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Coming off the mountain
dropping down the road to town
sandwiched below low cloud
and wattle-dusted August forest,
where alongside a chunk of quartz
a sundew savours the aftertaste
of a fast-rotting black midge.

In the distance – slanted rain on the gulf,
an oil tanker pointing south,
Filipino crewmen far from home,
captain a survivor of North Sea torpedoes
who tolerates his cross-dressing engineer
and dreams at dinner of Plymouth Hoe
tea and scones with British Grenadiers.