Secret Directions to Jilliby Farm
Enter beside the hollow log mailbox.
Here the road leads through a profusion of leafy damp shadows.
Wild ferns are the underbrush
where Fairy Wrens flit from the slightest presence.
This driveway winds by towering bush gums flanked
on the other side by a paddock
thick with Kikuyu and other mixed grasses.
A dam that reflects the passing clouds
is the central focus.
Wild ducks veer away whenever cars approach.
Way down - as far as the vision stretches
is a copse with mysterious shadows that beckon.
Walk now, along contours formed by the water rush of many rains.
Feel the stress of life melt from every cell.
Birdsong has already worked its magic on your being -as well
as sunlight on your skin, and earth scents inhald deeply to your lungs.
Your heartbeat has fallen into the rhythm of the elements around.
You’ve reached the shadows of the copse-
you’ll look up to a brilliant sky
through the branches of tiny, spiky melaluca leaves.
Imagine giant broccoli and you are Alice
looking for a Cheshire Cat.
Your hands will linger on the tree trunks woven
with a plimsol lines of grass left by many years of floods.
These melaluca trees are brother-twined, rising
from spongy islands, formed by countless accumulations
of their own dead leaves.
Placid waters reflect them, Narcissus-like,
as clouds hang in their branches.
Below, water lilies hide black roots
in squishy, clay mud.
Following along the small islands of land,
jumping from bank to bank,
you will see tiny wild flowers, trailing vines and wild maidenhair ferns.
Suddenly, you will happen upon,
a huge, grey Charoloais Bull
grazing on a giant clump of grass.
He will ignore you as you pass,
if you circle wide enough.
Look over now to the homestead on high ground.
It beckons with a fireplace for frosty mornings
and a swimming pool for scorching summers.
You’re in the Dooralong Valley
and a Golden eagle soars above, so large,
it can take an unprotected lamb.
Someone saw a huge, red-bellied, deadly, black snake
here in a pile of rubble, left by some land clearers.
Overnight, humongous spiders will build webs
between trees to catch you unaware.
But not all is scary here.
It only heightens the beauty.
In the pink dawn, grey wallabies, with a sun halo along their fur
will graze on dew-laden grass.
Kookaburras will laugh their kookalaugh
and fill the valley with their jollity.
Written Summer 2007
Copyright © Suzanne Delaney | Year Posted 2014