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Barking Up the Wrong Tree

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“Barking Up the Wrong Tree” ghost gums shed their bark the min-min makes good use of it papyrus, soft enough to imprint and write thoughts, like the ripening welts of green ants small bites sting subcutaneous and meridional, terra australis sings for the kneeling tree huggers, feel the rough exterior peel like sun-blistered thin skin weeps bit by bit silently baptised like a witch, now far removed a slate clean, reveals the smooth, hard resilient surface underneath, bleeding syrup in spoonfuls rusty vermillion gone black molasses good enough for ink; the dogs in the distance barking in pacts like dingoes hunting off track call it a duck, magpies swooping other heads congregate to water their baseline marks, to build their nests from blood and hair, survival of the fittest the protective angst of cohabitating with other feral predators on watch, like hiding bunyips their minds cobwebbed hirsute sow and split the seams, bush turkeys gobble and peck in order front seat, kangaroo courts all out of order brandish their own malleable police - miner birds, chortling pink galahs, black crested cockatoos territorial scarred, and twittering musk lorikeets, a Hanrahan storm is brewing the jury’s in, those dreaming Matilda hares expelled, waltzing for their lives for the road kill running, hear the Kingfisher speak Joker deals his 500 at the bush dance smiling - the bowers all put to bed, no-trumps, games-a-foot at the bush dance sliding across the floor the sawdust feet slid an eye-for-an-eye Thylacine sabre-toothed bides its time, it doesn't cry, dark night approaching dusk dawning indigo violate and rubenesque black boys rustle pepper trees salt the stinging eyes of diamond-scaled shining devils, slithering out of skin crackling slickly hiss, the sugar cane field burns its sweet acrid toffee stench blue and smoky mist chasing subtle creatures in a state of unrest, like foxes, rats and slithering red belly blacks flee out of their well-dug nests, now seen for what they are all undressed before the storm warning listen, hear the Kookaburra laughing, maniacally relaxed angels beyond salvation silver brumbies covertly arching sometime arrives the morning cloudy eyed, dark horses riding marmalade and magenta, shotgunned veined lightening claps its final fair weather warning (LadyLabyrinth / 2022) “Slide on By” / Tex Perkins & The Dark Horses https://youtu.be/j_YbaFvaSWk “She Speaks A Different Language” / Tex Perkins & The Dark Horses https://youtu.be/A1hBzIws5l0 “Please Break Me Gently” / Tex Perkins & The Dark Horses https://youtu.be/EJDrsy27dpg "There'll be bush-fires for sure, me man, There will, without a doubt; We'll all be rooned," said Hanrahan, "Before the year is out." "...every cloud, they say, has a silver lining." “Said Hanrahan”, Poem/ Australian https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Said_Hanrahan Tex Perkins & The Dark Horses/ Australian. Bill Henson/Photographer / Australian (Controversies) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Henson Sawdust, Kerosene and Candles "We used to prepare the floors with bags filled with sawdust soaked in kerosene and then we would have great fun, of course, dragging that all round; and then there’d be the candles, we’d shave bits off the candles and that would go on top, and then we would have a bag and we’d pull each other around on a bag to make sure that the floor was slippery enough." "The hall still has the original dance floor which has stood the test of time. It's highly polished and especially prepared before each dance. Back in the old days that was done using bags of sawdust and kerosene. A former resident recalls the local children "breaking the dance floor in, "George Ward would throw kero soaked sawdust over the floor. We'd slide up and down like mad things, then sweep up the sawdust," she wrote in a letter to Dan Ward. "Then we'd get chaff bags, with one kid sitting on the bag while the other pulled them over the floor to soak up the excess kero." "The more dragging they did, the better polish they got on the floor." A little candle wax in the mix also added to the shine. It was like glass for the grand opening."

Copyright © | Year Posted 2022




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Date: 10/25/2022 12:02:00 PM
Your poems and links are.... i am lost for words, yet here they are. Admiration for sharing your skilled poems. Have you shouted this one out from the rooftops? John
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Lady Labyrinth
Date: 10/25/2022 2:48:00 PM
Thank you John. That's very kind and generous of you. I shout all my poems from the rooftops lol...much to many another's perplexion or chagrin. :) xx
Date: 10/10/2022 1:02:00 AM
Startling poem, beyond my ability to comment, only experience and admire. We may yet be rooned! Elizabeth
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Lady Labyrinth
Date: 10/10/2022 1:22:00 AM
Thank you.
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Lady Labyrinth
Date: 10/10/2022 1:20:00 AM
I had to add in the sawdust, I remember going to bush dances up in Queensland, outside my mother's family's sugar cane farm, rural Gold Coast hinterland. The hall floors did smell of sawdust and kerosene, and I remember sliding from one end of the room to the other as a kid , in the midst of a civilised Pride of Erin. The old men sitting in the backrooms with the younger, playing 500, with roll your owns hanging from their lips and tables laid with cold 4X. I wondered if a person dropped a lit cigarette on the floor, whether the whole place would go up in flames from the kerosene wash.
Date: 10/9/2022 6:52:00 PM
She speaks a different language.
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Lady Labyrinth
Date: 10/9/2022 6:52:00 PM
https://youtu.be/A1hBzIws5l0