Daly Waters (part 13 of ‘The Northern Territory Suite’)

Early century ‘watering hole’
Dilapidated, run-down, arcane
Lost in another time
That told of depressions, harsh desert winds
Searing heat, and freezing cold.
An anomaly, a freak
No friendly faces to assist
A weary travellers trek.
Outback humour, only no one understands
The quirkiness of incorrect speech
Or toilet seats nailed to a tree
Underneath a collapsing verandah
Where, perhaps, once jokes were shared
With others of like mind.
Then to the street, and another scene emerges
Of bougainvillea, desert frangipani
And flame tree in full flower
And you wonder how can such beauty
Exist amongst the scattered ashes
Of an era long ago.

Tim Alderman
(C) 2001

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