Simsons Gap (part 10 of ‘The Northern Territory Suite’)

Chalk white boulder announces our presence
To the rich red walls rising high above.
At the end of the valley, we glance through v-shaped opening
Toward the desert glimpsed through trees
Leafed in green, alive again after the rains.
In the dry sand of the riverbed, a ghost gum awaits
The next outpouring from the sky.
While stagnant pool tells subtle tale
That the wait may not be soon.
Through dry heat shimmer we raise our gaze
High above us to the red walled heights.
A single tree, stature small but strong
Struggles against the elements to survive
The hushed quiet broken only by birdcall.
Time stands still here, as it always has.
Nature takes her time, there is no hurry here.

Tim Alderman
(C) 2001


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