Badu Mangrove Morning, Willo Drummond

When the sun hits

the surface of the Badu

morning do you know

what must be done?

 

When the sun hits

the surface of what must be done

fish wake to feed

river and ocean

 

river fish feed

shore birds training

ironic eyes to

assess the day

 

shore birds assess

the Badu morning

while grey limbs write

shadows across the silt

 

shadows lace the surface

of the Badu morning

of everything here

as good as breathing

 

of everything here

as sure as hope, where

the sun lights the

surface of the living

 

where the sun hits

the hope of the shivering

rippling sensation

of understanding

 

when the sun glints

off the living morning

there is a rippling

of intention

 

when the sun glints off

the morning badu

when thought is no more

and only time will do

 

when everything

breathing is alive

to sensation, alert

to morning glance

 

when the sun glances

off the thought

of no more, rising

waters turn to milk

 

when the rising

milky badu

thoughts breathe

under-surface secrets

 

secrets surface then

to cool their heels

with detritus

in white water

 

when thought hits

the surface of the badu

morning the sky

glimmers at your feet

 

when the surface of

trees go under

when the sky rises up

we hold our breath

 

we hold our breath

with each root

that we’ll make

one more day

 

under the surface

of this sky, under the

hope we hold for one

more chance of breathing

 

when the breathing

sun skims roots

as the sky rises up

everything sways

 

everything sways

and shivers everything

slips just out of grasp

 

when the shivering

sun breathes badu

do you recognise

your intention?

 

When you meet your

breath by the sliding sun

when the light hits

the surface of the shadow lace

 

when the sun hits

the surface of the Badu

morning do you know

what it is you must do?

 

Notes

The Badu Mangroves are located at Homebush Bay, Sydney. Badu is the Dharug word for water: “Dharug Dalang. A Collaborative Tool for Language Teaching”, http://dharug.dalang.com.au/Dharug/plugin_wiki/wordlist [Accessed 17 August 2014].

 

Download a pdf of Badu Mangrove Morning

Willo Drummond

Willo Drummond is a current PhD candidate in creative writing at Macquarie University and a recipient of an Australian Postgraduate Award. Recently migrated from the wilds of the NSW Blue Mountains to the shores of the Parramatta River, she has weathered previous lives as an actor, singer-songwriter, photographer and arts administrator. In 2012 she served on the assessment panel for the Varuna Publisher Fellowships and last year completed a Master of Research examining the ethics of the lyric mode in Australian ecopoetics. "Badu Mangrove Morning" formed a part of this work. Other poetry and short fiction have appeared in Cordite, The Quarry and Meniscus (forthcoming).

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