Dust to dust

A harsh westerly

wind blows outside

my window.

Reminding me that,

wherever you are

in Australia the

desert is never

far away. The dust

from the centre

brought by winds

from north, south

east and west,

permeates our

garden, house,

enters our lungs,

becomes part of

us in the way

stardust from distant

explosions becomes

part of us.

Treading lightly

Summer is here,

in the middle of

Spring, with the

first warning of

bushfires, and the

first moment of

almost treading

on a snake (a cute

baby Black, but hey

a snake’s a snake).

In winter I stride

across the land

(though always

avoiding ants, and

beetles, and spiders).

I walk differently

in Summer. Slower,

more carefully,

each foot

landing lightly.

Concentrates the

eye wonderfully

knowing the next

step could be your

last. Is that what

makes us Australians,

I wonder, such a

cautious tentative