Abyssopelagic, Ocean of Depression (I know the sea), Paint Haiku, & Untitled by John Blackley

Abyssopelagic, Ocean of Depression (I know the sea), Paint Haiku, & Untitled by John Blackley

Paint Haiku

Paint Haiku


Ocean of Depression (I know the sea)

My family are sailors,

I do not have the callouses of rope burn,

The dark skin from many tans and sun burns.

I may not have won a Sydney to Hobart.


But the sea she knows me

And I know her.


When I’m tossed about by life,

Clinging to truth like driftwood.

Waves of depression crashing over again

And again

I have been in the rip tide of anxiety,

Being pulled beyond your control,

The struggle to breathe,

Learn to move away from that dangerous flow.

Smooth seas never made a skilled sailor.

The tumultuous tempestuous tides

Of the sea of me,

Attractions like the Great Barrier (of) Grief

The Great Australian Bite of that second "comfort" pizza

East Australian Current Netflix binge


But the sea knows me

And I know her


She knows that this thinly veiled metaphor about depression doesn’t hold true

For it is between the Two lighthouses that I come and sit and watch the waves.

To let peace, wash over me

Salt water has long been used for healing

Not just external wounds but

I find peace with the blues the greens the whites the browns.

She is never the same,

Yet in the change her waves and unpredictability are a constant

Rhythm enough to stop the pounding of thoughts.


But the sea knows me

And I know her


And you see the sea is worthy of respect and honour,

my family are sailors

but they are boat people too


She took my ancestors Convict vessels to this land.

She propelled long ships from Scandinavia

With the awesome winds and tides.

When the oars men got tired.

Before the propeller we lived in fear and awe of the seas might and power.

Even when we try and tame her, build safe harbours, she can bring destruction or stillness

See I know the sea well enough that I don’t know her at all.





How can you do this to yourself?

What is there to gain, nothing to give, always taking causing pain?

Getting caught up in the self-defeating cycle, continually seeking pleasure as your only aim.

How can you keep hurting yourself in those ways for momentary gain?


you’re killing yourself man

Try moving forward, like a shark never going back.

So here’s me throwing this all way cause I never want to see it again

What happened to your plan?

Why must I always do this, there is so much more to life than this,

Here I am throwing it out to sea, that person I never want to be.

The old is dead and gone and the waves wash over and restore me.


I am starting new and fresh, that pain is put to death because I have thrown it out to sea.

The chains have broken around me,

I AM FREE because your love is deeper than the pit of despair I put myself in,

deeper than the Titanic’s new home.


Underserved I stand here in awe,

thanks to you I’ll never find myself alone.


Find John on Instagram, writing the occasional article for From The Gong, and check out some of his work hanging in Rad Bar


Executive Producers

Sue White

Sarah Hunt

Daniel Henson

Fruit by Emma McNair

Fruit by Emma McNair

Stag by Adrienne Corradini

Stag by Adrienne Corradini