on the plains, Weona’s weary – coughs dust from black soil 

caverns; arid gusts craft dirt angels on Maitland Street. Sky pearls 

squawk central ballads, lassoed in the eyes of rural foremothers

– steadfast and burning – on a flatline crockery cupboard of dust bowls 

and sapless river bends. The farm kids plead a barren sky for charity,

sandwiched in nature’s divorce proceedings – little sticky palms 

glued shut. Mother midnight casts shadow nets on burnt paddock crusts, 

whips desiccated breezes for taste. Starve, starving, starved – cattle lows 

and sheep bleats gargle, pink tongues turn to dry sponge. Cotton sheets 

on the Hoist veil melancholy – cartilage for the crows.


along the Oxley, tyres mould bitumen; squash the backland waves 

en route to the one-horse airstrip –‘coffee bar closed.’ Board 

a 74-seat Mosquito with the other gumleaves, Gadigal-bound; 

swap crunchy grass for gum-flecked cement, placid Sundays 

for train screams. Ochre lattice from 30,000ft; play God’s dentist, 

diagnose dead-land cavities; prescribe cloud fluids – the pharmacy’s

shut for summer. Return to where time’s measured in ceiling fan 

whips; sprawled slumber on low thread counts. Under shadow,

the moon bullies the clouds; at long last they bawl – sleepy smirks

emboss pillows.



after the rain, fog settles into mountainous cauldrons – bleached 

gaps in granny’s sage crochet. Crevices gulp water till bust; 

pockmarks on parched tin, safe for pussycat paws. Weona’s 

underbrush unfurls to stitch the fractured rind – absence of dirt 

underfoot. Ironbark smoke isn’t feared; amber flicks defrost 

human leather. Emerald palettes are silky on the pupils; the dentist 

has changed careers. An aerial botanist now – panning the landscapes 

for first drafts in scrambled word slices; too messy for toast. 

The Notes app transcends altitude, copies desert pea trembles 

and ghost gum moans onto digital tissue scraps; an alphabetical 

artisan of Country’s seasonal rage.