and the rivers run with antibodies

Julie Maclean


in blood-blue arteries of artless flight and gather

egrets meet and feed

in shallow

shadow           peace

and blue


on sand bars ochre red

beaks and birds feed as cells


cancer breeds like birds


birds in shallows         deep

eat and eat


feed in blood

in blood-blue river     river of blood

and bird


they       nod

and      nod

honed scythes innate

slash the cancer down


eat the fish

the cancer fish

fish and cancer feed


blue arteries collapse

and fold as egrets feed

on drought

rare treat

and cancer tides


Julie Maclean’s second poetry collection Kiss of the Viking (Poetry Salzburg) was published in 2014. A collaborative pamphlet, To Have To Follow, is due in 2016. Her work appears in Poetry (Chicago), The Best Australian Poetry and elsewhere. Blogging at

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