Govetts Leap – Anna Westbrook

It is in the soft thuds the susurrus
the rounded edges of event
where you can hear the knitted
space the pause
standing at the lip of the bowl
your own hot blood flushing through the pipes
those moments where time aggregates into scrap and
sausagemeat
and words like
immemorial
stand out  and reticulate
and the rock scrags loll like old nudists in the scrub
and somewhere a whipbird.
This is what they call infinity
but you can still feel the sepulchre of ocean
that carved a tub into a supple
earth the yearning
in the melted sugar cliffs for the Cretaceous
departed, left
the molluscs encofinned with the tide.
There is no sound in the basin. Once you saw a hang glider
drift out across the sky
glinting like a minnow’s back.
It caught your breath and you pointed
shielding your eyes from the sun
cicadas blasting behind you
infernal.
Something about this makes you want to shout
– when your friends go close
to the edge you don’t
like it when they mime falling –
shout until your throat gives way like drywall
to a sledge in a wild yawp
but you don’t.
Fire-trail appendix scar long-healed
a wind lifts the forest belly and it quivers.
Far out on the cleared land cows graze slipshod
across piebald fields
and a truck beetles up a distant hill.