Academic journal article Hecate

Dreaming of Pineapples

Academic journal article Hecate

Dreaming of Pineapples

Article excerpt

That night I dreamt of pineapples

and when my cousin asked where

I wanted to go, what to see,

I said I wanted to know how it was now

Along the road to the Sunshine Coast,

at Nambour, the Big Pineapple stood.

I hadn't seen it for thirty years

but I remembered the Golden Circle juice cans

In the paddocks Conrad dug in

pineapple heads. A sixth generation farmer,

he showed me the four growings: roothead

to leaf, to flower, to 18-month gold-orange fruit

'We used to kill one crow and string it up

to keep the others away,' he said. 'Smart birds,

sit when I come out with a stick,

only fly when they see a gun.'

'Half the farms have gone into sugar-cane,'

he said. 'Pineapples take a long time to

grow. We only get 30 cents each one.'

City-bred, I looked at the open sky

The tourist sugarcane train had trundled

its last lot of passengers; the front gate

closed. My cousin was looking for me.

Conrad gave me a three-headed pineapple

'He's twenty-five and single,' the gate-man

said. …

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