Station life in the Kimberleys

Rob Hack

Bittersweet nine months. Stifling. Armpit
rash burns and snakes scare the hard men.

Ghostly gums and a stunning moon. Stroppy
cooks, mad gardeners and lizards that wave.

Washing starches dry on the line. Windmill chatters
all night, meat ants bite and green frogs  stare.

A million acres. Eighty miles to the top fence.
Rain smashes down, turns roads to rivers.

Station horses eat poison weed, get walkabout
and a bullet. Perfect, perfect nights. Abos play

Slim Dusty, die young. No newspapers, no cat fights, no
sirens. 3 am steak breakfast for cowboys in tight jeans who

eat cigarettes, walk funny and talk peculiar. Ghost
town at night. I read, flicking insects at the fan

while the generator roars and the air con vibrates.
The generosity, the isolation. I loved it. I hated it.


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