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The Avondale Poets
Aunty Grace


Joan Marion nee Page Farid is
daughter of Ida Marion nee Rixon Page  1912 -1988
granddaughter of Alice Jean  nee McLachlan Rixon  1880 - 1967
great granddaughter of Daniel McLachlan  1852 - 1917
great great granddaughter of  "McLachlan of Avondale"
in AUSTRALIA since 1850

Aunty Grace

Grace Marion McLachlan 1887 - 1970
daughter of Daniel McLachlan 1852 - 1919
granddaughter of  "McLachlan of Avondale"
in Australia since 1850

Your posture, deportment & dress
Suggested  "aunt"  would be more suitable means of address;

Grace Marion McLachlan   1887 - 1970   photo abt 1906
Grace Marion McLachlan 1887 - 1970 photo abt 1906

But you were truly named  Aunty Grace
One full of patient love & giver of undeserved favours.

You did not aim to attract affection
But your nieces & nephews glimpsed your love & loved you back.

Grace Marion McLachlan - photo abt  1915  in Sydney NSW
Grace Marion McLachlan - photo abt 1915 in Sydney NSW

You lived in the shadow of your elder sister
Who was our Grandma & whose presence demanded attention.

Yet through your quiet faithfulness
We knew you to be gentle, mischievous, honest & loving.

 Grace Marion McLachlan  with four of her sisters - Cliffside at Manly NSW  abt 1929
 Grace Marion McLachlan with four of her sisters - Cliffside at Manly NSW abt 1929

I loved staying with you when I was sent
To your house,  for my edification or as your companion.

Even though there were no toys, lollies or TV
YOU were there @ "Heath Cottage";  & there was a sunny kitchen porch

Grace Marion McLachlan  - home from 1940 with chn of sis Eva who died 1940  Glengrove @ Metz NSW
Grace Marion McLachlan - home from 1940 with chn of sis Eva who died 1940 Glengrove @ Metz NSW

Where I watched you working
And where I ate frozen cream from the top of the milk sprinkled with sugar.

There were prickly bushes with red berries
And multi-coloured chooks who laid brown speckled eggs of all sizes.

 second photo  Glengrove @ Metz NSW
 second photo Glengrove @ Metz NSW

There was an old strawberry patch
From which I could eat all that my small hands could find.

There was a tin tub & a chip heater
That would heat water; but  it would make frightening sounds when lit.

Water was limited. Adjusting the heat was tricky;
But it was never too much trouble for you to prepare my evening's bath.


Grace Marion McLachlan - mature years - at Elaine Simmons wedding @ Bathurst NSW in 1957

There was conversation & discussion
As you washed up in the large tin dish & I wiped with linen tea towels.

You informed me of the Presbyterisn Catechism.
You taught how God's armour covers me like Christ's Cross as I put it on.

Eva  nee McLachlan  Simmons  -  toddler son Bill Simmons -  Grace McLachlan n  cared for  him following death Eva in 1940
Eva nee McLachlan Simmons - toddler son Bill Simmons - Grace McLachlan n cared for him following death Eva in 1940

You created your private space on a veranda.
It was invaded weekly by a horde of children but you never complained.

I never heard you boast or gossip
I saw you serve others as loving duty & always with the utmost  "grace". 

Eva  nee McLachlan  Simmons  - twin daus  Shirley & Elaine  Grace Marion McLachlan  cared for  them  folowing death of Eva  in June 1940
Eva nee McLachlan Simmons - twin daus Shirley & Elaine Grace Marion McLachlan cared for them folowing death of Eva in June 1940

Yes,  you were "Grace"  in name & deed.
Were you aware that you were loved & respected by all who truly knew you?

written by -

Joan Marion  nee Rixon-Page  Farid during 2002,  
@ Weston in Canberra,  in the Capital Territory of AUSTRALIA


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