This summer I treated myself to an Artist Date, a little “assigned play” per the wisdom of Julia Cameron. Julia recommends replenishing one’s well of inspiration through whimsical and festive solo exploration. What could be more fun than a day with two fuzzy visitors to Zoo New England, Milo and Thackery?
The koala brothers slept through most of my visit, but at noon a bushel of fresh eucalyptus arrived. They perked up a bit, and dined with placid, steady determination. Here is my poem about this highlight of their day:
THE KOALA’S LUNCH
The koala won’t holler if lunch is delayed,
He simply continues to doze.
Curled up in a lump, just a furry gray bump
Til a menthol scent tickles his nose.
Eucalyptus – your favorite! It’s time to get up
And fill your round belly with leaves.
He crunches and munches the greens in big bunches
Then stumbles back up in the trees.
Sleep well young koala! Enjoy your long nap.
May your dreaming be pleasant and sweet.
For the rest of the day you’ll be snoozing away
Til you wake up once more just to eat.
When my husband and I travelled through Australia, we saw plenty of kangaroos, emus and wallabies. We loved the fairy penguins on Kangaroo Island and the kaleidoscope of marine life on the Great Barrier Reef. Despite hiking miles of riverbank, we never saw a platypus but became intimately familiar with leeches (ick!). I spied koalas through binoculars, sleeping through the heat of the day at great shady heights. Although I did not succumb to any of the tourist-trappy “Hold a Koala for a Photo” spots, I do regret not seizing the opportunity to touch that fluffy fur!
Cool, crisp fall mornings are now upon us, and Milo and Thackery have returned to their warm San Diego home. I’ve assembled some koala links if you would like to learn more about these cuddly creatures:
- “Adopt” a young koala through the Australian Koala Foundation
- Read the incomparable Mem Fox’s Koala Lou picture book
- Watch PBS Nature’s “Cracking the Koala Code” to learn about the day-to-day life of koala families threatened by habitat destruction.
- See an adorable video of Milo and Thackery as joeys from the Huffington Post
What is your favorite cuddly creature? Or your favorite lunch?