As you get closer the trail declines from wheel ruts to track, path to pad paced between grasses, an alignment of sticks, leaves, animal ways then ends — you can’t see it yet.
Push past banksias and wattles, stunted angophoras roots down into cracks forever, potholes full of leaf litter, bone-white logs jagged — this place resists, there’s no reveal, no discovery, each step is pushing against, shoulder through, stumble ahead. You are out of breath and alarm bells are ringing — it’s right here.
Now a platform of sandstone furniture, desks and chairs and conference tables – the undershelf scoured to gravel in every flood down this escarpment. In the glare and the heat and then … it opens to ocean
Below tiny sheepdogs herd tiny sheep over hanky-sized pastures, a toy truck winds up the switchback with a puff of black cotton wool, a hawk hangs and across the valley the torrent falls.
Among the fly storm
a dappled moth sips
from my teaspoon.
Image: The Larapinta Trail, Northern Territory. A haibun for Frank at Dverse where he asks us to take a hike.
And here’s my favourite prog-rock from way back – they were obviously hikers too – (just skip the ads).