Armageddon Skies (26/12/2001)

The 2001 Boxing Day fires in Sydney were truly frightening, and I din’t think I have ever seen fires get so close to the city. I was at my Mother-In-law’s home in Chester Hill when the burning leaf that inspired this landed in the yard. The skies were a red colour in daylight the likes of which I had never seen before. It was, indeed, like Armageddon come!.

Black leaf floats free
Through Armageddon sky,
Grey, cast in shadow, forlorn,
Then gently down, down,
It rests on ground
Far from its home.
Life cast out in fire, smoke,
Flame of destruction.
Now sitting, judged in time.
Is it still living, now dead?
Is it now dead, still living?

Fire tongues shoot high

To Armageddon sky,
Destroying all in its path.
No animal safe here,
No plant untouched,
No house left standing,
All life cut off,
All memories gone.
Black ash against grey haze,
Green brush against black ground,
Orange sun in misty air,
Red moon in daylight sky.

Surreal light in Armageddon sky,
Day becomes night, all life gone.
A frantic scurry, frightened haste,
Small shape in fiery rush,
Safe at last – screech of tires.

Everything left to time
Only sorrow lives here now
While overhead floats a lackened leaf

Into an Armageddon sky

Tim Alderman
(C) 2001


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