After Yarrawonga Drive

You know, the thought of you consumes my brittle landscape
—the trees dry up, bark peeling away—from dawn, when I scrub
dishes clean so we can use them (our hands never touching, reverent
as grass-fed rain), to eleven o’clock, when I collect two dozen fresh eggs
from happy hens, to evening when you goad
me about lamb chops, about pork sausages,
all kinds of meat I don’t touch, to night, when you wander in, wet gumboots,
rest your body against mine, but cotton sheets are never clean
enough; wattle or some bush flower snuck in with your flannelette
overcoat—eucalypts rustle on the corner of the paddock—you whisper
about your chest, I gaze at your chin, about how my skin
prickles as your hands trace lines under my breasts, and bush-scraps
scratch at us, we make a mountain under the linen—grass falls
from the silent mower outside our window—I can only listen to your breathing,
control the rise and fall of my chest as if with a lever, pulling at my teeth,
your hands on me, your breath on me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nina Carter is a poet, memoirist and editor who studied at Queensland University of Technology. She has been published in Voiceworks, The Suburban Review, Stilts and elsewhere. She writes mainly about disability and the gendered self. She edits poetry at Voiceworks and occasionally tweets about her equity/pro-environment leanings @carternnia.

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