BARRE-WARRE – (FROM THE HILLS TO THE SEA) – John Bartlett

From the hills to the sea
from those heaven-hugging You-Yangs to the east
they journeyed to the Karafe wetlands behind Pt Impossible
when the shearwater laid eggs in burrow nests
they sat in the soft hollows of the breasted-dunes
on shell-fish feasted — kooderoo, moorabool, and barrabool
on low fires roasted — dora, yabbi and wiitji
the names still echo in the dunes like prayers
their soft footprints in the sand
erased now by the ‘Torquay Sands’ development
eighteen-hole golf course and sleek condominiums rising from the wetlands
where red-eyed bulldozers blink in the dust
whinging-whining seven days a week
with bunkers, greens and a clubhouse
covering the tracks of those Wathaurong
forever gone.

 

Author’s Note: A beach outside Torquay