Your eyes are the exact shade of the heart of flint―mine
shine gold in the sun.
(Eileen Chong, ‘Flame’)
During the night the wind had blown away all the clouds; the dark blue sky was spreading overhead, and in its midst was the bright sun shining down on the green slopes of the mountain, where the flowers opened their little blue and yellow cups, and looked up to him smiling. Heidi went running hither and thither and shouting with delight, for here were whole patches of delicate red primroses, and there the blue gleam of the lovely gentian, while above them all laughed and nodded the tender-leaved golden cistus.
You can see that she was fond of what she saw,
the way a she-oak’s grey will break apart
to gold and purple; brown rocks
cluttering the foreground.
She made no concession
to nostalgia’s green longing –
her native grass is bleached of colour,
bush and distant ranges’ varying mauves
mark out shade’s intensity; she understood
a landscape reticent about its beauty
and painted what her eye saw.
Nearer he draws to the gum-tree scrubby horizon, turns the clouds to orange, scarlet, silver flame, gold! Down, down he goes. The gorgeous, garish splendour of sunset pageantry flames out; the long shadows eagerly cover all; the kookaburras laugh their merry mocking good-night; the clouds fade to turquoise, green, and grey; the stars peep shyly out; the soft call of the mopoke arises in the gullies!
Bound in green leather, the book looks like a rare first edition with flaking gold writing on the spine and vanilla pages.
(Cassandra Atherton, ‘The live sparrow of translation’, Southerly 76.3)