Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Bill Wootton

Song Cycle of the Magpies

--after the Wonguri-Manjigai people from north-eastern Arnhem Land

They are milling about at the G, on benches, in bars, along the back of the Great Southern
Milling about in wavering  lines, there in the shade of the Great Overhanging Roof.
Standing and waiting for the bounce of the ball,  in black and white verticals, like
           loosened upright piano keys:
In the shade of the overarching roof, they are standing, untuned.
People of the Carringbush, gathered there like rippling accordion keyboards, like
           vast splayed snakes.
In here, behind the Goals, in this Place, in the shadow of the Great Overhanging Roof.
Now sitting in rows, those Carringbush people, Piano people, waiting for
          the performance to begin.
Living on hot chips, sitting there with grease-grappled fingers,
Sitting in there waiting, those People of the Magpie Clan...
Sitting there like unplayed pianos, at that Place of the Leatherball... and of the pig's
          bladder entrails.
Sitting, waiting there in the Place of the Leatherball...
In that Place of the Centre Square, and at the Place of the Leatherball,
There at that Leather Stadium, they await... The Siren.


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