12 September 2013
To fulfil my promise to myself to re-establish my walking regime I set off early through the empty the community gardens to the lily pond to find a Nankeen Night Heron in mid hunting stare, having the wrong lens did not help with this picture.
Onwards out of the deep green of the gardens onto a road already heavy with traffic, past a stony patch of what was probably natural Darwin bush land suffering the end of the dry season. I was thrilled to spot a group of bush stone curlews. I have only ever seen these birds in zoos before and here beside a busy road was an entire flock of them blending with the dry rocks and sticks standing as still and as straight as those dry sticks and dead. Across the road was a bright green lawn, splashes of luscious palms swaying in a small breeze and a leaf free concrete path. I could not help imagine the manicured green and clean concrete creeping towards the scrubby block the bird’s perfect camouflage lost. To me it seemed as if these thin brown birds with pleading eyes were huddling together in a last refuge. Although the greening of Darwin is a comforting and beautiful maybe some browning is a good idea too.
The rest of my day was spent working on a manuscript with Sandra Thibodeaux, http://sandrathibodeaux.wordpress.com/2013/09/08/the-casualties-of-the-season/ and lunching in Fanny Bay (poets have to eat ).
I attended the first session of Read Back http://ntwriters.com.au/home/ — a new critiquing group held in Frog Hollow at the NTWC with Kaye Hall. Great to hear from some Northern Territory writers Jahn read a short story, Diggy from his novel ‘Slow’, James from work in progress ’Longgrassing with a Laptop’ and Helen read from a novel in progress about the sex industry. Matt and Anne were happy to join in with the session listening and critiquing.
I know you want to know what happened in the night. First off, more gunfire, read fire crackers, you’ll get used to said the locals. A helicopter made several passes over the George Brown Eco House; I wondered if they could see an image of me green curled in my bed on the night vision heat seeking cameras. Heavy breathing in the undergrowth – a possum said the locals, in the morning confirmed by the community gardener who said someone had been eating her bananas.