Thought Provokers

time in a pelican’s wing

lake george’s

as elders or royal relatives

by an absence of light

stand formal

like knives & forks
stuck upright
in mud for the night

day will have them up
using themselves

spooning mud
water vegetables
& fish

so what

if they’ve been having
the flavours of the
lakes they fished in changed

as the nameless
brands of water

were formed and disappeared

on this continent

for 30 or 40 million years

they have followed water
scooping fish frogs crabs to live
to here–

today lake george
is the clearest of soups–


as the tide’s pollutants move
on the shore-crabs
as the effluent flows
down the rivers & creeks
as the agricultural chemicals
wash    off the land
into streams

what time is left
in the flight of their wings–

unlike humans or sun
they are not
big drinkers of lakes

they will dribble back the water
keep the fish

we are joined to them by ignorance
what time is left in anyone’s drink

– J.S. Harry (1939-2015)
from A Dandelion For Van Gogh (Sydney, Island Press, 2000)

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