There’s no morning on that slope, east
against the day, all granite’s flat
tree-crotchets of staccato in the dim.
One abuts a boulder; trunk slim
bark reptile-tight, a sinew strained
between the gristly eucalypts.
And far from grey! A crown
of lusty lime, quill-tipped
finger kisses with each waft.
Amid the arid, olive gums, this teen
in green looks on across the hollow
to the light, where vast-limbed
Grandmother stands squat
clinched and struck, her Moses
staff into the deep, cleaved
through stone. Alone, folioles drop
in copper clatter, gnarled arms retreat
with April’s moisture from the slope.
In language of the ages
– quartz-sap, tap-root, lace-bark –
She’s sending messages
by lyre bird, fungi filament
quoll, nomadic Silvereye
Rosella, Figbird, Oriole.
Maybe by that slate-dark Euro
tip-toed, tail in tripod then
languorous beneath the leaves
or on some ancient breeze;
a millennial shimmer, rainforest
glimmer. God’s prophet
of vestal woodlands, sounding
through the lipped abyss and
down to the scourging sea.