Stories on a Map

Quettreville River

Quettreville River largeMocco Wollert


Evening sun brushes the landscape
with summer glory, deep green river water
twinkles with gold flecks, darting silver sparks
old-time poplars throw into the breeze.
Covered in living patina dead trees silhouette
petrified branches, showing careless art.
Petals and leaves navigate toward the shore
where Charolais watch, patiently waiting,
for the small boats to pass, hissing gently.
Behind green, weaving walls life hides from sight,
insect ballets celebrate in jade corners,
as the sun start to sink, tranquility grows.
The Cathedral bell calls for nature to rest
and the smiling river to behold its dream.


© 2014 Mocco Wollert
Image: Ikmo-ned

Wollert 150Mocco Wollert was born in Cologne and, as a child in Germany during the Second World War, survived the bombings of Cologne and Dresden and capture by Soviet forces. She eventually succeeded in fleeing to the west, making her way to Australia in the 1950s. Mocco taught herself English along the way by reading books in the language, and now writes happily in either German or English. Her often passionate and sensual writing about human emotions and intimacies, which she views as reflecting a European literary heritage, stirs feelings that are universal. Her economy of style draws on the influence of Japanese haiku, which she much admires. Mocco has had eight books published in Australia and focuses especially on poetry. Her most recent book is Australia – Images and Inspiration, written in collaboration with the artist Glenise Clelland and published in November 2014. She is currently working on a memoir of life in 1960s Darwin. Mocco’s poems have won numerous prizes and have been widely published by the literary press. She lives in Brisbane with her husband and they have two daughters.