03 May 2015
Geoffrey Lehmann, Australian poet
When we first came our house
was two weatherboard rooms
in a bare paddock.
I was just back from a war.
There were no trees
and I chose the name "Spring Forest".
It was dark when we drove up
and lit our pressure lamps and unpacked.
Our children found potatoes sprouting
on the wire mattress of a large iron bed.
What were they doing there?
my daughter kept asking.
We burned ironbark
in the old brick fireplace,
rubbing etherized hands into warmth.
At dawn Sally and Peter were out
calling in the frost, exploring.
A long icicle hung from the tank.
That day five cars passed on the road
and the children ran out every time.