Swept down the footpath
like McDonalds’ wrappings
the Adelaide-igentsia blows in.
A bit crumpled –
it’s Friday after all.
We’ve all come tonight…
The upright and responsible,
With the week on their faces –
Old weight on Armani shoulders.
The ancient and crippled
With cane and accomplice
For Bethsaida’s plunge.
The young and aspiring,
loaded up with things to do
and someone to be.
The bored and ignored
stuck deep in the having
and having been.
We all shuffle and crank ourselves
into slots and corners
to hear honey sweet music.
And it comes.
It flows and smooths
like the great trickle that spills
until its mountain stream
slows to the plains
and delta fruitfulness.
We are composed.
Sharonne Price 2011
What if you blew me away, Lord,
On this gentle waft of a breeze,
Across the white lace petticoat
And the wide-spread skirt of the seas?
Beyond seductive aqua
To bluer, sapphire deep,
Where whales lament in baritone,
And languid dugongs weep.
There is another haunting here.
I hear a faint faint bell,
And muted moans of shipwrecks
Swaying slowly in the swell.
This is a turgid highway
Of migrants, winged and finned,
Of nomads, pranksters, pilgrims
With bearings deep within.
So when I’m blown out seaward
I’ll hear the signs and sighs
Of travellers who have been this way
Their history in their cries.
But I’ll hover in still moment
And despite the wind blast, sing,
My compass will direct my flight
To your antipodean spring.
Sharonne Price October 2011
In this dappled mountain clearing
Razor light captures the tiniest joys.
A flicker of leaf
floats to the forest floor.
Insect wings sparkle pink, then blue,
then disappear in flight once more.
Magic in the morning.
Maybe half-light brings its blessings,
hard baked truths no more to teach,
but here in filtered shafts of sunlight,
moments glisten into speech.
Sharonne Price 2017
On Visiting the Cathedral at Wells (UK)
They laid my flesh under granded stone
And carved my name with praise,
An epithet to do me proud.
And catch the tourist gaze.
The feet of pilgrims since have trod
four hundred years or more.
I’ve harkened to both heart and voice
in songs of rich and poor.
Now children bring their pencils
And scrub to find my name,
But the soles of a thousand penitents
Have dulled and dented fame.
Thanks that in this place of song
The stone is never cold,
It tells the tales of journeys long
And human hurt consoled.
The old grandmother tree
spreads herself at the Oval gate.
Generations of nests
cradle in her spreading arms.
She rocks and sways,
to the chimes of bells
and brisk cool gully breezes.
Old Adelaide she is, in place and posture.
Benevolent matriarch, guest of honour.
In silent commentary
she smiles upon her noisy brood.
She’ll indulge their excitements
at parties, fetes and festivals.
But higher praise she still reserves
for the strain into brighter lights.
She knows the prodigals all come home
with fortunes lost and made,
to wrestle with familiar odds
and take refuge in her shade.