Kyogle Writers Festival logo

Black Swans

by Ana Davis

The husk is broken, cracked
wide open. The fourth wall      between
us and
Disasters are stressful, challenging, exhausting
Meanwhile, in a comfortable house on the canal,
B & G play scrabble as the rain bombs.
‘OMG! You’re taking this very seriously,’ texts B.
‘Maybe… It’s just that I’ve never seen the canal this high’.
How high is high enough? It’s just stuff people
are trapped / food drops are being done
Helicopters trawl through sodden skies.
It was the community that
                                     stepped
                                                 up
Dark smell of mud stagnant water & mould, so much mould!
Creeping into the bones and sinews         of things.
15, 000 warm wet bodies / Those displaced by the flood
ravaged Mullum ‘paradise’         for some

Swollen creek / swollen minds
The smell of things stirred up, ugly things, dark things
and we, ‘the lucky ones’, wrinkle our noses
as we leaf-blow the drive.
The most striking aspects of ongoing flood
molecules     of recovery, stunned recovery
              hang
                        in the moist air.
The issue caused great anger / It’s really insulting we don’t get that extra
money.

Morning and a rainbow hovers—
translucent through light rain.
On our canal—a rarity of two black swans.
Gliding, webbed feet invisible.
Their necks bow down to the glassy surface,
no longer mud-churned, forming
wine-glass shapes, reflections looping
into twin infinity-symbols.

Signup to receive news: