & regal the courthouse stands.
A  key position it commands.
Upheld the law in former days
To cure the outlaw of his ways.
Churches over a century old
Fine architecture to behold.
Buildings of a bygone era
Yet somehow vision is dearer.
Come see the showground at Carcoar
A  highlight of our tour.
Carcoar welcomes the tourist trade
To view true beauty that's first grade.

-Grace Platt

Grace (McLachlan-Buckley) Platt, husband & children, circa 1960, @ Mandurama,
near Bathurst NSW Australia in front of a "home of yesteryear"

Rocky Ridge Creek

Out beyond Mount Macquarie's rugged peak
Lies a secret valley near a running creek.
Through the village of Neville calm & serene
Down through the forest is a picturesque scene.
Kangaroos bound from the scrub so dense
Swiftly they move as our presence they sense.
The hills rise up to a jagged peak.
Down below winds Rocky Ridge Creek.

There's a story been told by men of old
How the Chinese searched & panned for gold.
They set up camp by this old creek bed
Where the great she-oak fine nedls shed;
And wild goats graze on these lonely hills.
The mopoke calls when the night is still.
This place of beauty is hard to find
Sure-footed down the steep incline.

Very few know of this secret place there.
The concertina rocks are a sight so rare.
A tourist delight I know it would be
These rocks so strange ... a wonder to see.
There is an opal mine not far away
So fossick around & fill in the day.
Now if it's peace & quietness you seek,
Pack up & have a day at Rocky Ridge Creek.

-Grace Platt

Grace  (McLachlan-Buckley) Platt in front of her "home of today"
in 1997 @ Blayney near Bathurst NSW Australia

Briars on the Hill

Our humble home was surrounded
By briars on the hill.
The vivid orange pips would blaze
Of them we took our fill.
We watched for prickles on the ground
No shoes were on our feet.
In & out the briar bushes
The pips were quite a treat.
Our house was roughly painted
A faded forest green.
Our home was very basic
We could never get it clean.
The rats would race about at night
On ceilings lined with bags.
My family lived in this old place.
Our clothes were almost rags.
We lost our Mother years before
And only had our Dad.
He worked so very hard for us
Of this we were so glad.
Trapped rabbits cooked in many ways
To put food on the table,
Curried, boiled, stewed & fried,
Which kept our diet stable.
I reminisce on hard days past
We took it in our stride.
We shared the work to help our Dad.
I look back now with pride.
Yet still the memories fill my mind
Of days I can't forget,
The briar pips that filled us up
These thoughts are with me yet.

-Grace Platt

Home of Yesteryear

It may only have been an old sheet iron roof,
And the toll of the years had shaken nails loose.
The windows were small, didn't let much light in
And the walls all around were corrugated tin.
It had weathered the wild winds & stormy blast
With all the creaks & rattles it stayed firm & fast.
There was no plush carpet or coloured TV,
Just evenings by the fire, children 'round the knee.

The old kettle sang by the white washed hob.
Firelight reflected on the polished door knob.
Pictures in the fire held a fascination.
Today it would be called ... just hallucination.
The hot water fountain stood upon the stove
Simmering away gently in its own alcove.
The lino was polished down on hands & knees.
In the garden was heard the busy hum of bees.

Monday morning was ... "light the copper day".
The washing smelt so nice as it bubbled away.
Pressing was done with irons flat & black,
Heated on the stove... smoothed with fine bees' wax.
The workload was heavy in the home of yesteryear.
Looking back now, you can see that's very clear.
At times nostalgia surges like a tide within
Thinking of that old home of corrugated tin.

-Grace Platt

Poems by -
Grace (McLachlan-Buckley) Platt
written @ Blayney near Bathurst
central NSW Australia

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