Thursday, December 21, 2006


Just home from my overnight stay at Old Adelaide Gaol. Turns out I was the only one booked in to stay the night. So lucky me, I got to stay alone in a cold oven of a cell in the Remand Wing… just one other person acting as Caretaker… but he was on the other side of the gaol in the dorm building.

I booked in at 5pm and my ghost tour got underway at 7.30pm. Jeff and I had the whole place to ourselves, so as the place sank deeper into darkness he told me the many spooky stories of the place. Jeff is part of a team of paranormal investigators PFI (paranormal field investigators)… check out their site if you like… it’s not a bad one.

The night wore on… Yard 1, 2, 3 ,4, the Hanging Tower, the graves of the executed, the tunnel, the New Building (built in 1879). By this stage it was 11.30pm and Jeff and I had been at it a while. We were standing on the staircase in the western wing of the New Building… completely in the dark. I wasn’t freaked out… nor was he. He’d been recounting stuff for a while and in quite a matter-of-fact way.

So fifteen minutes in, we hear a knocking. Like someone tapping the end of a wooden cane onto a ballroom floor.

It was to the left of the staircase on the second landing… locked off by an iron cage gate. We checked the wind level outside, but there was barely a gentle breeze. We revisited to the spot twice more and the sound came back, louder, within a minute of each arrival. And by then we could hear a softer noise in between the knocking.

Now… I don’t know what it was, neither does Jeff, but when you’re standing in (arguably) South Australia’s most haunted building at 11.30pm, and are interrupted by a strange noise… and when you read later that most ghost sightings have been said to occur on the landing to the left of the staircase… it kinda trips you out.

Jeff then took me back to the supper room and showed me footage he’s taken over the last few years. Much of it in the gaol. The best one was a cell door opening and closing by itself in the Remand Wing. MY wing for the evening!!!!!

After this we said goodnight and went our separate ways. I spent most of the night after that waiting for my cell door to open on me.

Okay… so there you go... Old Adelaide Gaol… pretty damn freaky.
My next stop in January is the most haunted town in Australia, Picton NSW. In the meantime I’ll be writing this up for my next book of poetry... Ghost Poetry... oh and check out the OAG phots in the gallery, they'll give you some small idea... the first shots there are of past plays of mine.

wishing you all a Merry Xmas and Happy New Year.

Wednesday, December 6, 2006

Old Adelaide Gaol

Well... i've been working hard on my canberra poems and think i have a little collection close enough to complete. Now I have a stay in Old Adelaide Gaol coming up. There are many spooky stories associated with this place... but you can read all about it at the sites below...
ie. the story of Squizzy Taylor's necklace, Liz Woolcock, the only woman to be hanged at OAG or the terrible thing that occurred at Sundown Station.

Also check out Divan 6 if you are looking for some new poetry online. Some top Australian voices there. I have a poem titled... Young Ballerinas.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Room 214

So what went down at the Hotel Kurrajong in room 214?

Firstly a bit of background. Ben Chifley, as Prime Minister, never lived at The Lodge, he worked twelve hours days and returned each night to the Hotel Kurrajong, to his room at the top of the stairs at the end of the hall.

On June 13, 1951, he skipped the Golden Jubilee Ball and went back to room 214 where he suffered the massive heart attack that killed him. Since then there have been many stories in regards to the appearance of an apparition.

So I booked myself in and stayed a night, setting up the video camera to capture anything that might occur. I talked with staff over the course of my stay and heard tales of people being tripped up on the stairs, of a cleaner that refuses to enter the room after being tapped on the back and of a figure appearing at the window, pointing towards Parliament House.

I cannot corroborate these stories, but have yet to view the video footage of my stay. I can tell you that the movie, The Shining, was at the forefront of my mind. I had turned the handle like Danny and entered the room despite the warnings. But for the rest of the story you will have to wait until my book of Ghost Poetry is published.

What I can confirm is that Canberra is some weird kinda town. I was just happy to get out of there and back to Melbourne. Everything looks like an office, the cafe's, schools and playgrounds... or a photocopier inisde an office.

Next month I am staying in a cell next to the Hanging Tower at Old Adelaide gaol... will post info on that soon. It is arguably up there among the top three haunted sites in Australia.
Now… if you feel ripped off because you wanted more goss, then take a stand and leave a comment. Or perhaps you have a spooky story to share.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Canberra and the Cable Car

Am just home from my first Ghost Poetry stay. I flew back in to Melbourne from Canberra and went to Crash Test Drama where my short play CABLE CAR OF DEATH was being read.
News is we won the night. Gareth Ellis picked up Best Actor and Best Director, Suzie Stapleton won a prize, and CABLE CAR won both the judges and audience vote, which means we’re in the final next year.

So I’m feeling chuffed with myself and the whole crew. Seems audiences want ‘zany’ comedy at the mo, so for now that’s what I’ll do (although I’ll be working on poetry for a while … so the next one might have to wait).

Other news is that i was recently shortlisted for the Wannabee Poetry Prize. One of 30 from 630... but was pipped at the post. Losing is made easier however when I lose in good company... with Kevin Brophy and Gita Mammen among the list.

Stay tune for the post on my night at the Kurrajong Hotel in Canberra. I stayed in Ben Chifely’s room where he suffered his fatal heart attack. I’m head-down now working hard on the poems , but promise to have a spiel for you soon.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Ghost Poetry is on!

Big News. Ghost Poetry is on!

Just scored some love from the Australia Council to undertake a poetry project over the next 12 months. Wow! It’s going to be one helluva year.

The goal is to sleep at ten so-called haunted sites all over the country: hotels, community halls, courthouses, homesteads, gaols and arts centres. I have recently approached a famous theatre in Melbourne but they wouldn’t have a bar of it. Bummer.

Needless to mention I’m feeling very supported at the moment in my writing career, but also excited and scared. It promises to be an intense and very personal exploration.... and to express it through poetry.. to test poetry perhaps... will be intriguing.

So stay tune to the blog to read up on all my visits, and in twelve months I should have a full ms of Ghost Poetry. My first visit kicks off mid-November. I'm staying in the room that an Australian Prime Minister died in.

BTW I’ve been doing lots of research but it seems like everybody knows at least one haunted house. Drop me a line if you like, would love to hear suggestions of places or just your spooky stories.