The Man at Finke River

NovPAD Day 5 – “Peril”

it’s after we take the crossing,
the truck’s yearn and grind
this fat brown river
its sucking flow, eddying and dark

it’s soon after that
we see him on the track
motorbike hang-dog by his side
hail-pocked and limping

he tells us of a nimbus swarm
sudden and inimitable
between those (hand points) 
red breasts of desert;
darkness arrived like a train
heaved in between lightning forks 
that stung and stung and disappeared;
etched purple memories - a
crayon’s rub that faded into night’s pile

its outrage pelted his shoulders
insulted his prostrate frame
he heard screaming, like the ground itself was aching
and saw the whiplash of the trees

and we're thrown into 
his story: he and his motorbike
plaster headed and broken
while the sky caves in

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