The brown earth snake winds up the hill.
We travel on it, ants in space
held in by tree upon tree upon tree,
one dropped by bat or bird to mark
each year since the start of counting
four hundred million years ago;
and ferns for festivals and feasts
in case the months go unremembered.
Somewhere in a green curve
the firework bursts of two hydrangeas
dazzle the eye, pull in the breath, attract
butterflies, their very familiarity
reminding us we both are strangers.
Joe Massingham, Australia