The sun’s decent towards the horizon and into the abyss beyond the distant wall of dunes and salt bush, is the beginning of its slow recession away from the torturous heat of day with its burning white hot sky, towards the cool of night
With the advent of evening the sky’s colour slowly deepens and with the returning colour, the evening sky becomes an immense canvas streaked and splashed with an explosion of rich swirling colours that give birth to a painting of awesome ever-changing intensity in the fading light.
So the burning torture of the day fades as the ghostly cool fingers of the evening breeze, like a lovers touch, caress the scorched parched body seeking to rest. While the freshly lit cooking fire challenges the enfolding curtain of darkness that slowly engulfs the vast expanse of surrounding red dust and salt bush.
And from the glowing wood coals of the dead ghost gum, there drifts a faint perfume that penetrates the artificial taste of tinned processed stews and braised steaks with a subtle taste of freshness. A bush taste that only the open fire creates and is never forgotten
As the curtain of night slowly encircles the camp, so the fire’s glowing coals send a protective circle of light to challenge and hold the encroaching darkness at bey.
So the fire’s spread of light creates a haven safe from the encroaching curtain of infinite darkness that now engulfs the surround of space. And here, all that exist within that depthless surrounding darkness is controlled by the lores of life while all else is governed by the imagination.
A raucous massed chirping of tiny multi-coloured birds erupts from the salt bush seen within the edge of the fire’s glow and to close the eyes is to form a picture within the mind of those monstrous buildings called housing estates. Where from tea to bed time the buildings echoed to the screams of frustrated parents towards their kids and in return, the kids screaming at their parents in defiance.
Those little birds in their salt bush estate give a perfect rendition of their human counter-parts.
A soft grunting sound drifts from just outside the ring of light and then unstaring shining eyes reflect the light from the glowing coals. They stare but briefly, and then are gone into the darkness as a mother dingo passes in her hunt for prey.
Faintly, a barely heard sound of whirring wings drifts from above the ascending fire light and in the dimness between light and darkness is seen the ghostly shadow of the great owl. Oh! You mighty bird of wisdom and the keeper of man’s journey within the realms of bush dreaming.
To sit looking into the glowing coals and watch the changing shapes and forms created by the flickering flames and feel the hypnotic fingers of tranquillity and peace slowly fill the mind
And gently into this reverie drifts the soft rustling of the leaves, the voices of the bush spirits telling that all is at peace.
The loose surface earth has been scraped away to form a sleeping recess to receive the swag and once within, to lie and stare at the richness of the near black purple velvet sky. An infinity of blackness filled with a brilliance of glittering giant sequences that mesmerize with their clearly defined patterns and designs that are continually in evolutionary change.
The desire to but reach up and touch, to hold, to posses is but a fleeting emotional desire that can not be fulfilled.
Then as the eyes tire and the gentle voices of the bush spirits drift on the delicate breeze and the warmth of mother earth enfolds into her bosom, so the astral journey into sleep begins until the dawns awakening to the cursed heat of day.
Word count: 642 words.