Tea and Samosas

Unexpected to find myself

uneasy, walking into the frame

of a Victorian town, an interloper

to a prospecting past, an unknown

relative buried in a broken grave.


In the art gallery a more familiar

chronology, even Russian icons

drew me in before a royal blue

English conversation jumped

off the wall.


In an Ethiopian cafe I drank Irish

breakfast tea and ate samosas and

left with the warmth of a long ago

home though no road signs could

get me out of Ballarat.


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Driving through drought on a bitumen

of sun, silver sun shimmering on a road

straight out of movies. Yet here I am

with only dry dusty fields and rocky crops

of nothing, no gold, just the usual suburbs

clustered in boxes around new estates.

To arrive then to an avenue of trees

and a wrought iron bench, to shade

and the sound of small birds

finches, wrens, sparrows, starlings

darting between hedges and trees,

to olives deflecting light back to the sky

and aloes relishing their patch.

An oasis of shovel and contemplation.


Copyrighted by the author