into the wild… the making of ‘Wilderness’

“WILDERNESS” – a collection of 13 songs inspired by animals; animals that have been totemic in the relation between a man (Robert Davidson) and a woman (myself, Kat McDonald).

a sound born in a storm. this is what happened when a bird fell from the sky and foxes followed us home. this is supernatural, homespun honesty. this is soup, at 4am. this is a map of the stars that trace our fate. this is paprika tea. this is animal instinct. this is our story. our music.

this is the sound that came from a gorge . this is what happened when lovers cut each others hair with a samurai sword. this is inside out and up ‘n’ down. this humble creation from this hibernation. baring and purging. this is defining heroes. this is katsu curry & fermented pears. this could be winter. these are our scars. this is our music.

this is the chaos of living with panthers in a house by the sea, where ravens share their secrets with those who speak their language. this is our allegiance to our ancestors and the salt in our Bourbon. two years of travelling the sun, we are finally home.

Source: into the wild… the making of ‘Wilderness’

Listen to WILDERNESS >> HERE <<


wilderness – part two : this is the most honest we have been.

wilderness part 2 COVER

Source: wilderness – part two : this is the most honest we have been.

[a huge fan of Pilgrims, obviously, being one of the singers/songwriters… but don’t let me cloud your judgement.]

this is the sound that came from a gorge . this is what happened when lovers cut each others hair with a samurai sword. this is inside out and up ‘n’ down. this humble creation from this hibernation. baring and purging. this is defining heroes. this is katsu curry & fermented pears. this could be winter. these are our scars. this is our music.

pilgrims – part one of the journey

ep art1

a sound born in a storm. this is what happened when a bird fell from the sky and foxes followed us home. this is supernatural, homespun honesty. this is soup, at 4am. this is a map of the stars that trace our fate. this is paprika tea. this is animal instinct. this is our story. our music.


words, imagery, music (c) Pilgrims, (c) Robert Davidson, (c) Kat McDonald – ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

like a kitten with string

kittens in my head

my feet…
i listened to my feet today.
they beat out my thoughts
in the strangest
of rhythms;
like a breeze and
as its dancing leaf.

and so
the beat goes on…
words come,
in a flurry and fuzz,
like a kitten
with a ball of string.
and it got me
thinking, because
it made me sing.

i have a heart.
it beats for me
and skips for he.
for he,
is the one…

the one
i love to dance with,
but we have not danced
as yet…
that remains a mystery.
but we dance
in my head…
and in his bed…

i think aloud
and spill my words
into a song,
playing along
with my foot falls.

but these words,
like kittens,
pull me apart.
so many words…
so many beautiful words
but they litter me
in a jumble… i tumble
fashioning a song-
from footfalls
and kittens
in my smitten

mumbling and tumbling

eight hundred kittens
– all fur and needles.
they pull and they tug…
they snare
and they snag…
they pounce
and they drag
messing with my song.


i will sing,
for my love,
this strange little ditty
written in string
from the heart
of this kitty.

(c) Kat McDonald 2015

for Robert- my fellow pilgrim- and the REAL kitten in my head…

The Great Insanity

stark imagery and home-thumping truths. brilliant lyrics. wonderful band.
go mad. go check out The Greatest Insanity, ever!

Pure Phantasy

Third, forth, fifth hand preconceptions over actual experience
Chinese toys for wealthy children
Pinkies and spared no expense
Truly oblivious, you are going through the motions of your parents’ examples
Gadgets and safe distractions and pig headed self satisfactions
Repressed adolescents playing the games
For their own gains, for their own sakes
Taking affirmation, learning from your friends’ mistakes
Don’t rain on my parade – Don’t rain on my parade
Or i’ll stamp onto your face
I’ll stamp onto your head
I’m looking for any excuse to vent
Just give me a push, oh give me a push
I’ve been drinking all night
All week uptight
I’m ready for sex or ready to fight

Don’t rain on my parade

Ticking clocks that hinder choices to the demise of our circumstance
Ignorance and stifled voices
And Trident guised as self defense
Truly expendable, you are led by fear mongering and corporate…

View original post 96 more words


oh Daddy...

oh Daddy…

at 13, i thought i knew everything.
at 13, i thought i could take on the world – and win.
at 13, i thought everything should evolve around me – including the sun.
at 13, i thought the world owed me a favour.
at 13, i thought i could have whatever i wanted – when i wanted.
at 13, i never thought about mortality.

at 13, my father died.
at 13, i truly knew how it felt to cry. to really cry.
at 13, i truly knew what injustice felt like – why my father?
at 13, i became angry and cynical.

at 15 i had to put up, shut up, wise up and grow up.
but i did it all wrong.

memories of my teenage years are broken.

i skipped school to dye my hair red.
i shaved my head.
i stole cigarettes from my mother, and porn from my brother.
i dyed my hair yellow
i partied with punks and dyed my hair black.
i sunbathed on railway tracks.
i devoured great literature and took too many pictures.
i sketched body parts, studied Italian and art.
i pierced my own nose and kept a diary of prose.
i took LSD and smoked skunk.
i braved electric fences to be with a wolf pack.
i bleached my hair.
i really didn’t care.

for too long, i didn’t care about anything or anyone. i was full of rage.

when my father died, he left my world starved of light.

i was scared.
i was scared to death of death – thoughts of my father’s corpse rotting in a hole in the ground.
i was scared to love.
i kept people at a distance for fear of losing them.
i feared emptiness.

as i grew up, i felt cheated; cheated out of how the father-child relationship changes, how it develops into a solid friendship. a close friendship.

my father never saw me grow up; he did not come to my 18th birthday party or drive me to the airport; he was never there to disapprove of my boyfriends or tease my girlfriends; he never saw me drive my own car or break bread in my first home; he never saw me perform.

when my father died, it was as though someone turned off the big light.
and i was afraid of the dark.

i miss my father. even now.

memories of that Sunday morning when my mother and brother came into my bedroom to tell me:

“Kathryn, darling… Daddy’s died”

memories of my own screams and wretching still haunt me. still as real as though it happened yesterday.

and i am still afraid. afraid of loss.
i fear that one day i will forget what he looked like.
people say i look like my father, but some days i feel i am drowning in my own blind panic as i try to envisage his face. or how he smelled. that fresh soap & water scent. but what soap did he use? i can’t remember.

‘oh Daddy why you?’

my father taught me many things; how to fly a kite, how to grow vegetables; how to knit and sew; how to skip and how to drive; how to shoot a gun and skin a rabbit; how to bath a dog and how to waltz.

he taught me how to have fun.

my father had infinite patience, something i haven’t inherited from his gene pool. i have precious little of that, but i am learning.

my father’s death taught me many, many things: about life, about love, about loyalty and the importance of family and friendship… but mostly he taught me about myself.

i am no longer afraid to tell people that i love them because life is too short not to.

my father was 52 when he died. i look at my mother and i feel for her. she lost her husband, her lover, the father of her children, her best friend and confidant, and a companion for her in the winter years of her life.

knowing love myself now, i can only imagine her pain and the loneliness of facing her own mortality – alone.

life is short.

we must live each day as if it were our last – and not waste a moment.
we must not take anything or anyone for granted – we can lose everything in a heartbeat, or heart attack as in my father’s case.
we must consider the little things… every detail… how they brush their hair from their forehead, their smile, their favourite shirt, their chosen soap.

and we must love. truly, madly, deeply.

and we must know no fear.
we must tell our family and friends that we love them. every day, in every way.
we must.


because at 13, you think you have year upon year of living and loving and laughter. but i know better…

don’t leave anything to chance.
don’t live with regret – or leave this world, full of woe and wretched of regrets of ‘if onlys’.

so say it now. it’s only 3 words. 3 small words.

but you know they mean everything. so say it now…

“i love you”

and i do: ‘i still love you, Daddy’

(c) Kat McDonald 2014

throw your dreams to the wind like a kite…

throw your dreams to the wind like a kite

i remember, as a child

a child
is born into this world
fearless, knowing
yet blissfully unaware.

i remember, as a child,
scribbling my dreams
on a kite.
a kite
of pretty colours –
red and blue
yellow and green,
dancing on a breeze.
i remember, as a child,
watching my dreams
flying high,
soaring with romantic notion,
as i held on tight to its tail.
my tiny hands, frozen,
clasping the threads;
holding on so tightly
i was so scared of letting go.
my fingers, red,
as the threads
knotted and tightened their grip,
cutting into the soft
impressionable flesh.
little fingers, red.
little hands, sorely determined
to keep the dreams alive.
if i let go, i lose myself and who i am
so i held on tight
to these romantic notions.
foolish childhood notions of mysterious lovers,
mysterious places,
unravelling like a kite, and travelling across the bluest of oceans,
like the span of the sky above me – limitless and clear
with no clouds to cloud my judgement.
i remember, as a child,
small beneath the sky
gazing upward.
eyes big and wide and full of wonder.
my kite, my dreams
tethered to my tiny, cold and blood red hands
i was scared to let go –
for fear of losing all i held dear.
the kite, the dreams tethered to me.
tethered like me
to the ground where i stood
fixated on my dreams;
tethered – like a bird
flapping, and desperate to fly.
i was scared to loosen my grip;
to let go, for fear
that all i held dear
would disappear from me.
but let go i did.

with clouds in my eyes i watched
my kite, my dreams
come crashing down and break apart.
my kite was broken.
my dreams, in tatters, lay broken on the ground.
and so, with a heavy heart,
i buried my kite
and laid my foolish romantic notions to rest.

and twenty seven summers later,
i bought a kite.
a kite, bright and full of colour.
a kite with a long tail to tell,
hopeful and pretty.
i took her
out into the open,
to find her breeze.
i took her
out into the open
and on her skin, i wrote my dreams.
i took a deep breath
and slowly let go…

i set her free.

she took to the open sky like a bird.
sensing her urgency to fly
i let the threads slip through my fingers.
i loosened my grip, biting back tears
as i felt her bite back and snap at the breeze… at me.
but her tail is tangle-free
she is strong –
but the wind is stronger.
changing direction like my next breath.
she dips
as if glancing back at me
for reassurance?
i watch her struggle as i grapple with the threads,
trying to keep her happy.
but she soars
with grace and stoicism.
oh my heart feels heavy –
for in my hands i hold her future.
it’s time to let go.
i watch with clouded vision
as she dances away with my dreams
higher and higher
and out of reach.
she does not look back.
what will become of my dreams,
my hopes, my notions
now that i no longer have control?
what will become of my dreams,
my hopes and notions now that i no longer hold the threads that bind?
i am not scared
because i am ready.
throw your dreams to the wind, like a kite,
because sometimes…
sometimes… they take flight.

Image and Words (c) Kat McDonald


what's wrong with me?


7 empty bottles lie strewn across the floor in violent, yet elegant, disarray…
7 empty bottles and yet i am craving more.

i had to drink to escape. to escape from you. to escape from myself…

what is this?
what is wrong with me?

7 attempts to dim the sight of you, to turn down your brilliance.
7 attempts to mute your voice.
7 attempts to drown you out, and cut you adrift.
7 attempts to crush… crush… crush… this… this…
this… i don’t know what this is.
but i do know this – i have slid beneath it.

but this isn’t anything.
this isn’t anything because everything i touch breaks…

i am broken, like these 7 empty bottles.

i am smashed.

i crawl across the floor and find sanctuary in the fragments of glass… i lie, still.
i finger the shards… i nestle into the pain.
the pain is perfect and exquisite
and makes me forget the crushing weight upon my chest.
a slither of glass in my hand, sparkles like that moment.
a momentary sparkle, like that memory.
i wrap my fingers around its dangerous length and squeeze it tight,
like i hold tight to that memory… that moment…
tighter and tighter…
the pain is profound, the pain is perfect
a momentary distraction, yet it will not yield.
i hold on tight.
tighter and tighter…
like the tightening in my throat, in my stomach
the pain is beautiful and i had hoped it would help me to forget.

but it does not. it only makes me crave more… more wine, more you…

red rivulets run from my hand, like salvation… a release…
a letting of blood…
a way of letting go,
a way of letting go of you…

i lie down, naked, among the broken glass as if cradled by fragmented memories…
i am bleeding. i am punctured.
i am hollow and broken, like those empty bottles.

i am smashed. i am a car crash.

naked and bleeding, my hands are in shreds.
amid the shards, i am cold and bloody and shaking…

but still the blood flows thick and slow.
my knees are cut- blood stains my hands, my lips…
my mind runs away from me as i lie, still…
smashed, smeared and empty,
bleeding and broken.

i drank and drank and drank and drank with a seemingly endless thirst,
and desire…
a desire to forget this… this… this…
just for a short while…

the cuts, this letting of blood, let you roll over me and wash me away.
i forget where i am. you make me forget where i am, who i am… and why i am.

i scream out loud.

what is wrong with me?

7 bullet holes in the heart,
7 pills in the hand,
7 cuts across the wrist,
7 bottles of wine will not silence this.

7 empties, smashed.

i am empty.
i am smashed.

i cry for something real from you, but like these shards, you cut me to the quick.

i curl up, naked, in the carpet of shards and feel them pierce and puncture.
the blood flows like the wine from those broken empties, where i seek solace.

my heart beats fast. i cannot swallow… i feel hollow, empty…

the blood flows.
the pain is pervasive, exquisite like an orgasm.
the pain is supposed to help me drown you out, help me extinguish this…

but damn you’re good…

(c) Kat McDonald 2012

like caged tigers

like caged tigers

like caged tigers…

tonight, more than most, i cannot sleep.

tonight, caged tigers pace inside my head. their roar quickens, deafens – making my heart race against their fire. they are restless. and they are hungry.

tonight, more than most, i cannot sleep.

i am restless, and shaking. the darkness claws at me. my body is in shreds. my heart is bleeding out. and my will is hopelessly and irretrievably lost.

tonight, more than most, i cannot sleep.

tonight, you are so close to me. so close to me. but i cannot reach you.
tonight, you are so close to me, but i cannot reach you. and these tigers are hungry. they need fed.

the tigers roar at me and the darkness mauls. these tigers are hungry. they are restless. i am restless, and shaking. and tonight i can neither sleep, nor reach you.

but here, in this dreamland, you are right next to me, lying naked and still. i cannot sleep. my heart quickens and roars, like hungry caged tigers. you are right next to me, but i cannot reach you. i cannot even reach you through your dreams. and you do dream… i have been there.

the darkness shifts and flickers, like the dying street light outside. like a beacon. is it a warning, or the glow from the burning eyes of the beautiful caged tigers pacing inside my head?

tonight, more than most, i cannot sleep.

i cannot sleep. from inside this dream, i study your face as you lay naked and still beside me. so close to me. and yet i cannot reach you.

i cannot sleep. i watch you. your hair falls, soft. i cannot sleep. your lips. your lips – lips that were once upon a time smashing against mine. i cannot sleep. i want your kiss. i cannot sleep. i cannot sleep. i cannot sleep. i want you. i want your kiss. i want more. i cannot sleep. i want to kiss you. i want to leave my scent on your lips. but my fingers will not let me. my fingers stay pressed hard against my lips. i cannot reach you.

oh but i want to… but i cannot. so i close my eyes to study your face. the curl and curve of your mouth, tempered – only slightly – by sleep. i cannot sleep. damn your mocking mouth. mocking lips, lips that i adore. lips i want to maul for hours. i am hungry. i am restless and shaking. those tigers will not be silenced, or abated. they are wild, and they are raging. they pace, to the pace of my quickening heart.

those pretty blue eyes sleep. even in sleep they possess extraordinary and insurmountable beauty. those blue eyes lost in their dream. and you do dream… i watch you dream. i have watched you from behind those blue eyes, from inside your dream.  i have watched your mouth and your eyes flit behind closed doors. i want to kiss those eyes.  from inside your dream i have watched your body resolve, and the curl of your fist unfurl. i have watched your chest rise and fall behind the clutch of your self-embracing, self-protective shape. i have watched the little boy sleep. but tonight, i cannot.

my unsleeping state is fevered, fearsome and ferocious. like caged tigers that roar and savage my brain. i cannot sleep. you are so close, but i cannot reach you. i cannot sleep. but i want your kiss. again.  i want you to kiss me again. and again. and again. and again. and….

i cannot sleep. i see you naked and crave to have your scent in my hair, with such intoxicating intensity that i will still smell you in the hours that follow. i will not wash, so i may then pleasure myself on your scent alone – long after these moments have gone.  but tonight, these caged tigers are hungry. they are frenzied. and outside the darkness roars, gnawing at my bones… i cannot fight it. i am exhausted… i cannot sleep.

nor do i want to sleep.

tonight, i cannot reach you. but you are so close. naked. still. tonight i want to slip into your dream, and be part of you.  tonight i want to nestle into you, mirror your shape.  tonight i want to hold you, and unfold you. but i cannot reach you.

i cannot sleep. i visualise, study your face, and inhale you.  my fingers are flames. i cannot sleep. i want to slip into your dreams. i want to slip under that cover and drink you in. i am thirsty. my mouth is dry. i cannot sleep. i just want to slip under your skin.

i cannot sleep. i want those kisses. those beautiful stolen kisses and collisions that first smashed my circadian rhythm. i want… i want… and you know what i want. i cannot sleep. i want to fuck. i want you, and i want you alone. i want your mouth. i cannot sleep. i want to fuck. my fingers are telepathic. i need that mouth. i want that mouth. i want my fingers…  i want the smell of your sex to veil me. i cannot sleep. you are so close and yet so far away. this distance – so close. i want your taste in my mouth. i cannot sleep. i want to fuck. i am restless and shaking. i pace, like a caged and savage tiger… my mind is racing, i am pacing. my eyes see more than they should… i prey. i pray for you to wake up… i want my taste in my mouth. i suck my fingers. almost… shall i come to you? i want to… shall i wake you? i want to. but if i do, we will never sleep again. i want your hips raging against mine. i cannot sleep. i want to be at your mercy. i am, already, there. i am restless, and shaking. i want to fuck.

i cannot sleep. i want to fuck. i cannot sleep. i am restless, like these beautiful caged tigers.

i must set them free…


(c) Kat McDonald Photography


shapeless and invisible, i can feel you inside me. stirring, i feel you move me – kicking in my stomach, sticking in my throat and heavy in my chest. i know you are awake… again.

ancient and certain, but without innocence. a now adulterous motive, that once was pure, overwhelms. and you are strong. stronger than me. i cannot fight you.

pervasive and relentless, i know you are there. i feel you growing inside me – gnawing, twisting. you will not be abated, or sated. you heighten my senses and keep me awake at night – feeding my dreams, imparting upon me with a voracious appetite to match my own. you consume me. my thoughts. my thoughts.

sometimes gentle, you seep into my thoughts like the slow, inevitable, stain of red wine on white linen.

sometimes you rape my concentration, violently twisting; clawing for my attention, as you drive harder and deeper into me. and i like it.

but you won’t let me be. i hear you moving furniture inside my head – rearranging my thoughts and dreams, churning through my memories. you are dangerous. you tattoo my better judgement with words and glances and beautiful irrational moves and images that distract me. taunt me. haunt me for hours.

you arouse me.

powerful and completely disarming, you know how to play me. you prey on my imagination and wittingly litter my head with notions and desires. yes, you are dangerous. beautiful, but dangerous.

you are a monster. electric. and…

i awake to find you looming over me – mocking me – cruelly snatching my moments of clarity and shearing what little fibres of self control i have left inside me. you perverse my dreams – alluding me to a seeming reality of wild abandonment and submission. deeper into this seeming reality you lure me and i never want to leave that beautiful place. dreams from which i never want to awaken. but…

you torture me. you steal this world from me – leaving me helpless, exhausted and frustrated. you never finish what you start. so…

and yet you continue to besiege me with daydreams, recent, and replay home movies of all too brief encounters. you fill me with music – songs from before, but i hear them for the first time with visions. visions that make my head spin. dizzy dancing. visions that taste of wine, and the succulence of forbidden fruit.

you are a master of ambiguity. a paradox. controlling and persuasive, you inflame my hands; my fingers – they hunger for skin, naked; my lips – they burn and taste of your spit; my thighs – they ache from clenching and my best endeavours to control this beast…this longing. in your wake, all there is, is a chronic ache that will not abate. there is no calm. no peace or contentment. only recklessness. only a restless itch. a craving. a constant narcotic craving…

cannibalistic. you eat your way out from the inside. a voyeur, i am too weak to fight you. beside myself, i watch you… i watch as you… you… you manipulate and masturbate my weakness. you are loud. screaming to me. i cannot close my eyes and ears to your intoxicating presence. and i don’t want to.

lost, in the middle of the afternoon, i find myself on coffee tables, in dark alleyways, in stark hotel rooms, on leather chairs and in tangled bed sheets. lost, in places i recognise and places yet to be.

all i have left is this duality, this perplexity; this… my complexity.

and it is complex. you wont let me be. every breath i inhale now reeks of anticipation and the urgency of depraved sex. every breath i exhale, of elusive chance and missed opportunity.

are you awake? i know that you are…. again. it’s all too familiar.
you sexualise me, like before. it’s all too familiar.

you are fucking with my head. but please…

don’t stop there.

(c) Kat McDonald, 2010