Rage of the Heart


Hello. Did you miss me?

I missed me.

I think I’m nearly ready to do this thing again. Differently, though.

Go Wild. Quietly.

What does that even mean?

Our worlds have become so small. At least in Melbourne, with the world’s longest lockdown on record.

Our workplaces now reduced to two small screens, are in no way large enough to contain the petty politics of a fragmented workforce.

We’re all a little demented. Consumed with Mask Rage and Vax Rage and These-four-walls Rage.

From my upstairs window, I’ve been watching my neighbours dump regular gifts of bread for the crows to glut their babies’ bellies with.

I’m incensed with Bread Rage.

I’ve become the local mad hat, masked and gloved and stabbing my pickup stick at other people’s bread gifts.

The crows are incensed with Me.

They don’t understand. Maybe none of us do.

You might love this as much as I do: the word courage quite literally breaks down to ‘rage’ of the ‘heart’ (coeur in French).

~ Sarah Wilson, This One Wild and Precious Life

After six lockdowns totalling what will be 263 days inside our isolated urban bubbles, it’s the simple things you miss the most.

The smell of a freshly watered rainforest – no humans in sight.

The brisk, unfiltered rush of clean, inhaled air.

The happy, garbled chatter of cafe clientele, backdrop to the hiss – gurgle – crack of brewed coffee on the make.

That First. Eager. Slurp.

Freedom is the small things.

The temporary loss of these small pleasures has revealed the fault lines of our complicated, global existence.

We rage over their loss, because we don’t know how to deal with the Big. Unfathomable. Things.

Life is out of kilter. Perhaps it always was.

From the standpoint of today, what we thought was Normal is beginning to look like a fool’s wet dream. And tomorrow?

How do we re-emerge into this strangely unfamiliar Covid Normal world?

What will it look like ten or twenty or fifty years from now?

It’s through these Unfathomable Things that Sarah Wilson winds a “hopeful path forward” in her book This One Wild and Precious Life.

A book that is truly of its time, it whispered to me last year, quite by surprise, as I wandered aimlessly through a discount bookstore in what would become a rare and luxurious moment between lockdowns.

I was looking for an answer to my question: What, exactly, is going wild, quietly?

And how do I get back there?

The cover beckoned to me with an arresting image (I only later realised) of the very place where my own earliest memories of life in the wild began – out there, on the road to Cradle Mountain.

I had to buy it. And it was the most transformative read since Quiet; the Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, by Susan Cain. The perfect sequel, in a way, on my Go Wild. Quietly quest.

Tune in to my next post and beyond, where I delve into a review of the book and its power to enlarge one’s world.

Where are you at these days?


  1. says

    Welcome back to this other half-real world. Where I am at, is mostly where I was before. I’ve kept writing, kept studying how to do that better and applying it as best I can. I have 20-something books out now, and year on year they get a bit better.

    Have you watched the new show Claudia Karvan is doing about Aussie books? It made me remember I have Australian stories I want to work on and publish, and not just the genre stuff I’ve been doing. And it also reminded me I’m oldish, heading always to older then oldest, and none of us has forever, sort of.

    Going Wild, Quietly, has been good preparation for you for our recent(ish) world. It’s sort of how Melbourne did Covid, isn’t it? More lockdowns than anywhere else, yet that saved so many lives. We’ve been lucky in Australia, I’m certain. Most of us.

    • says

      Hello Mr Pants! How lovely to see you here! I’ve thought of you often in the unmentionable years of my absence. Thought to write to you, then didn’t, because you have always been so encouraging, and I was doing Sweet FA about it… Sorry about that.

      I’m so glad to hear you are still writing strongly, and keeping the faith. You may be older (who can escape it), but no doubt wiser, too. Please do write those Australian stories – we need them more than ever.

      I have not watched Claudia Karvan’s show. Didn’t know about it, to be honest, but also have been trying to limit my screen time. I will be sure to check it out, now, though.

      So good to see you and thank you for your kindness, always. X

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