Academic journal article Antipodes

Poetic Perspective

Academic journal article Antipodes

Poetic Perspective

Article excerpt

Six siblings, 10 years between us.

Same house. Same parents.

Same farm. Same yard.

A yard that breathed steam in winter; it curled up

from the puddles, out from the herd of cows queued

beside the dairy, udders bulging, calves bawling.

It spurted from the tractor spluttering to action

drifted from the sheep's carcass as it hung on the tank-stand

and from my own mouth as I freed chooks and gathered eggs.

Summer filled the yard with flies; buzzing round

the freshly hung carcass, the horses' dung, our mouths.

The tractor and truck sizzled, steering wheels too hot to touch.

We kept our eyes on the stack, on the horizon.

The dry grass felt electric

ready to combust.

When I write poems based on the growing years

I send messages to my siblings.

What was the brand of tractor we had before the blue Ford?

What did we call the yard between the paddocks and the house yard? …

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