Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Ron Walks My a.m. Circuit

Ron is in Michigan mending
they've taken out all the tubes
so this morning I carried him out the gate
and on to the gravel past the paddock
with the eohippus-small ponies
grazing and steep dog leg bend at the dead trees.

Today I smile to discover a short cut
on the too trodden path
down to the dry creek where dark pools stop
between the wide grey stone ribs,
cut another corner among the blackberry straggle
and stop to pee just out of sight of the road
the creek lovelier here beneath the cool dark trees.

We climb the steepest stretch
bitumin smooth between well tended acres
where two bluey dogs grey in the muzzle
bark dutifully at the fence, my breath heaviest
when the road at last levels a little
at the cul-de-sac and still further we scramble
up the public right-of-way zigzag bush track cross-stitched
by tree roots and knobs of dolerite
one hundred metres steep to the wide meadow
expansive kite-site sunny breast of earth.

We're halflings here in a broad space
descending gently to a tall stand of old growth eucalyptus
the path winding through like an old tale
to where path and road re-meet, the Volk's stone house
still unfinished, and decades in the making.

On the verge a wallaby newly dead on Thursday
is now reduced to vertebrae, empty fur coat and a grimace
stretched back from small teeth skewed and ivory clean.

Look Ron, how bright the distant bay
above this high road as we turn for home.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

New Year

The last day’s swelter of an exhausted year
is party-draped with dead animal odour in the still air
where the green copper cock marks reproach by faintest drift
calls west by northwest and I perplexed scrabble for the source…
perhaps it arrived with the wheels in the drive
across the calendar and coincides with December’s
competitive Strait sailing and up the tangle tree gravel drive
where oak, gleefully collected as acorn
by pairs of quick small hands
is now chewed to a struggle of stubble
limbs tortured to painful skew breaks
by demon possums in the night.
Two brothers make guarded rapprochement
at November’s wedding, the young wives
as yet not met after the hurt
returning at year’s end in uncrossing turns
to the clay and timber of births and beginnings
where I awake in this new year’s birth bed
sense these yet unsullied days, the Christmas book
under my hand where the heart angles for prospects
and there faint in the early light I sniff
the scent of its binding, pages blank and new.