Boy Dreaming

In dust that walks
before the pale drive
of winter on Black Mountain

Beyond cold spidering shadows
where Cotter-River trees are with-holding
their names

In mist whispering
in the margins
of frost at Adaminiby

Up under bogong wings
collected in the granite caves
at Brindabella

I sense my dreaming

And wild pig foraging down-wind
south south-east of Franklin

The brumby kicking at
stars up on Scabby Ridge, where
lichen rock was a cradle

Mallee root nubbed into the fire
and the yarn over red-embers and billy-tea with
condensed milk sweeter than mother’s

And old Dido (grandpa’s labourer since time)
wearing bib and brace
pressing down hard
on tea-softened arrow-root,
his gums and fingers 
kneading the kind of tobacco that came in a tin



MChallis © 2005/2014