This is barefoot country
even now, in early winter
when the cool mountain air dampens
the risk of a startled snake rising
in your path.
This is sitting-still country –
where the bracken unfurls its fronds
and where the layered view of the purple hills
makes you contemplate your place
in the natural order of things.
This is cracking bark country
where a distant haze of smoke drives
a shudder through the core of the old-growth trees –
that yearn and lean toward
the merest hint of flame.
This is vast night country,
a curving roof of blackness shot through with stars –
points of light reaching across time –
and you wonder at the significance
of a self-aggrandising world.
This is stony swamp country –
as springy as the moss on the southside of the trees –
as pitted and tender as the bruise you find
on the sole of your foot three days
after you return home.
To access the full text version of this article, login if you are a subscriber.
Subscribe to Griffith REVIEW or purchase the edition in our Online Store.
Level 4, Griffith Graduate Centre
South Bank, Campus – Griffith University
Sidon Street, South Bank 4101 Australia
South Bank Campus, Griffith University
PO Box 3370, South Brisbane 4101, Australia
Phone: +61 7 3735 3071
Fax: +61 7 3735 327