21.10.07

White Hills

Yellow daisies in the tough grass of the Chinese section. An ochre lichen grows over the tilting, dun-coloured stones, through which gleams the red painted into the inscribed characters that name the dead. A circular tower with a conical roof, a hearth within for burning paper money? Offerings? Small, like the grave tablets. Some of these men walked five hundred miles overland from Adelaide, digging wells along the way, living on sheep they bought from local farmers. They were very cheerful, singing as they marched to New Gold Mountain to make their fortunes. Wind sighs in the Gallipoli pines. The yellow fields stretch fenceless away into the purple and blue-black gums. A rosella flies up into the trees, iridescence glinting from its wings. A lone cry.

2 comments:

Soapbox Press said...

Welcome back, Martin!

chiefbiscuit said...

Beautiful writing. I can picture / sense it.