The Saturday Paper
Moonrise in a new suburb
Colorbondage: fences edging the raw lowness.
On this street
Google maps can’t find yet
a full moon has just been released.
Seems no one else saw it jump the rooftops –
all the TV lights through curtain cracks.
Over waste ground winter green,
a moon on parole.
The cat of Lisbon
The cat of Lisbon listens in its sleep – the summer rustles outside and a Marcha band echo-locates the street.
When gulls cry from the Tagus, the cat’s ears flick – its ancestors went with Cabral and Da Gama down that estuary, ratcatchers in Macau, Timor,
Goa and Brazil – riches shining there like a sardine’s belly.
The cat of Lisbon is a white tabby, a fine dark streak either side of its spine, leopard spots like an old azulejo from Mozambique.
A cat full of saudade, it knows there’s an other self on a balcony it can never reach, even if it balanced on the washing lines and leapt the centuries.
The fire enters Fairy Dell
White flakes fall, a breeze picks up, the valley fogs with grey.
A forest kingfisher spotlit by halogen-yellow sun preys on moths escaping –
then flits as well.
The orange dancers come; the quivertrees.
Black crescents spiral down that once were green lance tips in the sky.
Two wattle birds still chase and squabble though their territory’s alight.
The elemental is here. It has a strange beauty – heresy to call it so.
Up on Chatsworth Road, neighbours with hose and rake collectivise their firebreak.
A pendulum of water bomb swings from a chopper’s underside – a wrecking ball for flame.
Unseen, god-like, the pilot leaves in a throbbing arc.
Up on the ridge
Fire trucks pulse carmine and blue into dance-floor smoke that came from crowds of eucalypts.
And now it’s fully dark.
The stumps are glowing in Fairy Dell like lanterns on a Shinto path.