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a potters notebook cover


A Potter’s Notebook is a collection of ideas, in text and drawings, from an author who has been a potter for many years.

It is these ideas that ultimately find expression in simple tea bowls, used and enjoyed in everyday life.


In Store Price: $19.95 
Online Price:   $18.95



Ebook version - $AUD9.00 upload.


ISBN: 978-0-6482780-3-0
Format: Paperback
Number of pages: 86
Genre: Non Fiction


John O'Connell
Publisher: Zeus Publications
Date Published:  2018
Language: English




    each day

    brings new light

    and new ways

    of seeing things


It may happen through contact with a beautiful bowl or while watching a potter at work. When it does happen there is the realisation that the potter has always been within, just waiting. And then the journey begins.  


    light lingers

    and the cold too              

of early morning

    in the desert



He was working in the open outside his mud-brick house, squatting at his wheel, which turned on a hub fixed into the ground.

The potter formed a small bowl on top of a mound of clay, and then cut the bowl from the mound. He placed the bowl beside him, turned the wheel and formed another bowl.


When a lot of bowls had been made and allowed to dry they were carefully stacked on the ground and slowly surrounded by fire.

The bowls, having been fired so they would be hard enough to be used, were allowed to cool. Then they were loaded onto a wooden cart and taken to the town.


In the middle of the night, as the crowded train pulled slowly into a crowded station, tea sellers called from the platform.

Chai garam. Chai garam.

Carriage windows were pushed up and sleepy passengers passed their money. Small, unglazed bowls of hot tea were passed back.

Some passengers left the train, others boarded. And the train moved on, into the night.


The simple clay bowl sat perfectly in the hands. It was delightful to hold, delightful to drink from, as delightful as the tea itself.

It was the custom, when the tea was finished, to discard the bowl. So the empty bowl was crushed in the hand and dropped beside the railway track. It was like a beautiful flower, withering, falling to the ground, its purpose having been fulfilled.



    in the afternoon

    the rain came

    bringing music

    and quiet colours



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