Issue 6, 2019

The Dry Country

poem by Vanessa Proctor , illustrated by Heidi Cooper Smith

Dusk creeps over
the dry red soil,
over the ragged clumps
of burnt out grass
and silently settles
on the featureless plain.

It is the darkening time
before the sky turns
midnight blue and
a host of stars fleck
the evening sky.

Kangaroos the colour
of dust dot the plain
like desert oak,
cascades of stones
line parched creek beds.

A dust devil whirls
across the flatland,
blowing tumbleweeds
light as air.

An emu raises its head,
then scrabbles for seeds
in the dirt.

Every living thing waits,
waits for the blessing
of the rains.