Why did the littered trail lead through leaf
and broken stone, across buried branches
of memory and time, and on through chilled
creeks of decadence and decay, until she could
no longer remember, where she began, or why?
Did the voice cry out the question, or did
she hear it as a sobbing unto life, a plaintive
keen of desperation, driven deep into the heart
of child and woman grown, who never knew,
that the bush would be so deep and dark, the
deserts so dry and dusty, and the sky so
unforgiving and relentless, as it pressed upon
her mind? They gathered, all the questions,
like silent sentinels, sitting or lying by the
side of bits of time, as if to mock the hopes
and dreams which dragged, belatedly behind.
Watching, waiting for that moment when
a stumble, one foot, so poorly placed upon
the hardened earth, would send everything
back to the beginning; the body brittle, broken
and bruised upon unseen ground; eyes closed
because there was no more that she could bear:
ears blocked with the dust of regrets and heart,
beating slowly, in time with the pain, driving
small, steady, explosions of dirt into memory.
Lips, dry, dressed and cracked with all that
was unsaid, could only mouth, against the
mother’s breast, in spit of soil and sodden ash
the one question to which there was no answer:


About rosross

Editor, writer, poet.
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