Lock liquid eyes. Swim in feathered crimson.
Drink the knowledge of this mountain. Leaves
are logograms. Read the layers: green almost
silver, green almost ochre, green almost blue.
Stone velvet against your bare soles. Light braille
rain on your tongue. Forget the horizontal
boundary. Climb tall white trunks with forest
sense. Make a potpourri of papaya, peat, mulch,
honey, the astringency of wet pine, a waft of
moss and lichen. You are already living and
dead. Sense your skin shedding, growing wild.
Remember the backbone road, the soft sculpted
valleys. Watch the king parrot fly to the talisman
tree, knotted, gnarled. Drop to the hollow
sanctuary inside, wood dust and leaf litter. Hold
your nerve. Now you are ready to go home.
Jane Frank is a Brisbane poet, originally from Maryborough in the Fraser Coast region. Her latest chapbook is Wide River (Calanthe Press, 2020). Jane’s poetry has won prizes and been published widely in Australia and internationally. Most recently, her work has appeared in Westerly, StylusLit, Live Encounters, Shearsman, Grieve vol 9 (Hunter Writers Centre, 2021), Poetry for the Planet (Litoria Press, 2021) and Not Very Quiet: The Anthology (Recent Work Press, 2021). She teaches in Humanities at Griffith University.