They have carved up the Brigalow forest, etched
out strange designs in the dark leather of its belt.
We sense in the burnt bottom of the pan; gidgee
scrub encircled by roads, railways & stock routes
that pick off mobs of trees like a shooter’s quota
of roos. At night, giant mines blend with the sky
into one wide, black ocean. We emerge in the cool
as the young frogs bubble up from groundwater;
toads we bite, turn the armoured hulks into sacks
of fluid, but the froglets hop into our jaws & rest.
We taste your red. Your engines radiate in waves
of heat, but our fangs do not hurt them. So we hide
by day in the tunnels of deep soil cracks, under the
tip trays of fallen logs. We slither out of your holes.