peasant sanctuary // poem

Fragment 1

On afternoons when the sun is too hot to be beneath it, 

the body rests in cedar-wood shade

gallery mood temperate undone by the 

cries of loud angels white and screeching.

When the mountain quiet settles 

cockatoo and dust-paws inclining towards the coast,

the curious peasant naps. Limbs like a thicket 

of honey-suckle perfume

Fragment 2 (or peasant vision)

His dreams are stretched out across watersheds, 

tickling the shores of icy rivers bubbling onto

smooth pebbles tossed by dirt-pressed hands.

He wonders how it feels to know in each instance 

that everything is happening

accordingly. Future arriving graciously

no sooner, no later. Perhaps it is a sensation similar to

a dove floating across tree tops, memorising the hustle

bustle of a below world.

Gazing without remorse from a

flightpath clear and shimmering.

Fragment 3

Those winged gods show us how to give your

heart purely: place its satin blush

in the arms of the soul’s twin who will plant it

where the grey goshawks nest

until it becomes the first flower to seed

gusted across rock-faces

or the noble high-altitude meadows, we become the

tumbleweed. Frayed and holy. Somedays

our dreams elevate themselves through our hands which

do the bidding.

Fragment 4

Last summer floating down

the Murray, borrowed kayaks creaking

you informed the river gums

“the heart is animated by a mercurial force,” before the

cod leaped up, marble eyed and laminated,

with a request clear as the rain shower arriving. She in her

suit of scales asked me to open so I spilt

the river across its bank, erupted fluid supernova

letting thermal veins warm us.

Glow worms, woven faint and celestial

hovered around. You

wondered if I would stay magnetised.

Fragment 5

A reference point for changing times, we

offered dug quartz as payment to the farm-gate,

summoning angels from our rosebush

to make a moat. Where the barbed wire is hostile

and brittle, our personal pack

of divine public workers sing unwelcome visitors

away.

Fragment 6

The peasant wakes to the sound of cicadas

emerging, leaving shells of former selves

stuck on birch bark. It must

be the eyes on those trees

alluring them towards a

sanctuary.

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